Breast Enhancers

Saturday, 5 July 2008 | Tags: ,

Even though beauty is only skin deep, many women are forever in search of something better. Breast enhancers are a simple way to add some temporary curves or cleavage to your overall shape. We try out a variety of products on the market to find out if one works better than the rest.

The Basics

  • Breast enhancers or inserts are made of a variety of materials and are inserted into the bra or sewn into a garment. Some bras come with the enhancers sewn right in.

  • Materials used for these products include:

    • Silicone gel inserts, which have a polyurethane skin, and mimic the natural breast tissue well and passes the “hug test”. Silicone can be on the pricier side, however, and if can cause a bit of sweating against the skin. They come in various shapes and sizes, including full cup and partial cups designed to push from the outside or bottom. On full cup models you can even find them with or without raised and/or coloured nipples!

    • Foam inserts (or cookies) offer lightweight shaping in a variety of sizes and shapes, at a reasonable price, but can look obvious under clingy clothing. They can also be sewn directly into a garment for a more permanent pick-me-up. However, they aren’t good for swimsuits since they absorb water.

    • Gel, usually sewn in permanently or inserted into a specially-designed bra pocket, are designed to support while creating cleavage. It moves with the body and is similar to silicone for feel and look.

    • Water, usually as a water bra, have sacs filled with an oil/water mixture sewn into the bra. They look and lift well, but be careful about punctures.

  • Whatever material you choose, there are a variety of styles and levels of lift:

    • Full cup enhancers fit snugly over your breast and cover up the nipple. Or you can buy them with faux nipples as well.

    • Bottom push-up enhancers cover half of the breast and are designed to lift from the bottom to create cleavage

    • Side push-up enhancers also only cover half of the breast and are almond-shaped, designed to push in from the side to create cleavage

    • Pillow push-up enhancers are smaller, almond-shaped pads (only cover a quarter of the breast) designed to sit at the bottom or side of the bra or bikini cup to give a subtle fullness.

    • All-in-one push-up bras are convenient. Some come with removable inserts or extra inserts so you can actually change the level of cleavage you want. Others just have inserts sewn in permanently, which makes for less fidgeting and worry.

  • Depending on the size or shape of insert, you can go from adding a little fullness to going up two cup sizes.

Other Considerations

  • Always hand wash bras, lingerie, and foam inserts with mild soap, and hang to dry.


We tested these different breast enhancers, both inserts and bras:

  • Silicone Enhancer (insert): $75
  • Mini push up pads (inserts): $6 for 2 pads
  • Add-A-Size Foam Inserts: $10
  • Triumph Push-Up Bra (lightweight foam, strapless convertible): $42
  • Lejaby Lace Push-Up Bra: $110

Enhancement Test

  • The Silicone Enhancer inserts increased all of our testers’ breast size by about an inch. They also felt very natural to wear.

  • The Add-A-Size foam inserts were cumbersome to use and a bit stuff and uncomfortable.

  • The Mini Push-Up pads offered pretty insignificant enhancement, and they slid around a bit too. Best for days when you’re not moving around much.

  • The Triumph push-up bra looked great with and without the pads, and the strapless option really turned it up a notch.

  • The Lejaby lace bra had a nice shape, but the lace chaffed, and so did the price.


If you’re really set on enhancing the look of your breasts, without the invasiveness of surgery, the Silicone Enhancer inserts are our top pick. If you just want some occasional added perk, and the versatility and usefulness of an actual bra, the Triumph Push-Up Bra is a great choice for almost half the price.


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