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Despite the widespread use of autologous fat grafting in both reconstructive and cosmetic surgery, volume retention remains a significant problem. We aimed to critically appraise the current body of literature in fat grafting to provide a framework to guide application and comparison.Search of scientific databases and gray literature was conducted. Articles examining nonadipogenic applications of adipose tissue and those specific to breast reconstruction were excluded.One hundred three articles were included. These fell under the headings of donor site, effect of infiltration solution, harvest method, effect of centrifugation, reinjection method, supplementation, the role of adipose-derived stem cells, and scaffolding.Despite the significant research effort in this field, there remains no consensus as to the optimum technique. This stems from the vast array of research methods and short follow-up durations. Further, extrapolation of in vitro results to clinical settings has led to many conflicting practices.