Don’t miss out on swimming just because of a little cellulite. You can help firm and tone sagging skin with firming body creams and I found a few that actually work!
I’ve been testing out 5 firming body creams for the past 2-3 months and I’m happy to tell you which ones work (and which ones not so much).
Best Overall Performance
Nerium International Firming Body Contour Cream, NeriumADTM is the most expensive one we reviewed BUT it delivered the best results. (Go figure, right?!) Unlike other body creams and lotions, this one nourishes and soothes dry, sun-exposed skin while also providing potent anti-aging ingredients. Nerium Firming Body Cream is packed with Forskohlii root oil and Caffeine which both work together to help smooth and tighten the skin. The exclusive and patented ingredient, NAE-8TM, helps to firm and tone problem areas.
I chose to use Nerium Firming Body Cream on my belly because after 3 kids, it needed a little help. I used this firming body lotion twice daily, every day on my stomach for the past 2 weeks. I’m not in love with the scent of this one, but the immediate results I experienced made me unconcerned about the light scent that dissipates quickly anyway. Immediately after application my skin literally feels tighter. Not in a dry way either. This body cream is actually very moisturizing, but you do need to really massage it into skin for at least 30 seconds. After a week of using it twice daily I could tell my skin looked different. Two weeks later, I actually felt confident enough to wear a two piece swimsuit to the beach.
Independently conducted clinical trials show:
- 92% of participants reported positive improvements on their thighs.
- 92% of participants reported an increase in skin hydration.
- 83% of participants reported an improvement in the appearance of skin smoothness and cellulite.
Case in point, I definitely recommend Nerium Firming Body Cream because despite the steep price, it actually delivers results and a little goes a long way. I’ve only been using this one on my stomach for 2 months and I’m only halfway through the tube. I’m sure if you use it on all your trouble areas, you could go through a tube a month. You can save $30 on the price of each tube if you get on auto delivery, so that is worth considering.
Price: $120 for a 6.7oz tube ($90/tube on auto delivery)
Get It: Nerium.com
Best For Tightening Action
StriVectin-TL™ Tightening Body Cream is ready to tighten up slack skin, no surgery required. This rich and intensely hydrating cream instantly goes to work to tighten skin’s surface and over time actually enhances density too. This multitasking warrior helps your skin retain vital moisture for a visibly firmer, more youthful appearance. This clinically-proven body cream contains a patented NIA-114 molecule that will help strengthen the skin barrier to prevent water loss all while lifting thin, saggy skin giving you visible results in the firmness, tone and texture of your skin.
I chose to use this one on my upper arms for around 8 weeks and was very happy with the results. I have not been doing as many pushups as I would like, so my arms weren’t looking very toned. Thankfully, this body cream made a noticeable difference in the texture and tone of the skin on my arms in just a few weeks. I have to give this one an A+ effectiveness. Since I was reviewing other products on my stomach and thighs, I don’t know how well it will work on the rest of my body. I suspect it will be quite effective though since I got noticeable results using it on my arms for a few weeks. A friend actually said to me, “Oooh your arms are so toned!” when she saw me in a tank top. Winning!
Price: $59 for 6.7oz tube
Best For Cellulite
Mary Kay TimeWise Body™ Smooth-Action® Cellulite Gel Cream is the cellulite solution that has been proven so effective that 9 out of 10 women who used it liked what they saw in the mirror after a nine-week independent consumer study.
- After 2 weeks, 9 out of 10 women said their skin felt smoother.*
- After 3 weeks, this product was clinically shown to improve the appearance of cellulite and skin firmness.**
- After 9 weeks, 87% of women said it dramatically reduced the look of cellulite.*
Mary Kay’s targeted and thoroughly tested TimeWise Body™ Smooth-Action® Cellulite Gel Cream is proven to deliver deliver results: cellulite that looks less noticeable and skin that feels tighter, looks firmer and feels smoother. This super potent gel cream glides onto skin easily and infuses skin with glycolic acid, caffeine, argan oil plus potent botanical and marine extracts that together create a powerful, effective formula.
I chose to use this one on the outside and back of my thighs for the last 10 weeks. I didn’t notice an immediate difference, but I saw noticeable results after about week 4. I was surprised that it did in fact visibly minimize the appearance of cellulite. I used this cellulite cream twice daily and massaged it in with the Mary Kay Smooth Action Body Massager until it was fully absorbed. This duo is a great cellulite treatment!
Price: $40 for 6oz bottle
Get It: MaryKay.com
Best Under $50
If you can’t drop a huge chunk of change, that’s ok, you can still get great results with Whish Firming Body Cream.
Known for their use of all natural and high performance ingredients, Whish has wowed us again with another phenomenal product. This luscious and super moisturizing body cream is designed to help eliminate the appearance of minor scars, stretch marks, blemishes and hyperpigmentation, while providing a firmer look and feel to your skin. It is made with only all natural and organic ingredients. It’s not going to do your situps for you, but it will definitely enhance your hard work and make you feel more confident to bare it all on the beach.
I chose to use this one on my hips and love handles for 8 weeks. The scent alone is enough to make me keep using it. It has a light, floral scent that makes it a joy to apply. With this one, I noticed a reduction in stretch marks more than a tightening or toning effect. It seemed to smooth out even deep stretch marks and make my skin tone more even, making them less noticeable. For that alone, this one is a great bang for your buck!
Price: $36 for 5oz bottle
Get It: Ulta
Best For Natural Ingredients
Frownies All Natural Cellulite Cream combines 100% pure, therapeutic grade essential oils with natural caffeine and plankton to help improve the appearance of cellulite on legs, hips, under arms and belly.
I chose to use this one on my inner thighs and I’m already seeing a difference in the texture of my skin after just two weeks. It looks slightly plumper which makes it appear smoother and less bumpy. Out of all the cellulite / firming body creams and lotions I’ve tried, this is the most natural one that actually delivered noticeable results.
Apply this one twice a day to any areas of concern to firm, tone, smooth and contour the skin. It is recommended to use it for 30 days, twice daily, to see results.
Price: $39.95 for 4oz tube
Get It: frownies.com
I’m no swimsuit model, but I’m not about to let that stop me from getting out there and having fun with my kids! I’ve given birth to 3 children, but I committed to losing the baby weight and getting back into shape. I’m not where I want to be yet, but I’m on my way and I’m thankful for the skin care products that are making me feel better in my own skin during the interim.
(And yes, those are kissy lips on my Betsy Johnson swimsuit bottoms.)
Products To Help Your Firming Body Creams Work Better
Any firming body cream or cellulite treatment will be more effective if you are putting it on clean, well-exfoliated skin. Just as you would prep your skin prior to applying a sunless tanner, you should take the same steps before applying firming body creams or cellulite cream.
Hop in the shower and get nice and clean. Make sure you get off all the sunscreen, body lotions, and whatever else could be on your skin. My personal favorite is Beessential Grapefruit & Lemongrass All Natural Body Wash that is made with coconut, olive and hemp oils. This stuff is straight up awesome. I get the opportunity to review a lot of different body washes, but I always go back to this one. Gentle enough to wash your sensitive nether regions yet strong enough to remove anti-perspirant deodorant. I’m literally on like my 6th bottle of this stuff and I’ve been using it for years. Highly recommend!
After you are sure you’ve gotten your body good and clean, it’s time to exfoliate! Guinot’s Gommage Peau d’Orange is spa-quality body scrub that is targeted to attack what the French call “orange-peel skin” – the unattractive condition known as cellulite. Peau d’Orange helps facilitate the absorption of your firming body creams and other cellulite treatments.
Get It: lovelyskin.com and at more than 1,000 Guinot spas in the U.S.
Less Effective Firming Body Creams
I tried several other products that were less effective or produced no visible results at all. Some I would still recommend, some I would not. They are as follows…
Nivea Skin Firming Hydration Body Lotion with Q10 Plus has a light scent, goes on greasy but absorbs quickly and overall is a great moisturizer. If you use it consistently, you will notice an overall difference in your skin, but I think the results would only be dramatic for someone that either doesn’t normally apply lotion and has very dry skin or someone who is older (50+) and has crepey skin. I wouldn’t put this one at the top of my list because if you just switch out your normal moisturizer for this one, you probably won’t notice impressive results. However if you normally don’t moisturize or have extremely dry skin, you might like this one. Plus it’s very affordable! Just $10 for a 13.5oz bottle.
Bliss FatGirlSlim, a fan favorite with a cult-like following, but believe me, it’s just because of the name. While this is an excellent moisturizer and it smells fantastic, it doesn’t do much for reducing the appearance of cellulite. Like I said above, if you normally don’t use any moisturizer at all and then start using this twice a day, religiously, you will most definitely love it and are likely to see results. If you already keep your skin fairly moisturized though, don’t expect miracles. At $36 for 6oz and the inconvenience of having to scoop it out of the jar by hand, don’t bother.
Jergens Skin Firming Daily Toning Moisturizer smells great and moisturizes just fine, but that’s it. Don’t bother buying this one.
Aveeno Body Moisture Positively Ageless Firming Body Lotion is another one that smells nice and is a great moisturizer, but your money is better spent elsewhere if you are actually looking for results.
What did I miss?
Are there other firming body creams or cellulite treatments I didn’t cover in this post that you are wondering about? Let me know in the comments! I’m always willing to try new things!