How to Choose the Right Size Breast Implant

What Is the Right Breast Implant Size

Choosing the right size for a breast implant is a significant decision that can influence your satisfaction with the surgical outcome and how you perceive your body afterwards. This choice should reflect your unique body shape, lifestyle, and personal aspirations rather than conforming to a standard ideal or trend. The process of selecting an implant size is as individual as you are, and it offers an opportunity to align your external appearance more closely with your internal sense of self. It’s essential to approach the process with an open mind and a clear understanding of what is achievable.

Sydney Specialist Plastic Surgeon Dr Michael Kernohan believes that the journey towards selecting the right breast implant size should be a process, where the aesthetics align with your personal comfort and well-being.

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What Are Breast Implants

When considering breast augmentation, understanding the various types of implants and their characteristics is fundamental to making a choice. Breast implants come in different materials, shapes, and sizes, each with its own set of benefits and considerations. Here are breast implant options:

  • Types of Implants: Breast implants are primarily categorised into silicone and saline types. Silicone implants are filled with a silicone gel that feels similar to human fat, making them a popular choice for their natural feel. Saline implants, on the other hand, are filled with sterile salt water and are known for their safety feature—the body can absorb the saline should the implant rupture
  • Shapes and Profiles: Implants also vary in shape and profile. The two main shapes are round and anatomical (also known as teardrop). Round implants provide a fuller appearance at the top of the breasts, often favoured for the lift they can offer. Anatomical implants mimic the natural slope of the breast, providing a more subtle enhancement. The profile of an implant refers to how far it projects from your chest, with options ranging from low to high profiles
  • Surface Texture: The surface of breast implants can be smooth or textured. Smooth implants move freely within the breast pocket, potentially leading to a more natural movement. Textured implants, however, are designed to stay in place, reducing the risk of movement and complications such as capsular contracture
  • Implant Size: The size of the implant is measured in cubic centimetres (cc) and plays a crucial role in achieving your desired outcome. It’s important to note that implant sizes do not directly correlate to traditional bra cup sizes, as the final cup size will depend on both the implant size and your natural breast tissue
  • Longevity and Safety Considerations: While breast implants are designed for durability, they are not considered lifetime devices. You may need to replace or remove the implants at some point due to various factors such as changes in preference, lifestyle, or potential complications. Regular check-ups and follow-ups with Dr Michael Kernohan are essential to monitor the condition of your implants and ensure your ongoing health and safety

The Concept of “Right Size” for Breast Implants

Selecting the ‘right size’ for breast implants is a nuanced process that goes beyond just numerical values. It involves understanding how different sizes will interact with your unique body shape, lifestyle, and personal aspirations:

  • Personal Goals and Aesthetic Desires: Your personal goals and how you envisage your ideal outcome play a role in determining the right size. Whether you’re seeking a subtle enhancement or a more noticeable change, it’s vital to communicate your desires clearly with Dr Kernohan. Visual aids and detailed discussions can help ensure your vision aligns with the feasible outcomes
  • Body Structure and Anatomy: Your natural body structure, including chest width, existing breast tissue, and skin elasticity, sets the framework for selecting an implant size. Implants that complement your body’s proportions tend to produce the most harmonious and satisfying results. A size that looks proportional on one person may look entirely different on another due to variations in body shape and size
  • Health Considerations and Physical Comfort: Larger implants may impact your physical comfort and are associated with a higher risk of complications such as back pain or implant displacement. It’s essential to consider how your choice of size will affect your daily activities, physical health, and overall comfort. An implant size that enhances your appearance without compromising your physical well-being is key
  • Achieving Balance and Proportion: The goal of breast augmentation is often to achieve a balanced and proportionate figure. This means considering how the implants will look in relation to your waist, hips, and overall body shape. The right size should enhance your natural silhouette rather than overshadow it
  • Long-term Satisfaction: Trends in body aesthetics evolve, and what is popular today may not be tomorrow. Choosing an implant size based on timeless principles of balance and proportion rather than fleeting trends can contribute to long-term satisfaction with your decision
  • Adjusting Expectations: It’s important to have flexible expectations and trust in the expertise of Dr Kernohan. He can provide valuable insight into how different sizes will realistically look and feel on your body. Sometimes, the right size is a compromise between your dream outcome and what is safely achievable

Body Proportion and the Right Size Breast Implant

Here are some things to keep in mind when choosing the right breast implant size for your particular case:

  • Body Frame and Chest Width: Your body frame, particularly the width of your chest, plays a crucial role in determining the appropriate size and type of implant that will look natural and proportional. Implants that are too wide for your chest can cause complications, such as visible edges or an unnatural appearance, while those too narrow may not achieve the desired fullness. Dr Kernohan can measure your chest width and suggest implant sizes that will complement your natural frame
  • Current Breast Tissue and Skin Elasticity: The amount of existing breast tissue and the elasticity of your skin are important factors in selecting an implant size. Individuals with more breast tissue may achieve a natural look with a larger implant, whereas those with less tissue or limited skin elasticity might consider more moderate sizes to avoid stretching the skin excessively or risking implant visibility
  • Achieving Symmetry and Balance: Symmetry and balance are key goals in breast augmentation. The right implant size should not only match your body’s proportions but also aim to correct any natural asymmetry between your breasts. Achieving balance can enhance your overall silhouette, making your body look more harmonious
  • Visual Proportion with Other Body Features: How your breasts proportionally relate to other body features, such as your waist and hips, is important. An implant size that creates a harmonious balance between your bust, waist, and hips can enhance your overall physique and contribute to a more balanced appearance. This consideration ensures that the implants enhance rather than overwhelm your natural features
  • Long-term Physical Comfort: Larger implants may impact your physical comfort and mobility. It’s important to consider how the size of the implants might affect your ability to engage in certain activities or exercises. The goal is to choose a size that enhances your appearance while maintaining your lifestyle and physical health
  • Personal Perception and Social Considerations: How you perceive yourself and how you wish to be perceived by others can influence your decision on implant size. While it’s important to make a choice that makes you feel comfortable and true to yourself, considering the social and professional environments you navigate daily is also wise. The right size should align with your personal identity and how you wish to present yourself to the world

Visualising Your Goals

The path to selecting the right breast implant size involves not just practical considerations but also a clear vision of your desired outcome. Visualising your goals is a critical step in aligning your expectations with achievable results.

  • Setting Realistic Expectations: Establishing realistic expectations is fundamental in the journey towards breast augmentation. It’s essential to understand the limits of cosmetic surgery and how it can enhance your natural body. Engaging in honest conversations with Dr Kernohan about what is achievable can help set a clear and realistic vision for your outcome. This dialogue ensures that your goals are grounded in what can be safely and effectively accomplished
  • Utilising 3D Imaging and Simulation: Advancements in technology have made it possible to use 3D imaging and simulation tools during your consultation. These tools allow you to see a virtual representation of how different implant sizes and shapes could look on your body. This visual aid can be incredibly helpful in making a decision, providing a glimpse into your post-surgery appearance and facilitating a better understanding of the potential impact of various sizes
  • The Importance of Proportion over Size: When visualising your goals, focus on the proportion rather than fixating on the implant size or cup size. Consider how the implants will enhance your overall physique, including how they balance with your waist and hips. This approach helps in choosing a size that contributes to a harmonious and balanced silhouette, rather than selecting a size based on arbitrary numbers or trends
  • Reflecting on Lifestyle and Future Plans: Your lifestyle and any future plans should play a significant role in visualising your goals. Consider how your choice will affect your daily activities, physical exercises, and any other aspects of your lifestyle. For instance, if you lead an active lifestyle, consider how certain sizes may impact your comfort and ability to engage in sports or other activities
  • Seeking Inspiration and Guidance: Looking at before-and-after photos of patients with a similar body type can offer valuable insights and inspiration. These images can help you gauge the impact of various sizes and shapes, providing a realistic reference point for your own decision. However, remember that each body is unique, and your results may vary

The Role of Lifestyle and Activity Level in Choosing the Breast Implant Size

When contemplating breast augmentation, considering how your lifestyle and activity level might interact with your choice of implant size is important. The right implant size should not only meet your aesthetic goals but also fit seamlessly into your daily life, ensuring comfort, functionality, and long-term satisfaction:

  • Impact on Physical Activities: For those who lead an active lifestyle, participating in sports, fitness routines, or other physical activities, the size and weight of breast implants can have practical implications. Larger implants may pose challenges in terms of comfort, mobility, and the ability to perform certain exercises or activities. It’s important to discuss your activity level with Dr Kernohan, so he can recommend sizes that complement rather than constrain your lifestyle
  • Consideration for Professional Life: Your professional environment and the physical demands of your job should also influence your decision. If your occupation requires physical labour, frequent movement, or wearing specific attire, consider how different implant sizes might affect these aspects of your work. The goal is to choose an implant size that supports your professional responsibilities and personal comfort
  • Social and Recreational Considerations: Social activities and personal hobbies also merit consideration when choosing an implant size. Whether it’s engaging in recreational sports, dancing, or attending social gatherings, think about how your implants might affect your participation and enjoyment of these activities. The right size should enhance your quality of life and confidence in various social settings
  • Future Family Plans: If you have plans for pregnancy or breastfeeding in the future, discussing these with your surgeon is important. Changes to the breasts during and after pregnancy can influence the appearance and feel of implants. Selecting a size that accommodates potential future changes can help maintain satisfaction with your results over time

FAQs about How to Choose the Right Size Breast Implants


How do I know what breast implant size is right for me?

  • Choosing the right implant size involves considering your body frame, breast tissue, lifestyle, and aesthetic goals. It’s important to have a thorough consultation with Dr Kernohan. He can recommend sizes based on your body’s proportions and your desired outcome. Using 3D imaging and try-on sizers during your consultation can also help visualise how different sizes will look on your body.

Can I choose any implant size I want?

  • While you have a wide range of sizes to choose from, not every size may be suitable for your body type or lifestyle. Dr Kernohan will advise on the best sizes that align with your natural anatomy, ensure long-term comfort and minimise the risk of complications. The goal is to achieve a balance between your desired appearance and maintaining your health and well-being.

Does a larger implant size increase the risk of complications?

  • Yes, larger implants can increase the risk of certain complications, such as implant displacement, rippling, or capsular contracture. They can also lead to physical discomfort, such as back or shoulder pain.

How does my lifestyle affect my choice of implant size?

  • Your lifestyle and activity level are important considerations when choosing an implant size. If you’re very active or participate in sports, larger implants might affect your ability to engage comfortably in these activities.

Can I change my implant size after the surgery?

  • Yes, it is possible to change your implant size after surgery, but it requires an additional surgical procedure known as revision breast augmentation. However, undergoing revision surgery involves additional costs, recovery time, and the risks associated with any surgical procedure. It’s best to carefully consider your options and choose a size you will be satisfied with long-term to avoid the need for revision surgery.

Further Reading about Breast Implant Surgery with Sydney Specialist Plastic Surgeon Dr Michael Kernohan

Medical References about Right Size Breast Implants