Breast Lift

Conveniently located to serve the areas of San Diego, CA

breast lift san diego

A breast lift, also called a mastopexy, is a cosmetic surgery that raises the breast profile and sculpts the breast mound for improved projection. A breast lift removes excess skin and tightens the underlying tissues to reshape the breasts and create a firmer, rounder, more youthful contour. This in-demand procedure can also reposition the patient’s nipple-areolar complex and resize enlarged areolas to be more proportional to one’s breast size.

Time and gravity are constants that greatly impact the appearance of the breasts. Additionally, weight fluctuation and hormonal changes can also contribute to sagging breasts. (1) With age, women also lose elasticity in the skin. These changes may cause a woman suffering from breast ptosis to lose confidence.

Dr. Steven R. Cohen and the team of Faces+ help women achieve lifted perkier breasts so they may regain a new sense of self. If you are interested in learning how a breast lift can help reshape your breast profile and improve self-esteem, contact our San Diego office today at (858) 453-7224, or via our online inquiry page. 

Before and After Photos


Breast lifts have grown in popularity in recent years–in fact, since 2000, breast mastopexy has increased by more than 70%. (2) Today, numerous women seek a breast lift to correct sagging from the effects of time, gravity, and aging. Many women may also seek breast mastopexy to correct sagging caused by pregnancy, breastfeeding, and fluctuating weight.
Breast lift surgery can effectively address: 

  • A drooping breast profile
  • An enlarged areolar region
  • Irregularities in nipple positioning 
  • Discomfort and hygiene issues under the folds of the breasts 

Breast Lift, Breast Reduction, and Breast Augmentation

A breast lift will not significantly change the size of a patient’s breasts. It will instead improve the overall placement and shape of the breast profile. This differs from breast reduction, which reduces the weight and size of a woman’s breasts. Also called reduction mammoplasty, breast reduction helps to correct challenges such as neck strain, shoulder pain, lower back pain, and chronic skin issues underneath the breast fold. Alternatively, breast augmentation enhances breast size to improve proportions and create a more voluminous shape.

Breast Lift Techniques

Four commonly used breast lift techniques include crescent, periareolar, vertical, and anchor. (2)

Crescent Breast Lift

Patients with minimal sagging may benefit from a crescent breast lift.  An incision which runs halfway along the outer edge of a patient’s areola, allowing a crescent shaped piece of tissue to be removed from above the areola. Once the incision has been closed, the lower pole of the breast receives a subtle lift, and any scarring is concealed at the border of the darker pigmented areolas.

Periareolar Breast Lift

Recommended for: Mild sagging

Also called a “donut lift”, the periareolar breast lift results in a subtle lift of the breasts. This procedure requires a circular incision around the circumference of a patient’s areola, so that a donut-shaped piece of tissue can be removed. Scarring is also minimal.

Vertical Breast Lift

Patients with moderate ptosis, or sagging, are typically good candidates for a vertical breast lift. This type of mastopexy is also called a “lollipop lift” because of the lollipop-shaped incision. This procedure requires two incisions. One incision will encircle the outer circumference of the areola. A second vertical incision will be made from the bottom center of the areola to the inframammary fold, or breast crease. The underlying breast tissue can be repositioned, and excess tissue removed to lift the entire breast mound higher on the chest.

Anchor Breast Lift

Severe cases of ptosis are best addressed with the anchor incision, or inverted T incision. Three incisions are made so that an optimal amount of excess tissue can be removed, and that the surgeon has adequate access to the underlying tissue, which can be lifted and secured in place with internal sutures. The first incision will circle around the circumference of the areola. The second will travel vertically down from the areola to the center of the breast crease. The third will travel horizontally at the base of the breast fold. The anchor technique results in the most lift, and can dramatically reshape a patient’s breasts. It will also, however, result in slightly more scarring due to the number of incisions made. Scarring will fade considerably after one year, and is hidden discreetly underneath the breast fold and the border of the areola. 


A breast reduction has numerous benefits which include:

  • Long-term results
  • Improved cleavage
  • Better-fitting clothing and the ability to wear less constricting bras
  • Improved breast placement, projection, and contours 

Ideal Candidates

You may be a good candidate for breast lift surgery if:

  • You have generally good health
  • Your nipples are oriented downwards and are below the breast crease
  • You are content with the size of your breasts 
  • You experience mild to severe breast ptosis  

If you are an active smoker, you may not be a good candidate for breast lift surgery. (3)

Personal Consultation

Dr. Steven R. Cohen is a Board-certified Plastic Surgeon who has helped many women to improve breast placement and projection with breast lift surgery. In your consultation, we will discuss your goals for breast lift surgery, and determine the best way to achieve them. We will also share images of past patients who have undergone the procedure it will help you to gain an idea of the end result and identify potential outcomes for your own procedure. If you are interested in learning if breast lift surgery may be right for you, contact us today to set up a consultation with Dr. Cohen at our San Diego office. Call (858) 453-7224, or get in touch through our online inquiry form. We also invite you to visit our blog! Learn more about how our procedures are helping patients experience an improved quality of life. 


You should follow pre- and post-operative instructions closely to ensure effective results from breast lift surgery. To prepare, you should:

  • Schedule a mammogram. 
  • Avoid medications, supplements, and vitamins that thin the blood. This includes aspirin, ibuprofen, NSAIDS, Vitamin E, and ginkgo biloba. Blood-thinning medications can lead to increased bleeding and swelling from breast lift surgery. 
  • Arrange for a trusted friend or family member to drive you to and from the procedure.
  • Stop smoking. At least four weeks before surgery, you should avoid cigarettes and other nicotine-based products. 


Each breast lift surgery is customized to fit the unique specifications of each patient, including their natural breast size and shape, areola positioning, and skin elasticity. The procedure steps are as follows:

  • Anesthesia. Breast lift surgery is usually performed under general anesthesia
  • Incisions. Your surgeon will make incisions on each breast. It will be either a crescent, periareolar, vertical, or anchor incision, depending on the amount of sagging and desired results.
  • Reshaping and Repositioning. The patient’s breast tissue will then be lifted, sculpted, and repositioned as needed. Your nipple-areolar complex will be repositioned higher on the breast, and your areolas may be resized for a more proportionate appearance. We will also remove skin to tighten underlying areas for a firmer appearance.
  • Closing incisions. Your surgeon will close the incisions with stitches. Scars will fade with time and typically assume their final appearance within one year. Each patient is different, with healing dependent on an individual’s genetics and medical history. 

After waking from the anesthesia, your chest will be dressed in supportive bandages and a compression garment to minimize swelling and discomfort. 


Our breast lift patients usually feel well enough to return to work within one to two weeks of the completed procedure. Bruising and swelling will also resolve within three to six weeks. Gentle exercise such as walking is recommended. Patients should continue to get adequate rest, avoid heavy lifting, take medications as required, wear supportive undergarments, and attend follow-up appointments. 


On average, the results of a breast lift last between 10 and 15 years, though most patients still enjoy a significant improvement after this time. We stress the importance of a realistic perspective – gravity, aging, and other factors will continue to play a role in breast appearance, even after a breast lift. 

Some things that you can do to maintain results are to:

  • Don’t smoke
  • Wear supportive bras
  • Maintain a consistent weight 
  • Maintain a healthy lifestyle and eating habits

Cost of a Breast Lift in San Diego

The cost of breast lift surgery varies from patient to patient based on their individual case and the extent of the procedure. Factors that contribute to the overall cost of this procedure include anesthesia, surgical facility fees, and medical tests. You’ll be given a detailed estimate for the cost of your breast lift following your personal consultation with Dr. Cohen.


  1. Qureshi, A.A., Myckatyn, T.M., & Tenenbaum, M.M. Mastopexy and Mastopexy-Augmentation. (2018). Aesthetic Surgery Journal. 38(4): 374-384, Mastopexy and Mastopexy-Augmentation – PubMed (
  2. Ramanadham, S.R., & Rose, J.A. Breast Lift with and without Implant: A Synopsis and Primer for the Plastic Surgeon. Plastic Reconstructive Surgery Global Open. 8(10):e3057,  Breast Lift with and without Implant: A Synopsis and Primer for the Plastic Surgeon – PMC (
  3. Martinez, A.A., & Chung S. Breast Ptosis. [Updated 2022 Jan 14]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2022 Jan-. Available from: