Cosmetic surgeons enjoy a summer wave of daddy and mommy makeovers.
While the kids are away, parents will play.
Plastic surgeons are seeing a spike in parental nips and tucks while kids are off at sleepaway camp or visiting relatives for the summer.
“Especially here in New York City, a lot of kids go off to summer camp for three, five or seven weeks, and this way parents can shield their children from the surgery they’re having, and they have the downtime to recover,” Dr. Stafford R. Broumand from 740 Park Plastic Surgery told Moneyish. His schedule is booked through Labor Day.
A 35-year-old Queens mother, who wished to remain anonymous, told Moneyish that she was waiting for her 7- and 9-year-old children to head to camp to treat herself to a breast lift and tummy tuck this month.
“It was just easier while they were away, because I could rest and recover,” she said. “By the time they get back, I’ll be healed enough to be active with them, and they probably won’t realize that I got anything done – because kids let things slip, and I don’t want anybody to know!”
Like many moms, she struggled to get her pre-baby figure back. And dropping up to $20,000 at Dr. Elie Levine’s upper East Side office for the total body-sculpting package was worth it for the self esteem boost.
“Your body really changes after having two pregnancies, and I didn’t want to have to cover up any more, or worry about how my breasts or how my tummy looked while wearing certain clothing,” she explained, noting she tried working out and doing CrossFit, but no amount of push-ups or box jumps was “going to lift up my DDDs again, or tighten that loose skin.”
“I just wanted to feel more like myself again,” she added.
Dr. Levine told Moneyish that from late June through early August, he sees a parade of parents – mostly women from their early 30s to mid 40s – coming through his doors for the mommy makeover trifecta: Abdominoplasties (a.k.a. tummy tucks, about $10,000), breast lifts (around $5,000) and liposuction ($4,000-$6,000).
Breast augmentation and liposuction were the top two most popular procedures in 2015, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons announced in March, with the tummy tuck actually beat out the facelift to become the fifth most common in the booming $14 billion plastic surgery industry.
Dad comes in, too, Dr. Levine said – because no man is really comfortable with “dad bod.” They mostly get lipo to nix their love handles and bring out washboard abs. Others contour their chests and remove “man boobs” with gynecomastia surgery ($7,000 to $10,000), and hair transplants are also popular for $5,000 to $15,000.
“Summer is perfect from a scheduling perspective, because it’s definitely easier for both working moms and stay-at-home moms to get work done while their kids are at sleepaway camp … and the dad procedures are non-invasive enough where they can work from home for a week,” he said, noting that parents pick very specific dates tailored to when their kids take off and return.
“This is the only group of patients that can’t negotiate a date,” he laughed. “They come in saying ‘it has to be July 2’ or ‘July 19,’ and if we can’t negotiate the date, they’ll actually push it off until the following summer.”
Some mothers even get a head start to make sure they are nipped and tucked before “visiting day,” usually in July, when parents, grandparents and siblings are invited to come spend the day touring the camp and engaging in activities with their little campers.
“I have two friends who both had tummy tucks in the spring to be ready for visiting day, since there’s a lot of walking around and exhausting physical activity that you would not be able to keep up with if you just had surgery,” one upper East Side mom dished to Moneyish.
There’s a lengthy recovery time of four to six weeks for more invasive procedures like breast augmentation and tummy tucks – which is why some choose to get those done ahead of beach season, and before the heat and humidity makes post-op pain and swelling feel worse.
But for some parents, answering their children’s awkward questions about why mommy or daddy looks different might be more painful than just suffering through the summer heat.
“If you have a 7-year-old at home while you’re recovering, your child will definitely pick up on mommy not doing well, and it can be a little scary,” said Dr. Levine.
Plus, you have to limit physical activity in the weeks following a tummy tuck, when you’re not supposed to lift anything heavier than 10 pounds – let alone a child.
“You really shouldn’t be running after your kid at home, or you wouldn’t want to go to her soccer game and sit outside for three hours in an uncomfortable chair,” said Dr. Daniel Maman, also of 740 Park Plastic Surgery. “You really need one or two weeks to relax.”
And since parents been out of sight – and maybe even out of mind – for those fun-filled weeks at camp or at grandma’s, they might chalk up their mom or dad’s new and improved appearance to getting a little more sun and exercise.
“My kids won’t notice anything,” laughed the Queens mom. “Or I’ll just tell them it was CrossFit.”
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