Should You Change What You Wear After Surgery?

Should You Change What You Wear After Surgery? That is the question. How many of you sacrifice¬†your fashion sense due to having a stoma? Surgery may change you physically but that doesn’t mean that it should change you. Here is how I have not sacrificed my dress sense due to stoma surgery.

Should You Change What You Wear After Surgery?

I can honestly say second time around with a stoma I have not sacrificed my wardrobe and gone to smock tops and leggings due to having a stoma, not that there is anything wrong with what I have mentioned but its not my fashion and I am more comfortable in skinny jeans and a vest top or hoody. I dress up when “Im going out out” in the words of Mickey Flanagan but I mostly work from my desk at home and dont look out of place on the morning school run in jeans and a hoodie. There are ways of easing yourself back into your wardrobe after surgery and adapting your wardrobe to account for the stoma.

Post op recovery

So post op recovery means your abdomen is swollen and sore so the last thing you want to be doing is jumping into your jeans and going off out on adventures.

These are the things that helped me post op:

  • Tracksuit bottoms/lounge bottoms. These I lived in for about 4 weeks after surgery. You can get cute matching sets from stores like Peacocks, Sainsburys or Tesco. They sit quite high up on the waist so are not rubbing on the stoma or your surgery injuries
  • Low waisted knickers such as french knickers or girl boxers
  • Jeggings. These are a life saver and dont have any buttons or zips to dig into sore places
  • Skirts, loose fitted skirts that pull on and off are very comfortable
  • Pyjamas, what girl can forget pjs, I found nighties more comfortable during the 6 week recovery period

So after the recovery period what can you wear to one disguise the stoma and two wear what you would have prior to surgery?

I've not had to compromise my sense of fashionThe best advice I can give for this is support wear. There are specific ostomy garment companies where you can purchase ostomy knickers, hernia support wear, stoma bag covers and “adult shennagians” underwear.

  • Jasmine stacey. This lovely lady makes Ostomy lingerie in matching sets to give you a more confident and sexy approach to underwear. I have one collection of hers and a few other bits and pieces
  • Comfizz. They have hernia support wear for both male and females and are more for every day wear. I have the briefs, support band and shorts to tuck me in and give my stoma support whilst wearing clothing such as jeans, skirts and dresses. They also have vest tops if shorts or briefs arent your thing
  • Vanilla blush. They make ostomy knickers which are high waisted and have an internal pocket to tuck the bag into, this also supports you and tucks you in a little bit. I wont mention how many pairs of these knickers I own as may look like I have secret ostomy knicker issues. I also have the hernia support vest tops as they look like your regular top and no one would notice the difference.They also have the mens vests and boxers for male ostomates.
  • Stomawise. They make bag covers for those who just wish to cover the bag and not have to wear support wear

I personally wear support wear from the lists above as I have hernia issues and am doing everything in my power to stop them re-occuring.

In all honesty I haven’t changed my dress sense at all since having surgery, I am still the same skinny jeans, hoodie and converse wearing Crohnsfighting that I was prior to surgery. The only thing I struggle with is fitted skirts due to a small waist but big hips and fitted dresses but I cant get rid of my bust. My dress sense has improved since surgery and I still wear body con dresses and skater dresses with no thought to my ostomy. I even wear bikinis and don’t bat an eyelid.


Overall I don’t believe that as ostomates we should have to change our fashion sense or the way we dress after surgery. Apart from the odd balloon moment with the stoma bag most people dont even notice you have a stoma bag hiding under your clothing. I think the support wear under the clothing helps massively but thats not every ones preference. Hoping this post is helpful to fellow ostomates.

Please feel free to leave any comments



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