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What is a Mommy Makeover? Steps to Regaining Your Pre-Baby Body

Published by Dr. Brandon Richland, MD

Many women struggle with unwanted body changes after pregnancy. There is a solution that will help you look great and feel your best. It’s called a “mommy makeover”.

A “mommy makeover” is a cosmetic surgery procedure that uses multiple treatments to help restore a woman’s pre-pregnancy body.

This guide will help you understand what a mommy makeover is, provide you with a detailed overview of the common procedures included, and review the numerous benefits to help you decide if this treatment is right for you. 

Key Takeaways About Mommy Makeovers

  • A mommy makeover is a combination of different cosmetic surgery procedures that address physical changes caused by pregnancy and childbirth.
  • Common treatments include tummy tuck, breast lift or augmentation, liposuction and vaginal rejuvenation.
  • Benefits may include: restoring pre-pregnancy body figure, boosting self-confidence, addressing multiple areas of concern simultaneously in one surgery, and customizing the procedure toward specific needs.
  • Postoperative care instructions include: clearing the schedule for one to three weeks, proper wound dressing & drain maintenance, as well as avoiding alcohol consumption and smoking during the recovery period.

What is a Mommy Makeover?

A mommy makeover is a combination of surgery procedures designed to address common physical changes which can occur in the body after pregnancy and childbirth. It often involves tummy tuck, breast lift or augmentation, liposuction, and vaginal rejuvenation. The overall goal of a mommy makeover is to restore pre-pregnancy bodies without compromising quality results and recovery time. 

The customization of a mommy makeover varies from patient to patient as each individual needs and desired results are taken into account. For those who don’t prefer invasive surgeries, there are non-surgical options available such as laser therapies and thermal treatments. These alternatives are for women looking for more natural approaches.

New moms deserve to look just as beautiful as they did before having their precious child. Hence, mommy makeovers have become increasingly popular amongst mothers.

Image Credit: Anatolii Riepin  / 123RF.com (Licensed).

Common Procedures Included in a Mommy Makeover

A typical mommy makeover includes a combination of procedures. The most common procedures in a mommy makeover are tummy tuck, breast lift or augmentation, bbl, and liposuction. Let’s dive deep into each one:

Tummy Tuck to Remove Excess Skin

A tummy tuck, also known as abdominoplasty, involves surgically removing excess skin and fat around the abdomen for a more toned and sculpted look.

The goal of tummy tuck procedure is to improve abdominal contour and restore its form and function after pregnancy and childbirth. With this type of surgery, women can achieve their pre-pregnancy body shape by reducing visible signs of aging or laxity such as stretch marks, loose skin, stubborn pockets of fat, and weakened muscles that may cause hernias or bladder control issues.

Depending on each woman’s needs and goals, the surgeon may suggest additional treatments like liposuction for better results and minimal downtime following the preceding surgery. 

Overall, tummy tucks allow mothers to feel good about themselves both emotionally and physically by having improved confidence in their body image with their new curves.

Breast Lift or Augmentation

A breast lift or augmentation is another surgery commonly included in the mommy makeover. It involves reshaping and lifting the breasts to make them look fuller and more youthful. Augmentation uses implants to add additional volume, while lift tightens the skin around the breast for better shape and contour.

The results of this combined approach can be dramatic. The results can restore confidence as it enhances natural feminine curves. Also, for mothers who may have lost significant nipple sensation due to pregnancy, there are techniques available that focus on preserving sensation as best as possible during surgery.


Liposuction is one of the most common procedures included in a mommy makeover. This surgical procedure uses a thin tube called a cannula to remove unwanted fat from various body areas, reshaping them to create contours.

Liposuction can precisely target specific areas based on each woman’s ideal results. The outcome can be impressive when combined with healthy living habits such as regular exercise. 

The procedure is generally considered safe when done by an experienced plastic surgeon. There may be some postoperative discomfort during the healing process that can be addressed with proper care instructions.

Vaginal Rejuvenation

Vaginal rejuvenation is a transformative surgery that rehabilitates vaginal laxity and restores changes in the appearance of the vulva caused by pregnancy. The specific techniques used for vaginal rejuvenation vary depending on each individual but usually involve vaginoplasty, perineoplasty, labiaplasty, mons pubis reduction, and clitoral hood surgery.

Vaginoplasty repairs stretched tissues around the vaginal wall, while perineoplasty tightens or adds a bulk of muscle and tissue below it. Labiaplasty reduces enlarged labia minora (inner lips) that may be uncomfortable during sports and intercourse. At the same time, mon pubis reduction removes excess fat from this area which commonly occurs after birth and with aging.

Clitoral hood surgery lifts up external folds called prepuce, to make the inner part of the clitoris be better visible – providing more stimulation during sexual activities. This procedure also benefits the clitoris’ appearance since the underlying parts are no longer hidden with fatty tissue build-up.

Benefits of a Mommy Makeover

A mommy makeover can help bring back moms’ pre-pregnancy bodies and boost their self-confidence while addressing multiple areas of concern at once.

Restoring Pre-Pregnancy Body

A mommy makeover is a series of plastic surgery procedures that addresses issues such as loose abdominal muscles, stretched skin, deflated breasts and other common post-childbirth concerns. It can bring an immense amount of physical and emotional satisfaction for mothers after childbirth.

Boosting Self-Confidence

Mommy makeovers can provide excellent results for moms who want to improve their figure post-pregnancy and reclaim the confidence they may have lost. After a mommy makeover, many women have reported an improved self-image and increased feelings of control, happiness, and outgoingness.

Various studies have identified that feeling attractive is one of the main factors in regaining a sense of self-confidence. With a mommy makeover procedure, mothers often experience considerable aesthetic improvements that result in greater overall well-being.

Addressing Multiple Areas of Concern in One Surgery

A mommy makeover is an effective, comprehensive approach to simultaneously improving multiple areas of the body that have changed due to pregnancy in just one surgery.

With treatments combined into a single session, moms can avoid having multiple surgeries with separate recovery times for each procedure as all their concerns can be addressed in one go. Therefore, a mommy makeover is considered to be more efficient than individual procedures done at separate times. 

Combining similar surgical techniques allows surgeons to complete the procedure while keeping patients under anesthesia only once, reducing potential costs and risks associated with surgeries.

Customized to Individual Needs

A mommy makeover is designed to meet the unique needs of each patient. During the consultation with a qualified surgeon, moms can choose which body parts they like to focus on and which procedures to have. It’s vital that moms carefully consider what plan of action best suits them before undergoing any sort of plastic surgery treatment.

Patients should discuss all available treatments with their surgeon during these initial consultations to ensure they get the results they desire from the procedure. It’s worth noting that ideal outcomes vary according to each person. 

Recovery and What to Expect After a Mommy Makeover

An understanding of the potential risks, healing timeline and postoperative instructions is essential to ensure a safe and successful recovery period after a mommy makeover.

Post-Operative Care and Instructions

Once a mommy makeover surgery is concluded, it’s important that patients follow their postoperative care instructions carefully to aid in the recovery process. A common rule of thumb is to clear the schedule for at least seven to ten days afterward and take it easy.

Proper wound care is vital during this stage; depending on the individual case, this could include cleaning and dressing incision sites several times a day as well as wearing compression garments or drains for up to six weeks after surgery.

Alcohol consumption and smoking needs to be avoided during the entire recovery period. Drinking plenty of water and exercising within an approved range of intensity help ensure rapid healing, usually one to three weeks, with some variation based on the type of procedures performed.

In some cases, patients may receive exclusive instructions from their surgeon about how best to manage post-op healing milestones such as diet, exercise restrictions/regimens and activity level resumption timelines.

Healing Timeline

The healing timeline after a mommy makeover surgery is necessary in order to ensure that the procedures are properly recovered from and risks are minimized. Generally speaking, the initial postoperative period usually involves about one to three days of rest in the recovery suite.

After this, patients typically take two to four weeks off from work as well as any strenuous activities or exercise until all incisions have properly healed. It may also be recommended to wear compression garments during this time as it helps reduce swelling, discomfort, and speed up their healing processes.

After six weeks, most patients can enjoy full activity levels again as long as they have followed their surgeon’s instructions diligently and ensured that all important milestones of recovery have elapsed.

Temporary Side Effects and Discomfort

After undergoing a mommy makeover, patients will experience some temporary adverse effects which are normal and expected during the recovery period. The most common symptoms include swelling, bruising, pain, tenderness, and scarring.

Patients may also experience changes in skin or nipple sensitivity as well as postoperative bleeding due to the nature of the procedure(s). Mild pain and discomfort are also commonly experienced but should be minimal enough to manage with over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen.

The recovery timeline for each patient depends on the procedures performed and their overall health prior to surgery. It can take anywhere from three to eight weeks before moms can feel their usual self again.

Ideal Timing for a Mommy Makeover

A mommy makeover generally takes around at least three months recovery period to fully enjoy the results.

Waiting Until After Childbirth and Breastfeeding

It is essential to wait until after childbirth and breastfeeding before undergoing a mommy makeover. This is due to the changes in the body caused by pregnancy, labor, and newborn care that can affect breast shape, size and volume, as well as the abdominal muscles.

Time allowance before the procedure can give great results as the body returns closer to its pre-pregnancy state without additional physical stress or compromise on your health.

Waiting also reduces risk of potential complications and offers peace of mind from knowing that everything has settled down both physically and emotionally. Because each woman’s case differs in terms of desired outcome, healing needs, and family planning decisions, consulting with a qualified cosmetic surgeon beforehand is recommended to determine the best timing for getting the procedure.

Consider Family Planning

When deciding on a mommy makeover, it is important to take into account potential future pregnancies. Mommy makeovers are designed to re-contour areas of the body affected by pregnancy, so subsequent pregnancies can undo many of the results achieved with these procedures.

For those who plan to have more children, it may be wise to wait. Should you decide to undergo a mommy makeover, it is essential to consult with your healthcare team about possible impacts about your future plans, health, and caring for your infant. For instance, if breastfeeding will be part of your baby’s diet in the future, discuss how this could potentially affect any surgery choices currently being considered as some treatments may limit options available due to nursing.

Discussing With a Qualified Surgeon

It is essential to consult a board-certified plastic surgeon before considering a mommy makeover. A thorough consultation with an experienced surgeon can help ensure the best possible outcomes and minimize any potential risks or complications associated with the surgery.

During the consultation, your surgeon will perform a physical examination to evaluate skin elasticity, excess fat deposits, stretch marks, muscle laxity in the abdomen and breasts, as well as scarring from previous surgeries.

The information gathered allows your doctor to customize treatment recommendations that are tailored to meet your individual aesthetic needs.

Choosing a Qualified Cosmetic Surgeon for Your Mommy Makeover

Board certification is essential when choosing a qualified plastic surgeon for a mommy makeover. To be board-certified, plastic surgeons must meet the highest standards of medical care and aesthetic results set by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS). This verifies that they are informed on new techniques and technology that ensures patient safety during the procedures.

An ASPS board certification requires five years of surgical training after medical school in addition to passing rigorous written and oral exams, plus completing continuing education courses every year. Hence, board-certified plastic surgeons are able to take advantage of more advanced approaches and technologies, giving them an edge over less experienced practitioners. 

Researching Surgeon’s Experience and Expertise

When considering a mommy makeover procedure, it’s best for moms to research the experience and expertise of the plastic surgeon before making a decision. Patients can then trust that their doctor has the necessary qualifications to perform the desired procedure in order to achieve the exact look they’re hoping for.

Experienced surgeons are more likely to understand all complexities associated with the cosmetic procedures and have immense understanding about proper postoperative care and complication management if need be.

Consultation and Communication

A thorough consultation with a board-certified plastic surgeon is essential for understanding the possibilities and outcomes of a mommy makeover. During the consultation, it’s important to discuss one’s goals and expectations, ask questions related to experience and expertise, as well as the potential risks and complications associated with different procedures involved.

Experienced surgeons will know how to customize the surgery according to your individual needs resulting in improved outcomes from each treatment you undertake.

The role of the plastic surgeon in both guiding the patient through the decisions they need to make when considering a mommy makeover is instrumental, so make sure you keep an open line of communication and maintain realistic expectations.

Image Credit: Dmytro  / 123RF.com (Licensed).

Potential Risks and Complications

With the benefits, there are also potential risks and complications associated with a mommy makeover you should be aware of before deciding to undergo this transformative surgery.

General Surgical Risks

A mommy makeover is a major operation that carries the same risks as most other types of surgical procedures. Common complications can include adverse reactions to anesthesia, infection or poor wound healing, hematoma or seroma (accumulation of blood or fluid), cardiac or pulmonary complications, and deep vein thrombosis.

These risks can be minimized by choosing an experienced board-certified plastic surgeon with expertise in performing mommy makeovers, and taking all post-operative precautions seriously.

Specific Risks Associated With Each Procedure

Each of the procedures in a mommy makeover comes with its own potential complications and general risks associated with surgery. Common potential complications include pulmonary embolism or nerve damage due to anesthesia, healing difficulty related to smoking or obesity status prior to surgery, and skin necrosis. There can also be problems related directly to implants, such as rupture/leakage and heavy scarring.

Preparing Mentally and Physically for Potential Challenges

Undergoing a mommy makeover surgery is serious business so it’s important to prepare both mentally and physically for any potential challenges. It is essential for moms who have had a baby understand the risks and complications associated with this major surgery.

Proper mental preparation can help lower anxiety levels which might put an unnecessary stress on the body during recovery. Similarly having an idea about the postoperative care instructions beforehand will ensure that moms are well equipped to handle their own recovery process.

Moms should also take some time to appreciate that their bodies went through a lot during pregnancy, from growing babies inside them to making milk upon childbirth. Seeking out support from the spouse or other loved ones could be beneficial in coping with this transformation emotionally before, during, and after undergoing such life-altering procedures.

Real Patient Experiences and Results

For a firsthand account, potential patients can access before and after photos of mommy makeovers that have been shared by previous patients. Patient testimonials and reviews are available to provide insight on results and recovery experiences.

Before and After Photos

Before and after photos of mommy makeover patients are a great way for mothers to see the potential outcome of the procedure. ‘Before’ photos in particular can help paint a realistic picture of what changes the surgery can address, which is important in helping prospective patients set realistic expectations.

‘After’ photos demonstrate how successful mommy makeover surgery can be. They serve as visual evidence that one customized approach can give a life-changing transformation.

Through before and after images, mothers considering this procedure may become inspired and reassured that these surgeries offer real-life success stories from other moms who restored their pre-pregnancy bodies using this revolutionary technique.

Testimonials and Reviews

Testimonials offer firsthand information on both the results achieved by patients as well as their individual experience with either surgical or non-surgical procedures. They can help other moms decide if a mommy makeover is right for them as they get to read what other women have gone through during the procedure and how satisfied they were with the result. 

Reading good reviews and testimonials from real patients about their mommy makeover experiences can also provide invaluable insights about the reputation of the plastic surgeon offering this type of surgery. It allows individuals to gain an understanding of the skill level and expertise of a particular plastic surgeon with regard to performing these surgeries.

Image Credit: Staras  / 123RF.com (Licensed).

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About What are Mommy Makeovers

1. What is a Mommy Makeover?

A “mommy makeover” combines surgical and/or non-surgical procedures to restore areas of the body that have experienced changes due to pregnancy, childbirth, nursing or weight loss to regain the youthful look enjoyed before motherhood. It commonly includes breast augmentation, abdominoplasty surgery, liposuction, butt lift/augmentation along with many other treatments available today.

2. Are There Any Risks Associated With a Mommy Makeover?

As with any surgery or medical procedure, there are always inherent risks involved such as anesthesia complications or infection. However, the risk can be minimized with diligent care during preparation and postoperative recovery periods. Special attention should be paid if considering multiple procedures at once as more risks may present themselves due to the added burden on the patient’s health system (i.e., prolonged general anesthetic).

3. Who is a Good Candidate for a Mommy Makeover?

By best practice standards, only healthy individuals without active major diseases (vascular disorder etc.) who have maintained their ideal weight for at least 6 months prior to the treatment should consider undergoing this type of surgical process. Also, women who are no longer planning on any future pregnancies.

4 . What Are the Long Term Effects of Having a Mommy Makeover?

Outcomes tend to vary from person-to-person based on how much they invested in aftercare following the procedure. Assuming all goes well, most patients enjoy improved physical shape and overall well-being versus pre-makeover status, which frequently lasts alongside lifestyle education provided during consultation stages.

Conclusion and Summary Answering the Question: What is a Mommy Makeover

A mommy makeover is a surgical procedure that aims to restore the physique and self-confidence of women who have given birth.

This type of procedure should only be pursued when the individual is mentally, physically, and financially prepared, and most importantly, when the individual is certain that this is the right decision for them.

It is important to take the necessary time to make an informed decision and to consult with a qualified medical professional to ensure that the procedure is safe and appropriate for the individual’s specific needs.

Please note that this article is intended for informational purposes only and should not be construed as medical advice. Before making any changes to your treatments, please consult with your healthcare provider to discuss the appropriateness and safety of such changes.

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About the Author

Dr. Brandon Richland, MD is a respected Board Certified Licensed Plastic Surgeon in Orange County / Southern California specializing in cosmetic and reconstructive surgeries.

Driven by his passion for medicine, Dr. Richland obtained his Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) degree from the prestigious program at Saint Louis University (SLU) School of Medicine in 2013. His exceptional skills were recognized when he received the McGraw Hill / Lange Medical Student Academic Achievement Award, and graduated top of his class with Honors. For his undergraduate degree, he attended University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and graduated with Honors in 2009.

To further enhance his surgical expertise, Dr. Richland completed his Residency in Plastic Surgery at the University of California, Irvine (UCI) from 2013 to 2019 earning the Academic Achievement Award twice during this period. A total of 14 years in dedicated schooling and medical residency.

Dr. Richland is actively involved with healthcare and medical societies, as a Diplomate of the American Board of Plastic Surgery, a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons, and the California Society of Plastic Surgeons.

Contact Dr. Richland today by visiting RichlandMD.com, scheduling a cosmetic consultation, or by calling 714-241-0646 or 949-945-0025 directly.