Contrary to what many people think, cellulite is not a type of fat, but is rather simply the appearance that fat under the skin can create when the skin dimples. The term was first used in the 1920's and one cosmetic company has noted its historical place of cellulite in modern society as an "inappropriate term used by women to describe curves which they judge to be too plump and not very aesthetic".
Hormones, genetic factors, lifestyle and diet all contribute to the development of cellulite. Cellulite affects mostly women, and rarely men.
Newspapers and gossip magazines love celebrities with cellulite and will tend to publish close up photographs of the cellulite which is usually accompanied by a derogatory headline or comment. This has lead to women fearing cellulite as it is regarded as "ugly" but yet there is no "cure" for the condition.
One problem that the cultural obsession with cellulite has created is that cellulite suffers will seek cosmetic improvements (which won't work) rather than address the cause of the issue, which is largely diet and exercise based.