Scarring is inevitable after a surgical procedure such as breast augmentation or breast lift surgery, but you can take steps to minimize the appearance of your scar. Think of it as a joint effort between you and your plastic surgeon, since an experienced plastic surgeon employs special techniques to give you great results and minimal scarring.
One of the first steps to minimizing scarring after your procedure is to follow your plastic surgeon’s recovery recommendations. We’ll outline other steps you can take, but first, let’s discuss what kind of scarring you can typically expect after breast augmentation or breast augmentation with lift surgery.
What Will Your Breast Augmentation Scar Look Like?
After surgery, breast augmentation scars are typically raised and red, reddish-purple, or pink in color. As time passes, your scars flatten and fade, taking on a more neutral color.
You should also expect your scar to look different depending on your skin tone, as scars are often more noticeable on lighter skin. However, if you have darker skin, you may be at greater risk for hyperpigmented or hypertrophic scars.
Where Will Your Scar Be Located?
Plastic surgeon Dr. Renee Burke specializes in transaxillary breast augmentation, where the incision is placed in the natural crease of your underarm area. This incision method neatly hides your breast augmentation scar with no evidence showing on your breasts. If you have a traditional inframammary incision, your scar will be hidden under your breast, and if your surgeon uses the periareolar incision technique, the scar will follow the lower edge of the areola.
Dr. Burke will discuss all your options for minimal scarring before your procedure and what type of incision will be best.
What Will Your Breast Augmentation With Breast Lift Scar Look Like?
Many women combine a breast lift with their breast augmentation to give breasts a perkier position in addition to added fullness. Several incision types are common during breast augmentation with lift surgery. If you decide on a combination procedure and have mild ptosis (sagging), the donut incision is usually used. This incision goes around the areola and heals with a minimal scar. For moderate sagging, your surgeon may use a “lollipop” incision that goes around the areola and vertically down to the crease under the breast.
If you decide to combine breast augmentation with a breast lift, Dr. Burke can recommend the best incisions to achieve your goals and give you a beautiful result.
How Long Will It Take for My Scars To Fade?
There is no specific time frame for your scars to fade—scar progression usually depends on each person’s unique physiology. For many people, their surgical scars will appear raised and red for about 6 months to a year, at which point they will start to fade and flatten. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, your scars can take up to 18 months to fully heal and mature.
What You Can Do To Minimize Scarring
– Wear a compression garment or sports bra as your plastic surgeon recommends.
– Start applying scar creams, gels, or patches once your incisions heal to minimize the appearance of your scar.
– Gently massage your implants several times a day to improve circulation after your incision has healed completely. Massage also helps create a less visible, flatter scar.
– Rub or scrub the surgical site when cleaning your incisions.
– Expose your skin to sunlight, which can darken your scars and create hyperpigmentation. Always wear sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher when going outside.
– Engage in strenuous activities that strain your incisions for at least 4 weeks after surgery.
– Lift any heavy objects over your head for at least 4 weeks.
– Smoke 1 month before and after your procedure.
Scar Treatment Options
In some cases, even with the best aftercare, you will be left with a prominent scar, or you may just want to improve the appearance of a moderate scar. You have several scar revision treatment options.
Laser and Light-Based Skin Treatment
You can have an intense pulsed light (IPL) to improve your breast surgery scar without damaging the surrounding skin. IPL uses light energy to promote healing and collagen production and break up pigmentation so your scar appears flatter and lighter. You may need several IPL sessions to get the results you want.
This treatment uses a “sanding” method to remove the top layer of skin and reveal fresh, new skin underneath. Dermabrasion can improve the look of your breast augmentation scar by smoothing out the rough-textured skin covering the scar. However, you should know that dermabrasion doesn’t work on all skin types. If you have a darker skin tone, dermabrasion can worsen scarring or discoloration.
If you are apprehensive about scarring after your breast augmentation and breast lift, know that you have many options to improve your scar’s appearance. Women who seek breast augmentation and lifts at our practice enjoy their perkier, more voluptuous breasts with minimal scarring, as you can see in these before and after photos.