Contoured breast implants may not be the most popular choice of implant shape, but for many women it can lead to a more natural breast shape. They get their name because they"re shaped to look more like a natural breast — narrower at the top, and thicker at the bottom. They have a tendency to be more expensive than the more popular round breast implants, but may look more natural than the round shape in certain situations.

Here"s the scoop on contoured breast implants, so that you can make an informed choice as you discuss the details of your breast augmentation surgery with your doctor. Your plastic surgeon will also advise you on the best type of breast implant for your particular situation and desired results.

  • Contoured breast implants are ideally suited for use in cases where there is little or no breast tissue to place the implant under to "hide" it. In post-mastectomy breast reconstructions and in women who have little or no breast tissue, the contoured breast implants may look more natural than their more symmetrical, rounded counterparts, which can jut out unnaturally if not placed correctly.
  • Contoured breast implants need to have a textured surface, and come only with silicone filling. Because teardrop breast implants will make the breast look unnatural and misshapen if they shift once they"re implanted, contoured implants need to be made of a more textured surface that the surrounding tissue can grip onto as it heals after surgery, to help hold it into place. The textured surface also helps decrease the chances that you develop scar tissue around the breast that could encapsulate your implant and lead to malformations.
  • If they"re placed correctly within the body, teardrop breast implants may give you a more natural, lifelike shape. They won"t have that rounded "implant" look that can come with the perfectly symmetrical round implants. Ask your doctor for her advice, and be sure to look at her before and after pictures of patients who used the contoured implants to determine if they placement is correct.
  • Some plastic surgeons won"t work with contoured breast implants. Because of the increased risk of breast distortion due to shifting of the implants, you may find that some surgeons refuse to use a teardrop-shaped implant and instead suggest utilizing the round implants.
  • Teardrop breast implants may not make your breasts look fuller where you want it. Many women are hoping to create fullness both at the top and at the bottom of the breast, and some doctors believe that the teardrop shape creates more fullness just at the bottom of the breast. However, others disagree with this assessment and say that contoured breast implants can also create a voluptuous breastline at the top.
  • While finances should not be the top consideration when you"re making major decisions about your body, keep in mind that teardrop breast implants are generally more expensive than their round counterparts.

Ultimately, you should choose a plastic surgeon you trust — and consider his opinion as you make the big round vs. contoured implant decision.