Today’s Most Commonly Used Breast Lift Techniques


Here at Charlotte Plastic Surgery, we meet a number of women who wish to enhance the appearance of their breasts. There are many breast lift techniques and breast enhancements available today, but even so the choice of which type of breast lift technique or enhancement is the right one for you may not be as simple or as straightforward as you might think. Different women come to us with different desires; some want their breasts restored to their natural placement, for instance, while others want us to add a little volume. And, depending on the cosmetic goal you and your surgeon set, there may be a number of different breast lift techniques and enhancements that can help you achieve it.

breast lift techniques

Breast Lift Vs. Breast Augmentation

First and foremost, it’s important to draw a sharp distinction between a breast lift and a breast augmentation. These are two different procedures to meet two different goals, and sometimes the two procedures are used individually or together depending on the desired result.

Let’s start with breast augmentation. This is one of the most commonly performed procedures in all of cosmetic surgery. This is essentially just a matter of adding volume. We perform breast augmentations for many different women, including moms who have lost a little breast volume as a result of pregnancy or breastfeeding.

The breast lift is its own procedure. This procedure involves repositioning of the nipple, which can help the breasts to appear a little “perkier” or less saggy. In other words, it has more to do with the shape of your breasts than the volume or size of your breasts.

It’s also worth noting again that these two procedures do not have to be mutually exclusive. More often than not, we see a lot of patients who require both procedures to achieve the desired result of lifted and fuller breasts.

A Closer Look at Breast Lift Techniques

Assuming you do require a breast lift procedure, there are a few breast lift techniques to consider.

  1. First, the breast itself will be uplifted, reducing the overhang and allowing the patient to see underneath them.
  2. The nipple is relocated to a more central location on the breast mound; visually, this helps enhance the shape of the breast.
  3. A breast lift can also restore fullness to the breast, simply by moving the breast tissue upward.

In pursuit of these three goals, there are actually several different breast lift techniques that our plastic surgeons might employ. Here are just a few examples of some of the most common breast lift techniques in use today.

  • Anchor incision. In this procedure, an incision is made along the perimeter of the areola, then down from the areola to the crease of the breast, and then horizontally along that crease; the shape of this incision does indeed resemble that of an anchor. This option is generally just employed when the breast lift is done in conjunction with a breast augmentation.
  • The lollipop incision. This option involves an incision along the perimeter of the areola and then vertically down to the breast crease. Also called the keyhole incision, this method is only suitable for women who do not wish to have implants added.
  • The donut incision. This option involves an incision being made simply around the perimeter of the areola; it is generally recommended for women whose level of “sagging” is fairly minor to moderate.
  • The crescent incision. This option involves an incision being made just along the upper perimeter of the areola or a half-circle, basically. This option is for women whose sagging is very minor.

These are just a few of the possibilities, and again, it’s all dependent on what you’re hoping to achieve. The best way to choose from these breast lift techniques is to meet with a plastic surgeon who can talk with you about your goals and walk you through how to best achieve your desired outcome.

Assessing Your Needs for a Breast Enhancement

It’s natural to feel excited about the possibility of a breast lift or breast augmentation, but it may also be a little daunting. After all, the procedures will fundamentally alter your physical appearance, and you may feel trepidation about exactly what the end result will look like.

Thankfully, a number of advances, including Vectra imaging, eliminate a lot of the uncertainty and guesswork, both from the patient and the surgeon. We use Vectra here at Charlotte Plastic Surgery, and it allows us to take 3-D images of your breasts which we can then “virtually” augment or lift. In other words, just by looking at the screen, you can “try on” different options and get a very clear picture of what your surgical results will entail.

Learn More About Breast Lift Techniques

Do you have further questions about how to achieve your cosmetic goals? About what you can expect in terms of the recovery time? About how our surgeons can help minimize scarring? Or simply about which of these procedures is right for you?

The best way to have all of these questions answered is to sit down with one of our surgeons and talk together about what you’d like to achieve. We’d love the opportunity to share with you more about how to enhance your breasts in a way that’s truly beautiful and discreet. Contact Charlotte Plastic Surgery today to set up your free consultation with one of our board-certified and award-winning surgeons!