Beauty through tattoo artistry

3D Nipple Tattoo

Want a discounted or FREE nipple tattoo this Friday at 10:30am?

Expert tattoo artist Sasha will be teaching tattooing in an advanced educational workshop to  medical professionals (nurses, physician’s assistants, etc). The work will be done either by Sasha as demonstration (for 50% off) or by the nurse under Sasha’s supervision (free).

If you would like or need additional tattooing after the tattoo has healed, you can schedule a follow up privately with Sasha for $175. The regular cost of this procedure is $525-750.

The date: 10:30 am Friday July 27. If you want to be on the list for future trainings, leave message.

Please contact Sasha at 415.550.1445 Wed July 25th.

Client comment

"I didn't realize I hadn't looked in the mirror for 5 years. I don't avoid the mirror after my shower now. Thank you!" Nancy, Dragonfly Ink client

3d Nipple Gallery

3D Nipple Tattoos after breast reconstruction 

After cancer related breast reconstruction, 3d nipple tattoos can help restore a sense of wholeness and self.  Using artistic and tattoo skill beautiful, natural 3D nipple tattoos are created to complement skin tones, breast size as well as what looks best for each client.

3D nipple tattooing is a highly specialized technique of tattooing used give the visual illusion of a three dimensional nipple. Additionally, areola repigmentation restores the natural looking color and shape of an areola after breast reconstruction.

This tattoo procedure is done after breast cancer related reconstruction. 3d nipple tattooing can be done in place of surgical nipple reconstruction giving the “illusion of protrusion” using artistic trompe l’oeil techniques of light and shadow for realistic tattooed nipples. 3D Nipple tattooing is also done in conjunction with nipple reconstruction to return natural color as well as improving symmetry in the nipples. The same 3D nipple tattoo techniques can also improve reconstructed nipples.

Below are answers to common questions about 3D nipple tattoo and areola repigmentation. Please contact us for additional answers to your specific questions.

Schedule Appointment

Frequently Asked Questions

What is 3D nipple and areola tattooing/regimentation?

This procedure is a highly specialized practice of tattooing that restores the natural looking color and shape of a nipple and areola after breast reconstruction. This can be done in conjunction with surgical nipple reconstruction. If there is no nipple, a 3 dimensional nipple can be created with light and shadow, to give the “illusion of protrusion”.

What is the Process?

Pigment is implanted into the skin between the epidermis and the dermis, generally using the same equipment used for body art tattoos. The skin heals over the pigment and a soft natural areola/nipple is created.

Why areola or 3D nipple tattooing?

Most women who chose to areola restoration or nipple tattooing do so because they do not want anymore surgeries. Other find the nipple reconstruction they had done, has flattened out and is no longer dimensional. Many find it helps to return a sense of normalcy and femininity to her body and sense of self.

Does it hurt?

Most clients are surprised to find tattooing quite tolerable. It is a superficial process, and afterward it is just a bit sore, like a minor sunburn for 2-3 days. Ask about easy ways to minimize discomfort.

Is 3D nipple tattooing safe?

Yes, 3d nipple/areola tattooing is very safe. Single-use disposable needles and pigments, along with regular hand washing and glove changing are part of high standards of clean protocols. Post procedural instructions, if followed carefully, also ensure a safe procedure.

Experienced Fine Artist

An experienced artist will understand the special considerations of skin that has been radiated and/or stretched and will be able to safely tattoo this skin.

Can I get an MRI after this procedure?

Yes, even people with large body tattoos have little to no problems from MRIs. In the very rare instance where MRI discomfort resulted, it was localized and very temporary.

How do I take care of my new nipple tattoo?

There is very little down time for tattoo healing. Aftercare is primarily a matter of keeping the area clean, avoiding direct sun, and not letting it soak or dry out. There will be some itching and flaking of the skin for the first week or two. It takes about 3-4 weeks to really see the soft, natural results of your areola and nipple tattoo.

Why have a tattoo artist create the areola/3D nipple rather than my doctor?

Some doctors do fine tattoo work. However, while surgeons are specially trained to surgically create breasts, most are not trained in tattoo procedures, color theory, and how to create a 3 dimensional illusion on a 2 dimensional surface. A tattoo artist generally has an art back round and training, as well as experience in 3D work.

Does health insurance cover areola and nipple tattoo?

The Women’s Health and Cancer Rights Act of 1998 requires insurance to cover post mastectomy reconstruction, including areola/nipple tattooing. Insurance will often reimburse some of the cost of procedures done by a tattoo artist. Dragonfly Ink will provide a receipt to assist in applying to your insurance company for reimbursement for your out of pocket expenses.

Can I bring my friends or significant other to the appointment?

Definitely. Friends and family are welcome to come to the studio.

How do I choose the right artist or doctor to do this work?

• Always look at healed pictures of the areola and 3D tattoos (photos taken directly after will be a bit bright and darker then healed).
• Make sure the areola color looks natural and that it isn’t perfectly round with hard edges
• Does the nipple appear dimensional?
• The artist should have good experience and specialized training, particularly in color theory and areola/3D nipple tattooing. An arts background is especially helpful
• Ask all your questions, and be sure you are comfortable with the artist’s ability to answer your questions
• Of course, be sure anyone tattooing follows all protocols and safety standards for a clean and safe procedure

Is there anything I need to do before my appointment?

• Avoid alcohol for at least 2 days before your appointment
• Have a good breakfast and minimize the caffeine the day of procedure
• Wear a comfortable clothing including a shirt, sweater, or hoodie that opens in the front and that is ok if pigment gets on it
• Do not stop regular meds without consulting your doc, but avoid any aspirin or other blood thinning meds
• If your doc will prescribe, you can use a topical anesthetic before you come in (let your artist know for direction in using or the name of an over the counter cream) There is topical for use during the procedure so this isn’t necessary

How do I make an appointment at Dragonfly Ink?

The best way to schedule a consultation or areola/3D tattoo appointment is to call the studio at 415.550.1445. Please review Rates & Scheduling

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The Next Step Scheduling

Ready to schedule your consultation? Contact Sasha and get the process started. Have questions specific to you, or questions that were not answered here? Contact Sasha for more information.

Insurance and the WHCRA

While the Women’s Health and Cancer Rights Act of 1998 (WHCRA) requires insurance companies to cover the cost of breast reconstruction after cancer related mastectomy, including nipple tattooing, most tattoo artists are out of network. Some plans cover a portion of out of network services, some do not. Check with your carrier to see if they will reimburse your cost of the 3d nipple tattoo. Sasha can give you a receipt letter with the insurance code and procedure information to take to your insurance company.

Get more information about the Women’s Health and Cancer Rights Act of 1998.



490 Post Street Suite 1701
Phone: 415.550.1445


Dragonfly Ink is committed to providing excellent quality 3D Nipple Tattoo and Areola Restoration that is natural and realistic. 3D nipple tattoos can be a successful option to create the experience of a finished breast after cancer.