After breast augmentation surgery, it’s natural to be eager to show off your new curves. It’s also normal to feel concerned if your new breasts don’t yet look the way you’d imagined. But don’t worry! Breast implants take time to settle, and you will see some changes during the first six months. Here’s what to expect:
How Implants Settle into Your Breasts, aka “Dropping & Fluffing”
When breast implants are placed submuscularly (under the pectoralis muscle), they may sit slightly higher on the chest and feel firm to the touch in the weeks following surgery—this is completely normal. Post-surgery, your muscles are tense and stressed, prompting them to squeeze the implant tightly against your chest.
This effectively pushes the implant upward above the top edge of the muscle, creating excess upper breast fullness. As the muscles relax, the implant will “drop” down lower on your chest wall and then “fluff,” filling out the lower portion of your breast. Your implants will then look and feel more like natural breasts.
For implants placed over the muscle, you can still expect to experience some dropping and fluffing—though it will be to a lesser extent, and the implants will take less time to settle.
Your Lower Breast Fullness Will Increase
After your breasts drop and settle, expect your upper breast fullness to decrease and lower breast fullness to increase. Your plastic surgeon may recommend massaging your breasts, which can ease muscle tension and allow the implants to move freely and naturally within your breast tissue.
The extent to which your lower breast fullness increases will depend on the existing shape of your breasts and the shape, material, and profile of your chosen implants. The settling process can take between six weeks to six months, so you may not see final results from breast implant settling for quite a while after the initial procedure. So, if you’re planning to have implants in time for a big event, such as your wedding, be sure to plan ahead for a natural look.
Track Your Progress with Photos
While implant settling will naturally occur, these changes happen so slowly that you may not notice anything different. If you feel like it would help you to track your progress, we suggest a visual diary of weekly photos. Taking photos once a week will help you see the subtle and gradual changes that are occurring. Not only is tracking your progress reassuring, it’s also a fun way to see the changes in your body as you move closer to your final look.
In sum, remember that the breast augmentation recovery process is different for every woman, and there isn’t a standard timeline. While most major swelling will be gone within the first few weeks, your implants need time to settle. So be patient with your body and the healing process—your results will be worth the wait!