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When Can I Start Tanning Again After Surgery?

By: Dr. Rolando Morales


Tummy tucks are great because they can remove hanging skin on the abdomen that prevents you from fitting into your favorite outfits and swimsuits. In fact, Morales Plastic Surgery offers a wide range of treatments designed to improve the stomach, breasts, hips, thighs, and buttocks, making you feel more confident in general.

So, when can you start tanning after cosmetic surgery in Houston? It's a question many of our patients ask when it comes to tummy tuck surgery, liposuction, breast augmentation, or a full mommy makeover. But before you go to the beach or tanning salon, it's important to educate yourself and take precautions, or you may end up with dark tummy tuck scars and other serious issues.

Want to know more? Read our guide below and schedule a private consultation with board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Rolando Morales. We'll help you get the best results possible from your procedure.

What happens when scars are exposed to the sun?

Scars are very reactive to sunlight and UV rays, causing the tissue to become red and inflamed. Our bodies need time to heal from trauma, so exposing your incisions too soon prematurely puts you at risk for discolored scars or infection. Dr. Morales recommends keeping the incision site covered with clothing or bandages for a minimum of nine months to avoid sunlight.

What if I want to go tanning?

Just because you have to keep your scars covered doesn't mean you can't enjoy being outside. Many of our patients love going to the beach and spending time outdoors! If you want to go tanning, there are several ways to get the sun-kissed glow you want without putting your skin at risk. Try some of these methods after recovering from cosmetic surgery in Houston:

  • Going to the beach or pool: Cover tummy tuck scars with swimwear and use a high-SPF sunscreen on the surrounding area. Stay near the shade of an umbrella, so you don't get sunburned.

  • Tanning bed: This is not the most ideal to tan your skin safely. But if you do go to a tanning salon, cover your scars using occlusive tape, like electrical tape. You can get this kind of tape from a local pharmacy.

  • Tanning spray: Spray tans are a great option because they minimize your exposure to UV light and let you control how dark you want your skin. Patients should wait a full two months before spraying anything on their surgical scars for the best and safest results.

Can I treat my own scars?

It's important to keep your tummy tuck scars clean and moisturized after your initial recovery from procedures like tummy tuck surgery and breast augmentation. We recommend using a vitamin E ointment or aloe vera lotion daily to promote healing, reduce inflammation, and prevent pigmentation changes. Avoid applying any type of cream, gel, or spray on your scars before the two-month mark or without speaking to a board-certified plastic surgeon first.

Enjoy successful recovery with minimal scarring

We understand it’s hard to wait when it comes to showing off your gorgeous results from cosmetic surgery. Our goal as professionals is to keep your skin healthy and looking great no matter what! If you’re in need of some tips or advice for tanning after a procedure in Houston, call Morales Plastic Surgery and meet with board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Rolando Morales. We can help you have glowing skin in no time.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.