What I Wore Post Tummy Tuck

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Hey, Friends! It’s been four months since my surgery. I lived in a compression garment 24/7 for three months straight — oi. I’ve gone from terribly swollen and inflamed, to less swollen and numb. The last time I had a neurotherapy (involves needles), I felt NOTHING. My scar is still fresh, and it sometimes hurts. If I have a busy day, I’ll feel some pain at night. My lower belly, where the internal stitches that repaired my muscles and the external stitches cross, is still inflamed.

Recovering from surgery is no fun. BOO. Our post-tummy tuck outfits, compression garments to stretchy jeans, change week to week. Here's your shopping list.

Not pictured: chronic back pain, hernia, weak muscles, peeing my pants everyday.

I wrote on my Instagram (@julietatorresd) that I don’t recommend a tummy tuck unless necessary, and that sentiment is still true. My abdomen needed a big repair, and that comes with a lot of pain. I cried every night for over two weeks. This is not a walk in the park, but it’s been one of the best decisions of my life.

One thing I didn’t expect (besides the pain), was how difficult getting dressed would be. I knew I’d be in sweatpants for a couple weeks, but I thought I’d be back in my clothes soon after. I wasn’t. At the two-week mark, my husband invited me to have dinner out. Getting dressed for it was so awful. I tried on several pairs of jeans and tops, and I couldn’t feel myself. I was still bent over and swollen, and NOTHING FIT. I cried. Two weeks in sweatpants were taking its toll on me. The next day I got my period. That explains all the crying. Why do we always have to deal with hormones on top of everything else?

Anyways, here, I’ll share the things that worked for me. Things that helped me feel more like myself when I wasn’t feeling my best.

1. Compression Garment

Recovering from surgery is no fun. BOO. Our post-tummy tuck outfits, compression garments to stretchy jeans, change week to week. Here's your shopping list.

This was the day before the surgery, that’s why the smile

It’s probably one of my most asked questions. Not sure why, but Colombia is very famous for the compression garments or “fajas”. There are a lot of brands, and you can count on them to be good. My surgeon said I could get any brand. He only specified that it was better to have a side zipper with a center hook and eye closure, especially because I was having all my linea alba repaired. Best thing about this? You don’t have to go to Colombia to buy it, and the price difference is not big.

Fajate post-surgery/postpartum girdle – This one is a little longer than the one I’m wearing, but it’s better. I had two, this one and other longer one. I sized up, and it was perfect for the first six weeks. Then I had to take it in at the waist. NOTE: Lots of women wear it for postpartum recovery.

2. Good Loungewear

Recovering from surgery is no fun. BOO. Our post-tummy tuck outfits, compression garments to stretchy jeans, change week to week. Here's your shopping list.

Only two days after surgery, trying to make myself smile.

Recovering from surgery is no fun. BOO. Our post-tummy tuck outfits, compression garments to stretchy jeans, change week to week. Here's your shopping list.

Two and a half weeks, when I started to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

As I said, I lived in loungewear for over two weeks, and then more than half of the time after. I didn’t like leggings over the compression garment, so I lived in joggers. Before my surgery I made sure to get stylish sweatpants. Being home and in pain all day doesn’t mean you have to live in old and stained clothes.

3. Jackets
Recovering from surgery is no fun. BOO. Our post-tummy tuck outfits, compression garments to stretchy jeans, change week to week. Here's your shopping list.

Recovering from surgery is no fun. BOO. Our post-tummy tuck outfits, compression garments to stretchy jeans, change week to week. Here's your shopping list.

Ten days post-surgery. Not seen, but I was still bent over and had low energy.

I wore this coat all the time. You’re going to see it in all my pictures. Even when wearing sweatpants, I’d throw it on and feel more me. I’d feel put together, and at the same time I was covering my drains, my posture and swelling. Also! Mix sweatpants with a button down instead of a tee. My favorite place for pretty coats is ASOS. I can always find a good coat to wear with everything. Some picks below. 

4. The Stretchiest Jeans

Recovering from surgery is no fun. BOO. Our post-tummy tuck outfits, compression garments to stretchy jeans, change week to week. Here's your shopping list.

I’m four weeks post-surgery here, and feeling more like myself. I was able to stand straight around week three. Good posture always brings a smile.

On days I had to go out or wanted to give my sweats a break, I relied on my stretchiest jeans with a coat or cardigan on top. I’ve never worn so many light coats or cardigans in my life. My favorite stretchy and comfy jeans are Good American, Everlane or Madewell.

5. Dresses for Warm Weather

Recovering from surgery is no fun. BOO. Our post-tummy tuck outfits, compression garments to stretchy jeans, change week to week. Here's your shopping list.

Three weeks post-surgery. I’d only been straight for a couple days.

Dresses, specially for warm weather can get tricky. My surgery was in the middle of the holiday season and vacation time in Colombia. We usually leave Bogota for warmer weather. I needed to cover my compression garment, so strappy dresses, shorts and short dresses were out of the picture.

I went to a local store and got some dresses. Button up with the option of cinching the waist to give you some shape while swollen.

6. If Not Dresses, Then Jumpsuits

Recovering from surgery is no fun. BOO. Our post-tummy tuck outfits, compression garments to stretchy jeans, change week to week. Here's your shopping list.

Three and a half weeks post-surgery. The half-week makes a difference.

Another option is a jumpsuit with short sleeves and wide legs. This is the only one I had, and I wish I’d had more. The wide leg was perfect for the compression garment and I felt amazing.

Two Months After Surgery

Recovering from surgery is no fun. BOO. Our post-tummy tuck outfits, compression garments to stretchy jeans, change week to week. Here's your shopping list.

Six weeks post surgery, about to board our plane back to NY. Still in stretchy jeans and a coat.

More like from six weeks up to three months. By this time I felt more like myself. I was standing straight and that made all the difference. Sometimes we don’t realize how much posture matters. Standing a little straighter always brings more confidence.

Clothing-wise, I still needed the compression garment, which limited things a bit. In Colombia it’s recommended to wear it for three months nonstop with a few exceptions on occasions you can’t wear it. By this time I felt good enough to wear anything, but I just had to keep in mind the compression garment.

My Favorite Post-Tummy Tuck Outfit Combinations

Slim Tops Fully Tucked in Straight or Wide-Leg Jeans

Recovering from surgery is no fun. BOO. Our post-tummy tuck outfits, compression garments to stretchy jeans, change week to week. Here's your shopping list.

Eight weeks post-surgery, wearing compression garment under.

My waist is smaller and my belly is almost flat. If I wore bodysuits before with my saggy soft belly, why not now? To help with the leg line my compression garment gave me, I wore all the straight and wide-leg jeans. By this time I was back to my non-stretch denim, that I LOVE.

Three Months After Surgery

Recovering from surgery is no fun. BOO. Our post-tummy tuck outfits, compression garments to stretchy jeans, change week to week. Here's your shopping list.

Three months post-surgery, no compression garment.

I still like to wear my compression garment, especially to exercise. I also wear it when I’m doing a lot of things with the kids. I feel supported while I gain my strength. Now it’s all about embracing that new body, including the scar, and feeling proud of going through all of it.

I’ll see full results after 6 months or more. Sometimes it takes a year. To the eye I look good, but internally I still feel my body is working to heal. The only thing I need to try after my surgery are swimsuits, but I want to wait at least one month more. I love my one-pieces and high-rise bottoms, and don’t feel the need to rush into a regular bikini. It’s been five years since I’ve worn one so..hmm…it intimidates me.

Chao, chao 

Julieta

See more go my tummy tuck journey on my Instagram (@julietatorresd) a lot of high rise jeans and  real and honest take on motherhood. Social media shouldn’t be for the good things only. 

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About Author

Love: keeping it real, athleisure and hiding my mommy tummy under high rise jeans 📍NY from Colombia If you can't find me in the bathroom hiding from my two boys, I'll be showing a mix of style, vulnerability and real life on Instagram (@julietatorresd) Would love for you to join me there!

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15 Comments

  1. Thank you for sharing this! You are beautiful before and after. I also appreciate your honesty – too many internet/insta/ads talk about tummy tuck and mommy makeovers but don’t address how hard the healing really is. Good luck in continued healing and love all your outfits! PS – the dress in Columbia is so beautiful!

    • Thank you Mary, and you’re right they always show the end result but not the process. It’s not the same for everybody though, las time someone shared with me the pain was low, so I guess it depends on every case. My diastasis was bad and I know that’s one of the reason I had so much pain recovering.

  2. I am not sure why no one is talking about why we need to have a tummy tuck at all. Can’t our post baby bodies just be ok?

    • All postpartum bodies are ok if we only look at the physical part. Whether a mom wants to modify the way she looks or not, it’s her decision and should not receive any judgement. What it’s not ok is living in pain and other medical issues because we had kids. There’s a lot of us who despite therapy and all our efforts to be better, it’s not enough. I decided to chose to go through this hard recovery to have better quality of life. Not having sagging skin is only the cherry on top.

  3. Thanks for sharing. Could you share more about the recovery and improvement you’ve experienced so far and over time? I have been seriously considering getting my diastasis recti repaired. It was extreme after my third child (who is now 4 years old). Can still stick my hand inside my abdomen, even after PT (which really helped! At least I’m out of my support garment!) My mother had to recently do a major abdominal muscle repair, so I know it’s not easy. I can’t decide how/when to plan the recovery time, whether the surgery/recovery is better than the back pain, etc. Even though it’s broken… is it broken enough to fix it? or will I be in my 60’s and forced to fix it or live off a liquid diet and have difficulty standing up like my mother…

    • Hi Erin! So glad physical therapy helped a little. I have more information in my website, but I can definitely tell you that the surgery/recovery is better that living in pain, etc. I’d do it again.

  4. Hi Julieta, I have to say I was surprised when I found out you got a tt. But it was a good surprise for me b/c I would love to find the courage to do it myself. Seeing that you did it might just help me make the choice slightly easier. Can you tell me at what point where you able to take care of the kids without help? I just don’t feel like I have the time for recovery with my little ones.

  5. I appreciate you sharing so honestly. I know a number of women who have had to have similar postpartum repairs you discussed and a few of them opted to spend the extra 15-40K to get a tummy tuck as well. I know their recovery was very painful and long with a few extra emergency room visits that were scary, but after a year or more of pain, they all look better than me in a bathing suit now. They are very honest, like you, about their body. The concern I have is when normal people think that tummy tuck tummies come from regular exercise or eating less, then we are setting up a false expectation of what our bodies can look like without plastic surgery intervention. Thanks for sharing your story. I hope other bloggers follow suit and tell us about their struggles to have the body they want and what they did to get it including plastic surgery. Also a few regular looking contributors (most women are “plus”size) would be an added bonus as well.

  6. Right on Julieta. There is nothing wrong with leaving a body as is and there is nothing wrong with changing things that make us feel less than great whether it be aesthetic or purely physical.

    I have several friends who have undergone tummy tucks, pelvic floor surgeries, etc to facilitate where they want to be. I cheer them on as much as I cheer on my friends that choose otherwise. I’m glad you are through the worst parts of recovery!

  7. Hi Julieta Im wondering whats your compression brand and size you’ve been using? Just had a 3 week post op diastasis recti hernia/ Tummy tuck. I need to change my garments for full support. Thanks for sharing I really appreciate your time and sharing for this. Yes I’ve suffered from lower back pain and been doing exercises for 2 years after had kids of two ruin my back and strength it needed to be done. Thanks for sharing dear.😇🙏💐💕🎉

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