Areola Artistry; 3D nipple & areola tattooing is the VERY reason I retrained and became a Medical Tattooist! Being able to offer this treatment is, in equal measures, the most humbling and inspiring treatment I offer.
If you have read my story, then you’ll already know that I retrained after being inspired by a friend of mine who had had breast cancer.
So after over a years worth of training in medical & cosmetic techniques and treatments, I was delighted to be able to introduce this treatment. During this year, I started to volunteer for Look Good Feel Better cancer charity (see my separate blog post on this amazing charity!). It was really important for me to spend time with ladies that were either going through, or had recently undergone cancer treatment. I think we are all well aware that as women, we are exceptionally good at putting on a brave face for the world, particularly in front of friends and family – our way of protecting the ones we love! The LGFB workshops helped me to see and understand some of the raw emotion and views of ladies going through treatment. I believe that has helped me to provide an environment and service that supports my lovely clients, beyond just the treatment I offer.
So what is 3D nipple and areola tattooing? I think another (better) term for it is Areola Artistry – because the treatment involves using artistic techniques to create the illusion of 3D. Using bespoke medical pigments, together with advanced shading and highlighting techniques, it’s possible to create a very realistic looking nipple and areola.
This treatment is highly adaptable and can be used for ladies that have been through different surgical and reconstructive procedures. There are many different reconstructive procedures available today, with our wonderful surgeons advancing techniques all the time. Areola tattooing can be adapted for all different types of reconstructions, including those that have had nipple reconstructions.
How soon after surgery can I have a treatment?
This is a question that I am often asked. Post surgical timescales vary for treatment. Typically this ranges from 3-6 months post surgery and is also dependent on whether you are having any further treatment. It is really important to let your reconstruction heal and settle before tattooing the area. Your surgeon is the best person to advise you on when your reconstruction will be ‘settled’, so do ask for their advice. We want to make sure that your nipple and areola are in the correct place, which can only be done once the swelling has reduced and tissue (including implants) have had time to find their natural place.
It is also worth mentioning that scar tissue plays a part in when you can have an areola tattooing treatment. Scar tissue is unpredictable when it comes to tattooing, as it can either grab pigment or reject it. It’s impossible to know how scar tissue will respond until it’s tattooed. I often carry out 2-3 micro needling scar treatments before tattooing, as this helps to break down the scar tissue and improve the quality of the skin. This is something we will go through at a consultation.
What can I expect from Areola Artistry?
First things first, lets talk! I always recommend coming for a consultation if you are able to, as we can go through photographs of others that have had treatment and I can also assess your skin and any scar tissue. That said, many clients travel some distance to me, so we can carry out a consultation over the telephone if required.
If you have had a single mastectomy or a lumpectomy, then then aim of the treatment is to match the existing areola and nipple as closely as possible. For some clients this involves tattooing a 3D nipple and for others it’s areola colouring only. It is impossible to get an EXACT match with pigment, but we will get as close as we possibly can! If you look closely at your areola, there is a lot of detail and different colours in there……that’s where the artistry comes in, as I look to replicate the detail during the treatment.
If you have had a double mastectomy then we will work together to design areola and nipples that suit your skin tone, colouring, breast size and of course, your preferences! Many ladies will bring photographs of their breast prior to surgery, so please feel free to bring any photographs you like to a consultation.
Is it a permanent tattoo?
Well, yes and no. It is permanent in so far nearly all client will retain some colour in their skin long term. However, you will require colour boosts to keep the colour fresh. Typically this is every 2-4 years, but some clients will need to come back sooner and other will go much longer. This is very much dependent on the the colour used, your skin type and your lifestyle.
Is this treatment only available to breast cancer patients?
No, absolutely not. This treatment can be adapted for clients that have had breast reductions/uplifts, cosmetic enhancement to improve symmetry or colour and also those that have undergone gender transformations.
OK, I’m interested, what now?
Please get in touch using the ‘book a consultation’ button on the website. Alternatively, feel free to call or message me. We can then arrange a face to face consultation, or to speak on the telephone. We’ll talk through your reasons for having treatment and different treatment plans available to you.
I look forward to hearing from you. Warmest regards, Nikki