All silicone breast implants are the same, right? Nope!
There are two main breast implant ‘types’ (meaning the filling inside the implant): saline, or silicone.
Silicone implant Types
Focusing on silicone, there are also two different versions of silicone breast implants:
Silicone gels (usually just referred to as silicone implants), and
Highly-cohesive silicone gels (called Gummy Bear)
So, what’s the difference between the two?
Implants with a silicone filling are considered to give the most natural ‘like natural breast tissue’ feel.
When we talk about implant ‘feel’ (how firm or soft they feel), with a silicone implant this is measured in something called cohesiveness. Without getting too techy, it’s a science thing to do with how tightly the silicone molecules are huddled together inside the implant filling.
The silicone molecules are huddling together… which means the silicone implant holds its shape well.
The higher the cohesiveness the firmer the silicone implant feel.
This leads me in nicely to the two versions of silicone implant…
Cohesive gel implants
So, we’ve established that all silicone implants are ‘cohesive’. If you think of it on a sliding scale of soft-to-firm, at the softer end of the silicone implant feel scale are the silicone gel implants. They feel the softest because they have the lowest level of cohesiveness.
Gummy Bear Breast implants
The Gummy Bear breast implant (which is also called highly cohesive) is at the firmer end of the scale. They have the firmest silicone implant feel because their cohesiveness is high.
They're nicknamed 'gummy bear' implants because their filling is like the consistency of... you guessed it... a gummy bear!
Because of how cohesive the gummy bear implant is they’re also referred to as form stable. Basically this is a fancy way of saying that they hold their shape really well!
Highly cohesive silicone gel implants are available in either a round or anatomical (teardrop-shaped) shape.
You can still achieve a good natural feel with a highly cohesive breast implant (depending on your existing anatomy - e.g. amount of your own breast tissue) but you can also get a more defined shape. For example, highly cohesive implants can give you a fuller upper pole because they hold their shape at the top easiest.
In summary, the main difference between the cohesive (aka silicone) and highly cohesive (aka gummy bear, or form stable) implants is: the cohesiveness/consistency!
If you’re considering silicone implants (whichever version) for your breast augmentation ask your chosen Board Certified plastic surgeon about how either cohesive or high cohesive silicone implants can help you achieve your augmentation goals.