Imagine a Christmas tree with no decorations…a car without headlights…the beach without sand…Mt. Rushmore with no faces…the American flag with no stars…that’s how I felt looking at my chest with no nipples. It has been quite an adjustment for me to not see them adorning my breasts, after being there for over three decades. I felt awkward looking in the mirror and seeing a blank canvas, and on a daily basis, tilting my head in confusion at the fact I had become like Barbie – only with two massive scars where they once resided. I missed my nipples terribly and I didn’t feel “whole” without them. So, for the first few follow-up visits with my reconstructive surgeon after my bilateral mastectomy, I would bring up my nipple dilemma. He would look at me with a smile and say “let’s worry about that later because there are several options”. On my way back to the car after leaving his office, I would simply drop my head and quietly mourn my loss.
My curiosity began to grow about my “options”. I then committed the cardinal sin of cancer and post-mastectomy existence: I started researching things on the internet. I saw and read things that made me feel even worse. Surely, I saw some options that seemed to work for people – such as tattoos or balling the skin to make a “faux” nipple – but I also saw the results of trying to forge a nipple that had gone terribly wrong. I have a lot of tattoos; however, I was concerned that my quest to make a three-dimensional nipple on a two-dimensional surface would be a complete (irreversible) failure. My expectations were way too high: the tattoo might have “looked” good in the mirror, but when I looked down, I knew I would not be happy with it.
Then, I got this bright idea to look for prosthetic nipples. Why not? They make prosthesis for all sorts of missing body parts, so I just figured I would give it try. It was then that I had found the holy grail of Nippledom: the Pink Perfect prosthetic nipple. I was so excited I ran into the house and practically implanted my laptop in my husband’s face. You would have thought I hit the lottery…well, I felt like I did…the eff-in nipple lottery!
“Look! Look! They exist!”
I was going out of town for a much needed break from the house, and I just had to have them. I placed my order and then called them immediately to see if they could overnight them. But alas, it was a holiday week and there was no way they were going to come in time. The gentleman I spoke to on the phone was sincere and empathetic, and then I read the story about how the company was founded, so then I knew why. The owner, Michelle, had undergone a mastectomy herself and her company was inspired by the same challenge I faced: she felt like something was missing. Out of sheer determination, Michelle acquired some skills in silicone prosthesis making, and Pink Perfect was born. She is truly an artist – I have two sets and they are uniquely hand-painted to look as realistic as possible.
In addition to making a *fabulous* prosthetic nipple, one thing I found unique about Pink Perfect is that they will send you a kit to take an impression of your existing nipple. You then get a custom-made prosthesis that looks exactly like your original nipple. Unfortunately, I found Pink Perfect too late in my journey, but I am more than satisfied with what I did receive. You even get to pick the color and style that you want! Pink Perfect really made a difference in my well-being and their product is very durable. All it takes is a little medical-grade adhesive and the waterproof prosthetic can stay on for up to a couple of weeks (the longest I have kept them on consecutively is 3 weeks). This is going to be MY choice for the rest of my life, and my Pink Perfect prosthetic nipples will probably last longer than I do.
*EXCLUSIVE*! (Thank you so much, Michelle!). Use this coupon code for $25 off your Pink Perfect order: NEWNORMAL25
Ready-made nipples: http://www.pink-perfect.com/product-category/ready-made-nipples/
Custom made nipples: http://www.pink-perfect.com/product/custom-made-prosthetic-nipple/