How can you tell if someone has breast implants?

Suzie M Wants To Know: This is a little bit embarrassing, but I’d like to know how to tell when someone has had a boob job. My friends think they can spot fake ones a mile away, but I’m not so sure. Are there any technical tip offs that we should know about?

The Right Boob, uh, I mean Brain, Replies:

We’re cosmetic scientists, not cosmetic surgeons, but we did some research on breast enlargement surgery and we think we can help on this one. A lot of this information is common sense, but we’ve tried to look at this as scientifically as possible.

First let’s point out that factors such as body type, original breast size and shape, and type and placement of the implant are important in the resulting appearance. And of course, don’t underestimate the skill and experience of the surgeon. Having said that, there are a few key things to look for when deciding if someone’s breasts are Real or Real Expensive.

In the interest of good taste, we’ll limit this discussion to observations you can make on a woman who’s fully clothed and not talk about how you can tell from touching them or from things you could see on a naked breast, like scars.

1) Size

While size alone can’t tell you if breasts have been augmented or not, it certainly is an important factor. Pay attention to whether or not a woman’s breasts look disproportionate to her body. If they look too big and you want to know if they’re fake, consider the rest of the visual cues listed below.

2) Shape

Is the shape too perfect? If so, they might be fake since the majority of natural breasts aren’t perfect orbs. Furthermore, real breasts are not exactly identical, so if they look like perfect twins they might be artificial. Also look for too much roundness as opposed to a more relaxed pear-like shape. Natural breasts have a natural sliding curve line from top to bottom. They slope down gradually. Implants tend to have a much higher arc as you look from top to bottom. Firm appearance is another cue; augmented breasts can look more like solid muscle.

3) Placement

Vertical placement: Look at where the breast are positioned on her chest. Breasts are naturally found at about armpit height. Frequently, implants are placed too high on the chest. This is particularly noticeable if she’s not wearing a bra. Horizontal placement: look at the spacing between the breasts. If they’re more than a fist’s width apart, they might be fake. If the surgeon didn’t properly scrape the pectoral tendons, the implants may not be spaced close enough together.

4) Movement

Real breasts are mostly fat, which gives them a jiggle quality; implants don’t move that way. Look at the way her breasts shift (or don’t shift) when she she reaches back or stretches. If they maintain the same dimensions, instead of flattening out, then they’re probably fake. Observe how they follow her body movements, particularly when she’s moving and swinging her arms. Watch how they behave as she bends over, you should see them fall if they’re real. If you’re looking at someone at who’s laying down at the beach or the pool or whatever, see if her breasts naturally fall to the side or if they unnaturally stick up.

5) Other Visual Cues

Depending on what she`s wearing, you might be able to see some additional visual cues like the shape and location of her nipples. A bad boob job may put them too high, too low, or not pointing in the same direction. You might also be able to catch a glimpse of stretch marks that could be a byproduct of the surgery. (Of course, stretch marks can also occur naturally from weight gain and loss.)

Take the Quiz

Think you’ve got it now? Then take this online quiz on Augmentation Mammoplasty. You get to guess if 30 different pairs of breasts are natural or augmented. Good luck!