What Will Happen to my Tattoos After a Tummy Tuck?

I've posted here before and was told a full tummy tuck will probably be most beneficial to me. But what would happen to my feather tattoos? If my belly button is moved down in a traditional tummy tuck, won't that mean my feathers will stretch all the way down almost to my hips!? How stretched out will they be? I'm still losing weight so am not planning on having surgery done any time soon, but could I get away with a mini or hybrid tummy tuck?

Doctor Answers 15

What will happen to your tattoos after a tummy tuck

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Thank you for the question. It is rather difficult to fully evaluate your situation without an in-person exam. The answer will ultimately depend on the location of your tattoo as well as the amount of fat and skin to be addressed by the procedure. In some cases, your tattoo can be stretched or pulled down.  

Remember that an in-person exam with a board-certified plastic surgeon would be the best way to assess your needs and guarantee a reliable medical advice. Best of luck! 

Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 122 reviews

Tummy Tuck Affects Tattoos

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A full tummy tuck may warp your tattoos above your belly button, depending on the extent of correction required. The tattoos near your groin may also be warped or partially removed. 

Impact of Tummy Tuck on Tattoos

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Most likely an abdominoplasty will affect your tattoos. However, the degree can be altered by altering the skin excision. You probably would want to have a full abdominoplasty to meet your objectives. Consult in person with 2 - 3 experienced and expert board certified plastic surgeons to explore your options.

Kris M. Reddy, MD, FACS
West Palm Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 56 reviews

What Will Happen to my Tattoos After a Tummy Tuck?

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The tattoos in the upper tummy and the flanks will probably not be affected, the tattoos in the groin may be removed or left behind depending on the level of scar placement that you and your surgeon agree upon.  There may be the possibility that the tattoos in the upper tummy might be just slightly stretched a bit wider as the skin is pulled down, but probably not to a significant degree.

Tummy Tuck with Tattoos

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It all depends,  in your situation, on how important it is to you to have no change to your tattoos.  It certainly would be possible to have a full tummy tuck with no alteration in your tattoo.  A full tummy tuck does not necessarily move your umbilicus to a lower location.  I think you can have a nice result with a tummy tuck with no effect on your tattoo if it is important to you.




John Whitt, MD (retired)
Louisville Plastic Surgeon

Full tummy tuck

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Lets answer the last question first, you will need a full tummy tuck , not mini or hybrid. As for the tattoos, the ones in lower abdomen will be gone, the feather tattoos will be pulled down, but will stay above the umbilicus. The more weight you loose the more likely the feather tattoos will drop. Good luck

Moneer Jaibaji, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon

Tattoo Movement with Tummy Tuck Surgery

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IF I understand your question properly, you seem more concerned with the integrity of your tattoo art than in how much flatter your tummy can be made and how much of the stretch marks damaged skin can be removed. That is different than what most women are concerned with but judging how much you have invested in these tattoos it is vERY important that your surgeon fully understand your concerns and plan your surgery according to your wishes.

You would MOST benefit from a FULL Tummy Tuck and I think a modification of Lockwood's High Lateral Tension procedure would get you THE BEST results. If you are willing to accept a midline scar, a Fleur de Lis Abdominoplasty would GREATLY taper your waist AND remove most of the loose skin around / above the belly button. In the final results the groin art will be gone, the belly will be flat, the waist would be narrowed and the feathers will come down somewhat but not as much as you think. In a Fleur de Lis, the lower edges of the feathers may touch but the moles in the center of the tummy may either be gone or shifted to the very midline.

You REALLY should discuss this with your surgeon.

Good Luck.

Peter A. Aldea, MD

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon

What Will Happen to my Tattoos After a Tummy Tuck?

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From your photos ALL the expert posters agree on results. What concerns me is why your chosen sugeon has not explained this to you? 

Moving tattoos and a tummy tuck too!

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I agree that a full tummy tuck is your best option to improve the contour of your abdomen. The feather tattoos will be pulled down quite a bit and may stretch slightly. To lessen this, you could compromise skin excision to prevent tattoo distortion. As for the tattoos in the groin, the incision may be placed above them. This could lead to an elevation of those tattoos, however it would likely be minimal. As for the spiderweb tattoo? Probably minimal change.

Your best choice is to consult with a plastic surgeon. He/She can demonstrate in the exam room what can be removed with and without affecting your tattoos.

David Bogue, MD
Boca Raton Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

Abdominal tattoos after tummy tuck

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There will be shifting of abdominal tattoos after tummy tuck, and tattoos in the central or lower abdomen are affected the most. The tattoos up high by your rib cage will draw down about  an inch, no more, and the tattoos over the hip will probably be removed by tummy tuck. Those over the flank shouldn't be affected.

Best of luck,


Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 44 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.