Sagging breasts are something every woman dreads. After all, firm and perky breasts can do plenty for your posture and self-image. Your breasts may sag due to aging as your muscles weaken, weight gain and loss, or pregnancy and breastfeeding-linked changes.1 But that doesn’t mean you have to say goodbye to the pert twins just yet! Try some of these easy and effective home remedies, exercise, and make a few lifestyle changes to firm up sagging breasts.
1. Moisturize Your Breasts To Keep Them Firm
Moisturizing your breasts can keep your skin firm and supple. By ensuring it is more pliable, you lower the chances of the skin becoming stretched or saggy. As research on breast appearance in identical twins with the same genetic dispositions found, the twin who moisturized regularly had fewer wrinkles and less loose skin than the twin who didn’t.2
2. Get An Olive Oil Massage To Boost Circulation
You can combine the benefits of moisturizing with a boost in circulation and skin vitality when you get a massage. Olive oil has been used since the times of the Romans and Egyptians to keep skin elastic and well-protected from wrinkling and other damage. Its composition is not unlike that of the body’s own natural oil or sebum, making it a great alternative to prevent your skin from drying out – the precursor to wrinkles and sagging.3 Boost circulation with an olive oil massage of the breast and chest region a couple of times a week.
3. Apply Aloe Vera Gel To Tighten The Skin
Applying aloe vera gel to the breast region and around can help firm up the skin. This is attributed to the collagen-stimulating properties of the gel. As one study found, when aloe vera gel was applied as a remedy for wound healing, it not only helped do this but also improved the strength of the skin. Some of these properties can be leveraged in your battle against breast sagging.4
Simply apply and leave the gel on for about 10 to 15 minutes before washing off. This should help improve skin elasticity.
4. Exercise For Firmer Breasts
When muscles that support the breasts are not strong enough to support the weight of the breasts, you may see sagging. Breast tissue itself can’t be isolated or “worked out.” Which is why the key to firmer, less saggy breasts is working the muscles that support the breasts and making the chest region more supple.
Your focus should be your chest muscles, specifically, the pectoral muscles and shoulders and upper back. Try these exercises, aiming at 3–4 sets of 8–10 repetitions:
Barbell Bench Press
Rated the most effective chest exercise in a study commissioned by the American Council on Exercise, this workout makes the most use of the pectoralis major muscles that support your breasts.5To do this, you will need a barbell and a flat bench. Lie down on your back, raise the barbell off the rack, lower it till your elbows are below the bench. Bring it back up for multiple reps.6
Dumbbell Chest Press
If you prefer working with dumbbells, this exercise is a great way to tone up your chest muscles to help those sagging breasts. Just lie back on a bench with dumbbells in each of your hands. Press these dumbbells up to the ceiling, straightening your elbows as you do so. Inhale slowly as your bring them back down to shoulder level. Your back mustn’t arch during the movements – if it does, that is a sign you’re doing it wrong.7
Incline Chest Press
Alternatively, try the incline chest press which follows almost the same principles but uses an incline bench. Get the help of a spotter who will help pass and take back your dumbbells after you are done and assist in case of any problem. This ensures you are doing the exercise safely without hurting yourself. Your body will be at a 45 or 60 degree angle, but your arm movements are similar to the chest press. You will have to raise your arms up to the ceiling, dumbbells firmly clasped in each hand, straightening them before inhaling and returning to the start position.8
Another exercise using dumbbells and the bench is the dumbbell fly or lying chest fly. You will need to lie flat on the bench, dumbbells in hand. First press the dumbbells up so your elbows are straight, without bending your wrist joint. Next, inhale as you lower your dumbbells so they are level with your chest and shoulders. Exhale as you raise them back up before finally bringing them down to the starting position so they are shoulder-width apart.9
Good old fashioned push-ups may not top the charts like a barbell press, but they do actively engage your pecs. Strengthen your chest muscles and your shoulders with any of the variants of the push-up. Suspended push-ups, where your feet are suspended at an elevation, have been found to be slightly more effective than stability ball push-ups or standard push-ups that need no props.10
5. Try Yoga Asanas To Strengthen The Chest
Yoga can help strengthen the back and improve your posture, besides also opening up the chest and strengthening muscles. All of this combined can help your body support your breasts better and also make the breasts seem less saggy. Among the asanas seen as most effective for chest strengthening are:
- Bhujangasana or cobra pose
- Ustrasana or camel pose
- Virabhadrasana or warrior pose
- Trikonasana or triangle pose
- Dhanurasana or bow pose
- Chakrasana or wheel pose
6. Quit Smoking To Minimize Elastin And Collagen Breakdown
Yes, smoking is one culprit when it comes to sagging breasts!11 That’s because it causes the breakdown of elastin in the skin in your breast area and around. Elastin is responsible for supporting the breasts and keeping them looking supple and youthful. Some research also indicates that smoking may stimulate the degradation of collagen, a protein responsible for keeping skin strong and elastic.12 If you quit smoking, you could halt or slow down degradation from this activity and improve your chances for firmer breasts that don’t sag.
7. Support Your Breasts With The Right Bra
Another obvious way to prevent sagging but one that’s often ignored! Be sure to be fitted for the right size of bra so you get the support you need. Wear a good sports bra that lends added support when you are exercising to reduce the stress and strain on the tissue and muscles that support the breast.
According to Breast Research Australia, 70% of all women report some form of discomfort with their breasts while working out. They suggest that a lot of this could be mitigated by wearing the right bra in the right size. Unfortunately, many women don’t take the time to be professionally fitted for the right bra size or do not change their bra size or style when they gain or lose weight. Just this step alone could help you avoid some of the problems you face around posture as well as breast discomfort and sagging.13
|↑1, ↑11||Rinker, Brian, Melissa Veneracion, and Catherine P. Walsh. “Breast ptosis: causes and cure.” Annals of plastic surgery 64, no. 5 (2010): 579-584.|
|↑2||Soltanian, Hooman T., Mengyuan T. Liu, Adam D. Cash, and Rodrigo A. Iglesias. “Determinants of breast appearance and aging in identical twins.” Aesthetic surgery journal 32, no. 7 (2012): 846-860.|
|↑3||Viola, Publio, and Marzia Viola. “Virgin olive oil as a fundamental nutritional component and skin protector.” Clinics in Dermatology 27, no. 2 (2009): 159-165.|
|↑4||Surjushe, Amar, Resham Vasani, and D. G. Saple. “Aloe vera: A short review.” Indian journal of dermatology 53, no. 4 (2008): 163.|
|↑5, ↑10||ACE-Sponsored Research: Top 3 Most Effective Chest Exercises. American Council on Exercise.|
|↑6||Chest Press. American Council on Exercise.|
|↑7||Chest Press. American Council on Exercise.|
|↑8||Incline Chest Press. American Council on Exercise.|
|↑9||Lying Chest Fly. American Council on Exercise.|
|↑12||Sela, B. A. “Dermatological manifestations of smoking.” Harefuah 141, no. 8 (2002): 736-40.|
|↑13||Why is BRA important?. Breast Research Australia.|