Guest Blog: 3D Nipple Tattooing

Some patients have asked about how to change the appearance of failed free nipple grafts or add on nipples after a surgery without nipple grafts. At The Gender Confirmation Center, it’s extremely rare to have a complete failure of a nipple graft, and tattooing or nipple reconstruction due to nipple loss is an uncommon event. However, it’s good to know what is out there for nipple reconstruction, as it is helpful for those who do desire it after a nipple graft loss, or those who opt for no nipple grafts who may want to pursue an alternative method of obtaining nipples

An innovative approach to nipple reconstruction is to have a nipple tattoo made that uses optical illusion to create a three-dimensional appearance, even though the skin is still quite flat. We were contacted by Garnet Tattoo in San Diego, and would love to share the information they sent as a guest blog to this website. There are experts in 3D nipple reconstruction through tattooing in San Diego,Minneapolis, and around the country. Take a look!

Shane Wallin is the owner and lead artist at Garnet Tattoo in San Diego. He has been tattooing for over 20 years. About 15 years ago, he opened his first tattoo shop in Minneapolis, MN—Twilight Tattoo. He didn’t get his start specializing in 3D nipple tattoos and other medical tattoos. But this is where he has found the utmost fulfillment with his art.

It began in 2012, when he was approached by a breast cancer survivor and double mastectomy patient for a “bra” tattoo. At first he treated it like any other tattoo; working with the design challenges, moving with body lines and complex curves. Little did Shane know at the time how much it would change her life.

His specialization in 3D nipple and areola work invariably led to providing nipple tattoos for patients who have undergone chest reconstruction top surgery. . Sometimes nipples are affected by tissue death, and patients want a tattoo as a replacement nipple. 

Garnet Tattoo provides 3D nipple tattoos and scar cover-ups in a clean, bright, confidential environment – not unlike a doctor’s office. Shane knows the sensitivity of these types of procedures, and as such, he’s made Garnet into a safe haven for those looking to augment their surgery outcomes. 

Nipple Tattoo Frequently Asked Questions

  1. How soon after surgery can I get 3D nipples/areola reconstruction through tattooing?
    The consensus is 5-6 months if there are no complications with the healing process. If you are unsure we encourage a visit to your surgeon to ask their opinion.
  2. What if I am healed, but the scar is still pinkish or discolored?
    Not all scars are white. As long as there is no itching and you are healed, we can tattoo in an area with pink coloring or discoloration.
  3. How should I prepare for my appointment?
    You should get a good night’s rest. Eat a well-rounded meal about 3 hours before your scheduled appointment. Taking Ibuprofen with a meal prior to your appointment can greatly reduce both discomfort and swelling. No alcohol or marijuana use beforehand please.
  4. How long until I am fully healed?
    A typical tattoo heals in 3 weeks. Results can vary by age, genetics, and medical circumstances.
  5. What do you charge for 3D Nipple Areola pigmentation?
    My fee is $600 a set or $450 for a single. If need be, it includes a touch up to ensure dimension and consistency. Many times it is not necessary, but I want my clients feel secure with my process. I accept credit cards and cash.
  6. How do I schedule a consultation or appointment with you?
    San Diego- Garnet Tattoo- info@garnettattoo.com 619-942-9737
    Minneapolis*- Twilight Tattoo- info@twilighttattoo.com 612-722-2233

*Alli does call backs on Mondays only*

1 2