Breast Lift Without Implants for Small Breasts? (photo)

Hi, I am wondering if it would be possible for me to get a breast lift without implants? I love having small breasts but I just hate how saggy they are and how low my areolas sit.I think my breasts really suit my body when in a bra even though they are small and I would really rather not get implants.

Doctor Answers 32

Will you still love having small breasts with scars?

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I think your breasts are perfectly fine the way they are and sometimes women need to hear this from a plastic surgeon who examines dozens of breasts every week.

If you love your breasts this much I would be afraid that you won't love your breasts with scars.  You cannot get these breasts up to the chest where I think you want them without some type of scarring.  And beyond that no lift lasts forever.  If you hate the scars you will hate the fact that in ten to fifteen years from now you might need the whole operation done again, especially if you are going to breast feed some day after the operation.

Concentrate on your lovely figure how it is now and really think about these scars before singing up for a lift.

Breast Lift Candidate?

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Thank you for the question and pictures.

I think you are an excellent candidate for breast lifting ( without implants),  if you are happy with the size of the breasts but wish to raise the position of the breasts and the nipple/areola complexes on the chest wall. You will achieve these results with the breast lifting operation;  the trade-off will be scars ( probably around the areola and vertically).

It would be in your best interest to meet with well experienced board-certified plastic surgeons to discuss your goals. I recommend showing  your surgeon “goal pictures” to communicate your goals as clearly as possible. If, for example, you find breast pictures with more volume/fullness superiorly you may want to consider breast implants as well.

Your plastic surgeon will be able to guide you depending on what you communicate to him/her.

I hope this helps.

Breast lift procedures and breast implant procedures

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Breast lifts (mastopexy) and breast implants (augmentation mammoplasty) are separate operations and do different things. Sometimes they are combined, but experience has been that they are more controllable and have less problems if done separately. The important thing is to understand what each do and do not do as well as the trade-offs. 

Breast implants do not lift the breast. They act as a volume pillow behind the breast and can fill out areas of it which can give the simulation of a lift as well as "perkiness" but they don't actually move the breast or nipple-areola up on the chest. 

There are some procedures that sound like lifts. The "Ultimate Breast Lift" sounds nice but beware procedures with capital letters in their name that are potentially more hype than good surgical science or depend on a permanent suspension, like the "Threadlift" in the face. These are fraught with potential problems in the long term. Usually there is minimal general or long term experience with such procedures. I would also beware of peri-areolar and crescent lifts which do not truly lift the breast but merely manipulate the size, shape, and position of the nipple-areola. 

A true breast lift requires a vertical (lollipop) incision and allows for moving the breast up on the chest permanently without depending on skin support. The breast volume remains essentially the same but the breast is not expanded forward and the fill in the upper pole is modest. The nipple-areola can be resized and positioned better. In your case I would recommend a vertical lift and discuss the size of the areola and bringing it in to the center of the breast a bit. This should give you what you're looking for with the trade-off of the lollipop scar required. 

Scott L. Replogle, MD
Boulder Plastic Surgeon

Breast Lift Without Implants for Small Breasts

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You appear to be a candidate for a breast lift without breast implants. To verify, consult with 3 - 4 experienced and expert board certified plastic surgeons to understand your options.

Kris M. Reddy, MD, FACS
West Palm Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 56 reviews

Breast lift

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If you want to remain about the same volume, them perhaps a lift alone is good for you. It is hard to tell from the photo views that you took.  It is best to have an in-office exam. Alollipop type lift may be all that you need.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Can small sagging breasts benefit from a Breast Lift without implants?

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Often small #implants or fat are used to restore fullness to the upper portion of #sagging breasts during a #BreastLift. However, the procedure is customized to the needs of the patient. Such will be discussed in greater detail during your consultation with Dr. Nichter or Dr. Horowitz to learn about the options best for you.

Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 116 reviews

Breast Lift Without Implants

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That is a great question. It is difficult to decide on whether or not a prospective patient will need an
implant without properly examining her. The only way to know is to have a physical consultation with a surgeon. Your measurements and FEEL of your breast tissue dictate everything.  This should have little to do with what you WANT but rather what you need….that is if you want a natural result. However, it is correct to assume women with smaller breasts and less sagging can sometimes get away with a breast lift without an implant. Although sometimes a lift without an implant can leave a breast deflated. I hope this has helped.  

Rady Rahban, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 141 reviews

Breast Lift Without Implants for Small Breasts

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There is no reason you cannot have a lift only. If you  wanted a little more fullness in your breasts, but did not want breasts implants, you could consider adding some fat grafting to your breast augmentation.

Michael Law, MD
Raleigh-Durham Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 123 reviews

Breast lift without implants

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The first fundamental test whether breast lifting alone will meet your goals is are you happy with the size of your breast in a push up bra?


A breast lift can maintain the size of your breasts, but reshape them into a more youthful shape and form.  However,  the tradeoff is some visible scarring on the breasts.

There are several options for women considering more minimally invasive breast procedures:

1. Breast lift alone

2.  Breast lift with an implant at a later date if the result is not sufficient.

3. Implant placement alone

4. Dual plane breast augmentation

5. Subglandular breast augmentation

Yes, you have options for breas lift without an implant

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Thank you for your question and the photos. Yes, you can have a breast lift without implants. The only difficulty is that fullness in the upper part of your breast is usually only long lasting with the addition of a small implant.

Another possibility to consider is a small amount of fat transfer (fat grafting) in the upper part of your breast at the time of breast lift.  It could give you that little extra you are hoping for without the implant.

To be sure, see two or more board-certified plastic surgeons in your area for a full and complete evaluation to make sure you are a good candidate and that it is safe for you to have surgery.  I hope this helps.

J. Jason Wendel, MD, FACS
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 221 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.