Breast implant sizing. How to get it right.

Unhappiness with breast size is one of the most common reasons for revision surgery after breast augmentation.  There is a best breast implant size for each patient and there is an art to getting it right.  The breast implant should fit the body type.


  • Large implants on a short patient just make them look heavy.  Conservative sizing is important.
  • Large implants on the very thin patients look “augmented”, top-heavy and generally overdone.
  • Large implants are best suited for medium to tall height patients who have wide hips and larger lower bodies.
  • Symmetry in nature is beautiful.  There was a recent study published in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery that looked at body type.  Photos of the same woman were “morphed” at various heights and builds.  Patients with thin hips were found to be most beautiful with small to medium breasts and the opposite was true with fuller hips.  “The top should match the bottom”.

It can be very difficult for a patient to adequately communicate the final breast size that they are looking for, particularly when they often aren’t entirely sure themselves.  A few tools are available to help a patient feel comfortable with their decision

  • Review pictures, look for patients with your similar build and breast size.  Record the size of implants they got and start making notes.
  • There are commercial breast implant sizers available to wear in your bra.  You can wear them in different situations and with different clothing styles.  There are a few available, I have provided a link to one such sizer.  They cost about $60 and come with a bra and variety of sizers.
  • 3D imaging is helpful to visualize the size on your body.
  • If you don’t want to pay for sizers, simply filling plastic baggies with rice or water will do.  Measure the amount that gives you the result you are looking for.  A little less convenient but a good option.
  • Make sure there are open lines of communication between you and your plastic surgeon.  Personally, I feel that natural looking augmented breasts are far superior to “done” or augmented looking breasts but that is only my opinion.  This is one place that I give a great deal of responsibility to the patient.  Of course, if they choose a size that I feel would be a problem we discuss the reasons for this.  Patients are generally good judges of what is best for them when armed with information.

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