1. Skill

Legitimate plastic surgeons earn certification from the American Board of Plastic Surgery. Credentials can be found on the board's website, or by searching for the phyisician by name online. Some surgeons receive additional certification from the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, showing a more concentrated focus on cosmetic surgery. The ASAPS has a searchable database of their own.

Play devil’s advocate during your search: Google the surgeon and see if they have been sued or made the news for any botched surgeries in the past.

2. Reputation

One positive word-of-mouth recommendation is worth a thousand online reviews; make sure to ask around for references. Online rating sites like Yelp, Angie’s List and Rate MD’s give a good attempt, but lean toward negative, uneducated criticism with little helpful evidence.

Check the surgeon’s website for testimonials and before-and-after pictures.

3. Experience

A good reputation is great, but good experience is better. Look into: how many years a doctor has been performing breast implantations, how experienced he is with various types of surgeries and how successful his surgeries have been. Look into the surgeon’s education and experience as well. Did he attend a top medical school? Did he do his residency at a major hospital before opening a private practice? Any fellowships or additional training? All of this helps build your confidence in the surgeon.

4. Personability

You should meet and talk face-to-face with the surgeon at least once before the day of the surgery. This will allow you to form a relationship, have all questions answered and become comfortable with the physician you’ve chosen. Plus, if the surgeon is willing to meet it shows that he cares, encouraging since you will be returning for mandatory check-ups following the surgery.

5. Facilities

Learn where your surgeon performs his work. Does he operate in a fully accredited facility? Who administers the anesthesia? Breast augmentation is a serious operation and should be performed with top-notch equipment in a legitimate medical facility.

6. Cost

Insurance rarely covers cosmetic surgery. Check a surgeon’s price tag for your augmentation against national and regional averages. As with any other inverstment purchase, weigh price against quality; bear in mind the results will be much more difficult to change than minor cosmetic practices if you are unsatisfied with the results. Think in terms of getting the best results for your money, instead of simply saving the most money possible, and your breast augmentation surgery can be a positive experiece in every regard.