Logo Roy Kim, MD
San Francisco Plastic Surgery

call us at 415.362.1846

220 Montgomery Street, suite 348
San Francisco CA - 94104

Choosing the Proper Breast Implants to Get the Best Cleavage



“Looking at a cleavage is like looking at the sun. You don't stare at it. It's too risky. You get a sense of it and then you look away.” -- Jerry Seinfeld


Breast cleavage is a mysteriously powerful thing indeed. Men are seemingly fascinated with it, and women have used it accordingly for centuries. From Elizabeth’s corsets to Victoria’s miracle bras, cleavage is one fashion accessory that will never go out of style.

Yet like fashion, cleavage trends tend to change by the season. While the fully pushed together straight line cleavage of years past is what most people think of when they hear the word “cleavage,” a more subtle slope is usually favored by today’s Hollywood stars and housewives alike. And I’m here to tell you, men appreciate it in whatever form it takes. Like George Constanza says, looking at cleavage is a reflex, not a choice.

As a plastic surgeon, I can certainly help women achieve breasts that are more full, less droopy and better suited to their body types through the use of breast implants. By making the breasts larger, and lifting them when needed, the natural slope and subtlety of the top portion of the breasts will be seen when wearing low cut blouses and dresses. But when it comes to more dramatic cleavage, it is still bras and shapewear that do the heavy lifting.

So what role does breast implant profile play in creating cleavage? What other factors determine how much cleavage will result after breast augmentation? How does a woman’s unique anatomy affect the type of breast implant she should choose for the most natural looking cleavage? All these questions and more are answered to help you figure out- how can I get cleavage with a breast augmentation?

Defining Cleavage

Breast Implant Profiles

Existing Fat and Breast Tissue

Original Distance Between Breasts

Defining Cleavage

One thing I’ve learned in my years of plastic surgery practice is that doctors and patients are often speaking different languages when we talk about cleavage. Women think of cleavage as the natural transition from collar bone to sternum to the rounded upper portion of the breasts that is visible while wearing clothing. Y’know, the area that the car mechanic is staring at while you are trying to explain the weird sound that your brakes have been making?

Doctors tend to think of cleavage as simply the distance between two breasts. Regardless of breast size, this distance should remain relatively consistent – about 1 to 1 ½ inches – for the most aesthetically pleasing results.

Some wishful patients think that breast augmentation surgery should give them breasts that are creating cleavage, or nearly touching, at all times … even without a bra and even while laying flat on their backs. This is simply not true, and honestly, not desired. Breasts that don’t separate and fall somewhat to the sides when not inside a bra look, well, weird.

So now that we all know what we are talking about when we say “cleavage,” let’s take a look at how breast implant profiles play a role in creating it.

Breast Implant Profiles

When most people think about breast implant sizes, they think of volume. That is to say, how big are the girls gonna be? But in fact, breast implants are sized by both volume and profile.

As a patient, you want a certain volume to give you the necessary “oomph” to get you to where you want to be. After you figure out the best volume (measured in mL or cc), then you will need to figure out the profile of your breast implant. Profile refers to the width or circumference of the implant. The more volume you put into a certain width, the “higher” the implant will be.

Think of it this way - if you have 3 cups of pancake batter, it would look very different when poured inside a 4-inch muffin tin than it would look poured into a 9x13 pan.

Implants range from low profile to medium profile to high profile and even Pamela Anderson profile. To find the one that will create the most natural look for you, your plastic surgeon will take several measurements of your breasts, chest wall and rib cage area.

Your breast implant profile should be less than or the same as the width of your existing breast. This will give you a natural appearance, with some breast tissue separation in the middle of your breast area, over your sternum.

If the breast implant profile is too wide, then the implants and your breasts may touch in the middle. Despite what some patients think about braless cleavage being cool, this is actually abnormal and called synmastia.

If the breast implant profile is too narrow, your breast implants will fit the width of your breasts, but there will be too much space between your breasts. The Grand Canyon is a beautiful wonder of the world, but you don’t want it on your chest.

If you have very little breast tissue, then you will probably need a medium or high profile implant to achieve natural looking cleavage. A low profile implant under skimpy breast tissue could create a squished down look. Likewise, if you already have some breast tissue, you may need a smaller volume or low profile implant to achieve the subtle slope. It completely depends on your body.

So now we know that choosing the right breast implant profile is crucial for the best and most natural looking cleavage. There are just a few other factors to consider regarding your own unique anatomy and how it will play a role in your resulting cleavage.

Existing Fat and Breast Tissue

The amount of existing body fat and breast tissue has a significant impact on the natural look of cleavage after breast augmentation surgery. And sorry skinny ladies, but this is one time when you may wish to have a little more meat on your bones.

If a woman is very thin and without much tissue on her chest wall or in her breasts, implants will certainly create cleavage, but it will sometimes lack a natural slope from chest to breast. Instead, very thin women will end up with a flat chest wall that quickly protrudes to show the shape of the implant.

In other words, thin women run the risk of a “beach ball” look in addition to an increased risk of rippling due to the lack of fatty tissues surrounding the implants. These risks can certainly be reduced by inserting the implants below the muscle and choosing the proper profile. Or maybe, perhaps, you want to look like a Playboy bunny, and that’s perfectly okay, too. .

Conversely, if a woman is overweight and has a lot of extra fat and tissues around her chest area, the resulting cleavage after breast augmentation will not be as dramatic or noticeable.

Original Distance Between Breasts

The majority of women with smallish breasts have a lot of separation between the right and left breasts, usually more than one inch. This separation, of course, affects the look of cleavage while wearing low cut clothing or a bikini. Some people think of this as the runway supermodel look, or in other words, the 15-year-old look. Again, proper breast implant choice will help with closing this gap.


The most important thing to remember is that all breasts naturally separate and go slightly outwards when they are not inside supportive lingerie. The goal of plastic surgery is to enhance the size and lift up the girls while maintaining this natural beauty. Even with the surgical assistance of breast augmentation, dramatic cleavage will always require a great push-up bra.

Yet for those sexy, subtle and understated moments in a tank top, bathing suit or simply hanging out in your husband’s work shirt, the right breast implant size and profile combined with the right plastic surgeon will do wonders for the new “natural” you.

If you’d like to schedule a consultation with Dr. Kim to discuss your best cleavage options, please contact our patient care coordinator at info@drkim.com, or call our office at 415-354-8148.

blog comments powered by Disqus
  • American Board of Plastic Surgery
  • American Aesthetic Society of Plastic Surgery
  • American Society of Plastic Surgeons
  • Real Self