Many transgender people, specifically those who were assigned male at birth, want to increase the size of their breasts.
This could include transgender women and nonbinary people who were assigned male at birth.
Increasing breast size may help with gender dysphoria and can help you feel more comfortable in your own body.
If you want larger breasts, here’s what you need to know about safe breast growth.
There are a few ways you can instantly make your breasts look larger. While these DIY solutions won’t work for everyone, they’re worth a try if you want a quick fix.
Wear a bra that’s slightly larger than you usually need
A padded bra with silicone inserts (or even a sock) works wonders, as does wearing two padded bras at once.
Bear in mind that this might be uncomfortable, depending on which bras you’re wearing.
Makeup can help create the illusion of cleavage
There are plenty of cleavage contouring hacks on YouTube, but most involve adding a stripe of bronzer down the center, between your breasts.
Shimmering highlighter on the mounds of your breasts can also make your breasts look larger and more perky, especially if you’re wearing clothing with a low neckline.
Clothing-wise, opt for plunging or V-necklines
If you’d prefer to cover up, polo-neck shirts combined with one of the above-mentioned bra tricks can also make your breasts look larger.
Shapewear can also give you a more hourglass-like figure
Certain types of shapewear are designed to push your breasts together, making them look fuller and perkier.
Another trick is to correct your posture
Slumping forward or slouching can make your chest look smaller.
But don’t bend your body too far back, as this will end up hurting you in the long term.
Certain upper body exercises could tone and strengthen chest muscles, which can make your breasts look perkier and larger.
Try pushups, plankups, chest flys, and chest presses, with or without light dumbbells.
There are also certain exercises you can do to improve your posture.
There are no diets that are guaranteed to increase your breast size. However, some people attempt to gain weight to increase the size of their chests.
Others attempt to lose weight around their waists to give them an hourglass-like figure, as a smaller waist can emphasize the chest.
Some people use herbal supplements to increase their bust size.
Often, natural breast enhancement supplements include herbs that mimic estrogen’s effect on the body.
Many of these herbs are traditionally used for reproductive purposes, such as inducing a period or lactation, or treating the symptoms of PMS.
However, there’s relatively little evidence on whether these supplements are effective and safe to use for breast growth.
It’s also important to remember that supplements and herbs aren’t regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Unfortunately, this means there’s a risk that they’re unsafe.
Hormone therapy could increase the size of your breasts slightly.
This process is called feminization. It’s typically given to transgender women and nonbinary people who are assigned male at birth and wish to have more typically “feminine” features.
Feminizing hormone therapy typically involves:
- estrogens, which reduce testosterone and produce feminizing secondary sex characteristics
- anti-androgens, which reduce the effects of masculinizing hormones on the body
Feminizing hormones could lead to breast growth.
One study of 229 trans women found that the participants’ breasts grew an average of 3.1 centimeters in the first year of hormone therapy, with most of the growth happening in the first 6 months.
That said, anecdotally, many people on hormone therapy notice more significant changes. Results vary person to person.
If you’re struggling to access hormone therapy or a trans-friendly doctor, it might be tempting to use birth control pills instead.
Doctors advise against this. Although birth control pills contain estrogen, they’re not a safe or effective replacement for hormone therapy.
Hormone therapy is a complex process. Expert supervision is the best way to minimize the risk of side effects or complications.
Breast augmentation is a potential option if you’d like to have larger breasts. This is a surgery that involves placing inserts underneath the breast tissue.
Typically, breast augmentation is called top surgery when it comes to trans people.
This surgery usually takes between 1 and 2 hours. Before the surgery, you’ll talk to your doctor about your desired breast size, the type of implant that will be inserted, and the procedure they’ll use.
Breast augmentation specifically on transgender people hasn’t been studied that much.
However, as a retrospective 2019 review notes, it seems to be a safe procedure for trans women. The study noted that all 34 participants surveyed said that it improved gender dysphoria.
Overall, most participants reported they were happier and satisfied with the procedure.
If you’re looking for a trans-friendly healthcare provider to help you get hormone therapy, breast augmentation surgery, or both, here are a few ways to find them:
- Our guide to finding an LGBTQ-friendly healthcare provider offers some tips.
- Trans Health has a list of clinics that offer support to transgender people, including some clinics that help people transition medically. They also have a list of surgery programs in the United States.
- MyTransHealth is a resource that lists vetted trans-friendly and trans-specific healthcare providers, including therapists, general practitioners, and surgeons.
- Planned Parenthood assists transgender patients with hormone therapy.
- The World Professional Association for Transgender Health has an online directory of transgender-affirming providers.
- Trans-specific organizations or support groups in your area may be able to recommend a local doctor or clinic.
- Online forums for transgender people might be a great source of advice if you’re considering medically transitioning.
If you’d like more trans-specific resources in general, we have a helpful guide that covers surgery, mental health, identity, and more.
It’s usually difficult to increase the size of your breasts without breast augmentation surgery or hormone therapy, though certain short-term tricks can make your breasts look bigger.
If you’re interested in breast augmentation surgery or hormone therapy, find a trans-friendly doctor near you. They can answer any questions you may have and advise you on next steps.
Sian Ferguson is a freelance health and cannabis writer based in Cape Town, South Africa. She’s passionate about empowering readers to take care of their mental and physical health through science-based, empathetically delivered information.