October is traditionally marked as Breast Cancer Awareness Month, a time when we all come together to raise awareness of this disease and show patients and survivors some love and support.
Annually, different organizations, companies and individuals run special campaigns and programs to contribute to Pink October, and the PMU industry is very active on this front.
Let’s review all the ways in which the PMU community is showing their support, and perhaps inspire you to set up a similar program next year. Plus, scroll down to the works of artists who donate their services – they deserve a shout-out!
Free Eyebrow Tattoos
Cancer treatment often entails hair loss as a side effect, and that doesn’t only apply to the hair on the scalp. A large portion of patients undergoing cancer treatment also lose their eyebrows, and even eyelashes.
Thankfully, brow tattoo techniques have been perfected so much that they now give hyperrealistic results. They can give people their brows and their self-confidence back, making their journey at least a little bit more bearable.
But a high-quality brow tattoo is an expense not everyone can afford.
So, during Breast Cancer Awareness Month, there’s always an increase in services donated to cancer survivors. Artists all over the world are offering free eyebrows to patients who need them.
Everyone chimes in as much as they’re able to. Some artists do it completely pro bono, others only charge a symbolic price to cover the costs of the material. Some artists offer more services than others, but it’s not a number’s game – it’s about helping as many people as you can.
Image source: Instagram @maria_browboss
Free Areola Tattoos
Mastectomy is a common course of treatment for breast cancer. In most cases, it leads to the loss of one or both nipples. And while the breast is usually reconstructed with breast implants, the final step is to reconstruct the nipple and the areola.
And nipple and areola tattoos have become the standard for achieving this, with or without nipple mound reconstruction.
There are so many super-talented nipple tattooists who can recreate the nipple so realistically it looks 3D. And this truly makes a difference in people’s lives, as it’s so often reported by survivors.
But since it takes so much time and hard work to perfect this skill, nipple tattoos don’t come cheap.
In general, most health insurance policies cover a portion of the cost of a nipple tattoo, but during Breast Cancer Awareness month, nipple tattoo artists are going a step further and donating their services, as individuals.
There are also organizations that provide funding year-round, like the Mastectomy Tattooing Alliance, so the client gets their complimentary tattoo, and the artist gets compensation.
It’s important to note, though, that some cases of nipple reconstruction are more complex than others, due to the presence of scar tissue, and not all artists are equally experienced.
So consults are always mandatory before setting up an appointment, so the artist can assess the situation and see what they can do.
Free Decorative Breast Tattoos
Some patients decide to get their mastectomy scars camouflaged with a more creative option than realistic cosmetic nipple tattoos – decorative body tattoos.
They decide to get different designs and turn their scars into works of art, something that will remind them of their strength and victory over this disease.
And many tattoo artists decide to support them by doing these services for free, especially during Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Here’s a shout-out to them!
Discounts on Areola Tattoo Trainings
Apart from directly helping survivors, members of the PMU community are also supporting those who want to learn nipple tattooing. So, this year, there have been many academies and trainers who are offering discounts on nipple and areola tattoo courses.
What better time to pick up this skill than Breast Cancer Awareness Month, right?
How You Can Contribute
If you’re a PMU artist and want to give back, Breast Cancer Awareness Month is the perfect time to do so. As an industry largely run by women for women, breast cancer is a natural choice of cause to support.
Whichever service you provide, chances are there’s a cancer patient out there who needs it, be it brows, scalp micropigmentation, nipple and areola tattoo, or even permanent eyeliner.
And while you definitely don’t want to sell yourself short, Pink October is a time to put profits second and humanity first, so do some calculations and figure out if you can offer at least a couple of free services.
You’ll be surprised at how rewarding it can be!
But of course, there are also other ways to get in the action, like supporting global organizations and local charities, raising funds, raising awareness on social media, and finally just keeping the talk alive. And not just in October!
Charity Doesn’t Stop When Breast Cancer Awareness Month Ends
Many PMU artists donate their service year-round to cancer survivors, not just during Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Campaigns like Pay with a Smile or independent salons who donate their services regularly are truly improving people’s lives.
As a hub for all permanent makeup artists, trainers and enthusiasts, we’d like to thank them for their generosity and for driving the industry in a direction that truly makes a difference!
Cover image source: Freepik