Recovery After Brazilian Butt Lift

First day instructions

  • Send Dr. Yates photos and any questions
  • Get up and walk
  • Limit lying on your back and sitting.   Avoid buttock pressure
  • Strict avoidance of sitting for 14-21 days
  • Strict avoidance of lying on back for 14-21 days
  • A fair amount of incisional bleeding and drainage is normal.
  • Bruising and swelling are normal and will last for weeks
  • You may get swelling of the face from sleeping face down, standing and walking will help
  • GARMENT – You will wear the provided garment for three weeks
  • You can take the garment off to shower.  
  • GARMENT – As you remove the garment to shower, verify that there are no deep creases or irregularities in the skin caused by folds in the garment
  • GARMENT – When replacing the garment make sure it is smooth on the skin surface
  • FOAM – If a foam dressing was placed under the garment, this is to be worn for approximately 1-2 weeks
  • FOAM – Foam is helpful to provide smooth compression to the area and minimize the effect of garment creases or folds
  • FOAM – Purchase additional foam as desired  
  • AB Board – For patients who find they are seeing skin “creasing” when flexing at the waist an Ab Board placed above foam can reduce flexion
  • Get off the pain medications as soon as possible
  • Take antibiotics as prescribed
  • Take stool softeners if you are taking any narcotics
  • Take the single dose of Gabapentin if prescribed
  • Stay hydrated
  • Stay active, minimal bed rest is better for a safe and quick recovery
  • MASSAGE of the surgical areas to promote drainage of fluid can start as soon as the first day if comfortable
  • Your next visit is in three weeks.   In-person or online.


  • DON’T Massage the buttock or any area where fat was transferred.   This needs to heal without disruption.
  • Massage after liposuction can help decrease swelling.  Whether this results in an improved final result is controversial and somewhat dependent on the specifics of the liposuction procedure
  • Massage can begin as early as the first day after liposuction as tolerated
  • The goals of massage are to help to drain swelling and fluid as well as promote healthy lymphatic drainage
  • For most of Dr. Yates career, he hasn’t strongly recommended massage after liposuction.  Since we started using VASER liposuction we have seen an increased need for massage and particularly recommend massage for our VASER liposuction patients.   VASER liposuction uses ultrasound energy to liquify fat prior to removal.   The theory is that some of this emulsified fat can “clog up” the lymphatic drainage system and contribute to swelling
  • Massage is ideally performed under the direction of a massage therapist (preferably one trained in lymphatic massage).   This can be started immediately and a typical protocol would be 2-3 x per week for 2 – 3 weeks.  
  • For a number of reasons, such as convenience or availability, some patients prefer to do this massage themselves

Professional massage


  • This can be started as soon as the day after surgery, preferably within the first week
  • The technique of massage after liposuction is quite different than a deep muscle massage and best performed by someone with an understanding of lymphatic massage.   Here are a few local lymphatic massage therapists and their contact information.  If you know of a qualified lymphatic massage therapist we should add to the list in Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, or Nevada please let us know.  I have been told that at some Massage Envy locations, they have therapists who understand lymphatic massage and for our out of town patients, it is worth a call.
    • Marty Tracy – Ogden, Utah.  (801) 528-5066
    • Maxine Kite – Layton, Utah (801) 499-6344
    • Sherri Williams – SLC, Utah (801) 987-8786

Self-directed massage

  • Massage can begin as early as the first day after liposuction as tolerated
  • The goals of massage are to help to drain swelling and fluid as well as promote healthy lymphatic drainage
  • To encourage drainage of the fluid press the palm of the hand on the treatment area and slide with gentle pressure towards the incisions.   Lying on an absorptive pad is a good idea for this potentially messy situation. 
  • Possibly even more important than incision drainage is the promotion of healthy lymphatic drainage.  Lymphatic drainage is different than incisional drainage.   Lymphatics are the delicate tubes that drain swelling and fluid from the area back to the circulation.   Lymphatics drain towards lymph nodes, these are mostly concentrated in the groin, axilla and neck.  
    • VERY HELPFUL – review lymphatic massage instructions. This 15-minute video is made by a licensed massage therapist and we’ve found it pretty helpful
    • Step one – open up the lymphatic drainage pathways to the heart
    • Step two – open up lymphatic pathways to the groin and axilla
    • Step three – Move the fluid towards the lymph nodes

One week Instructions

  • There will typically be a peak of swelling by about one week after surgery
  • Areas of swelling may benefit from additional massage or garment position adjustments 
  • If there seems to be more swelling than expected or there are any questions, please send Dr. Yates a message including photos through the app

Three-week instructions

  • Send Dr. Yates photos and any questions
  • Sitting and lying on the back can be resumed at 3 weeks.   Avoid prolonged sitting as possible for a few more weeks.
  • You are able to resume physical work and moderate exercise
  • Full exercise at 6 weeks
  • The liposuction areas are still a little swollen but improving
  • Z wave therapy – For areas where the body is creating an excess of swelling we can consider extracorporeal shock wave therapy (Z wave).   
  • You may change to second stage garments at approximately 3 – 6 weeks.   Examples of good second-stage garments are Spanx, Flexees, Marena, or M&D.   All can be found online.
  • The goal of the second stage garment is swelling control and comfort.   These can be worn as long as you would like but most patients find little advantage after 6 weeks.
  • If you feel you have been treated with exceptional care, leave a review!
  • Schedule an online or in-person follow-up visit at 3 months.

Three-month instructions

  • You have no limitations.   Check-in with Dr. Yates with photos and any questions


  • You have no limitations.   Check-in with Dr. Yates with photos and any questions
  • Return to the office for postoperative photos
  • Leave a kind review 🙂
  • Share a bikini or similar photo for us to share on our “real patient” photo gallery:)

General Recovery Tips

Minimizing Bruising and Swelling

Bruising and swelling occur with almost every surgical procedure. Usually, the swelling lasts for only a few days to weeks. There are steps that can be taken before and after surgery to help minimize bruising and swelling… Read More.


Scars are the necessary trade-off of many plastic surgeries.  The goal is a near-invisible, thin, skin-colored scar.  Scars are ideally minimized by early attention but there are options for treatment of problem scars as well… Read More.

Stretch Mark Treatment

Stretch marks are the visible result of tears of the second layer of skin, the dermis. Stretch marks usually result from rapid stretching of skin, such as weight gain, or pregnancy.  Treatment options for stretch marks such as removal, microneedling, and laser are available…. Read More.

Preparation for surgery

prepare your house for surgery

1-2 weeks before surgery you should have your childcare, work arrangements, and caretaker lined up.  Depending on the procedure you may have a few recovery items on hand.  Start with an organized, clean house and full pantry.  If you are making meals, simple prep. meals and disposable dinnerware.  

prepare your body for surgery

The weeks before surgery are a good time to maximize a healthy diet and stay on top of exercise.  Yoga and heart-healthy exercises are particularly valuable. For almost every procedure stopping smoking 6 weeks before surgery is valuable.  For some it is critical.  Avoid excessive alcohol and marijuana prior to surgery as well. 

Check your medications and supplements

Some medications such as aspirin, fish-oils and some supplements can contribute to bleeding and bruising after surgery.  If you would like to take SinnEcch for bruising you would want to do so before surgery.  The benefit is mild in Dr. Yates’s opinion but some patients swear by it.

Stay away from illness

Avoid getting sick, wash your hands frequently and avoid contact will people who are ill.

Time off Work and exercise

Check the procedure list below for the time you should plan to take off of work or exercise.  With most procedures, office work and light exercise are OK between one to three weeks.  For most procedures, there are no restrictions after six weeks.      

Recovery Supplies

Dr Yates will give you most everything you need after surgery including garments, a BBL pillow, absorptive pads, and dressings as indicated.  A few recommended additional supplies are

  • Bed that reclines, recliner, or extra bed pillows
  • Icy Hot back patch
  • Loose baggy clothes
  • Paper tape 1″
  • Ice packs
  • Stool Softener
  • Ginger Ale
  • Antacid such as Tums
  • Melatonin (not to be used with pain medications)
  • Benadryl
  • Cortisone cream
  • Neosporin
  • Probiotics or yogurt
  • Lipo foam (as indicated)
  • Ab board (as indicated)
  • Second stage Garment (as indicated) – Spanx, Flexees, and Marena are a few options.
  • Flexible straws for drinking
  • Water bottles/ Gatorade
  • Entertainment such as DVD or Netflix
  • Cell phone charger near bed and sofa

Brazilian Butt Lift Recovery Tips

How long will I be in bed after the Brazilian butt lift?
You should expect no significant bedrest after buttock augmentation.   Get up and walk.
Tell me about pain management after the Brazilian butt lift?
The majority of pain after BBL is associated with areas of liposuction.   Pain is worst in the 1-2 days following BBL and you may find that narcotic pain medications are necessary.   We prefer you to take as few as you need.  After the first couple of days, the dull pain is not intense but lasts for over a week.
What do I do with the incisions after the Brazilian butt lift?
The small 3-4 mm incisions may drain a bit of thin, red fluid for a couple of days after surgery.  You will replace a gauze in these areas as necessary.  Once the drainage has decreased you can place Neosporin on the incisions.
When can I shower or swim after the Brazilian butt lift?
As soon as the drainage as slowed considerably you may shower.  You may soak in about a week.
How long will I need help with childcare after the Brazilian butt lift?
For toddlers or children that need a lot of care, you will want assistance for a week after surgery.
How long before I can return to the gym after Brazilian butt lift?
It is best that you get through the bruising and swelling phase of healing before returning to the gym, approximately 3 weeks.  Low to moderate impact exercise is OK from 3-6 weeks.  There are no exercise restrictions at 6 weeks.
How long before I can return to work after Brazilian butt lift?
It is best that you get through the acute phase of healing before returning to office work, approximately 3-5 days.  Avoiding sitting is the biggest challenge for many.   We will provide you a BBL pillow allowing you to sit without pressure directly on the buttock. 
Return to a physically demanding job is closer to 2-3 weeks.
When can I return to sexual activities after the Brazilian butt lift?
You can return to normal sexual activities at around 4 weeks after BBL
What can go wrong if I don’t follow these recommendations?
Pressure on the grafted areas could result in graft displacement, or graft volume loss.   We need to protect the investment
When will I expect to see my final results?
You will generally look pretty great right after surgery with some bruising and swelling hiding the final result.   As the swelling subsides and the graft matures we will see final results at around 3 months after surgery
How long should I expect drainage?
There is drainage from the liposuction incisions for around 2-3 days
How long do I wear my garment?
The garment should be worn nearly 24-7 for 3 weeks.  Changing to a more comfortable garment or shapewear can be done at that time
When can I sit?
Strict avoidance of sitting for 2-3 weeks, other than when using the provided BBL pillow
When can I sleep on my back?
Avoid the pressure of sleeping on the back for 2-3 weeks

Get in Touch
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Dr. York Yates
2121 N 1700 W
Layton, UT 84041
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Phone: (801) 525-8741

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2121 N 1700 W, Layton, UT 84041 801.525.8741