Many women choose to go under the knife to enhance their chest. But with the choices presented to them, how do they choose the material? Making the choice between silicone or saline can be extremely difficult. This is especially true if you aren’t knowledgeable about the two. There are pros and cons associated with each implant material. Each patient is different, and has their own individual look and preference in mind. Lets take a moment to discuss the two different implant materials. Hopefully, you will get a better idea of what material is better for you.

How They Look and Feel

First of all, most patients want a nice, natural look. This can be achieved with both silicone and saline implants. This is especially true if the implants are placed under the chest muscles. However, if you want your implants to feel natural, many say silicone is the way to go. Silicone implants are made out of a gel material. The material mimics the weight of natural breasts, as well as the suppleness. Liquid saline implants do not feel as natural as silicone gel. Silicone implants are also softer, and less likely to ripple. In addition, a very thin patient or someone who has little natural breast tissue would be a good candidate for silicone. On the other end of the spectrum, if a patient has very asymmetrical breasts they would be a good candidate for saline implants. The saline solution can be adjusted in each implant, evening out the breasts.

How They Scar

Secondly, an important factor to consider is how each implant material will heal over time. Will they leave big, visible scars? Most of the time, scars are not extremely noticeable. Saline breast implants are made out of a silicone shell, with a liquid saline solution filling. The saline solution can be added after the shells have been placed. Because of this, the incisions made can be a little smaller. In addition, there are more options of where the incisions can be made. With silicone implants you can choose to have the incisions in the breast fold or the armpits. Saline implants allow you to choose not only those two places but the areola borders or even the belly button. Scars from saline implants are usually around half an inch smaller than silicone, and have a larger range of options for where incisions can be made.


It has been found that both silicone and saline implant materials are safe. However, at one point in time, the FDA was concerned about the safety of silicone breast implants. Lawmakers were concerned that there wasn’t enough information to support that breast implant were safe. Therefore, the material was subject to years of rigorous testing. This resulted in the FDA basically coming up empty handed. They were not able to find any scientific data that silicone breast implants are harmful. The FDA assumed that they were linked to systemic diseases. However, this proved not to be true. Both silicone and saline implants are completely safe. There is on e difference between the two though. To get silicone implants, a patients must be at least 22 years old. Whereas to get saline implants, a patient only has to be 18.

Breast Implant Cost

Lastly, a huge contributing factor to how some choose what breast implant material to go with is cost. Initially, silicone breast implants are a little more expensive. The manufacturers of silicone implants charge about $1,000 more than saline. In addition to the extra cost, those that have silicone breast implants are told they should get an MRI three years after surgery. Then, every two years they should get an MRI. Patients that opt for silicone breast implants are made aware that there is no way to detect breast cancer, or ruptures with the implants. Therefore, getting MRIs is highly recommended. On the other hand, saline implants do not require that you get an MRI. Thus, over time the maintenance costs of silicone implants make them the more expensive option.

Making the choice

As you’ve read, each breast implant material has its own pros and cons. Both silicone and saline have a nice natural look. But silicone implants have a more natural feel. Saline implants have slightly smaller scars and more options for the placement of incisions. Both options are totally safe. Lastly, of the two choices, silicone is more expensive in the long run. Making the choice is completely up to you but your surgeon can answer any questions you may have.