10 Things You Should Know Before Getting a Boob Job

SKIN spoke to one of the top breast plastic surgeons in Singapore, Dr Tan Ying Chien, for insider tips on what you should know before getting a breast augmentation.


1pinkIn Nature, boobs are tear drop shaped. It makes perfect sense that enhanced breasts should mimic that for natural-looking results. The newer tear drop (or “anatomical”) silicone implants are especially good news for majority of Asian women who tend to have thinner chest walls, as traditional round implants have a higher likelihood to show at the edges, on top of looking like round char siew buns artificially stuck onto the chest. Moreover, the ability to customise both the height and projection for tear drop implants allows the surgeon greater flexibility to optimise results for every individual, and to correct pre-existing unequal breasts better.



The doctor may throw you a curveball. There’s much more to it than just size. Your new beautiful bosom buddies should be in proportion to the rest of body, have the ideal shape and curves from all angles, and looks perky, nicely lifted and basically like you’re born with it. Depending on your chest width and length, original breast size and shape, and overlying skin condition, your doctor might suggest a bigger or smaller size than you asked for, or a different incision site and implant placement from your friend who’s so happy with her new breasts. He might even recommend a breast lift (mastopexy) to give the saggy girls a helping hand against gravity. Just go in there with an open mind and be prepared to revise your original plan.


3pinkYou can visualise the final results. Apart from “sizers” (a sample sack) you can stuff under your T-shirt for a rough idea, advanced technology in the form of Vectra 3D imager can simulate the end result in 3-dimensions. This clever system also helps the surgeon more accurately assess the dimensions of the chest and breast pre-op. These measurements, together with other information such as tissue thickness and elasticity, will enable the surgeon to select the most suitable implants to deliver the ideal and your desired result.


An A cup can’t bloom from into a DD all at once. It’s important to set realistic goals. If you’re starting with itsy bitsy, don’t expect to go straight up to a D cup in just one procedure. Your skin and body need time to adjust to changes and progressively expand to achieve the best results. Depending on your skin condition, the surgeon may suggest going up only 2 cup sizes at first, before upsizing over the course of a few years if you still wish to expand your bustline.



Get things ready beforehand. Leave your house cleaned. Find help for the kids. If you are going to be home alone, have extra food and all medications handy so you don’t strain yourself especially in the first few days post-op. Buy looser clothes for work beforehand (most will take 5-7 days off work for a breast augmentation). But don’t rush into buying new designer lingerie, though. Your doctor will recommend you to wear a special recovery bra for about 1-2 months after the procedure to keep the implants in place and alleviate swelling. Underwired bras may hinder wound healing and keep the implants from settling appropriately in the first few weeks. In any case, it usually takes 1-2 months for the swelling to fully resolve and for the shape to finalise (you don’t have to feel disappointed with what you see 1 week after surgery!), so new bras purchased too soon after surgery will fit poorly in the end.


6pinkGo easy on yourself. Be still, girl. It might be difficult for some, but the first 2 weeks post-surgery is probably the best time to catch up on movies you’ve missed or books you’ve been hoping to read. It’s best to avoid any strenuous activities that could raise your pulse and blood pressure soon after the op, or which require strenuous use of your arms and chest for awhile. You can most likely resume light gym activities after 1 month (you really don’t want those boobies to be bobbing around before they fully settle, do you?) and full gym activities after 3 months.


7pinkAugmented breasts can affect your posture. The weight difference between equal volumes of saline, silicone, and breast tissue is slim to none, so a natural C cup and an augmented C cup are very similar in weight. If you choose an implant size proportional to your frame, you are likely to have less issues as compared to packing on a pair of big melons. In any case, back strengthening exercises pre-op would prove to be a plus for your posture and in helping you achieve that ideal silhouette, as well as to prevent slouchy shoulders, backaches or neck pain from the extra load on your chest.


8pinkCapsular contraction is one of the most common reason for re-operation, apart from patient request for size change. Formation of an overly tight scar envelop around the breast implant can cause pain, hardening, abnormal positioning or appearance of the implant, and even implant rupture, hence necessitating a second op to replace the implant. Things that can reduce the risk of this dreaded complication include: A skillful and meticulous board-certified plastic surgeon who’s experienced in breast surgery (that basically minimizes your risk for any complication) to ensure minimal bleeding during surgery, as well as the use of textured implants, sub-muscular placement of the implant, and the use of non-powdered gloves by the surgeon during the op.



You can get a nipple reduction, too. Breastfeeding can sometimes cause the nipple to become longer and mis-shapened. Nipple reduction is a simple surgical procedure that can be done together with the boob job, or separately under just local anaesthesia. Often times women who get a breast reduction will also have an areola reduction so the areola (the whole coloured skin of the breast) is proportional to the new size of the breast. The area around the nipple is very forgiving when it comes to scarring.


10pinkYou can remove your stubborn belly fat to stuff up those deflated breasts. Autologous fat transfer, or natural breast augmentation, is gaining popularity as technology to purify fat for predictable good results has grown by leaps and bounds. That not only tackles two common body woes simultaneously to sculpt the figure of your dreams, you can proudly announce that no part of you is plastic (or silicone, for that matter). But compared to breast implants, fat transfer can only offer modest increase of half to one cup size each time.





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