Implant size doesn’t translate to a specific cup size.
When preparing for breast augmentation surgery, many women are surprised to learn that certain implant sizes don’t necessarily translate to a specific cup size. There are many variables in implant sizing besides volume, such as height and width, which must be considered, as well as how those dimensions fit with your natural anatomy. The process of choosing an implant size is complicated and requires a personal examination, measurements of your chest and existing breast tissue and an in-depth discussion about the results you’d like to achieve. As long as you’ve chosen a board-certified plastic surgeon who’s highly experienced in breast augmentation surgery and you’ve thoroughly discussed your goals, he or she should be able to ensure your implant size is ideal for you and your frame.
How many ccs do I need to be a small C cup?
Without photos and better yet a personal interview and examination, it's impossible to tell the exact size that meets your goals. However, At 5'1'' and a present B cup, a 275 ml implant sounds about right..
Hopefully your PS placed "sizers" on your chest in a bra and with a T-shirt for you to actually view how each size looks. This will enable you to decide the size more definitely.
I would concentrate on how it looks more than the cup size, since they are not standardized very well. Best of luck to you, and thank you for your question.
Hi xtina1221, Thanks for your question on which implant size
would be best for you. Right now it sounds like you’re considering 275cc and C cup. Since there is no way to say definitively over the
internet which size would be optimal for you, take comfort in the fact that the
surgeon uses your unique measurements and is able to provide you with a general
range. In many cases the board certified plastic surgeon can best be your
guide as they’ve met with you in person and heard your aesthetic goals. You may
consider doing 3-D imaging; however with nearly all the breast cases we’ve
performed, we’ve found patients enjoy doing a live “try on” session where they
actually can “try on” the implant in a non-padded bra in our office. This
does not give an exact measurement of outcome, rather it gives a nice idea of
what to expect. For patients who desire a more natural look we like to
recommend the shaped implant. For patients who desire a more full,
voluptuous look we recommend a higher profile implant. And remember that all
breasts have at least some amount of asymmetry (we like to say they’re like
sisters and not twins).
My very best to you.
–Brian S. Coan, MD, FACS
CCs and cup sizes are not interchangeable
Thank you for your question!
Please note that the size of the implant has to be tailored to your breast characteristics and measurements (i.e., breast base width, amount of skin stretch, soft-tissue coverage, nipple to inframammary fold distance, etc.).
Without this, you will set yourself up for negative consequences in the long-term and fake looking breasts. So please focus on the looks and not the size as my colleagues have said. With regards to your question, please note that bra sizes clearly vary among manufacturers. A B cup may be a C for another, and unfortunately, the concept of sister sizers, and different techniques of breast measurements make it difficult to associate the implant volume with the bra-cup size.
However, a study by Dr. Bengtson and Dr. Glicksman titled “Standardization of Bra Cup Measurements” has shown that the average implant volume required to increase the cup-size by 1 size is equal to 205 ccs. Since you would like to go up by 1 size (i.e., from B to C), you may require 200 cc according to this study assuming you are considering bras of the same style and from the same manufacturer.
So I believe that if you are an avg sized woman a 275 cc should do the job for you, but you should ask for bra sizing trials with the implants to see if the C cup bra will fit. Note that after surgery, the breasts will be a bit smaller than they appeared during bra sizing - so it should translate well into a "small C cup."
Also note that you must consider the profile of the implant as well. The profile pretty much tells you how much the implant sticks out in the forward direction.
Low profile implants have wider diameter and the lowest projection
Moderate profile implants have less projection because of their wider diameter
High profile implants are narrower at the base and consequently have more projection
If you would prefer a more projecting breast rather than a more "natural" looking breast, then you may prefer a high profile implant which has a narrower base and a more ball-like shape that can provide fullness in the upper pole of your breasts.
Hope this helps.
Cup size and implant volume
Cup size does not always correlate with implant volumes. You can do a baggy test with the bra you want to fit to see what volume fills your cup.
What size will I be
How to Pick
the Right Size and Shape of Breast Implants
of the more frequent questions I'm asked as an aesthetic plastic surgeon for
patients considering breast implants is "how do I know what size, and shape I need?” The answer to this
question has changed dramatically throughout the 25 years that I've been doing
breast augmentation. I've also learned that the words that patients used to
describe either what they want or don't want can be completely misleading into what
I interpret their meaning to be. Therefore, I like to request that our patients
considering breast augmentation bring in photos of both what they think they
like and what they don't like. There seems to be a multitude of sources on the
Internet where these photos can be downloaded. By looking at the patient's
desires, I get a better understanding of what they want. We no longer recommend
that we place the exact implant on top of the existing breasts and then place a
stretchy bra over it to give us any idea what that exact same implant under the
muscle would produce in size. That method, in my opinion, will always over
represent what the actual result will be. If you are going to use a sizing type
method, then Mentor makes a shell sizing system such that, when the shell size
corresponding to the implant that it represents is placed over the existing
breast and in a bra, it will better represent what that size implant under the
breast and muscle will look like. We've also used 3-D imaging called Vectra® since
its inception some 6 to 7 years ago. With this method, a three-dimensional
photograph of the actual patient is taken and can be seen on a large screen
television by both the physician and perspective breast augmentation patient at
the same time. We then can place all of the different implants that are
available under that image and decide what size, shape, fill ratio, and height
to base width relationships will look best for each patient. Silicone gel
breast implants come basically into shapes either round or shaped. They also
come with either a textured or smooth surface. In my mind, there are advantages
and disadvantages of every scenario and combination of those choices. Most of
the time a round smooth implant placed under the muscle works very well for
breast augmentation patients. It's then very simple to just look at size and
ratio projection to base width and select the perfect implant for that patients
shape and desire. Sometimes we would like to use a textured surface implant.
Here the advantages are that the textured surface implants tend to migrate less
in the pocket, as there is some frictional resistance to motion. Another
advantage of textured implants is that the capsular contracture rate,
especially when implants put above the muscle, is less than for smooth wall
implants. Shaped implants, because we do not want them to turn in the pocket,
are always textured. My planning method to optimize the best implant for each
patient is begun with a measurement of the base width of the breast. We would then
like to subtract about a centimeter and a half total off of that number so as
to have coverage of breast tissue over the implant. We then will have a range
of implants whose base width matches that number. If we go larger than that
number, which sometimes patients will want, we as plastic surgeons know that
these larger implants can have more problems down the line. For instance,
larger implants may migrate below the crease which one has to lower at the time
of surgery in order to get the implant in. When these implants migrate below
the natural crease, they can create a second crease in what we call a
"double bubble". Large implants can also; because of the pressure
they put on the overlying breast tissue, thin that tissue out such that there
is less overlying breast tissue over the implant as time passes. After we have
the base width, our next decision needs to be what is the ratio of the base width
to the projection of the implant. Essentially, there are usually four choices
ranging from fairly flat which is called low-profile, to progressively more
height and less width with the same volume of silicone gel, which is called
ultrahigh profile. There are two profiles in between which are the ones more
commonly used and these are called moderate profile and moderate profile plus.
Common scenarios in which taller implants would be desired may be in patients
who want a larger look than their natural base with would allow or have a fair
amount of loose overlying skin that were trying to hold up. For patients who
want a more natural look, a moderate profile or moderate profile plus shape is
more desirable. There are also anatomically shaped implants. Rather than being
around these implants can either be taller than they are wide or wider than
they are tall. There are good reasons in patients to use either. For instance,
in the patient's with very widely spaced breasts and a large breastbone, a
shaped implant that's wider than it is tall can help hide that a little bit.
Another example of the patient in who a shaped implant would be best, is that
patient with laxity after childbirth or weight loss. When the nipple is just at
the level of the inframammary crease, we can sometimes get away with a tall
implant that is anatomically shaped such that the nipple when is it at the
lower two thirds of the breast mound created by the implant still looks good
and natural and may obviate the need for a breast lift. By spending some time,
long before the operation takes place, using the Vectra® 3-D imaging method, we
can decide what type, shape, and ratio of width to height would best serve the
patient's needs. We can then avoid what is sometimes done which is the
placement of sizers at the time of surgery. These sizers, in my opinion, have a
few negative implications. One is that there is a cost inherent in using them
and usually multiple ones are needed to make a decision as to which implant
would look best. I also believe that placing sizers in and out of the breast
pocket can be traumatic to that pocket and can cause bleeding. For me, the
state-of-the-art in today's breast augmentation is to decide long before the
operation exactly which implant would look best using computer animation. A new
wrinkle into the choice of breast implants is that breast implants now come
with silicone gel that is filled to a higher volume in the shell where it is
placed. This will allow for a round smooth implant, for instance to collapse
less in the upright position mimicking more of the look of the shaped implant.
When patients show me a photo of a very rounded upper part her breast, I would
likely choose one of these higher volumes implants such as the Natrelle
Inspira® silicone gel breast implant. Often times patients will present with
breasts that are of different sizes. One of the options to correct this is to
use breast implants of different sizes in order to best create symmetry. One of
the newer methods to help in symmetry creation is to do what we call a hybrid
breast augmentation. In the hybrid breast augmentation, the patient who has
asymmetry of the breast to begin can have matching silicone gel implants placed
and the overlying breast tissue can be made to look the same in volume and
shape by using fat grafting. In that way, no matter what the change in weight
of the patient is over time, the breast is more likely to have the same or
similar size. When it comes to symmetry, I like to tell our patients that they
should consider their breasts to be sisters that live across the railroad
tracks from each other rather than twins. With proper preoperative planning and
flawless execution of breast augmentation, this can be one of the most
satisfying aesthetic plastic surgery outcomes for both patients and physicians.
How many ccs do I need to be a small C cup?
The best cosmetic result in any
particular breast augmentation patient depends on a variety of factors,
including: your individual anatomy, realistic expectations, a thorough
discussion with the plastic surgeon about the options, and an understanding of
the pros and cons of any particular implant choice. Proper sizing is not just
about the number of cc’s. The thickness of your tissue, breast dimensions which
include the width, height, and projection, as well as chest wall width all need
to be considered when choosing an implant. Trying on implant “sizers” of
various shapes and volumes while wearing a tight t-shirt, bra, or bathing sit
at a preoperative visit will help you and your surgeon choose the optimal
There are no manufacturers' standards for cup sizing in the bra industry. The
cups of a 32 C and a 38 C are significantly different. Cup size
varies from manufacturer to manufacturer and even within styles from any
particular manufacturer. There is no direct correlation between implant number
of cc's and cup size in any particular patient.
Keep in mind that following the advice from a surgeon on this or any other website
who proposes to tell you exactly what to do without examining you, physically
feeling the tissue, assessing your desired outcome, taking a full medical
history, and discussing the pros and cons of each operative procedure would not
be in your best interest. I would suggest that your plastic surgeon be
certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and ideally a member of the
American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) that you trust and are
comfortable with. You should discuss your concerns with that surgeon in person.
Robert Singer, MD FACS
La Jolla, California
Thanks for your question.
Without a physical examination it is difficult to respond
with accuracy, but from your height and weight it is critical to stay conservative and small to avoid that artificial disproportionate appearance with your small frame. The best way to determine which breast implant size is best
for you is by first finding out your specific wishes not only with words or
letters as in cup size or “not too big” or “natural”, but also with a visual
understanding of what you hope to look like. This can be accomplished either
with photographs of patients whose breasts and body type look like you, or
ideally with photos of patients not only whose breasts are similar to yours,
but are also a similar height, weight, and pre-operative breast size. In our
own practice we have provided that unique functionality on our website to
accomplish exactly that.
Unfortunately the most common reason for a woman to be
unhappy after her augmentation is feeling as though she is either too big or
not big enough. Thankfully, in our practice this is rarely a problem because
implant size selection is what we spend most of our time discussing and
determining. I do not place the onus of selecting the breast implant size on my
patients since they are coming to me for my advice and expertise, but I do ask
my patients to be as specific as possible about their aesthetic goals and I
then advise them accordingly.
Implants vary in width,
projection and volume. This can be very confusing to women, who are used to
discussing one number only such as “300 cc’s”. To better understand which
implant is best for you, in our consultation room we have two shelves one above
the other, each with four implants. The
top shelf has all the implants with exactly the same width (12.5 cm), yet the
less projecting implant with that width is a 275 cc Moderate or Classic, and
the most projecting is a 590 cc Ultra High Profile. On the lower shelf, all of
the implants are 300 cc implants, yet the less projecting implant has a width
or diameter of 12.8 cm, and the most projecting of the 300 cc implants is the
Ultra High Profile which has a 9.7 cm diameter.
Once it is determined which
implant width or diameter would best fit you, the next step is to decide which
what sort of look you are hoping to achieve, i.e. more projection, moderate, or
least. This is determined by how much breast tissue you have naturally, and how
large you ultimately wish to be. All of this would be discussed during your
consultation. And don’t be shy about coming prepared with images which you feel
best represent your desired end point. These can be determined by visiting our
gallery, or any other photos you wish to bring. The advantage of using our
gallery is that all of the relevant information about patient age, implant size
and type, are clearly indicated.
I would advise you to seek the advice of a board certified
plastic surgeon experienced in breast enhancement surgery and make sure that
your own sense of aesthetics aligns with that of your plastic surgeon. Your
idea of “natural” or “pretty” or “proportionate” might be different from your
plastic surgeon’s and it is very important for you to feel confident that you
are both of like minds as far as the goals. Best of luck to you and I hope you
are successful in achieving the enhancement you are seeking.
How many ccs do I need to be a small C cup?
Thank you for the question. There is no accurate/reliable/predictable correlation between size/profile breast implant utilized and cup size achieved. For example, in my opinion, I do not think that the generalizations of "150 cc or 200 cc equates to 1 cup" hold any validity or is helpful in any specific way. There are simply too many variables such as a specific patient's dimensions and the variability in bra manufacturer's cup sizes…
Ultimately, careful communication of your goals (in my practice I prefer the use of goal pictures, direct examination/communication in front of a full-length mirror, in bra sizers, and computer imaging) as well as careful measurements (dimensional planning) will be critical.
Generally speaking, the best online advice I can give to ladies who are considering breast augmentation surgery ( regarding breast implant size/profile selection) is:
1. Concentrate on choosing your plastic surgeon carefully. Concentrate on appropriate training, certification, and the ability of the plastic surgeon to achieve the results you are looking for. Ask to see lots of examples of his/her work.
2. Have a full discussion and communication regarding your desired goals with your plastic surgeon. This communication will be critical in determining breast implant size/type/profile will most likely help achieve your goals.
In my practice, the use of photographs of “goal” pictures (and breasts that are too big or too small) is very helpful. For example, I have found that the use of words such as “natural look” or "small C cup" etc means different things to different people and therefore prove unhelpful.
Also, as you know, cup size varies depending on him who makes the bra; therefore, discussing desired cup size may also be inaccurate. Again, the use of computer imaging has been very helpful during the communication process, in our practice.
3. Once you feel you have communicated your goals clearly, allow your plastic surgeon to use his/her years of experience/judgment to choose the breast implant size/profile that will best meet your goals. Again, in my practice, this decision is usually made during surgery, after the use of temporary intraoperative sizers.
I hope this (and the attached link, dedicated to breast augmentation surgery concerns) helps. Best wishes for an outcome that you will be very pleased with.
Breast Implants/ Breast Augmentation/ Anatomic Gummy Bear Implants/ Silicone Implants/ Breast Implant Revision Surgery
I appreciate your question.
It depends on your chest wall
measurements and existing breast tissue as implant size does not accurately
correlate to a bra size. It also depends on the brand and style of bra
you wear as size varies from manufacturer to manufacturer.
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 and restorative breast surgery.
Best of luck!
Certified Plastic Surgeon
Hills Breast and Body Institute