Breast Uplift vs Breast Reduction - Which Surgery to Choose?

Mr Adrian Richards
By Mr Adrian Richards

Mr Adrian Richards is a Consultant Plastic & Cosmetic Surgeon and is Medical Director at The Private Clinic of Harley Street. He trained in Oxford and London.


Those of you who are considering a change of breast size, or shape, and are going from larger to smaller, will be best advised to look at either a breast uplift or breast reduction. These two procedures are different but can be pretty similar in their outcomes, which can lead to some confusion.

This is a short piece outlining the two which will help you make a more informed decision about which one is suitable for you.

We call it a breast reduction because quite literally the breasts are reduced to be a smaller size.

Surplus tissue and fat are taken out of the breast, they are then shaped into a smaller and more ‘lifted’ state.

In some cases, this is a purely aesthetic shift, but for other ladies, this is a way to eliminate the breast or back pain that can come with larger breasts.

Breast augmentation treatment

With less fat, the breasts will sit higher on your chest which is partly to blame for the confusion with the uplift.

The other major similarity is that a breast reduction will also help with sagging (but to a lesser extent than in an uplift) because there is less fat to weigh them down.

There are a few things you can ask yourself to help determine whether you are suitable for a breast reduction:

  • Are your breasts restricting your movements in any way?
  • Do you feel your breasts are too large?
  • Do you get discomfort under your breasts?
  • Are they causing any pain to your body, for example back, neck or shoulder pain?

If you answered yes to any of those questions then a breast reduction is something you can consider.

breast uplift surgery

A breast uplift (medically termed a ‘Mastopexy’) on the other hand is performed with the sole intention of raising sagging breasts.

If you are struggling with asymmetrical or tuberous breasts this may be the option for you as well.

Your breast volume should stay the same but after an uplift, they might look smaller because of the changed position.

As the skin tissue on the breast is taken out and not the fat you will see a lifted, ‘perkier’ look to your breasts.

How do you know if a breast uplift is advisable for you?

A few key questions to ask yourself:

  • Do your breasts look ‘long’?
  • Do your breasts hang unevenly?
  • Do your nipples point in a direction you don’t want them to?
  • Are your nipples placed unevenly or too low on the breast?

One of the biggest and most visible similarities is the small incision or ‘anchor’. It’s called an anchor because of its shape, it’s a pattern that follows the areola all the way around and then goes down into the fold underneath the breast which is known as the inframammary fold.

Both treatments can help with oversized nipples or areolas, however, a nipple correction or areola reduction can be done as a separate procedure also.

Both will give you somewhat of a lift but if a raise of the breasts is your main concern then an uplift is going to be better for you than a reduction which is solely geared towards reducing larger breasts.

I hope that’s given you a good place to start. Whilst it’s brilliant to research as much as possible for yourself, the number one way to know which surgery is best is to talk to an experienced surgeon who can properly assess your individual case.

When you’re in front of a medical professional you can raise any questions or concerns you may have.

If you want to read more, the experts at Consulting Room really know what they're talking about and have put together breast reduction, fat treatment, breast uplift and nipple correction FAQs just for you. 

If you have more questions, you can use the breast reduction, fat treatment, breast uplift and nipple correction questions feature to talk to our panel of trained medical experts. 

If you're keen to get started with any of these treatments right away then you're in luck - those clever folks also have a list of trusted, accredited breast reduction, fat treatment, breast uplift and nipple correction clinics in your area.

Many thanks to the author of this blog Mr Adrian Richards who is the Medical Director at The Private Clinic of Harley Street. He has worked at the Regional Plastic Surgery Centre in Stoke Mandeville, Aylesbury and now concentrates exclusively on Cosmetic Surgery and training with a special interest in breast surgery.

He is a member of BAPRAS and BAAPS and has written over 30 publications, including a bestselling plastic surgery book. As one of the leading generations of plastic surgeons his expertise is often sought after by the media, with frequent appearances on television and radio.

Thanks to the author

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