Women who are current smokers had a 16% increased risk of developing the disease, while ex-smokers had a 9% increased risk.
The research, which involved 80,000 women in America, also found that passive smoking can lead to an increased risk of breast cancer.
Another recent study found that 1 in 8 women will get breast cancer at some point in their lives. The good news is that breast cancer treatments are always developing and now 2 thirds of women who are diagnosed with the disease still live a full life.
Yinka Ebo, senior health information officer at Cancer Research UK, said: 'We already know that tobacco can cause over a dozen different cancers, and this study adds to the growing evidence that smoking can raise the risk of breast cancer. Being a non-smoker is still the best way to reduce the risk of cancer. It's never too late to quit and it's better not to start at all.'
Where to next?- Help and advice to stop smoking
- More on breast cancer
- Test your breast cancer knowledge with our quiz
- Video: How to check your breasts