Ariel Winter’s Breast Reduction Was Necessary

Being a 5 feet girl and having extremely large breasts is really ostracising and excruciatingly painful.” Imagine living with this type of pain when the world is judging the Ariel Winter breast reduction surgery.

There was once an episode of Seinfeld where George was forced into learning the various bra sizes from his father. They discussed the sizes and stated that double Ds are the largest size. Not only would Ariel Winter’s 32 F cup size shock them today, it would also show how misinformed we are about women’s breasts and why breast reduction is so necessary. 

When did Ariel Winter’s body first change? 

A 15 year old Ariel Winter didn’t wake up to huge boobs one morning. Her body started developing rapidly after Season 2 of Modern Family. 

“I came back to film season 3 of Modern Family, and I knew that I looked totally different than when we’d wrapped season 2,” she recalled. “All of a sudden, I was just over 5 feet tall AND an F-cup.”

She wrote an essay for the editors of Time, in which she penned just how much her former 32F bra size was hurting her both physically and psychologically. She remembered that her body unexpectedly changed so drastically over the course of one summer.

“I was 15 years old with a [bra size] F. It’s like, ‘How do you navigate that?” 

“My cousins have had breast reductions, so it wasn’t a shock when I decided to get one [but] I got it for myself. I can’t even really put it into words about how amazing it feels to really feel right.”

Why did Ariel Winter want breast reduction?

  • “I was 13 and I looked 19. 
  • “Women are so over-sexualized, and I grew into my body so young” 
  • All of a sudden, people didn’t want to talk about my job — they just wanted to talk about my cleavage” remembered Ariel Winter who was used to people talking behind her back. Are they real or fake? 
  • More importantly, “It’s really difficult to be such a small girl and have so much weight on your chest,” Winter recalled. 
  • “You physically hurt. You can’t find clothes that fit right. I couldn’t find a cute bathing suit. 
  • Everything looked like I was trying to be ‘sexy.’ It also didn’t help that I didn’t look like any of my friends my age.”

Ariel Winter’s thoughts after the breast reduction:

Going from a 32F bra size to a 34D post-surgery, like any surgery, is going to be painful and you need to heal your body. But in 2015, Ariel Winter said that she began to feel the positive effects of the procedure immediately. 

Post surgery, I feel great. It was such a quick recovery for me. I was up and running within five days. The feeling of not having so much there was such a relief! Once the surgery was completed, I can’t even explain the feeling. [A week later], I was buying clothes and crying as I put them on, I was so happy. You just feel so relieved and excited. You feel like a new person. You feel like this is how I was supposed to be.

Clearly, she doesn’t regret her decision according to Glamour magazine. 

She wasn’t hesitant at all. She wasn’t sad. She was really so thrilled about it and the idea of not being burdened with these any longer.  “I think going into the surgery that morning was the only time I ever felt nervous or a little scared, just because I had never had surgery before, not because of what I was about to get done. But I also have so much support in my life now.”

Why do you get bullied for breast reduction? 

Ariel Winter’s breast reduction study has been subjected to so much public bullying online for making a choice that positively HELPED her life. 

“Don’t get me wrong: I don’t think women should ever change themselves based on anyone else’s standards,” she wrote. “My surgery got a lot of criticism from some people, but I’m happier for it. In the end, I think it’s all about how you feel — not what other people think.”

She doesn’t regret doing this for herself despite the criticism. 

Winter said: “Yes, I had many comments, and it bothered me that that was kind of what I was known for. And that was kind of what people were commenting on my photos. That bothered me, but it wasn’t the main reason I did it.”

“I just feel so amazing with all the support I’ve received,” she added. “It’s been a wonderful year for me.” 

Wonderfully, she is so confident with her new body that she left the scars from her surgery unhidden. They are visible and she says:  “Guys, there is a reason I didn’t make an effort to cover up my scars! They are part of me and I’m not ashamed of them at all. :)” Winter later tweeted about her much-lauded decision.

Amber Rose is also another celebrity who was bulled for saying her previous breasts were “stupid heavy.” Can you imagine walking around with a size H? She would go on to get a breast reduction from a 36H to a 36D.

Why is a breast reduction necessary?


Abnormally large breasts create physical and emotional distress for patients. Those who suffer with macromastia may experience physical discomfort resulting from the weight of their breasts. The pain is tough for some patients to perform common physical activities. Along with the physical challenges of macromastia, some patients may suffer from emotional distress or more significant mental health problems as a result of their large breasts.

According to Ariel Winter, it was so painful and she had a lot of back problems. I really couldn’t stand up straight for a long period of time. It started to hurt so bad that I couldn’t take the pain. My neck was hurting so bad and I actually had some problems with my spine. I had been discussing my chest with doctors for many years, but when I finally said, “I’m thinking of doing this,” he said, “Your back is going to thank you so much.”

People with unnaturally large size breasts cannot find clothes that are comfortable. 

Flannels ringing a bell? Yep, that’s why Alex wore them so often on Modern Family. 

According to Ariel Winter, she went to a swimsuit store with her cousin a few months ago and couldn’t find a bathing suit that fits. 

I really felt bad about myself. I didn’t feel happy. I just kept saying, “What am I going to wear? There’s nothing for me to wear at the beach, at the pool.” I can’t go to a party with my friends and wear the same thing as them. I have to be completely covered up otherwise I’ll look a certain way that I’m not intending to look.

Being completely covered on Modern Family, a tv show where her sister can wear cute clothes, was tough on wardrobe too. 

The wardrobe department on Modern Family had to hide it on Modern Family a lot. According to Ariel “ I hid my boobs with sweaters, [or] strapping me down—which is fine—I understand that it doesn’t fit the character they have in mind. I understand that. But it was difficult to do that every day.

Formal dresses are a pain too 

According to Ariel formal clothes was really hard. There was so little that I could wear that was age-appropriate. I’d have to wear the dress that was super tight and form fitted everywhere because if I didn’t, it didn’t look good. I didn’t really have an option other than to wear fitted clothes. Everyone would [say], “Why is she dressing so mature? That’s so inappropriate for her age!” I understood what they were saying. It’s not like I wanted to pick out those inappropriate dresses, it’s just that I didn’t really have another choice, or I was going to get ridiculed. It’s hard when you’re a teenage girl and you already have a lot of ridicule and then you pile on more, and it’s kind of…it just gets too much.

No one sees you, they see your boobs first

According to Ariel, pretty much all she was known for was her boobs.

“It upset me and made me feel really uncomfortable because as women in the industry, we are totally over sexualized and treated like objects. Every article that has to do with me on a red carpet always had to do with Ariel Winter’s Crazy Cleavage!’ Or Ariel Winter Shows Huge Boobs at an Event!’ That’s all people would recognize me by, not, “Oh, she does great work on Modern Family.”

“Since the surgery people start looking me in the eye. Guys I’m friends with can start looking me in the eye. Other people I know can finally not turn around and whisper behind my back about, “Are those real? Are those fake?” I’ve heard that for so many years. Even at 14, people would ask me, “Do you have fake boobs?” But we live in a society that that’s what they think about.” 

You’re always stereotyped 

According to Ariel, it did play a part in that she couldn’t play younger roles anymore. 

“Once I developed, I couldn’t really play 12 or 13 or 14 anymore. They’d want to send me out for 18 or 19, but the problem with 18 or 19 is that I’m not 18 yet. So why would they hire me when they could hire someone that was 18 or 19? That was a problem I ran into. [Having large breasts] automatically makes someone look older and more mature. So it definitely was a problem.” 

Health and happiness is more important

The happiness for not being in physical and mental pain for those who get breast reduction is well explained below: 

“I’m just excited to try on all the dresses! Now I can wear all styles of dresses and all styles of things stated Ariel. I don’t always have to pick the tightest, most form fitting dress I can find. I can pick something else and still feel good about myself. I couldn’t do that before. I’m excited to finally actually feel confident and not just appear confident. “

FAQs on breast reduction surgery

How painful is breast reduction surgery?

After surgery, you will probably feel weak and you may feel sore for 2 to 3 weeks. You also may feel pulling or stretching in your breast area. Although you may need pain medicine for a week or two, you can expect to feel better and stronger each day.

How long does it take to recover from breast reduction surgery?

Recovery can take 2 to 6 weeks to fully recover from breast reduction surgery. You may need to take a leave of absence will need assistance with housework, childcare and shopping. Avoid driving until it’s no longer painful to wear a seatbelt.

How does breast reduction surgery work?

Breast reduction surgery is performed with incisions on your breasts. Doctors will surgically remove the excess fat, glandular tissue and skin.

Breast reduction surgery takes a lot of hours under general anaesthetic. You will usually need to stay in a hospital for a few nights afterwards. There are several techniques the surgeon might use depending on the size of your breasts and the desired result. Read more information about how breast reduction surgery is performed.You will need to rest for two to six weeks when recovering from breast reduction surgery, depending on your age and general fitness. It is likely that you will have sore breasts for a few weeks.

Will my breasts regrow after reduction?

No, your breasts will not regrow although it feels that way because of the change in size and shape after surgery.  Unless the surgery was done at an age when your breasts are still growing, they can increase in size if you put on weight or become pregnant. 

Your boobs may decrease in size if you lose weight. 

Is Breast Reduction a major surgery?

Breast reduction is also called reduction mammaplasty. This is a procedure to get rid of excess breast fat, skin and glandular tissue to achieve a breast size in proportion with your body and to alleviate the discomfort associated with excessively large breasts (macromastia).

The surgery, which usually takes two to five hours, involves incisions that create skin flaps but leaves the nipple and areola attached to a small amount of breast tissue. The doctor will then get rid of excess breast tissue and reshape the remaining tissue.

The risks of breast reduction

As with any operation, there are risks for going under the knife. The possible complications of any operation include an unexpected reaction to the anaesthetic which is very common, excessive bleeding possibly from blood thinners or a blood clot. 

Uneven shape

Your breasts will change shape after reduction surgery. There is a chance that they may end up slightly even or  lumpy or with lopsided nipples.


Surgical procedure can carry a potential risk of infection. But it can be treated with antibiotics and if needed more surgery. If you do get an infection after your surgery, this will delay the healing process.


The main disadvantage of having breast reduction is permanent scarring. The scars are formed:

  • around the nipple (areola)
  • from the nipple to the crease below the breast (this is the worst scar as it takes the most tension)
  •  from the breast bone to the armpit along the crease below the breast

The scarring levels are individualistic. Some women have red and raised scars, but most scars fade over time and should be invisible under normal clothing. 

Loss of nipple sensation

Some women lose sensation in their nipples after a breast reduction, including their ability to become erect. This is because the nerve supply to the nipple can be damaged during surgery.

On rare occasions, a disrupted blood supply can make your nipple die and fall off. 

Depending on the type of breast reduction you have and  if your nipples have been separated from the milk ducts, it can cause breastfeeding issues later on.


Healing the wound is problematic after breast reduction surgery, particularly after the anchor scar procedure where the vertical and horizontal scars meet.

wound problems are generally minor and can be treated. But the severe cases of healing causes infection, or skin loss and wound separation which may take longer to heal.

Sometimes, the fat in the breasts dies off, leaving them red and lumpy and called fat necrosis. This healing issue can take some time to settle. In addition, there are some excess skin left around the scars and, if this does not settle after a few months, it may need to be surgically removed. If you smoke or have diabetes you may have poor circulation, which will affect how quickly your wounds heal.


Occasionally bleeding occurs inside the breast tissue making it swollen and painful. This is called a haematoma. It generally occurs within the first 24 hours after the operation.  Another operation is needed to drain the blood and stop the bleeding, if that happens. 

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