Like most of us, model Ashley Graham has cellulite - and isn't afraid to celebrate it. Taking to Instagram this week, she posted a fabulous pic on her bike with a kick ass, body positive message:
"A little cellulite never hurt nobody.." she wrote. "Stop judging yourself, embrace the things that society has called 'ugly'. #lovetheskinyourein #beautybeyondsize."
I'm with you, Ashley. There's something about the Victoria Secrets models that makes me want to eat chips.
Granted it's an unusual response but I think my logic is that their bodies seem so unobtainable that I might as well plummet full throttle into rebellion. So mainly I just don't look directly at them, much like an eclipse. But when T- minus bikini is imminent, you need a few expert products you can employ to make your body look markably better. For me, these are them.
Original Source Watermelon & Jojoba Oil, £6.99
A quick drying moisturising oil spray that gives calves a pleasing sheen but without that slippery feel. I spray this on my legs after shaving and it makes them look much sleeker so I don;t have to bother with heels.
James Read Tan Accelerator, £25
I feel like this lets my natural tan achieve its full potential. Granted there's a small amount of self-tan in there so that obviously helps but it also stimulates the skin's natural melanin production to accelerate and extend any tan. A helpful and much needed boost for me.
Decleor Aroma Nutrition Nourishing Rich Body Cream, £32
I'm a little ashamed to admit that my skin must be parched because it drinks this stuff up. Super rich in texture but genuinely melts into the skin, making it look and feel nourished. The smell is pretty amazing and if you apply it all over before heading out, you certainly don't need perfume as well.
Mio Shrink To Fit Cellulite Smoother, £29.50
I blooming love this brand and haven't yet found a product that's disappointed me. This one's great for lumpy bits which let's be honest, everyone has to varying degrees. For me it's thighs and bum so I work it in those areas with the vigour of a Victorian washerwoman. I believe a portion of the results are from the physical motion of pummelling the skin into better circulation but the hi-tech formula turfs fat out of its little pockets and my skin's visibly firmer as a result. It's a 30-day process so you need to stick with it but way easier than dieting.
Bliss Fuzz Off Foam, £26
The worst thing about hair removal creams is the messy application so this got me with the fact that you just spray it on and leave it. That and the fact it doesn't smell like skin-melting chemicals.It's supposed to stop your hair growing back as thick and fast too but to be honest, I forget to make any kind of assessment each time. Best of all, you can just wipe it off with a flannel (against the direction of the hair growth) which is neat, just make sure it goes straight in the wash afterwards - gross.
By Terry Tea to Tan Face and Body, £55
I've never felt the urge to use this on my face as I'm certain I'd make a complete mess of it but I love it on my arms and shoulders when I'm going strapless. It's essentially a bronzing water so the first spritz can be a tad alarming but it blends in seamlessly for a warm, burnished tan look. Not for the pale but great if you've got a base than that you want to intensify. Amazingly it's never come off on my clothes yet.
The Body Shop Moroccan Rhassoul Body Clay, £16
This is a day-after-the-night-before body saviour if you've been hitting the sangria a little too hard. Apply a thin layer aIl over, let it dry on the skin and in the process, it draws out impurities (I like to think of it pulling out all the alcohol) and when you wash it off, your skin's gone from toxic grey to perky pink. It also has the benefit of tightening the skin so you can confidently sport bare legs again.
This Works Energy Bank Hand Makeover, £25
As the self-professed DIY manicure queen (let me have this one), I love a bright summer nail on tanned hands but I fully condemn dry, cracked hands or rough cuticles - no manicure looks good with them. This is so much more than a bog-standard hand cream because it contains blurring pigments and a brightening complex that makes hands of any age glow. I apply it to the backs of my hands and wrists to minimise any marks, veins or scratches.
Ciate Bikini Body Balm, £22
Totally sucked in by the name of this but then got to love it for its usefulness and the other-worldly luminosity it gives my skin. If I'm really out to impress (i.e have ample time to get ready), I'll apply it along my collarbones to make them look more prominent and dot it on my shoulders to catch the light.
Carita Preparing Contour Scrub, £52
I know face scrubs are bad news and but body scrubs are okay right? This one's made it into my top ten because it's a hybrid of double exfoliation action – both physical beads and enzymatic action. That way I don't feel bad if I scrub some bits harder than others. Elbows and knees get bit more attention, as do the tops of my arms.