What is the minimum age to have breast implants?

26 November 2021

Breast surgery - woman in low cut top from aboveBy plastic surgeon Dr Dirk Kremer

Across the UK, the vast majority of plastic surgeons are likely to have an age limit that specifies a patient must be aged 18 years or over to safely undergo breast enlargement surgery. At times, there may be special circumstances that can overrule this minimum age limit, but this would have to be discussed in great detail with the plastic surgeon.

Why do you have to be 18 or older to have breast implants?

There are a few key factors as to why you should wait until you’re at least 18 years old before having breast implant surgery.

These factors include:

  • You are unlikely to have fully grown until the age of at least 18
  • Breasts are typically fully developed by the age of 18
  • Implants are unlikely to interfere with any further breast development from age 18 onwards

It’s worth noting that many women experience continued development with their breasts into their early twenties, therefore you shouldn’t consider breast augmentation surgery until you feel sure that your breasts have fully grown.

A patient whose breasts are still developing would be extremely challenging to effectively operate on and achieve the best result. This is because it would be challenging to accurately determine which implant size, shape and profile of implant should be used during the surgery to best suit them in the long run.

Furthermore, breast implants can cause sagging and stretched, excess skin if they are placed into still-developing breasts.

What is the best age range to have breast implant surgery?

The best age range to have breast implant surgery would be between the ages of 18 to around 50 years old.

It is typically recommended that a woman waits until she has had children before considering some form of breast surgery, but it is understandable that many women do not want to wait many years before addressing their breast issues or something they feel self-conscious about.

Women between the ages of 18-30 are likely to undergo breast implant surgery to address what they believe to be small breasts that are out of proportion with their body, or to address a lack of volume in their breasts.

Meanwhile, women aged between 30-40 tend to opt for breast implants or other breast surgeries after noticing a change in the shape, size or perkiness of their breasts following pregnancy and childbirth.

Most mature women simply feel as though they would benefit from a boost in confidence and self-esteem by undergoing a breast augmentation that restores and improves their appearance.

Learn more about my signature Split Muscle Breast Augmentation

Why 20-35 is within the ideal age range to have a breast augmentation

Between the ages of 20-35 a woman’s breasts are fully developed, making it far more straightforward for an experienced plastic surgeon to provide an accurate assessment and make the best recommendations with regards to the breast implants that would be right for them.

Before going ahead with a breast augmentation procedure, and despite being within the optimal age range, a woman between these ages should consider a few things:

  • Do you want children in the future?
  • If you have children, do you plan to have any more?
  • If you have children, will you want to consider breastfeeding?

These questions are incredibly important to consider because the size and shape of the breasts are likely to change quite considerably during pregnancy. An introduction of breastfeeding post-pregnancy is also very likely to further add to those changes.

Although breastfeeding is still very possible even with implants, some women do find some difficulty with it and may experience a reduction in the firmness of their breasts.

Why 35-50 is within the ideal age range to have a breast augmentation

Women aged between 35-50 are a little different to those in their 20s or early 30’s. This is because in most cases, women aged 35 and above have already experienced childbirth and no longer plan to have any more children - meaning their breasts can be enhanced with implants sound in the knowledge of no further pregnancies physically affecting them.

This makes the age range of 35-50 perhaps the most optimum for breast implants.

This is because at this age women have:

  • Fully developed physically
  • Have no further plans to have children
  • Are likely to be healthy and fit

Undergoing breast augmentation aged 50 and over

It is perfectly safe and acceptable for a woman aged 50 or over to consider breast augmentation, though women should be aware that the healing and recovery process can become a lot slower as we get older. A woman aged 50 or over should also be sure they are in great health before undergoing breast augmentation and has a full understanding of any potential risks or complications that are associated with the procedure - although this also goes for a patient of any age undergoing any procedure.

Here at Harley Street Aesthetics, I offer a wide range of cosmetic surgical and non-surgical procedures. To discuss your breast surgery, or any other procedure that you may be interested in, don’t hesitate to book your initial consultation by calling 0845 519 7232, e-mailing info@harleystreetaesthetics.com or by simply completing the online contact form.


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