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The Difference Between “Real” & Augmented Breasts

There’s no doubt that even though breast augmentations have become increasingly more common, accepted, and generally very popular, there has always been a tendency for some to try to figure out whether someone has “real” or “fake” breasts.

Let’s just preface this by saying that ALL breasts are real, whether they have an implant or fat transfer, have been lifted or reduced, or are the breasts you are born with—breasts are breasts and each individual gets to decide what happens to theirs.

Although we’ll be the first to tell you that “fake” is not actually a thing, there are different factors than can make an implant look more or less natural. Our surgeons have spent countless years perfecting a “born-with-it” result. Here are the key concerns they discuss in consultations.

Will Anyone Be Able to Tell that I Had a Breast Augmentation?

One of the most common questions we get when a patient comes in interested in a breast augmentation procedure is whether anyone will be able to tell that they had a breast augmentation. So many patients want to know: how natural will my breasts look after surgery?

At The Plastic Surgery Clinic, our goal is always to give you the most natural result possible with any procedure. Having said that, everyone is different, and people have their own particular tastes. Some patients might prefer a more obvious breast augmentation result than others, and if that’s what gives you the most confidence and is the look you love, then that’s great too (you do you!).

There are a number of factors that contribute to how natural a breast augmentation may or may not look.


One of the most obvious ways to tell whether someone has implants or has had a breast augmentation procedure is by the size of their breasts. If your implants are significantly larger than what your breasts looked like prior to surgery, then you can expect that people who know you well will be able to tell you’ve had a breast augmentation procedure.

This doesn’t necessarily mean that your breasts will look “fake” or unnatural. If your breast implant size has been well chosen to suit your anatomy, even if they’re larger, they will still look like they’ve always belonged on your body.

If they’re obviously oversized, and just seem much too large for your chest and your overall body size and type, then you can expect them to look, well, obviously “done.” But again, this is totally a matter of personal preference. Some patients seek out the “done” look because that’s simply more their style.


Another way to tell whether someone may or may not have implants is by the way that the breasts move. Breasts without implants have a specific kind of movement, and although scientific and technological advancement in both implant design as well as surgical technique have really made it almost impossible to tell the difference, especially in experienced surgical hands, an implant will still move on the chest in a different way than a breast that does not have an implant.

How natural the movement of a breast implant may or may not seem largely depends on its placement.


The placement of the implant is really probably one of the most important factors when it comes to how natural the breasts will look following a breast augmentation procedure. We say this because, placement of the implant is what ultimately affects how the implant moves, how visible its particular shape might be to the naked eye, and where it sits on the chest, amongst other factors.

At The Plastic Surgery Clinic, the majority of our breast augmentations are subfascial, meaning that we place the implant between the pectoralis muscle and a tough layer of tissue that typically surrounds the muscle, called the fascia.

This placement allows the implant to be placed exactly where it should sit on the chest, while simultaneously using the fascia as a useful pocket in which the implant can be housed. This placement gives the breasts an extremely natural appearance and allows them to move very naturally as well.

Not everyone is always a candidate for subfascial placement, in which case the other two placement options include the implant being placed either over the muscle (subglandular placement) or under the muscle (submuscular placement).

Type of Breast Augmentation

Breast implants are not the only way to have a breast augmentation. There are other breast procedures that can create more volume in the breast without the need for an implant.

The breast augmentation with fat transfer for instance, harvests fat from other parts of the body where there might be more or unwanted pockets of fat and re-injects this fat into key areas of the breasts in order to add more volume to them.

Although, the breast augmentation with fat transfer will not offer as substantial an increase in size as a breast augmentation with implants, it’s a totally natural and more subtle way to increase the volume in your breasts and no one would be able to tell the difference. You can even combine this technique with breast implants to enhance the natural appearance of your result, and to create great cleavage.

Similarly, if you’re someone who might be a good candidate for a breast lift, and you don’t necessarily need to add much more volume to your breasts, a breast lift with auto-augmentation actually uses a patient’s own tissue in order to lift the breasts and offers more upper pole fullness, without the need to insert anything foreign into your breasts. So, except for your surgeon, who would ever know?

Choose What Works Best For You

At the end of the day, the only real or fake distinction that matters to us is having real confidence—really loving how you look and feel. No matter which path you take to get there, whether we join you on that journey or not, you deserve to feel as amazing as you are.

The Important Questions to Ask During Your Consultation
Why We Love Subfascial Breast Augmentation
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Before You Go…

Did we answer all your questions? Our goal is to ensure you have the best information possible to make your decision. If you still have questions, we’re here to help.

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