Breast cancer surgery can be an incredibly difficult and emotional experience for many people and afterwards, it's common to consider getting a mastectomy tattoo, a decorative tattoo on the breast or chest.
Why get a mastectomy tattoo?
While this is a personal decision, here are some of the reasons why people consider having a mastectomy tattoo:
• To reclaim their body after cancer
• To cover or disguise a scar
• To help someone feel more confident after treatment
When can I get a mastectomy tattoo?
First and foremost you should check with your treatment team. But typically, your operation site should be completely healed and you'll need to have finished any chemotherapy or radiotherapy treatment.
Choosing where to get a mastectomy tattoo
Finding the right person to your tattoo is really important and you'll want to find someone who really understands (or even has experience of) mastectomy tattoos. Don't be afraid to visit a few tattoo studios to have a chat so you can ensure you are comfortable with the artist or even to request a female artist to do your tattoo if it makes you feel more comfortable.
Mastectomy tattoos inspiration
We can't believe how realistic this butterfly tattoo looks! Butterflies are popular tattoos generally but they're especially poignant as part of a mastectomy tattoo as they are popular symbols of transformation, rebirth, and renewal.
Black and white flowers
Flowers are an incredibly popular choice for mastectomy tattoos and it's no wonder! We love how delicate this tattoo is.
Moths and eggs
This inspiring tattoo depicts the transformations of moths as they tend to a nest full of eggs. A moth typically represents tremendous change and transformation, but it also seeks the light.
Under the sea
For something unique, what about an octopus? Although it might not be the first thing that springs to mind when thinking of mastectomy tattoo ideas, octopuses symbolise intelligence, adaptability, and unpredictability.
This vibrant peacock is the perfect option as it's symbolic of re-growth and rejuvenation, as well as honour and integrity
In Hinduism and Buddhism, these birds are considered to be sacred and worshipped alongside their deities.
Choosing a specific location or scene that is important to you will ensure you end up with a deeply personal tattoo that is worth a thousand words, just like this Glen Coe scene with vibrant poppies.
This intricate and feminine tattoo design cleverly uses roses to look like a beautiful bra.
Turn your scars into something positive and pay homage to someone you love dearly, whether they're still with us or not. Sara decided to choose a tattoo to depict her dog Ninja who died of cancer.