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Areola & Nipple Complex



We all have a different relationship with our areolas.  For some, it is just a bit of dark pigmented skin which is of no great demise to them if they lost it.  For other patients, if they have lost it due to a much needed operation, it can mean so much.  Patients tell me that looking in a full length mirror and not looking symmetrical to the eye would actually make them feel off balanced.  Some do not wish to undress in front of their partners any more as they feel incomplete. 


Medical tattooing can bridge the gap between physical and psychological well being.  Many patients tell me that having the areola replaced is like closing the book on that chapter of their lives which they wish to move on from and this treatment helps them.


Breast Cancer 

If you have been a sufferer of breast cancer you will hopefully find that areola tattooing is now available within your NHS hospital where you have been treated. This is such a wonderful step forward within the NHS for a much needed after treatment. 


The treatments below may also require areola procedures.

  • Breast Mastopexy (uplift)

  • Breast reduction

  • Breast Augmentation (enlargement)

  • Gynecomastia (male breast reduction) - If excess skin needs to be removed and the nipple re-positioned. Scar tissue may need camouflaging into the nipple              


It is my personal professional opinion that at least a period of four months post op should be considered before continuing with your areola tattoo.  I suggest this for several reasons.


  • Firstly, post op you will have tissue swelling in the breast area. By giving yourself time for the breast swelling to subside will result in the perfect position for your areola.  I see patients that have had an areola procedure too quickly post op and once their swelling went down, they found that the areola was not positioned exactly where they would have wished.  This is increasingly so for patients that has had skin and fatty tissue taken from the abdomen or hip area to restore the breast.  After some down time, the breast may take a slightly different shape/position.   

  • Always make sure your new areola is drawn on prior to treatment standing up and make sure you look in a full length mirror.  You need to know that your new areola is in the correct position for you.  Technicians are trained in different ways, if your technician draws it on with you lying down; please don’t be afraid to say “can you draw the areola with me standing up please”, remember, it is your breast!

  • It is also important that if you have had nipple surgery, you need to make sure that the procedure has had time to heal well.  Having a technician implanting pigment with a needle into the new nipple area too early can result in the needle causing damage which can then cause collapse of the nipple. 

  • In the media, you may have read that some individuals have received areola tattooing whilst still under a general anaesthetic from there breast procedure – For all the reasons above, this is why you should consider these personal observations.


                                      Before                                                                                                 straight after treatment            

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