Start Your Healing Journey
If you have experienced the trauma of a mastectomy and are finally cancer-free, its time to heal. 3D nipple tattoos are the final phase of healing and can help make you feel complete and empowered.
At Love Your Body in New York City, we pride ourselves in using the art of tattooing to heal you. We take pride in our facilities and relaxing environment. We have experienced and professional artists who specialize in creating realistic nipple tattoos.
If youre ready to heal with us or want to ask some questions about the process, please reach out!
Are The Nipple Tattoos Covered Under My Health Insurance
Nipple restorative tattoos due to breast cancer surgery is a part of your entire reconstruction process thanks to the Women Health and Cancer Rights Act of 1998.
Very commonly, the surgeons office may provide the tattoos in-house either performed by the surgeon themselves or another staff member. Authorization through your insurance company is processed as any other visit or procedure.
Because you will be receiving your tattoos by a licensed tattoo artist, medical information will be needed such as: diagnosis/ surgical procedures/ medical history. All information that is needed will be reviewed during the consultation.
A itemized bill or SUPERBILL will be provided the day of your tattoo as well as receipts and note to send into your insurance for possible reimbursement. Tattoos will have to be paid in full & out of pocket. Payment is due the day of your appointment.
Each persons plans are different. We suggest calling your insurance company in advance to find out the reimbursement rates. NMR Tattoo cannot guarantee any payment will be given to clients from insurance.
For the Transgender community: Medical tattooing may be covered and possibly reimbursed for out of pocket payments. An Itemized bill can be provided to you for your tattooing services.
Nipple tattoos for cosmetic reasons are NOT covered by insurance.
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Nipple Reconstruction And 3d Nipple Tattoos
Breast reconstruction surgery is designed to restore the volume and shape of the breast after mastectomy. Some women may be candidates for nipple-sparing mastectomy but in many cases, this part of the breast must be removed. To complete the reconstruction and restore the aesthetic unit of the nipple and areola, women have the option to choose from 3D nipple and areola tattoos vs nipple reconstruction followed by tattooing of the areola pigment.
3D nipple and areola tattoos are done by a professional tattoo artist that specializes in this trade. Before photos are reviewed, and careful consideration is given to the color selection, size and placement of the nipple and areola. The pigment is then applied in the form of a tattoo with additional shading techniques to create the appearance of a 3D nipple. This means that in the mirror, the visual aesthetic unit of a nipple is present, but to the touch, the breast is smooth and flat.
These procedures are not mandatory but encouraged to achieve the most optimal and the most natural aesthetic result. If you have questions, please consult your breast reconstruction experts of Austin, North Texas and Oklahoma at Breast Reconstruction Associates. You may also find it helpful to review some of our before and after photos. The surgery and completion details are indicated for each photo.
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What Is Nipple And Areola Tattooing
Nipple and Areola Tattooing is an advanced Medical Tattooing treatment that enables me to create an incredibly realistic nipple and areola for you.
I adapt this treatment for you, depending on what your needs are. I have to tell you that my favourite subject at school was art, so I use all of my artistic flair to create very realistic treatments for you. Whether you need a single or double full 3D nipple and areola, or youd like to enhance your natural areola, we work together for the best outcome for you.
Your treatment plan will involve two treatments 4-8 weeks apart. At your first treatment we will agree a design and colour for your treatment and carry out the first treatment. When you return for your second treatment, we will add more detail and add a second layer of pigment. All of my pigments are medical grade pigments, which I mix to create bespoke colours that suit your skin tone and existing areola.
And please dont worry, I will make you as comfortable as possible! I pre-numb you with a local anaesthetic numbing cream and Ill even make you a lovely cup of tea or coffee whilst you wait.
How Is The Treatment Performed
The 3D nipple tattoo is created by depositing semi-permanent pigments into the skin with an electric device, but unlike regular tattoos, these pigments are only inserted into the surface layers of the skin.
As the skins natural regeneration cycle replaces pigmented cells with new ones, and as the body breaks down the pigments, the areola tattoo fades into invisibility.
Unless you get a color-boosting touch up, of course!
If youve had a nipple reconstruction surgery, or a dermal nipple implant and already have the 3D nipple, the tech will just add color to it and itll look just like a natural nipple.
If you havent had the nipple reconstructed, the tech will do a 3D nipple tattoo which will give hyperrealistic results. Of course, the tattoo alone cant recreate the texture, but it can look very realistic if the tech is skilled enough.
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Where To Get A Nipple Tattoo
A person can get a nipple tattoo from a member of staff at a plastic surgeons office or a qualified nipple tattoo artist.
Finding an artist who specializes in permanent areola and restorative tattooing is an important first step to getting a nipple-areola tattoo.
Although some individuals may have a tattoo artist in mind, others may ask a doctor, surgeon, or local cancer support group for advice or referrals.
Once they have found a potential tattoo artist, the person may find it beneficial to ask to see a portfolio of the artists work. They can also ask about the sterilization practices the artist uses and whether or not they have a private room for tattooing.
A person may not be eligible to get nipple tattoos if they:
- have undergone radiation treatments that have damaged the skin
- have breast skin is too thin
- have lymphedema involving the chest
- have a history of infections in the area of the breast
If a person does not want to undergo nipple tattooing or is unable to do so, other noninvasive options are available. Other types of nipple reconstruction include the following.
What Is Nipple Tattooing
Women who undergo a mastectomy as a part of breast cancer treatment also have the option of reconstructive surgery. Reconstruction rebuilds the shape of the breast but does not typically restore the appearance of the nipple. As a final stage of reconstruction, many women consider nipple reconstruction surgery. Three-dimensional nipple tattooing has recently become a popular alternative to an additional surgical procedure.
3D nipple tattooing is a reconstructive method that restores the realistic appearance of a nipple and areola. The technique relies on shading and ink placement to add visual realism to the breast. Tattooed nipples are not palpable they are flat to the touch. However, they recreate a natural look that patients appreciate without additional procedures and scars.
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What Should I Do To Prepare For My Tattoo
**FOR ALL TATTOO/SCAR SERVICES**
Avoid any sun exposure, tanning beds or tanning lotions that can change your natural skin color. If you come to your appointment with noticeable sun exposure, you will not be allowed to get tattooed. It is highly critical to observe your natural skin tone for color matching and placement. No exceptions!!
One week prior your tattoo, you should avoid the following medications and foods, as their consumption causes an increased likelihood of bleeding problems: Steroids, anti-inflammatories, aspirin, ibuprofen, or any medicines containing aspirin or ibuprofen . Foods and herbal supplements containing garlic, ginger, ginkgo, Feverfew, St. Johns Wort, dong quai, all blood invigorating Chinese herbs, pure licorice, fish oil, Glucosamine or Vitamin E .
If you have any questions about a medication or supplement, please leave a message here or speak to your physician.
Nicotine must be avoided for two weeks prior to the procedure and two weeks after your procedure.
If you are taking any medications that have been prescribed by another physician, please review these with your physician.
Do not drink alcoholic beverages 24 hours prior to the procedure and no blood thinning medications & procedures as well.
The day of your tattoo, shower and wash area, do not use any creams on the breast area. Wear a loose bra and top for your comfort. Make sure you eat a meal before getting tattooed. You can bring water during the tattoo session.
How Long Will It Last
Most of the initial fading will happen in the first two weeks. Because the skin that is being tattooed has scars and is compromised, from radiation/ multiple surgeries, it is common for fading to occur. Tattooing scars are unpredictable & everyone will have different results. This is why the tattoo is done in two steps.
Touch-ups may be needed after the TWO initial sessions but is not common. Certain factors may affect the pigment retention in the skin such as past radiation treatments, smoking, diabetes, necrotic tissue and/or thicker scar tissue. Medical tattoos need to be performed in stages. This assures preventing damage to fragile, compromised skin and achieving the most natural results while avoiding multiple touch-up sessions.
With all body tattoos, over time they will fade and lose definition. Touch-ups can be done 5-10 years or MORE from your initial tattoo.
The pigments used and tattoo techniques performed is the same as getting a body art tattoo. Tattoos exposed to the sun, more breast surgery and chemical/laser treatments around the breast area can make your tattoo fade more. USE SUNSCREEN. Its your best defence.
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What Happens During The Consultation
Well chat through exactly what youd like the end result to be. This will include looking at your areola shape, size, placement and colourings. Then your technician will pre-draw the areola and nipple complex using temporary markers and perfectly match the pigment shades to your skin. This is to make sure the correct style and colours are chosen and the finished result is as natural as possible. You can book a consultation by visiting our contact page.
Risks Of Nipple Reconstruction Surgery
With any reconstruction surgery, infection is always a risk, so make sure you understand your post-surgical instructions and call your doctor if you notice anything concerning in the area, like pus, a bad smell, or if you have chills or fever. One October 2013 study in the European Journal of Plastic Surgery points to nipple reconstruction being a high-risk procedure for people who have had radiation therapy.
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Nipple Reconstruction And Nipple Tattoos
If youve undergone a mastectomy, you may decide to also have breast reconstruction surgery. In most cases, when the breast is removed, the nipple and the darkened area around itthe areolaare removed as well.
Breast reconstruction creates new breasts in place of what was removed, and not everyone will elect to have the nipple reconstruction procedure that comes later. If you choose to, you have several options when it comes to reconstructing your nipple. Surgery to create a new nipple or nipples may be an option, but it’s not the only one you have. You can also decide to have nipple tattooing or use prosthetic nipples.
Learn more about what options are available when it comes to nipple and areola reconstruction and nipple tattoos, and factors to consider when weighing each option.
If You’ve Had Breast Cancer Then You May Be Looking For The Full 3d Nipple And Areola Treatmentor Perhaps You’d Like To Enhance Your Natural Areola Or Camouflage Scarring After Cosmetic Surgery
Nipple and Areola Tattooing is the reason I re-trained years ago. You will be amazed at the difference this treatment makes and how realistic the results are.
I am BUPA recognised for breast cancer patients, so please book a consultation to find out how I can help you feel confident and make you smile.
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Does A Breast Tattoo Hurt
Breast numbness after a mastectomy is common, so most people feel little to no pain when getting a nipple tattoo after a mastectomy.
Mastectomy significantly reduces sensation in the breasts, as nerves are cut during the surgery. If you have nipple reconstruction, your new nipple wont have any sensation.
Women with implants also experience less sensation, even if they have a skin-sparing or nipple-sparing mastectomy.
How much a nipple tattoo hurts, if at all, varies from person to person. Everyone is different.
The cost of nipple tattoos varies among artists and aestheticians. Location is also a factor.
Based on internet research, one nipple tattoo costs around $400 . Most artists appear to offer a slightly lower rate per nipple if youre having both tattooed.
Other than buying antibiotic ointment, there shouldnt be any other expenses outside of the tattoo. No downtime is required, so you wont need to take time off work for recovery.
Nipple tattoos are covered by some insurance plans if you meet certain criteria. A tattoo artist can provide you with a receipt that you can then submit to your insurance company.
Unless you have your tattoo done by a healthcare professional, directly billing the insurance company isnt possible.
Insurance plans, coverage, and criteria for coverage vary among providers, so youll need to check with yours.
What Are The Benefits Of 3d Nipple Tattooing
A 3D nipple tattoo offers the breast cancer survivor a fresh start. The careful application of color restores realism to the overall outcome of breast reconstruction. Using just ink, Dr. Ferrauiola recreates the natural focal point to the breast mound as a finishing touch to the reconstructive journey. Benefits of 3D nipple tattoos include:
- Closes the circle of recovery and restores a sense of wholeness
- No additional surgery is needed
- Tattooing can camouflage scars on the breasts
- Can correct faded or irregular areola pigmentation
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D Nipple Tattoos Are Changing The Look And Experience Of Breast Reconstruction After A Mastectomy
What makes a woman feel “whole again” after a mastectomy is incredibly personal and individual. Some women are comfortable “going flat” and some feel that reconstructed breast mounds are enough, while other women seeking full reconstruction feel the process isn’t complete without nipples. For them, nipples are a defining focal point of the breast.
Adding a nipple to a reconstructed breast can have an immediate and profound visual effect, helping the breast look more normal again. New nipples can also draw attention away from the scars, lopsidedness, indentations and other imperfections of surgery. In my own practice, I’ve seen what an important therapeutic step it has been for many of my patients.
In some cases, a women’s natural nipple can be preserved during mastectomy surgery. But when that’s not possible, there are two different ways to permanently create a new nipple. One option is to use the woman’s own tissue to create a round nipple and areola “bump out” or projection. That little cap can be tattooed for color later on. Another option is to tattoo a nipple directly on the breast mound. Nipple tattoos without reconstructed nipples are increasingly popular, especially 3D nipple tattoos that an look amazingly real.
Reconstructed vs. 3D Tattooed Nipples
The Pros and Cons of Reconstructed Nipples
What You Need To Know About Nipple Tattoos
Nipple Reconstruction Surgery And Nipple Tattoos
If one or both of your nipples were removed when you had a mastectomy, you can in most cases choose to have surgery, tattooing, or both to recreate the nipple and the areola . Some people find that having their nipples reconstructed or tattooed is an important final step in the breast reconstruction process. Others dont. The choice is completely up to you, and you can take your time to decide.
Plastic surgeons usually recommend waiting at least 4 months after breast reconstruction surgery to have nipple reconstruction or nipple tattoos. This will give your breasts time to heal and settle into a final position. Its also best to wait until youre fully satisfied with the rest of your reconstruction.
Rarely, some surgeons may offer the option of performing the nipple reconstruction as part of breast reconstruction surgery . This is generally not recommended because it can result in poor positioning of the new nipples.
Nipple reconstruction surgery is usually an outpatient procedure that uses skin from the area of the breast where the nipple will be located to form a new nipple. Later, the reconstructed nipple may be tattooed to add color and to create the areola.
The main advantage of getting your nipple reconstructed with surgery is that it will project out from the breast. Some women feel this creates a more natural look.
Some of the advantages of choosing tattooing alone are:
Learn more about:
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When Should I Get My Areola Tattoo Touched Up
Most technicians insist on the first touch up being done 6-8 weeks after the initial micropigmentation. This extra session ensures your 3D nipple tattoo lasts as long as possible, and it can perfect the shape and color.
During healing, its not uncommon for some minor patchiness to emerge this is also fixed at the first touch up.
After that, most clients like to get their nipple tattoo touched up once a year. This keeps the color looking fresh and even.
How often youll get touch ups depends entirely on you. If you dont get any, your areola tattoo will fade out completely after 3-5 years.
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