Amber Portwood of Teen Mom fame recently caused a bit of a social media stir when she talked about getting a mommy makeover.
Huh, what? Mommy makeover?
Hollywood Gossip, a website dedicated to this sort of news, didn’t know what to make of it, either. “She went and got herself something called a ‘mommy makeover,'” they said.
So, what exactly is a mommy makeover? And do you have to be a mommy to get one?
To answer the second question first, no. A mommy makeover is a suite of aesthetic procedures designed to address all the problems that come from being pregnant and breastfeeding children: loose skin on the stomach, a lack of fullness in the breasts, sagging in the breasts, stretch marks, and even unwanted fat in those hard-to-lose places. But of course, those same issues can be experienced by any woman who loses a significant amount of weight. And they are also concerns associated with the normal aging process.
The 2 procedures most commonly associated with a mommy makeover are cosmetic breast surgery and abdominoplasty (which most people know as a tummy tuck). Women who breastfeed often are left with deflated breasts and want to restore the volume with implants. But what if your breasts are also sagging?
“Many women who have had children are excellent candidates for a combination breast augmentation with simultaneous full lift, since the breasts tend to stretch and lose shape and volume after pregnancy,” says Dr. Thomas Hubbard, a plastic surgery specialist in Virginia Beach. “However, this procedure can be beneficial for any woman who wants to enhance the size of her breasts as well as reduce breast sag.”
Even on its own, a tummy tuck accomplishes a number of goals. Loose abdominal skin is probably the most frustrating concern for moms who spend hours at the gym trying to restore the flat belly they had before having children. You can do crunches until your abdominal muscles are rock hard, but that loose skin remains. Only surgery — specifically, a tummy tuck — can remove it. Removing the skin also helps get rid of most (but probably not all) of the stretch marks that result from pregnancy.
Additionally, plastic surgeons performing a tummy tuck can simultaneously repair abdominal muscles that often separate during pregnancy, a condition called diastasis recti. And besides breast enhancement and tummy tucks, liposuction is often done during a mommy makeover to siphon pockets of excess fat and create a smooth contour.
Another procedure that more and more women are asking about is vaginal rejuvenation. Some women feel self-conscious about how their vaginas look or express difficulties or pain during certain activities, such as riding a bike, and they elect to have aesthetic surgery to reduce and tighten the vaginal tissue. This can be achieved through either surgical or nonsurgical treatments, such as ThermiVa®.
As for Amber Portwood, apparently she opted for a breast lift, but decided against a tummy tuck because she’s still planning on having more children. That’s a wise decision: Most plastic surgeons advise patients to wait on having a mommy makeover until they are finished having children, because a subsequent pregnancy could very well undo the results.