Can Lipo Improve my Silhouette and Reduce my Dress Size?

I had lipo 8 years ago on my stomach, knees and thighs. I was 6/8 before and 4/6 after. I love the new contour of those areas even after gaining weight after my baby. Now I’m 8/10 and hope for 6/8 after lipo. Most of the weight gain showed up in my torso. I used to have slim arms but now I can pinch a lot of fat. I also developed back rolls and big hips. I'm considering lipo in those areas and also the knees again. Judging by my description and pictures do I have realistic expectations?

Doctor Answers 55

Revision Liposuction

Patients frequently request liposuction to improve body contour so their clothing will fit better.  In most cases, this can be accomplished with excellent results, providing the patient is a good candidate for the procedure.
Liposuction works best when patients have localized collections of fat.  It’s important to remember this is not a weight loss procedure, but instead, a procedure that addresses problem areas.  In addition, the quality of the patient’s skin is of critical importance.  Patients with skin laxity are much more likely to develop skin sag following liposuction procedures.
In your situation, it wouldn’t be unrealistic to anticipate dropping a dress size following revisional liposuction.  Unfortunately, this might be accompanied by the development of skin sag.  This appears to be more common following secondary liposuction procedures.
It’s important to have realistic expectations.  We view computer imaging as a blueprint and not a guarantee.  The projected results with computer imaging should therefore be relatively conservative, compared to what we hope to accomplish with liposuction.  In your case, I feel that your computer imaging is somewhat aggressive and might set the stage for unrealistic expectations.
If your primary goal is looking good in a swimsuit, you might not be happy with result of your procedure because of skin sag.  If your goal is having clothes, that fit better, you should be very happy.
If your considering revision liposuction, its important to consult with a board certified plastic surgeon who has experience in this area.  A treatment plan will be formulated which will address your specific anatomic issues and aesthetic goals.  It important that these goals be realistic.

Omaha Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 194 reviews

Computer imaging not realistic

Having performed over 700 laser liposuction cases (laser combine with traditional tumescent liposuction) our practice over the last three years, the answer to your question is simple. Liposuction almost always reduces size (it removes the fat). The skin retraction is variable, even in the best of hands, and to promise a patient more than this would be irresponsible. It is best to look at before and after pictures from the surgeon you wish to have performyour procedues, not computer images.

W. Tracy Hankins, MD
Las Vegas Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 292 reviews

Improving your Shilhouette

Liposuction is mainly for patients who have problematic areas. Liposuction is excellent at removing unwanted excess fat, but it cannot tighten or remove loose hanging skin. As fat weighs very little when compared to muscle and bone it is not intended for weight reduction.. But it is excellent for sculpting and contouring a new body silhouette.

When combined with a Tummy Tuck (Lipo Abdominoplasty) and a Brazilian Butt Lift the total body rejuvenation can be quite dramatic.

Check your surgeons credentials, and their before/after photos before you decide to evaluate a good expectation.  

Marvin F. Shienbaum, MD
Brandon Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Liposuction may reduce dress size

Liposuction can reduce your dress size. However, liposuction works best on isolated trouble areas. In other words if you have large hips and a narrow waist then after liposuction of the hips you can wear a size that matches your waist. Large volume liposuction can be done, but there are safety issues to consider. In general, liposuction is a refining tool, not a weight reduction tool.

Ralph M. Rosato, MD
Vero Beach Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 7 reviews



You can expect dramatic improvement in shape and in the rolls, and size reduction. You have experienced the good liposuction effect already.

In our plastic surgery practice in Manhattan -- and in any responsible practice -- we don't promise perfection or that the rolls will completely "go away". And, of curse, liposuction is not the way to lose weight. But that's not what you are asking. I think your expectations are realistic.

As with all surgery, it's got to be done right. The trick with the back rolls is to do the liposuction up and down, and not side to side.

Good photographic technique!

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Liposuction expectations

Thank you for your answer.  Liposuction is a very effective method of sculpting and slimming the waistline, lower back, hips, and abdomen.  It is reasonable to expect a loss of a few inches to the waist, and with it, a small reduction in dress size.

Joshua D. Zuckerman, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

May be possible but require inperson assessment

It may be possible to reduce the areas you're concerned about with liposuction but I'm not sure about your stomach in particular. You may have loose skin due to pregnancy, and this won't be improved with liposuction. Better to see a board certified plastic surgeon for an inperson assessment.

Ronald Levine, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Liposuction Can Improve A Patients Overall Silhouette and Body Contour

I do believe that you could expect a great result from liposuction of the abdomen, flanks, bra rolls, love handles, arms and inner and outer thighs.  This overall body contouring with liposuction would remove some excess fat deposits from the aforementioned areas and provide you with a better body shape and the ability to fit into smaller clothing sizes.  With that said, it is impossible to evaluate the elasticity character of your skin based upon your photographs alone so I would recommend consulting with a board-certified plastic surgeon who is well-experienced in liposuction procedures for a thorough examination and dialogue.  

One of the most critical parts of a consultation is the dialogue between patient and surgeon with regards to patient expectations and how realistic those expectations are.  In your case, I do believe that you would see a nice overall reduction in size, which can translate to the loss of several inches around your midsection and thighs.  While I believe that you would see a drop in your current dress size and that you might find it easier to wear certain clothes after another liposuction procedure, I would caution you from expecting to drop down to a specific dress size.

Stephen T. Greenberg, MD
Woodbury Plastic Surgeon
3.9 out of 5 stars 58 reviews

Liposuction to Improve Contours

Yes, lipo can be performed to improve your silhouette and reduce your dress size. Liposuction will remove fat in the desired area and give you a great appearance. Liposuction is great for body contouring but keep in mind that it is not a form of weight loss.

Jeffrey Weinzweig, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 61 reviews


Absolutely. Liposuction involves extracting the fat in the desired body area to achieve a skinnier appearance. This results in a smaller dress size and with a skilled surgeon an improved silhouette.

Keith S. Berman, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.