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Choosing the Right Breast Implant Size for Your Body & Lifestyle

March 19, 2018

For many women, the decision to get a breast augmentation is a process that requires several different factors before reaching the final decision. One such factor that is often quite difficult is choosing the right size for the implant — not too large, not too small. We know that breast size affects many aspects of a woman’s life, including her relationships, social interactions and overall physical well-being. We want to make sure that patients have the resources and guidance to choose the perfect implant size!

Here are some of the most important factors to consider and discuss with your surgeon before settling on what implant size to choose for your breast augmentation.

Body Measurements

We all know that bra cups are typically sized in A, B, C and up, but implants are measured in cubic centimeters — cc for short. For approximately every 150 to 200 ccs, the breasts will usually increase about one or one and a half cup sizes. That can vary a bit depending on your specific measurements and even the bra manufacturer, but it gives you an idea! You can always try on different sizes with specialized bras during your consultation to see how the implants look and feel on your body.

With such a large range of sizes, it’s important to realize that not every woman’s body type and breasts will be able to handle implants higher up on the scale. Your body type, including the width of your natural breasts and shape and size of the chest wall, will factor into the ideal size of implant to create the desired fullness, shape, and profile.

Your body type, including the width of your natural breasts and shape and size of the chest wall, will factor into the ideal size of implant to create the desired fullness, shape, and profile.

Body Shape & Frame

It should come as no surprise that larger breasts, whether natural or augmented, are heavy. This can take a toll on a woman’s entire body. Women with larger frames and/or stronger muscles are best equipped to handle large breast implants, but even they can be susceptible to issues. Choosing a too-large breast implant size can lead to fatigue, back and shoulder pain, and potentially even the need for a breast reduction.

Depending on your frame, a high, moderate, or low profile may work best. For those with a small frame, a high profile may be ideal because this option has a narrower width. While a low volume option may work for those with broad shoulders and a larger frame to create an even proportion.

Lifestyle Factors

Now that we have covered several body-related factors to consider, it’s time to talk about lifestyle. For active women, athletes, or women with more physically demanding jobs, larger breast implants may not be ideal. It’s simple: the larger the breasts, the more tiresome and potentially painful it will be to carry the extra weight while working, running, lifting weights or playing a sport.

It’s also important for you to think about what kinds of clothing you normally like to wear, and if those items will be compatible with larger breast implant sizes. Augmentation will certainly affect how shirts, bras, swimsuit tops, and dresses fit, and additional procedures like lifts or reconstructions will affect things even further.

How Your Plastic Surgeon Can Help

Breast implant fullness profiles

When you meet with Dr. Donaldson or Dr. Sieffert for your consultation, they will start the conversation by asking what your desires are for your breasts.

If you have inspiration photos to show how you’d like your breasts to look, these can help guide the conversation between you and your surgeon. Photos of women with fuller cleavage will guide your surgeon to recommend a more high-profile style implant, and photos of women with more natural looking breasts will direct your surgeon to recommend a more moderate-profile implant. Ideally, your model will have a similar build to you.

 During your consultation, your surgeon will talk to you about all of the different characteristics of breast implants, such as silicone vs. saline, the cohesivity of the gel, and the different projections you can get. Your surgeon will also go over whether your implant should be placed over the muscle, under the muscle, or in a dual-plane position.

Finding the Right Size for You

Dr. Donaldson or Dr. Sieffert will then take measurements of your chest that help to provide a range for the size of implants that would be best for your frame. The proper implant size for you is typically one that doesn’t exceed the outer borders of your chest. Once a size range is established, Dr. Donaldson or Dr. Sieffert will bring you a bunch of implants in that range with different profiles to choose from, and you will try them all on and see what you like the best!

If you are in between two different sizes, your surgeon may recommend going with the bigger sized implant because they will appear a bit smaller once they are inside the body. Many breast augmentation revisions occur because patients wish to go with bigger implants than those they originally chose.

Ready to Meet With our Qualified Surgeons?

There’s a lot to think about when deciding on breast implant sizes. If you’re considering breast augmentation surgery and wondering if it’s right for you, we would love to see you at Donaldson Plastic Surgery. Dr. Donaldson or Dr. Sieffert will perform a personalized consultation that takes into account your specific anatomy and the results you’re looking for. They will work with you to determine the best option according to your body shape. Call today to schedule a consultation and we can help make sure that you get the best results from your breast augmentation surgery.

Updated on October 15th, 2020.

* Earned by Dr. Donaldson