Hip dips are a natural part of the body as the distance between your hip bone and your thigh bone creates a crease.
You may have more or less prominent hip dips than others because of certain anatomical factors, including the shape of your hips, the amount of muscle mass you have, and your body fat.
Either way, people nowadays have become obsessed with perfect, sometimes even exaggerated hourglass figures, so these beautiful indentations are now largely considered as “flaws”.
So, how long does it take to get rid of hip dips?
Well, if you want to naturally cover up that crease, building muscle mass and getting a handle on your weight is the way to go. It’ll take a bit more time (I’m talking months, maybe years for some people) but it can also feel extremely rewarding. Plus, there’s a ton of health benefits to doing it this way, too.
Also, if you’re asking, “is there surgery for hip dips?” Yes. There is. Although I typically don’t recommend it, it’s a faster option given that you’ve already saved up enough money.
We’re going to discuss all these today, but let’s talk briefly about surgery first.
What is hip dip surgery?
It’s basically manipulating fat around the hips and thighs. This can either be done through injection (addition), removal, or transfer. Fillers and silicone are also alternatives.
It’s an outpatient surgical procedure, so it shouldn’t take too long and is relatively low-risk. However, like any surgery, it’s going to be painful when the anesthesia wears off. The area around the surgical site can also be swollen and it’ll take about half a year to fully heal.
It’ll also cost you anywhere between $4000 – $12,000.
I don’t know about you but that’s a lot.
Is hip dip surgery permanent?
From what I know, hip dips surgery through fat manipulation tends to be somewhat temporary since your body will reabsorb some of the fat while you’re healing and possibly even after you’re fully healed. This means that getting the curves you want can require multiple surgeries.
On the other hand, your body doesn’t absorb implants, so it’s a more permanent procedure. However, it might not look as natural.
With that being said, the choice is still yours in the end.
But, if I may, I strongly suggest you do it naturally through diet and exercise.
It’s not that I don’t think surgery looks good because, done right, I think they do. However, any surgery can come with risks. Per the MayoClinic, these include complications with anesthesia, infection, bleeding so much you’d need a transfusion, scarring, and even nerve damage.
On the contrary, transforming your body naturally through fitness comes with a myriad of health benefits such as a healthier heart, a better metabolism, more balanced hormones, better mood, and perhaps more importantly to some of you, better performance under the sheets.
These benefits largely stem from a lifestyle change of eating healthier food and just generally moving more which science has long associated with better longevity.
On that note, let’s shift our focus towards how to get rid of hip dips through exercise and diet.
What exercises fix hip dips?
The muscles in the region of your hip dips are your gluteus medius and your tensor fascia lata (or just TFL for short). In theory, working out these muscles sound good but that’s not the whole picture.
First of all, from a medical standpoint, working out your TFL solely for the sake of hypertrophy will likely lead to hip tightness. Back when I was practicing as a physical therapist, virtually the only thing we did to the TFL was stretch and release it because tight TFLs cause back, hip, and knee pain to even the most athletic people.
Second, yes, working out the gluteus medius does seem to help. However, it should also be part of an all-around glutes/legs workout.
So, to answer the question, exercises that develop your gluteal muscles, including and especially the gluteus maximus and the medius, is key to fixing your hip dips. This way, you get fuller, more 3-dimensional results that look good from any angle.
We talk in detail about these exercises in our How to Turn A Flat Bum Into A Round One article but here are a few examples that science says are best:
The 5 best gluteus maximus exercises (per a 2020 study):
- Hip thrusts
- Belt squats
- Split squats
Read more about the study here.
The 4 best gluteus medius exercises (with links to individual studies):
- Crossover step-up (study)
- Lateral step-up (study)
- Side-lying hip abduction (study)
- Seated hip abduction machine (study)
Another question I want to answer is this:
“Why are my hip dips getting worse?”
I get asked this all the time and, again, it always comes down to the same 2 things: diet and exercise.
Or, more specifically, lack of either or both of those leading to weight gain in all the wrong places.
Unfortunately, genetics has a lot to do with this. For example, some people deposit more fat on their abdominals whereas others gain more fat around their butts.
Your hip dips could be getting worse because you inherently deposit fat above your hips (i.e. love handles) or at the top of your thighs (i.e. saddlebags), making the indentations look more pronounced. It’s like an illusion, really.
Others are simply lucky that they deposit fat in and around their hip dips which makes the creases less prominent as they gain weight.
Now, let’s say you do exercise and you have a good diet but your hip dips aren’t getting any better.
Well, maybe you’re not training right. Maybe you’re too focused on your gluteus medius (because that’s the muscle nearest to those hip dips) and neglect working on your thighs, abs, and gluteus maximus.
As already mentioned, you’re going to want a complete, 3-dimensional look to get the best results.
Do hip dips go away with age?
If you’re asking this question, forgive me for assuming that you’re a younger woman — specifically, someone who’s maybe around the age of puberty — because that’s where I’m seeing a lot of these concerns.
Anyhow, it largely depends on you.
As your body changes, you might develop a hip structure that can make your hip dips more or less prominent. I know it sounds unfortunate, especially if you somehow develop the former. But, listen to me:
Hip dips are okay! They’re beautiful! My wife has hip dips and, I promise you, she’s as close to perfect as it gets.
Now, while you can’t change your skeleton, you can still do the right exercises and get proper nutrition. If you get better at transforming your body and targeting specific muscles, those hip dips can fade, even if not completely.
So, how long does it take to get rid of hip dips?
Months of hard work at the gym and the kitchen if you want to do it naturally; almost instantly if you want to go through surgery.
But, in case I haven’t made my point across, let me just say this as simply as I can:
You look beautiful the way you are — hip dips or no hip dips.
But if you want to get rid of it, that’s your call and you’ll still be just as awesome.
Surgery can get you faster results but it’s more expensive, more painful, and comes with more health risks. Diet and exercise can take a bit more time but it’s also a lot healthier and, in my opinion, more rewarding and more aesthetic.
Whatever route you choose though, all I ask is that you do it for yourself and not for anyone else.
Oh, and please share this with your friends who might be in the same shoes you’re in. Thanks!