One of the most commonly asked post-op questions is if—or when—you can wear makeup after facial surgery at our Nashville practice. While it may seem like a straightforward question, the answer is actually slightly more complex and varies from person to person.
General Makeup Guidelines After Surgery
First, consider these four general rules of thumb:
Wait until you can wash your face. You should wait at least 24 hours after your procedure to wash your face and hair—and at least as long to apply makeup so you can then wash the makeup off when necessary. Keep makeup and makeup removers away from your wounds by using less water while gently removing the makeup.
No pore-blocking makeup. You may experience swelling after plastic surgery, which can be incredibly uncomfortable—and the last thing you want is to add blemishes to your healing skin. Long-wear foundations, powders, and blushes can clog pores, so they are best avoided if at all possible.
Don’t apply pressure when applying makeup. As you apply and remove makeup, you naturally apply pressure to your skin, potentially irritating the wound and prolonging the healing process. Be sure to remove makeup slowly without pressing on your skin.
Stay five millimeters from your sutures. Makeup can irritate your wound and possibly cause an infection, so keep your makeup at least five millimeters—or about half the width of your thumb—away from your sutures. If you doubt your makeup application accuracy, consider waiting to wear makeup until your sutures are removed.
Second, consider these procedure-specific suggestions for the type of surgery you’ve had:
Facelift: Wait at least 10 days before applying makeup after a facelift. Avoid heavy makeup that can leave shadows, making your scars more noticeable. Consider a concealer with a green tint to balance redness. Read more do’s and don’ts after a facelift in our related blog post.
Rhinoplasty: Wait at least 3 weeks before applying pressure to your nose after a rhinoplasty. You may apply makeup to other parts of your face but not to your nose.
Brow Lift and/or Eyelid Surgery: Wait at least 2 weeks after a brow lift and/or eyelid surgery before applying eye makeup. Consider applying a blue eyeliner to your top and bottom lids to help minimize redness.
Resurfacing or Peel: Wait until your skin regenerates—typically 3 to 7 days—before applying makeup after laser skin resurfacing or a chemical peel. You should be able to use your normal makeup after a few weeks.
It’s only natural to be eager to get back to ‘normal’ after your procedure. But by following these recommendations and guidelines, you will allow yourself enough time to heal and achieve the optimal results you deserve. You can see some of the results our patients achieve in our facial plastic surgery photo gallery.
If you’re considering facial surgery such as a facelift, eyelid surgery, or brow lift in the Nashville, Brentwood, or Franklin area, we’re happy to answer your questions and discuss your options with you. Use our online form to request a consultation or call us at (615) 942-8016 to schedule an appointment.