If you have ever considered breast augmentation, the thought has likely crossed your mind: “Is there a ‘perfect’ size or shape for my breasts?”
That is a completely natural and understandable question to have, but also not one that has an absolute answer. A great many factors go into determining the ideal goals of breast augmentation surgery.
Has that stopped people from trying to determine what the “perfect” shape is, though? Of course not!
Pursuing a Definition of “Perfection”
In September 2014, a study was published in the medical journal Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery on the “perfect” proportions for female breasts.
In this study, researchers polled 1,315 people—a mix of men and women, including 53 plastic surgeons. Each was asked to rate the aesthetic appeal of a variety of different breasts sizes and shapes. In some cases, the researchers used Photoshop to alter the images to fit certain objective parameters.
In the end, there was a certain proportion that appeared to be attractive to a clear majority of participants: a ratio of 45:55 between the upper and lower poles of the breast, respectively.
What does that mean? If the nipple is the dividing point of the breast, 45 percent of breast tissue is above it and 55 percent is below it.
According to the study, the 45:55 ratio was preferred by:
- 87 percent of women in their 30s
- 76 percent of women 40 and older
- 90 percent of men
- 94 percent of the plastic surgeons (so 50 of the 53)
An upper-to-lower poll ratio of 50:50 came in a distant second place.
The results seem pretty conclusive then, right? Most people in this study considered 45:55 the most attractive combination, so it’s the “perfect” shape, right?
Hold the phone a minute.
Where “Perfect” Counts
While it’s pretty impressive that a large group of people can look at some Photoshopped chests and come to a general consensus, that is information that should be taken as a guideline and not a be-all, end-all standard.
When it comes to aesthetics, humans can be somewhat fickle creatures. It is not insignificant that, while 87 percent of women in their 30s prepared the 45:50 ratio, 13 percent of them preferred something else. Go to women a decade or more older and that number rises to nearly one-quarter preferring a different proportion.
An 11-point swing between two different age groups of women also implies another truth of humanity: common preferences can change over time.
There was once a time when men wearing huge, powdered wigs and long coattails was the height of elite fashion (and there is no guarantee they won’t come back sometime in the future). Plumpness and thinness tend to yo-yo in and out of popular discussion as well.
What qualifies as “perfect,” “ideal,” or “the best” can change from person to person, and from circumstance to circumstance. If you are trying to appeal to everyone around you, prepare to have a very uncertain and unsteady time of it. You’ll have an easier time nailing Jell-O to a tree.
And this brings us to one ultimate truth: The person whose standards you should be appealing to most with a breast augmentation is you.
“Perfection” Means More than Looks
Appearance is absolutely a valid consideration for a breast augmentation. We want you to have a shape and proportions that you feel good about and give you confidence.
But if you are not comfortable and satisfied with your own form, no favorable opinion poll is going to change that feeling.
Other’s opinions are also not going to matter much if you are in literal pain from your form. A breast augmentation should not sacrifice practical comfort for aesthetics. In some cases, a breast reduction is the best choice for the ideal outcome.
Every patient who comes through our doors has a different situation, involving different needs and their own individual body shape. To just tell each one that a 45:55 ratio is what they need and to get on with it would be incredibly disingenuous and against our mission.
Our process for discussing breast augmentation and other procedures puts you, your desires, and your goals in the driver’s seat. We listen firmly to your story before we make recommendations for potential steps forward and what you may expect from them.
Might that lauded 45:55 ratio be the goal in many or even a majority of the augmentations we perform? It’s likely. However, we might recommend an alternative based on the information we have, or you may simply be among the percentage who doesn’t feel those proportions would be best. That is completely valid, and you will get to see how many potential options may look for you.
Are You Ready to Take the Next Step?
Breast augmentation—or any form of plastic surgery—is never something to just go with trends and public opinion on. Your choices and your happiness are the only factors that should matter.
We would be happy to discuss the possibilities with you further. Schedule an appointment at our Fort Lauderdale office by calling (954) 380-8411. If you prefer to contact us electronically, you are more than welcome to do so. Simply fill out our online contact form and a member of our office will respond to you during standard office hours.