In 2021, 365,000 U.S. women spent a combined $1.544 BILLION on breast augmentation surgery.
After liposuction, getting breast implants was the most popular plastic surgery of the year.
But how much does breast augmentation cost to a single patient?
And how much is it in New York City?
What price is too high?
And what price is so low that it prevents proper safety and the best possible results?
Breast augmentation surgery in the Empire State
Breast augmentation isn’t actually all that popular in New York.
At least not when compared to all other U.S. states.
In New York and surrounding states, breast augmentation is one of the least common plastic surgery procedures:
New England and the Middle Atlantic states account for:
- 42% of national (U.S.) cheek implant surgeries
- 29% of lower body lift surgeries in the U.S.
- 26% of lip reduction surgeries in the U.S.
- 25% of male breast reduction surgeries in the U.S.
- 19% of labiaplasty surgeries in the U.S.
- 15% of facelift surgeries in the U.S.
- 13% of national breast augmentation surgeries!
New York and NYC aren’t exactly a plastic surgery tourist town.
It comes in at about 4th place for the “most popular” plastic surgeons, after Beverly Hills, CA, Miami, FL, and Dallas, TX.
But if you’re interested in breast augmentation in NYC, there’s no reason to travel elsewhere and no lack of breast augmentation specialist surgeons to do it.
NYC isn’t without its plastic surgery luminaries and hot shots.
NYC is home to Drs Andrew Jacono, Lara Devgan, David Rapaport, Darrick Antell, Daniel Del Vecchio, Adam Kolker, Sherrell J. Aston, and many others who are well-known and respected breast augmentation surgeons.
For these surgeons and others, surgeries are usually scheduled 12-18 months in advance.
Rogue “plastic surgeons” are also less of a problem in the Empire City than they are in some southern states, but any patient of plastic surgery would be wise to do their own careful research to ensure the surgeon they plan to see is truly qualified.
Cost of breast augmentation in New York
The cost of breast augmentation with implants in NYC ranges from $7,500 – $10,000. Non-board certified surgeons in New York offer it for $4-6,000. The exact price depends on who your surgeon is, what type of breast implants you choose, and where your surgery is done. Breast augmentation is most economical if a patient chooses saline implants and if the surgery is done in an outpatient center, rather than a hospital.
Breast augmentation in NYC is on the higher end of the national price range, but traveling across state lines to do it elsewhere might end up making the whole process more costly than it would have been, had it been done in NYC.
If you want a less expensive breast augmentation in New York, you have two basic options:
- Have a non-board certified plastic surgeon do it (Up for debate, but usually not your best option).
- Travel to Alabama, Florida for a $2.5-5K price reduction.
New York’s priciest plastic surgeons?
In May, The New York Times ran a piece on the cost of facelifts, “And Now, the $200,000 Face-Lift.”
The prices it peeked at are mind-boggling, but ultimately probably helpful to a potential patient looking for prices of breast augmentation in New York:
|Surgeon||Cost excerpt, NYT|
|Dr. Lara Devgan||“charges up to $200,000 for a face-lift.”|
|Dr. Steven Levine||“charges $50,000 to $110,000 for a face, brow and neck lift, plus lower and upper eyelids.”|
|Dr. Andrew Jacono||“$230,000 for… a brow-lift, upper and lower eyes, face-lift, lip-lift, neck-lift, earlobe reconstruction and rhinoplasty…”|
Is breast augmentation surgery worth the cost?
Although breast implants do cost quite a bit, they tend to improve a patient’s life for a long enough time that they end up “paying for themselves” over time and are generally considered a great investment by most patients.
Breast augmentation surgery has a satisfaction rate of more than 95 percent: Approximately 95 out of every 100 breast augmentation surgery patients feel their investment was worthwhile.
Breast implants may last for as long as 10 years before requiring other surgical interventions to correct problems that can arise—such as those listed below.
Cost of breast implants vs cost of other self care practices, products
Assuming you paid $10,000 to get breast implants and that you enjoy having them for 10 years (3,650 days), your cost is equal to $2.74 per day.
That’s less than the cost of a morning cup of coffee—or the cost of cosmetics used by many women.
According to a 2017 study by Groupon, women who “invest regularly in their appearance” spend an average of $3,756 per year, or $313 per month, while men who do so spend $2,928 a year, or $244 per month.
|Self-care practice or product||Cost per month, average|
|Beauty and personal care1||$313|
These cost comparisons may not be accurate to all patients.
The U.S. FDA says that breast implants are not lifetime devices, and that the “longer people have them, the greater the chances are that they will develop complications, some of which will require more surgery.”
Top New York breast augmentation surgeons
Cost alone should never be the only piece of information used when choosing a plastic surgeon for breast augmentation surgery.
A surgeon’s board-certification status, training, and experience should be made an important part of your research before choosing a surgeon.
These plastic surgeons were voted as the best breast augmentation surgeons in New York and NYC in 2022.
|U.S. Rating||Plastic Surgeon||City, State|
|2||Dr. David Hidalgo, MD, FACS||NYC, NY|
|9||Dr. Adam R. Kolker, MD, FACS||NYC, NY|
|10||Alan Matarasso, MD||NYC, NY|
|32||Dr. Dean DeRoberts||Syracuse, NY|
|46||Mihye Choi, MD||NYC, NY|
|60||Matthew S. Kilgo, MD, FACS||Garden City, NY|
|61||Rachel-Bluebond Langner, MD||NYC, NY|
|86||Nina S. Naidu, MD, FACS||NYC, NY|
|108||Laurence T. Glickman, MD, FACS||Garden City, NY|
|118||Dr. Enrique J. Armenta, MD||Syracuse, NY|
|119||Nolan Karp, MD||NYC, NY|
|131||Daniel C. Baker, MD||NYC, NY|
|136||Dr. Andrew P. Giacobbe, MD, FACS||Hamburg, NY|
|150||Dr. Richard G. Reish, MD, FACS||Garden City, NY|
Please conduct your own research as well, which the above list of NYC’s best breast augmentation surgeons may help with.
Best way to finance breast implants in NYC
Many patients find that financing is the best way to pay for breast augmentation surgery.
Just like car dealerships and furniture stores, the plastic surgery industry has its own financial providers.
These financing providers are more likely to approve you for a line of credit than, say, your regular bank might be. They accept lower credit scores.
And they usually—but not always—offer 0% APR on certain loan amounts.
0% APR means you pay no interest, as long as you abide by the terms.
Be sure that you fully read and understand the terms of your loan, credit line, or credit card.
If you were approved by CareCredit for “$2,500 or more,” the company says you “may be eligible for a 60 months offer with a 17.90% APR.”
What those numbers mean in plain English is that if you borrowed $10K for your breast implants, you’d be paying back just over $15,000.
You’d be charged about $5,200 in addition to the $10,000 it actually cost you to have surgery = $15,000 would be your approximate total cost.
The possible benefit of using a credit card or credit line in this case is that it allows you to get your surgery sooner, and to stretch out your payments over 48-60 months (4-5 years).
You can choose to use one of the plastic surgery industry’s financing providers—
- CareCredit • $25,000 limit
- Alphaeon • $25,000 limit
- LendingUSA • $47,500 limit
- United Medical Credit • $35,000 limit
- Prosper • $35,000 limit
—or you can find another way to pay for your surgery, such as taking out a bank loan, paying with an existing credit card, or—god forbid—a mortgage.
If you do choose to pay for surgery with a special plastic surgery credit card, do your best to pay off the entire balance before your due date.
If you fail to do so, you will be charged interest on the entire amount you borrowed—not just the remaining part you’ve yet to pay off.
Say you were to be approved for a $10,000 line of credit for your plastic surgery.
That $10,000 credit line/card might be interest-free IF you pay it off in full before its deadline.
If you were to pay off $9,999 by your deadline, you would be charged interest on ALL $10,000, because you failed to pay it off in full (by $1).
Patients aren’t required to use any one of these providers exclusively, but it is usually beneficial to both the patient and the provider, since these companies have suited their entire operation toward providing financing of this nature.
Again, it’s most important that you know exactly what you are agreeing to, so be sure to read and really understand the terms of conditions of any loan you get involved in.
Financing breast augmentation: Buyer beware
“Promotional Offers” and “0% APR for X Months”
Breast augmentation patients should be especially aware of the fact that many medical credit card providers offer an inviting plan that has one large caveat, or possible danger.
If you’ve ever bought furniture and received financing to do so, you may be familiar with the concept.
It’s this: Lenders extend (give) you a line of credit that sounds great but is actually tied to a future date where any unpaid amount RETROACTIVELY incurs interest fees on the ENTIRE AMOUNT LOANED.
This setup can be great for some patients, if they pay back the full amount on time.
Should you, for whatever reason, be unable to pay off the full loan amount within the agreed upon period, you will be charged interest not only on the unpaid portion, but on the entire amount that you borrowed.
To avoid this:
- Always read the fine print of any financing contract you sign for plastic surgery.
- Be very sure you understand the words and abbreviations used in the contract.
- Be sure to only accept as large a line of credit as you can comfortably deal with.
- Be sure to pay back the full amount borrowed before its due date.
Risks of breast augmentation surgery
Nationwide costs of breast augmentation surgery
Nationwide, four organizations provide price estimates for breast augmentation surgery in the U.S.
These figures are provided as national averages and will vary from state to state.
A surgeon’s skill level and board-certification will also affect the cost of breast augmentation surgery.
|Source||Avg. Cost of Breast Augmentation|
|RealSelf, Patient Provided Prices||$6,575, according to 42,915 patients|
|ASPS Annual Report (2020; latest available)||$4,516 average surgeon’s fee|
|Aesthetic Society Annual Report (2021, latest available)||$4,235 average surgeon’s fee|
|American Board of Cosmetic Surgery||$3,000 – $12,000 national range|
Cost of breast augmentation in cities in New York
According to the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery (ABCS), the price of breast augmentation surgery in key cities in New York is as follows:
|City||Price of Breast Augmentation Surgery|
|New York City (NYC), NY||$4,000 – $10,500|
|Buffalo, NY||$4,000 – $10,500|
|Albany, NY||$4,000 – $10,500|
|Rochester, NY||$4,000 – $10,500|
|Syracuse, NY||$4,000 – $10,500|
|Niagara Falls, NY||$4,000 – $10,500|
|Manhattan, NY||$4,000 – $10,500|
Note that these prices are less than the cost estimates provided by the American Society of Plastic Surgery (ASPS), as ASPS gathers price data from its own member surgeons, who are generally considered more skilled and experienced and thus charge higher fees.
A patient should decide for themselves if certain board-certification and experience/education are worth the increased fees, though many patients believe they are, and ABCS believes its own surgeons are sufficiently qualified.
Obvious red flags applicable to any surgeon doing breast augmentation are covered at the end of this article, under “Risks of Breast Augmentation Surgery.”
Breast augmentation basics
Breast augmentation surgery makes use of either saline or silicone breast implants in order to enlarge the female breasts, making them more attractive to most men and/or significant others.
Breast implants can also help improve a woman’s confidence and may even help her get farther in life at work and socially.
Things that improve our self-confidence usually improve our life overall.
Implants may not do that for all patients, but for many people they do.
The surgery should be done at a hospital, an accredited ambulatory surgical center, or a well-established surgical suite in a qualified provider’s office.
Patients won’t need to stay in a hospital overnight after the surgery, and can return home within a few hours of surgery, though they can’t drive themselves for about 5 days.
The breast implants used are FDA approved, assuming they’re from a valid provider.
Black market breast implants are extremely rare, but be sure you see brand-new, unopened implants in the surgical suite.
You can choose either saline or silicone breast implants.
Silicone implants are by far the most popular, though they are a bit more expensive.
Breast implant size options range from a small 125cc all the way up to 800cc. The most popular breast implants are between 350-400cc.
Implants can be placed under or above certain chest muscles.
If your breasts aren’t big right now (if they lack natural tissue volume), placement under the muscle is usually the best option.
Your surgeon can help you decide this.
Does health and medical insurance cover breast implants?
Insurance doesn’t pay for non-medical cosmetic breast augmentation and other similar plastic surgery procedures.
Health insurance does not cover the cost of breast augmentation surgery when it is done for purely cosmetic reasons.
This is true of the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom.
There is no country in the world where health insurance covers breast implants or other plastic surgery when it is being done for purely cosmetic reasons.
If you need breast reconstruction after a medical necessary mastectomy, health insurance will cover that cost. Consult your insurance provider.
Cosmetic breast augmentation—which, statistically, is probably what you’re interested in—falls into a class of medical procedure defined as “elective.”
This means the insurance provider has determined the procedure serves only cosmetic or vanity purposes and is not necessary for the correction or resolution of a medical condition.
Patient’s cost of breast augmentation surgery
The figures most commonly advertised for breast augmentation surgery are “surgeon’s fees” only.
In addition to that single fee, patients will have to cover a number of additional costs.
The actual costs of breast augmentation surgery are slightly higher than some of the official statistics provided above for a good reason: Published by professional societies, those statistics reflect only the surgeon’s fee for the procedure.
That means other costs, that are a part of all breast augmentation surgeries, have been left out of the calculations.
Other fees involved in breast augmentation surgery
For instance, when going for a breast augmentation, the patient will be charged for the implants, for the operating room, any hospital fees, the anesthesiologist and anesthesia, and any pain medication that may be required.
These costs are all borne by the patient and it would be inaccurate to assume you will be paying the low fee of $4,516 for a breast augmentation surgery—which is advertised as a national average.
There likely isn’t a board-certified plastic surgeon in the nation who would be able to safely and profitably perform a breast augmentation surgery at that price.
Importantly, the advertised cost is also not meant to reflect the total cost of the procedure, which those publishing it make known:
“Fees do not include anesthesia, operating room facilities or other related expenses.” – American Society of Plastic Surgeons, Plastic Surgery Statistics Report, 2020
Breast augmentation prices that are too low, and breast augmentation prices that are boldly used as the focus for advertisement (such as on social media) are each red flags.
These price-based advertisements are most popular when cosmetic surgeons (who aren’t board-certified in plastic surgery) use a low price point as buy-now or incentive for female patients.
The unfortunate reality is that if two surgeons are providing the same surgery at very different price points, the cheaper of the two surgeons is likely omitting that many thousand dollars worth of standard safety protocol.
For example, one of the most important parts of a breast augmentation surgery is a professional dedicated to the anesthesia used in the surgery.
By hiring someone who isn’t an actual anesthesiologist, surgeons can lower their fee.
Or doctors who are actually practicing dentists or even pediatricians may be doing the breast augmentation surgery.
Because there are no laws that prevent this, doctors can get away with it.
There are pros and cons to both possibilities: Dentists, pediatricians and other non-board-certified “plastic surgeons” can help you save money, but a board-certified plastic surgeon will probably provide a better aesthetic outcome and do so more safely.
Serious complications are rare when it comes to breast augmentation, but they aren’t unheard of.
The Brazilian butt lift, done the same way through the same loopholes, is much more dangerous and may lead to death, whereas if a breast augmentation surgery goes wrong, necrosis (or skin death) and infection are the more likely severe outcomes.
Breakdown of costs involved in breast augmentation surgery
The total cost of breast augmentation surgery is made up by a number of smaller costs.
These costs are:
- The surgeon’s fee
- The hospital’s fees
- The actual breast implants
- The anesthesia and anesthesiologist
- Any recovery garments, if needed
- Prescription pain medication
1. Your surgeon’s fee:
This is the portion of the total amount you pay that actually goes toward paying your surgeon and his or her practice for doing your surgery.
2. Hospital fees:
This is the portion of the total amount you pay for breast augmentation that goes toward using the hospital facilities required by the surgeon to do your breast augmentation in. Surgeons that have in-house AAACH-accredited ambulatory surgical centers could seemingly offer a lower rate (since they aren’t paying hospital fees), but these surgeons understandably instead raise their fees, since the costs involved in operating and upkeep an accredited ambulatory surgical center are not small.
3. Breast implants:
The saline-filled or silicone gel breast implants that your surgeon uses are paid for separately. Saline-filled implants (which are the less popular of the two available options) typically cost $1,000 – $1,500 in total. Silicone or silicone gel breast implants typically cost $1,600 – $2,500 in total.
4. Anesthesia fees:
One of the most important members of your surgical team is your anesthesiologist. Just like your surgeon, your anesthesiologist should also be board-certified. That professional, and the anesthetic used to prepare you for a pain-free surgery, needs to be paid/paid for.
The cost of this service runs anywhere from $800 – $1,500, and it’s an expense you don’t want to try to get around. Great surgeons use great anesthesiologists, period.
Anesthesia is an entirely unique subspeciality and it should absolutely be performed by a licensed and board-certified anesthesiologist.
5. Recovery & Medication: Various recovery garments and medications may need to be paid out-of-pocket and while this is a small cost in comparison to the other fees listed here, it is a cost that again falls on the patient to take care of.
Breast augmentation surgery comes with a number of known and acknowledged risks, but it is considered to be more beneficial than harmful for most patients.
Some of the most common risks of breast augmentation are:
- Capsular contracture: The breast implant gets hard as a capsule of hard scar tissue forms around it.
- Asymmetry: The breasts become slightly or obviously uneven, if one breast is affected by a condition (such as “cap con,” above) while the other isn’t.
- Breast implant illness: A growing number of women with breast implants experience systemic (whole-body) symptoms and adverse health events, which the FDA has now come to warn patients about.
As with any other surgery, breast augmentation also carries the risks of bleeding, swelling, infection, and adverse reactions to the anesthesia.
It is true that most patients will never experience the worst of these conditions.
But, it is also important that you don’t accidentally put yourself in the position of a minority of patients who do things that raise their risk of poor aesthetic outcomes, injury, or infection.
This can include:
- Never choosing a plastic surgeon based only on their low prices.
- Read Google, Yelp, and Better Business Bureau reviews of your doctor. Dive in.
- See a licensed medical doctor who is board-certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery.
- Make sure you see and consult with the exact surgeon who will be doing your breast augmentation, well before the day of your actual surgery.
- If it feels unsanity or unsafe, it probably is. Avoid it and get a second qualified opinion.
- Carefully follow your doctor’s post-operative (after surgery) instructions. They usually include things like what to expect after surgery, how to properly care for your incisions and wounds, what to do to reduce swelling and help your body heal, when you will be able to do various activities like drive and exercise, how much pain you will be in, and who to contact in the event of questions of concerns.
- Risks and Complications of Breast Implants, U.S. FDA, June 13, 2022.
- Plastic Surgery Statistics Report, American Society of Plastic Surgeons, 2020 (Latest available).
- True Cost of Beauty: Survey Reveals Where Americans Spend Most, Groupon, August 3, 2017.
- Newsweek magazine, “America’s Best Plastic Surgeons 2022,” May 2022
- How Much Does Breast Augmentation Cost?, RealSelf, Updated April 13, 2022
- Annual Report, Aesthetic Society, 2021 (Latest available).
- Cosmetic Surgery Pricing, American Board of Cosmetic Surgery, accessed July 20, 2022.
- An Open Letter to NewBeauty Magazine: Stop Misleading the Public, American Board of Plastic Surgery, February 9, 2015.