Breast Lift vs Breast Implants: Which Is Best For You? | VIDA

What’s the Difference Between a Breast Lift and Augmentation?

Among all of the areas that can be improved with plastic surgery, breasts definitely receive a lot of attention. Women who are unhappy with their breasts – from the size and shape to how they’ve aged, have different options to perk up, enlarge, and overall improve their bust. For this purpose, breast lifts and breast augmentations are the most popular procedures. With either of these options, your surgeon can help you lift and increase the fullness of your breasts to your liking, boosting your self-confidence too.

We’re here to answer some key questions, such as: What exactly is the difference between a breast augmentation and a breast lift? Can I get both? Can I get a breast lift without implants or vice-versa?

Breast lift vs breast augmentation: the main differences

Breast Lift

When a woman is trying to decide between a breast lift vs implants, it can be a confusing process. We are always more than happy to help our patients better understand both procedures and guide them into choosing the surgery that will ultimately give them the best results, so keep on reading for helpful information and tips.

A breast lift and a breast augmentation with implants are both surgical procedures that can dramatically improve the look of your breasts. The main differences are the things each surgery improves, the outcomes you can expect and the techniques and tools surgeons use.

If you feel like the appearance of your breasts is deflated, droopy, or saggy, then you’ll be delighted with what a breast lift can do for you. On the other hand, if you’d like larger breasts, a breast augmentation will definitely help.

A breast lift, also called a mastopexy, is a surgery designed to raise and shape your breasts. Most women seek out a breast lift after their breasts have lost volume and tone after having children, losing a dramatic amount of weight or aging. Women who previously had breast implants and choose to remove them can also benefit greatly from a mastopexy. These are some key aspects you can expect before and during breast lift surgery:

  • A consultation where your plastic surgeon will talk to you about the procedure, listen to all of your concerns and evaluate your breasts. This is when the doctor will evaluate the amount of sagging you have and extra skin that needs to be removed.
  • The surgeon will go over the different incision patterns that can work for you: a periareolar incision that goes around your nipple, a vertical incision that runs from the lower portion of your areola to the fold of your breast, or an inframammary incision underneath the breast fold.

During surgery, your doctor will remove excess skin from your breasts and proceed to re-shape your breasts, remodeling its structure. He or she will also reposition your breasts higher on your chest wall. If you and your doctor decide it, you can also resize your areolas, relocate the nipple higher or more centered on your breasts.

Breast Augmentation

A breast augmentation with implants is a surgery designed to increase the size of your breasts with the insertion of saline or silicone-filled implants. Most women choose to get breast augmentation when they want larger breasts or once they’re done breastfeeding and have lost volume. These are some key aspects you can expect before and during breast augmentation surgery:

  • A consultation where your plastic surgeon will talk to you about the procedure, discuss different implant materials and size options for you. The plastic surgeon will solve all your questions and help you understand whether saline, silicone or ‘gummy bear’ implants are right for you. You’ll get a chance to feel them and understand how different implants will affect the final result of the surgery. If you’d like to see how different implant sizes will look on you, ask your surgeon to have a Vectra 3D imaging done.
  • During a consultation, you and your doctor will discuss the different incision patterns through which your implant will be inserted: a trans-axillary where the implant is inserted through a small incision in your armpit area, an inframammary where the implant is inserted through an incision underneath the fold of your breast, or a periareolar where the implant is inserted through an incision in your areola.
  • Your surgeon will also discuss with you the different breast implant placement options. Depending on the type and size of implant you’re getting, the doctor could place your implants over or under the chest muscle.
  • During surgery, your doctor will make the incision and insert the breast implant. He or she will proceed to fill (in case you’re getting a saline implant) and position the implant before closing the incisions.

Do I need a Breast Lift or a Breast Augmentation?

Can I get a breast augmentation and a breast lift?

As you know what each procedure can and can’t do for you if you are in overall good health, you can choose either of them. It all depends on what your aesthetic goals are. However, some patients would benefit the most from combining a breast lift with breast augmentation. It is important to note that a breast lift will not affect your breast size. In the same way, implants will not lift your breasts if you have considerable drooping.

For the right patient, combining both will result in fuller and younger looking breasts that look perky and natural. While this approach offers the benefits of both, there are some things you need to consider:

  • Incisions and scars. When performing breast augmentation, incisions are usually tiny and can even be hidden in your armpit, areola or beneath the natural fold of the breast. The incisions and scars for a breast lift are slightly larger and can’t always be hidden, but, with proper care, they’ll fade.
  • The surgery itself. A breast lift is a bit more invasive since skin, and some tissue might be removed during the surgery. While your surgeon will make sure you are comfortable during and after the surgery, combining a breast lift with augmentation can mean a bit more discomfort during the recovery stage.

Final results. There are women who won’t be satisfied with either surgery, it could be because their breasts have sagged and they lost considerable volume, or their breast tissue has deflated, and gravity has taken its toll. For the right patient, a breast augmentation with a lift can be the best route.

Breast Lift and Breast Augmentation Pictures

When you look at these pictures, you can see how patients’ breasts change depending on the procedure they had:

before implants after implants





Breast lift before and after photos 

breast lift

However, you should remember that your body and your aesthetic goals are completely unique. Ultimately, deciding between implants and a breast lift or a combination of both is a personal decision that you should discuss with an experienced surgeon. Contact VIDA Wellness and Beauty Center now at (619) 610-1667 to schedule a personalized consultation with one of our expert cosmetic surgeons. From addressing concerns, explaining the benefits of breast procedures to offering a second opinion, we’re more than happy to help!

Dr. Alejandro Quiroz

Dr. Quiroz is our board-certified Chief Plastic Surgeon at VIDA Clinic in Tijuana. He specializes in Facial Rejuvenation, Neck lift, Buttock Augmentation, Breast Augmentation, Body Contouring and more. He is member of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, American Society of Plastic Surgeons, International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, San Diego Plastic Surgery Society, the Mexican Society of Aesthetic & Reconstructive Plastic Surgery and the Mexican Council of Aesthetic & Reconstructive Plastic Surgery, to mention a few.