Buying smaller jeans when you've lost a few? Fun. Buying smaller bras? Not so much.
But, unfortunately for anyone who's ever asked the diet and workout gods to spare her boobs, breast weight loss is definitely a ~thing~.
So to answer all of your questions about it, we tapped Angela Fitch, M.D., of the University of Cincinnati’s Weight Loss Center. Let the TMI-ness commence.
So...losing weight makes your boobs smaller, right?
There's no delicate way to put this: Yes. The vast majority of your breasts are made up of fat, along with breast tissue. So when you lose weight all over, some of that will come from your boobs, Fitch explains.
How much you lose from your chest (or how small your boobs get) depends on how much fat you store there—and how much weight you have to lose overall. So sometimes you might notice it, other times it might be an insignificant size change.
Ugh. And your breasts shrink before anything else?
Not necessarily. It might feel like the all the weight you lost came directly from your boobs—but that’s probably not the case. Fitch says this misconception likely comes from the fact that our breasts are front and center.
"Because of where they are on our bodies, they’re just out there for us to see," she says. "So we probably notice them more than our backside or thighs. But fat is going to come off wherever it’s going to come off. It doesn’t have a preference."
However, people do store fat in different places, Fitch says. While you might carry it in your hips or thighs, someone else might carry it in their belly. The same thing goes with breasts—some people will carry more fat there than others, and therefore might lose more fat from that area.
Does rapid weight loss make boobs sag more?
The good news: the rate at which you lose weight doesn’t effect the elasticity (or saggy-ness) of your skin, including your breasts.
The bad news: If you lose a significant amount of weight, your skin is likely to sag in most places, including your breasts.
"Sometimes breasts will have a more prominent sag than, say, your thighs because they weigh more and so gravity pulls them down," Fitch says. "But speed doesn’t matter. If you lose a lot of weight, you’re going to have looser skin."
Okay, but I heard yo-yo dieting makes breasts droopy.
Constantly losing weight and then regaining it won’t necessarily change the texture of your breasts, says Fitch—unless you’re losing a lot of weight at once. Then the same principles apply as above: The extra weight you carried previously will stretch out your skin, so when you lose it, that skin no longer stretches as far and therefore looks looser.
But with yo-yo dieting, you’re just filling up your fat cells, and then removing some of that fat, Fitch explains. So unless you fill them up an extreme amount, it won’t affect a perky chest after you lose again.
Can you do anything special to keep your boobs perky?
"During the weight-loss process, we always recommend weight training," Fitch says. "Cardio helps to burn fat, but weight training helps to increase metabolism. If you’re losing weight, your metabolism is going down, but building muscle will help bring it back up."
This article originally appeared on WomensHealthMag.com. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.