Breast Cancer Survivors – Turning Tragedy Into Art

Breast Cancer Survivors – Turning Tragedy Into Art

About 1 in 8 women in the United States will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime. In 2014, there were more than 2.8 million women with a history of breast cancer in the United States. This includes women currently being treated and women who have finished treatment.



The majority of these women have already or will have to get mastectomies in order to combat this disease. A mastectomy is a surgery that involves removing all or part of the breast to treat or prevent breast cancer. Although this can be a live-saving procedure, the scars that are left behind can have a huge physical and psychological impact on the individual. As a result, many of these breast cancer survivors are choosing to reclaim their lives and their bodies with beautiful commemorative tattoos.



For some, these tattoos serve as a form of healing. For a lot of women, coming to terms with how their body look after treatment can be very difficult. The tattoo not only serves as a decorative piece for the scars, but it also plays a huge part in the recovery process. (Personal Ink) is a charitable initiative, that connects mastectomy patients with qualified tattoo artists. Every year, they host Day events where they connect mastectomy patients with tattoo artists who donate their time and services for free. also accepts donations throughout the year to help pay for survivors to receive these tattoos.

David Allen, a tattoo artist connected with, describes this process best: “What was clinical became beautiful again… we turned sterile into sensual. We took back control.”

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