If you’re a woman who would like larger breasts but you’re hesitant about implant surgery, you’re not alone. In fact, every member of the entire aesthetic industry from top-notch board certified plastic surgeons to fly-by-night charlatans selling miracle treatments, is well aware that women would rather not go under the knife. Hence, there’s a huge range of breast enlargement options to choose from.
Unfortunately, most of the choices that don’t involve surgery are a waste of money. Some may even be dangerous.
When talking about breast enhancing options that don’t really work, creams top the list. They may contain some of the ingredients found in pills, those that can cause temporary swelling, and they may even cause some tingling sensation that fools users into thinking they work. In reality, there’s little to no scientific or even anecdotal evidence that they work(aside from testimonials on Web sites selling the creams).
Most breast enlargement pills on the market today are based on herbs that have hormone-like effects on breasts. Thus, they may cause a sense of enlargement due to fluid retention, similar to the effects birth control pills can have. But many doctors believe the pills may not be safe for that very reason. Discussing natural breast enhancement medications, a professor at Georgetown University School of Medicine said, “The use of bust-enhancing products should be discouraged because of lack of evidence for efficacy and long-term safety concerns.”
Before you plunk down money for an exercise device that promises to enlarge your breasts, think for a moment about what your breasts are made of: milk ducts and fat. There’s muscle there too (the pectoral, or chest wall, muscle, among others). The breast mound itself consists of tissue that can’t be enlarged through exercise.
You can certainly exercise anyway! Building your upper body strength is a good health move. It may even perk up your breast profile just a bit, but actually enlarge your breasts through exercise? Nope.
Speaking of equipment, there’s the infamous Brava device. It’s basically a huge suction cup bra that boosts breast size by causing swelling and some say damaging breasts.
Some women reported a slight increase in size (usually around half a cup) after using the Brava system, though many say it doesn’t last. The drawbacks are hard to ignore, starting with the price. The device will set you back about $2,500. Then, you’ll be advised to wear it for 10 hours or more each day for months and its bulk is difficult to disguise under clothing. Many women complain that the suction is uncomfortable and some report skin irritation. Plastic surgeons say they see patients who have tried the device and patients wish they applied the cost to breast implant surgery in the first place.
Injectable fillers are FDA approved for (and appropriate for) plumping facial wrinkles. There is one filler in use outside the U.S. for breast enhancement: Macrolane. Like its sister product, Restylane, the facial filler, Macrolane is used for filling, or enhancing, natural curves and contours.
You could fly to Europe, where Macrolane is generally available. Before you make airline reservations, consider these caveats. First, like other fillers, the effects of Macrolane are temporary. Not to mention that it takes a high volume of the product, at a high cost, to achieve significant augmentation. Eventually, there may be an injectable filler that works well for breast augmentation and is FDA approved for use in the U.S. but not yet.
Some plastic surgeons are performing breast augmentation via fat transfer, but many feel that it’s still too early for the procedure to go mainstream. First, there’s the potential for the fat to be reabsorbed by the body. There’s also the fact that many doctors feel that the transferred tissue may interfere with cancer screening. The majority of plastic surgeons still use a term like “promising” to characterize this augmentation option.
If you feel your small breasts are a hindrance to your quality of life you have every right to dream about a new figure. Just don’t let unscrupulous practitioners and daring pioneers prey on those dreams. Seek out the information you need and make informed decisions.