BOOB JOB If you could try out life with big­ger breasts for a day, would you do it? Liz Krieger checks out the con­tro­ver­sial new lunchtime lift.

Harper’s Bazaar (Malaysia) - - THE BEAUTY -

Cin­derella’s fairy g o dmo t h e r turned a tat­tered dress and a pump­kin into a shim­mer­ing gown and a lav­ish ride. Re­mem­ber, though, there was one catch: The makeover lasted only un­til mid­night. With his In­staBreast tech­nique, Nor­man Rowe, a New York plas­tic sur­geon, is play­ing fairy god­mother to women tem­po­rar­ily seek­ing larger, fuller breasts, but his hand­i­work also lasts for only one night. In about 20 min­utes, you can go from flat-chested to cleav­age-proud.

Rowe’s method is re­mark­ably sim­ple: He des­ig­nates a site at the edge of each nip­ple, and af­ter the area is anaes­thetised, he in­jects about a half-litre of ster­ile sa­line so­lu­tion – es­sen­tially salt wa­ter – into the pa­tient’s breast tis­sue. He ma­noeu­vres the nee­dle at var­i­ous an­gles to dif­fer­ent ar­eas, ex­pand­ing each breast un­til it reaches the de­sired full­ness. The sa­line is grad­u­ally ab­sorbed into the blood­stream, with the full ef­fect last­ing about 24 hours. (Rowe says that sa­line is con­sid­ered per­fectly safe; it’s the same stuff you would get in an IV if you were de­hy­drated.)

While some doc­tors sug­gest that in­stant breast aug­men­ta­tion is just a fad, it’s hard to ig­nore its po­ten­tial (con­sider the hun­dreds of thou­sands of women who don’t hes­i­tate to have vo­lu­mis­ers in­jected in their face). And the de­sire for big­ger breasts is as pop­u­lar as ever: Ac­cord­ing to the Amer­i­can So­ci­ety for Aes­thetic Plas­tic Surgery, 313,327 breast aug­men­ta­tions and 137,233 breast lifts were per­formed in the US in 2013. “Women want cleav­age,” Rowe says mat­ter-of-factly. “And this is fast.”

Fast re­sults were just what Shavon Jovi, 28, a model and as­pir­ing ac­tress, was hop­ing for when she un­der­went the pro­ce­dure with Rowe sev­eral months ago. Af­ter a few pricks of an anaes­thetic into the skin sur­round­ing the nip­ples, Rowe in­jected the anaes­thetic-laced sa­line so­lu­tion into her 32A breasts, one sy­ringe at a time. The ef­fect was an in­stant full­ness that brought her chest to a C cup. “For the long­est time, I’ve wanted to get a breast aug­men­ta­tion,” says Jovi. “I was sort of shocked when I saw them, but I loved it im­me­di­ately.” Within two days she was back to her nat­u­ral size (how long it takes de­pends on how your body metabolises the fluid).

So why have the now-you-see‘em, now-you-don’t pro­ce­dure? Like many of Rowe’s pa­tients, Jovi wanted to “try on” im­plants in a way that com­puter imag­ing just can’t mimic, says Rowe, adding that some of his pa­tients go for the tem­po­rary in­fla­tion for spe­cial oc­ca­sions, such as a wed­ding, a big birth­day, or a beach va­ca­tion.

Ni­cole, a 30-year-old mother of two, spent a day walk­ing around with sa­line-in­flated breasts, and a few months later went un­der the knife for im­plants. “It was amaz­ing to see what my breasts would be like,” she re­calls. As for how it felt? I’ve had Bo­tox and fillers, and it’s sim­i­lar.” About 75 per­cent of Rowe’s pa­tients who opt for the pro­ce­dure go on to get im­plants. How­ever, it isn’t a help­ful test drive for ev­ery woman. “If you need both a lift and an aug­men­ta­tion, the sa­line won’t give you a re­al­is­tic ap­prox­i­ma­tion,” ex­plains Rowe.

Not ev­ery­one is singing the praises of the short-lived boob job, and there are lim­i­ta­tions and risks to it. Since the skin of both breasts is pierced by the nee­dle, bruis­ing can oc­cur. And like any pro­ce­dure that pen­e­trates the skin, in­fec­tion is pos­si­ble. Some doc­tors see other down­sides as well, cau­tion­ing that un­der­go­ing the pro­ce­dure re­peat­edly could cause the skin to stretch – “like a Slinky that you stretch out past the point of no re­turn,” says Adam Kolker, a plas­tic sur­geon in New York. Rowe coun­ters that this is highly un­likely. “The skin has to be stretched for a much longer and con­tin­u­ous time pe­riod for it to dis­play per­ma­nent stretch­ing,” he says. Heidi Wal­dorf, a New York der­ma­tol­o­gist, agrees, not­ing that hav­ing the pro­ce­dure once is “prob­a­bly okay. As long as it’s short-lived, the area should re­turn to its nor­mal con­tour,” How­ever, she has con­cerns about stretch­ing for those who re­turn for more.

For her part, Jovi wanted to cap­ture the re­sults be­fore they faded away. “I def­i­nitely posted a few #In­staBoob self­ies that day,” she says. In the spirit of the pro­ce­dure, though, per­haps she should have used Snapchat.

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