The Truth about Breasts: Natural vs. Fake Boobs

posted on:
March 13th, 2024
posted by:
Dr. Thomas Bell, MD

Breast augmentation, colloquially known as a “boob job,” has gained tremendous popularity due to advances in technology and a changing cultural climate that is increasingly accepting of personal choices about body modifications.

Statistics show a significant increase in the number of breast augmentations worldwide. With this rise in surgeries comes a natural curiosity among the public about the differences between natural breasts and those that have been enhanced. Let’s explore the truth behind this debate and dispel some common myths.

Characteristics of Natural Breasts

Natural breasts are those that have not been altered through surgery or other enhancements. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes, with each pair being unique to the individual. Breast size is determined by factors such as genetics, hormones, and weight fluctuations.

Woman with natural breasts.

Appreciating the Diversity of Natural Sizes

The charm of natural beauty is its inherent variation. Natural breasts come in an endless spectrum of sizes, from petite A cups to voluptuous DD. This diversity adds to the appeal of natural breasts, as each pair is unique and carries its own allure.
While society may place value on certain body types, it’s essential to remember that there is no “perfect” size for breasts. It’s all about finding what makes you feel comfortable and confident in your own skin.

They’re Not Identical

It’s perfectly normal for a woman’s two breasts to be slightly different from each other. Asymmetry, both in size and shape, is part of the natural order. In fact, studies show that over 88% of women have some degree of asymmetry between their breasts. This natural variation is not something to be ashamed of or feel the need to correct through surgery.

The Influence of Hormones

Hormonal changes throughout a woman’s life can also impact breast size and shape. During puberty, the increase in estrogen and progesterone can cause breast tissue to develop, resulting in a larger size.

Similarly, during pregnancy, hormonal changes prepare the body for breastfeeding by increasing glandular tissue and blood flow to the breasts. These changes may lead to a temporary or permanent increase in breast size, depending on individual factors.

5 Factors That Determine Natural Breast Size and Shape

  1. Genetics: The genes inherited from one’s parents play a significant role in determining the size and shape of breasts. If your mother and grandmother have larger breasts, it’s likely that you will, too.
  2. Hormones: As mentioned earlier, hormonal changes throughout a woman’s life can impact breast size and shape. This is because hormones can affect the distribution of fat and glandular tissue in the breasts.
  3. Age: As women age, their hormone levels decrease, leading to a natural decrease in breast size and firmness. This is why many women opt for breast enhancement surgeries later in life.
  4. Weight fluctuations: A significant gain or loss in weight can affect the size and shape of breasts. As a person gains weight, their breasts may also increase in size due to the accumulation of fat.
  5. Pregnancy and breastfeeding: As discussed earlier, these phases of a woman’s life can cause temporary or permanent changes to breast size and shape. When a woman breastfeeds, her breasts may become larger and firmer due to the milk production process. Post-pregnancy, the breasts may decrease in size and firmness due to hormonal changes once again.

Characteristics of Breasts with Implants

Types of Implants

There are two main types of breast implants: saline and silicone. Saline implants are filled with a sterile saltwater solution, while silicone implants consist of a silicone gel. Both options have pros and cons, such as differing firmness levels and risk of complications. Gummy bear implants, a newer type of silicone implant, offer a more natural look and feel due to their cohesive gel filling.

Before and after photo of Breast Implant Surgery

Which Type of Breast Implant Looks and Feels the Most Natural?

The answer to this question is subjective and varies depending on individual preferences and factors. Some argue that saline implants, although less famous, can look more natural compared to silicone implants if placed under the muscle. On the other hand, others believe that silicone implants provide a more realistic feel due to their gel-like consistency.

What is Better – Round or Teardrop Implants?

Round and teardrop breast implants on hands.

Again, the answer to this question is deeply personal and depends on each individual’s desired outcome. Round implants offer more projection and fullness in the upper part of the breast, while teardrop implants result in a more natural sloping shape that mimics natural breasts. The choice between the two ultimately comes down to personal preference, body type, and discussions with a trusted plastic surgeon.

Factors That Influence Breast Implants to Look More Natural Vs. Obviously Augmented

A few factors can influence the appearance of fake boobs vs real boobs, making them look more natural than obviously augmented. These include:

Upper Pole Projection

This refers to the amount of fullness in the upper part of the breast. A more natural look often features a gentle slope from the chest wall to the nipple rather than a distinct roundness or sharp edge. A plastic surgeon can achieve this natural look by choosing the appropriate implant size and shape.

Volume Distribution

The distribution of volume in the implant can also affect its appearance. A more natural-looking implant has a gradual sloping shape, with the fullest part at the bottom, mimicking the natural distribution of breast tissue.

Upper Pole “Roundness”

Certain factors, such as implant size and placement, can affect the upper pole “roundness” of breasts. A small implant placed under the muscle will result in a more natural slope compared to a larger implant placed over the muscle. This is because the muscle provides a more natural-looking coverage of the implant.

Implant Placement

The placement of the implant can also influence its appearance. Placing the implant under the chest muscle can provide a more natural look by offering more coverage and a smoother transition from the chest wall to the implant. In contrast, placing the implant over the muscle may result in a more prominent augmented look.

Breast Tissue Thickness

The thickness of a woman’s natural breast tissue can also impact the appearance of an implant. Women with thinner breast tissue may have a more noticeable edge or ripple from implants than women with thicker, denser tissue. If a woman has thin breast tissue, her plastic surgeon may recommend placing the implant under the muscle for a more natural look.

Before and after photo of breast augmentation surgery

10 Ways to Tell If Breasts Are Fake

The most reliable way to determine if someone has breast implants is to ask them. However, if you are curious about someone’s appearance but not comfortable asking directly, here are a few characteristics that may indicate the presence of natural vs fake boobs:

  1. Unnatural shape: Breast implants can sometimes create a noticeably round or oddly shaped breast. Older implants, in particular, may have a more artificial look as they can create a distinct ridge or step-off at the upper edge of the breast.
  2. Firmness: While natural breasts have some give and move slightly when touched, fake breasts tend to feel firmer and less malleable. Silicon implants are typically softer than saline, which can sometimes feel harder and more rigid.
  3. Visible scars: Scars from breast implant surgery are often hidden in the fold under the breast or around the areola. However, in some cases, they may be visible through specific clothing or when lying down.
  4. Lack of movement: Natural breasts typically move and jiggle when a person moves. Implants, on the other hand, tend to stay in place and do not move as much.
  5. Size and proportion: Breast implants can sometimes create disproportionate or oversized breasts compared to a person’s body frame. Additionally, if someone’s breast size drastically changes over a short period, it may be an indication of implants.
  6. Not affected by gravity: Natural breasts are affected by gravity and shift and move when someone lies down. Conversely, implants tend to stay in place and maintain their shape regardless of body position.
  7. Cleavage spacing: Breast implants can sometimes create a noticeable gap or separation in the cleavage area, especially if they are placed too far apart. In contrast, natural breasts tend to have a more gradual and subtle separation between them.
  8. Symmetry: Natural breasts are rarely perfectly symmetrical, and one breast may be slightly larger or sit higher than the other. If someone’s breasts are noticeably identical in shape and size, it could be a sign of implants.
  9. Detectable edges: In some cases, implants can create visible edges or ripples on the side of a person’s breast. This is more common in women with thinner breast tissue and larger implants.
  10. Natural aging: As breasts age, they typically lose their firmness and may sag slightly. Implants, on the other hand, do not age like natural breasts and may maintain a firmer, more lifted appearance over time.

Ultimately, it is essential to remember that everyone’s body is unique, and breast size and shape can vary greatly. It is not always accurate or appropriate to assume someone has breast implants based on appearance alone. It is best to respect personal privacy and embrace diversity when it comes to body image.

Do Men Prefer Fake or Natural Breasts?

There is no one answer to this question, as individual preferences vary significantly. Some men may prefer the look and feel of natural breasts, while others may prefer the enhanced appearance of augmented breasts.

Studies on the matter also give varying results, with some studies suggesting that men prefer natural breasts while others suggest that they prefer augmented ones. The bias of the study, the participants’ demographics, and other factors can influence the results.

Tastes also change over time and can be influenced by cultural norms and media portrayals of beauty. Ultimately, it is essential for women to make choices about their bodies that make them feel confident and comfortable rather than trying to conform to societal expectations or perceived preferences. It is always best to prioritize one’s own well-being and happiness over others’ opinions.

Making a Choice That's Right for You!

When it comes to breast augmentation surgery, the most crucial factor is making a choice that aligns with your own values and desires. Whether you choose to enhance natural breasts or opt for implants, it is essential to do thorough research and consult with a qualified plastic surgeon.

At the Toronto Plastic Surgeons, we believe in empowering our patients to make informed decisions about their bodies. Our team of experienced plastic surgeons is dedicated to providing personalized care and support to help you achieve your aesthetic goals safely and effectively. Book a consultation today to learn more about breast augmentation options and find the best solution for you!


Are there breast implants that feel real?

Yes, modern breast implants are designed to feel as close to natural breasts as possible. Gummy bear implants, for example, mimic the feel of natural breast tissue.

How long do breast implants last?

The lifespan of breast implants varies, but most are expected to last approximately 10-20 years. However, it is essential to monitor them regularly and consider replacing them if there are any complications or changes in breast appearance.

Is breast augmentation safe?

Breast augmentation is considered a safe procedure, but like any surgery, it does carry some risks. Choosing a board-certified plastic surgeon and following all pre- and post-operative instructions is crucial to minimize these risks.

Can I still breastfeed with breast implants?

In most cases, women can still breastfeed after having breast implants. However, it is essential to discuss any concerns with a plastic surgeon beforehand, as the surgery may impact milk ducts and potentially affect breastfeeding.

Will breast augmentation completely change how my breasts look?

The goal of breast augmentation is to enhance one’s natural breasts, not create an entirely different appearance. Having realistic expectations for breast surgery and communicating clearly with your surgeon about your desired results is crucial.

Can I feel my nipples with implants?

In most cases, breast implants do not affect nipple sensation. However, there is a slight chance of temporary or permanent changes in nipple sensitivity due to nerve damage during surgery.

Will my implants look and feel natural?

With advances in plastic surgery techniques and technology, breast implants can now achieve a more natural look and feel. However, choosing the right size, shape, and type of implant is essential to achieve your desired results.

What are the potential risks or complications of breast augmentation?

Like any surgery, breast augmentation poses potential risks and complications. These may include implant rupture, capsular contracture (hardening of the scar tissue around the implant), infection, changes in nipple sensation, and dissatisfaction with results.

It is crucial to discuss these with your surgeon and follow post-operative care instructions carefully to minimize these risks. Breast augmentation can be a safe and effective way to enhance your appearance and boost your confidence.

Posted by:

Dr. Thomas Bell, MD

Dr. Thomas Bell has been one of Canada’s most renowned cosmetic surgeons for 35 years. He prides his excellence on the harmonious balance of vision, aesthetic appearance, and patient care.

More on Dr. Bell

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