What size implants look good on a small frame?

My surgeon sent me home with homework. I have no idea what size because I'm tiny. Im afraid im goin to regret wanting to go bigger or they are too big. I'm about 5'1 and 97lbs and currently wear a 32 a bra. I have yet to find pictures of women with my same frame. Please help with advice.

Doctor Answers 16

What size implant would look good on my frame?

I would agree with Dr. Rodgers in that I suggest to my patients that they look for a size relationship in photos and not a specific cup size.  In the end, whether you are a B/C/D cup, has less impact than how that extra volume looks on your frame.  

I hope that helps and wish you the very best.  

Wishing you the very best!

Denver Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

Implant size can be determined by external sizing

and you should experiment at home using different volumes of rice in a knee hi nylon stocking to help you decide what volume produces the look you like.  1 cup = 240 cc.  Use a unlined bra and light colored tops to help you see what would fit on you comfortably.  Yes, at some point, you will get top heavy and its desirable to avoid that look but  you don't want to be regretting your choice and wish you went larger like most patients do.

Curtis Wong, MD
Redding Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

What size implants look good on a small frame?

It is very difficult to determine the best lift you will need (recommended based on your photos) or the exact size and shape implant you will require to best match your ideal breast image without an examination by a board certified plastic surgeon. Not just any board certified plastic surgeon, but one with many years of frequently performing breast augmentation surgery including different approaches, techniques and implant choices. This is because several measurements not to mention your breast characteristics are needed to determine the optimal implant size to obtain your goals. Without knowing these dimensions it would be difficult to make this determination. For example, the existing base width of your breast will determine, in many cases, the maximal volume per implant profile that you can accommodate. To illustrate; a 100 cc difference may make a significant difference with a narrow base width breast, but much less of a difference if you have a wide chest wall and wide breast “foot print”. Therefore, just because your friend may have a great result with let’s say a 300 cc implant to make her go from a “A” cup to a “C” cup size does not mean that you will have the same result with the same size implant. The same process goes for just filling in the upper part of your breast without becoming much larger. Further simply placing implants in a bra to determine the size best for you is not always accurate as the bra often distorts the size, is dependent on the pressure the bra places plus the implant is outside your breast and not under it among other variables. Computer software morphing programs that automatically determine the best implant size can be helpful in some but not all cases (e.g. doesn’t work well in my experience with existing implants, sagging or asymmetric breasts). Using “want to be” photos however are useful if simply provided to the surgeon as I will further explain in the link below including silicone vs saline implants

Larry S. Nichter, MD, MS, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 154 reviews

What size of implant is good for a small framed person?

HI shytown,

 I usually tell my patients to go for a look and not worry too much about the cup size. There are many factors that go into choosing the proper implant for your frame- the amount of tissue that you already have, the droop of your breasts and your own personal goals are just a few.

I have had some of my patients bring in photos of models from teen magazines,and others,even from Playboy or online sites. Believe me there are small models even on these sites. If you find a look that you like, the surgeon can them make the determination as to which sizes of implants he/she wants to have on hand during the operation. I usually use sizers during the surgery to determine what look is best on the patient's individual frame

If you cannot find anything, you might try going back to the surgeon and have a more in depth discussion. Usually this is very helpful for both surgeon and patient. It is important to understand that no surgeon can ever make the exact replica of what you want, but with better communication, you and he/she can come pretty close.

Best Wishes.

Dr. Christine Rodgers


Christine Rodgers, MD
Denver Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 90 reviews


Thank you for the question and size is an individual decision based on measurements and placing implants in a bra till you see the volume on your chest that you like.  If the surgeon does not have enough sizes try putting rice in a baggy and do the same thing knowing the volume of the rice used.

Dr. Corbin

Frederic H. Corbin, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 61 reviews

Photos for better advices

Thanks for the question. I recommend you to send your photos to us to give you the advices you need and want. Kind regards

Emmanuel Mallol Cotes, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 256 reviews

What size?

I think it would be helpful for you to try on implant sizers on your frame. I have attached a link about how I approach sizing below. Finding a sense of balance  but not going overboard with your petit frame is key.

Hope it helps

Adam Tattelbaum, MD
Washington DC Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 104 reviews

Implant selection

Hello and thank you for your question.  The size, profile, and shape of the implant is based on your desired breast size/shape, your chest wall measurements, and soft tissue quality.  This decision should be based on a detailed discussion with equal input from both you and your surgeon.  This entire surgery can be performed with a small incision technique.  Make sure you specifically look at before and after pictures of real patients who have had this surgery performed by your surgeon and evaluate their results.  

Best wishes and good luck.

Richard G. Reish, M.D.
Harvard-trained plastic surgeon

Richard G. Reish, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 126 reviews

Choosing implant size is difficult

There are 4 decisions that need to be made regarding breast enhancement surgery:

  1. Type of implant (saline vs silicone)
  2. Location of incision
  3. Placement of implant (above or below the muscle)
  4. Size and style of implant

The most difficult decision to make is the size of the implant.  This will be based on your "breast footplate", your desires, cost, scar and experience of the surgeon.  Keep looking at before and after pictures, you will find other women shaped liked you and see what they chose.  Your plastic surgeon and his/her staff can help steer you in the right direction.  If you don't feel comfortable with your initial surgeon, obtain a second or even a third opinion, this is a major decision and more information collection is probably needed.

Good Luck!

David Finkle, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 75 reviews

Breast Augmentation - Size Selection

Thank you for your question. "Tissue based planning" relies on your chest and breast measurements and is the safest way to ensure good long term results. Your surgeon should determine what size and projection are necessary to give you your desired result based on your body's measurements. The best way to assess and give true advice would be an in-person exam. Please see a board-certified plastic surgeon that specializes in aesthetic breast surgery. Hope this helps and good luck with your surgery.

Steven J. Rottman, MD, FACS
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 78 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.