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Mommy Makeover

Breast Reduction

Breast Augmentation

Breast Reduction

Breast Augmentation

Breast Reduction


Breast Reduction


Breast Reduction



During pregnancy, many women have significant albeit normal weight gain. After pregnancy, some of that weight will dissipate over time. However, the overlying skin can become lax and require tightening. For some women, there is a laxity of the breast skin envelope that will result in “deflation” of the breasts. The breasts can also sag creating a flattened appearance that can be unattractive. The abdomen can also be stretched form the underlying uterus expansion so that a separation of the abdominal muscles occurs in the midline. This is termed a “rectus diastasis” and can create a disconcerting bulge in the abdomen (especially with flexing). Dr. Kim treats many women with these typical body changes following pregnancy through a combination technique known as the Mommy Makeover.

Dr. John Kim’s approach to the typical post-pregnancy body changes is to perform surgery for both the breast and the body—together, this combination surgery is known as Mommy Makeover. For the breasts, Dr. Kim often takes a combination approach of breast lift, or mastopexy, in conjunction with implant placement. This allows for an increase in breast volume as well as a re-inflation of the breasts after pregnancy and nursing. The breast lift or mastopexy that Dr. Kim performs will re-position the nipple areola complex into a more youthful and uplifted position. The typical incision patterns for a breast lift can be seen here:

Around the areola:

  • Around the areola and vertically down from the areola to the breast crease:
  • Around the areola, vertically down from the breast crease, and horizontally along the breast crease:

The mastopexy (breast lift) with augmentation can be supplemented with abdominal surgery. Typically there is excess skin and laxity in the lower abdomen as well as potential rectus diastasis. Dr. Kim can correct this aesthetic deformity by performing rectus diastasis repair and by tightening the skin and muscles through a low horizontal incision known as the Pfannenstiel incision. Dr. Kim will coordinate the two surgeries of the mommy makeover (breast and abdomen) so that both can be done safely in outpatient fashion. In rare circumstances, the patient will need to stay over at Prentice Women’s Hospital or Northwestern Memorial Hospital for 23 hour observation. Dr. Kim discusses this need on a case-by-case basis.

During your personalized free consultation with Dr. Kim regarding Mommy Makeover surgery, Dr. John Kim will also discuss the normal course of healing from this surgery: typically, this entails 2-3 weeks of acute healing, although quicker recovery is certainly possible. Most patients will need to restrict their activity for 6 weeks following surgery. Dr. Kim recommends that patients start ambulating and walking right after their Mommy Makeover to help minimize the risk of blood clots or other medical issues.

Typically, Dr. Kim will see his patients after surgery and in the first week after their Mommy Makeover. The office visits are at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in downtown Chicago (Gold Coast neighborhood) in the Galter Pavilion clinic where Dr. Kim has his plastic surgery offices. He always makes sure to provide detailed postoperative instructions verbally, and the patient will receive instructions in regards to their breast and abdominal care.

Here are some examples of Dr. Kim’s Mommy Makeover surgeries including the abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) and the breast lift (mastopexy) procedures with or without breast augmentation.




Mommy Makeover: Abdominoplasty

Breast Augmentation

Breast Augmentation

Breast Augmentation

Breast Augmentation

If you are in the Chicago area or beyond and interested in mommy makeover surgery, please contact Dr. John Kim at his offices in Streeterville on the Northwestern campus in downtown Chicago to set up your individualized consultation (312-695-6022 or

Choosing Mommy Makeover

Choosing to undergo this surgery is a highly personal decision, one you should make to fulfill your own goals and desires as opposed to someone else’s. Before you can undergo this surgery, you should plan on having no further pregnancies, as that will affect the results of your procedure(s). Ideal candidates for mommy makeover experience sagging and excess skin as well as weight gain that does not seem to subside with exercise and healthy diet. Patients may also be dissatisfied with the size, shape, or sagging appearance of their breasts. Patients planning to have this surgery should be in good physical health, not smoke, and have realistic goals and desires for their outcomes.

During your personalized free consultation with Chicago mommy makeover surgeon Dr. John Kim of Northwestern Plastic Surgery, Dr. Kim will carefully and thoroughly examine your body so he may customize an individualized treatment plan for your specific case. He will help you understand the risks of your proposed surgery so you can decide if the benefits will fulfill your goals and the potential complications are acceptable.

The Mommy Makeover Procedures

With the goal of restoring your pre-pregnancy figure, a mommy makeover is typically composed of several procedures to improve body contours through tightening your underlying tissues. The goal is to removal excess skin, which may require large incisions. Dr. Kim can often place these incisions where they are feasibly hidden by clothing. The length and pattern of the incisions are dependent upon the amount of correction Dr. Kim performs. Common mommy makeover procedures include:

  • Abdominoplasty (Tummy Tuck)
  • Liposuction
  • Breast lift
  • Breast Augmentation
  • Lower body lift

Abdominoplasty (tummy tuck)

Many women notice loose, sagging skin in their abdominal region after childbirth. During pregnancy, the skin is stretched quite taut, and upon giving birth, the skin loses its elasticity and cannot recover its initial shape. A tummy tuck removes any excess fat and skin from the stomach area, so that the muscles in the abdominal area are able to tighten, revealing a slimmer, smoother stomach.


Liposuction helps slims and reshape contours in a host of body regions. Liposuction is for reshaping. It is meant for people with stubborn fat deposits that simply will not go away with exercise and healthy diet. It can be performed as a stand-alone procedure or in combination with other plastic surgery cosmetic procedures, most commonly a tummy tuck. While liposuction is commonly excellent for removing target fat, it is unable to remove cellulite.

Breast Lift (mastopexy)

Many mothers experience extensive breast flattening or sagging, and breast lift surgery is aimed at recreating the natural breast contour by raising the breasts on the chest wall and firming them. When Dr. Kim removes excess skin in the lift surgery, the surrounding breast tissue is tightened in order to reshape and support the new breast contour. With a breast lift, Dr. Kim can also reduce the size of your areola, in the event that it has enlarged overtime. Often, women considering a breast lift opt to combine it with an augmentation, a procedure known as an augmentation-mastopexy, or “augpexy”. Incision patterns for mastopexy or augpexy include a circular pattern around the areola, a line extending from areola to breast crease, and a horizontal line spanning the breast crease.

Breast Augmentation

For women who are unhappy with their degree of breast fullness after pregnancy or breast feeding, a breast augmentation can restore the volume and shape of their breasts. With the insertion of a permanent implant under the breast for the purpose of increasing the volume, size, and shape, the natural perkiness of the breasts lost during pregnancy is restored. Breast augmentation is notorious for improving the proportions of your figure, enhancing your self-esteem, and improving self-image.

Lower Body Lift

After pregnancy and childbirth, you may want to consider a lower body lift if you are unhappy with the appearance of your buttocks, abdomen, waist, hips, or outer thighs. The goal of a lower body lift is to improve the sagging appearance by removing a “belt” of excess fat and skin, and to tighten and firm the lower body contours.


Plastic surgeon Dr. John Kim typically performs his Mommy Makeover surgeries on an outpatient basis, meaning your hospital stay will be 23 hours or less in duration. Directly following surgery, dressing and bandages will likely be applied to your incisions, and an elastic bandage will be applied to reduce local swelling. Thin, small drains may be placed temporarily under the skin to drain any excess blood or fluid that wants to accumulate in the area. Dr. Kim will provide you with specific instruction on how exactly to care for your surgical site after surgery, including which medications to apply or take orally to improve healing and avoid infection. He will also specify when he would like you to follow up with him for visits to his Northwestern Plastic Surgery offices in Galter Pavilion in downtown Chicago on the Northwestern campus.

It is crucial that you follow the guidelines Dr. Kim puts in place for you during your time of healing. He will explain what to expect during your personal recovery period, including pain expectations, driving restrictions, and general activity limitations. It is key that your incisions are not subjected to any abrasion, motion, or excessive force during your healing period. The healing process is different for each patient, based on each person’s different anatomy as well as the degree of correction Dr. Kim performed. After a few weeks, patients are typically able to resume the majority of their daily activities, including mild exercise.

Swelling usually begins to subside within two weeks, at which time you will notice your firmer, smoother new contours. Scars often appear prominently during the first few months after surgery, but these begin to lighten and flatten gradually. They will never disappear entirely, so Dr. Kim does his best to create the incisions in locations where they can be covered by clothing.

Almost immediately after surgery, you will start to see the results. For several weeks after your procedure, though, Dr. Kim may require you to wear a compression garment to support your healing tissues and minimize potential swelling. It may take up to 1-2 years for your results to fully develop, but they are very long lasting provided you commit to upholding a healthy diet and active lifestyle.


Mommy Makeover FAQs

What is the Mommy Makeover?
The Mommy Makeover is one or more cosmetic procedures that are intended to restore a woman’s figure after her childbearing years. Typically, a mommy makeover may include a tummy tuck, breast augmentation and/or breast lift, and liposuction.

When is the best time to have a Mommy Makeover?
Prior to choosing to have a Mommy Makeover, there are a few items to consider. First, it is often recommended that a woman wait until she is finished having children. Since you are making a personal and financial investment in the surgery, it may be in your best interest to wait until you have completed your family.

After you have decided to undergo a Mommy Makeover, you should wait until the body has recovered from pregnancy and childbirth. Typically, this will occur around six months following childbirth. A woman should also be finished breastfeeding so the breasts are able to return to their natural size and shape.

Is it safe to receive multiple procedures at one time?
Many Chicago plastic surgery patients have this question because a Mommy Makeover frequently consists of a combination of procedures. To answer, yes, it is safe to receive multiple procedures at one time. It is easier on the body to be under anesthesia on one occasion as opposed to two or three, and also can improve recovery time.

Can the Mommy Makeover get rid of my stretch marks?
There is not a procedure that will specifically eliminate stretch marks on the body. However, a tummy tuck may lessen the appearance of stretch marks, or even entirely remove them, depending on the location and amount of skin that is removed.

Will I still need to exercise after receiving the Mommy Makeover?
A Mommy Makeover is not a substitute for weight loss. Following a Mommy Makeover, patients are advised to incorporate regular exercise and a healthy diet into their regular routine. This will enhance the results of the Mommy Makeover, and make them long lasting.

Can I have more children after receiving a Mommy Makeover?
Having more children following a Mommy Makeover is definitely an option, but patients are advised to hold off on choosing a Mommy Makeover if they know they desire to have more children in the future. At your consultation, Dr. Kim will be able to discuss this topic more with you, and make a choice that best fits your goals and plans.

Will a hysterectomy affect Mommy Makeover results?
A hysterectomy will not affect Mommy Makeover results. Often, patients coordinate the procedures between their gynecologist and plastic surgeon to avoid having surgeries on two separate occasions.

What is the recovery time?
Recovery time varies based on the procedure you select and the number of treatments you opt to undergo at the same time. Depending upon the procedures performed and your rate of healing, healing time can range from one to three weeks.

When can I resume normal activities after Mommy Makeover?
Light activity should be possible for you, according to your comfort, within a couple of weeks after the surgery. Patients should have the ability to engage in more strenuous activities, such as exercise, after six weeks.

How soon can I return to work after a Mommy Makeover?
Typically, individuals are able to return to work after about two weeks. The exact amount of time will depend on the extent of your surgery, your pain tolerance and the physical demands of your work.

For more information on mommy makeover surgery, please contact board-certified cosmetic surgeon Dr. John Kim at his office at Northwestern Plastic Surgery (312-695-6022 or Dr. Kim has over ten years of experience with cosmetic body surgery, so set up your own personalized, free consultation with him today.

Galter Pavilion Suite 19-250
675 N. Saint Clair, Chicago, IL 60611
T: 312.695.3615 | F: 312.695.5672
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John Kim, MD
675 North Saint Clair St. #19 Chicago, IL 60611 (312) 695-3615
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