Last updated in September 2021.
Nipple and areola repigmentation is the final step in the breast reconstruction process after mastectomy. It can create hyperrealistic results, especially if the client’s had nipple reconstruction.
The effects of the treatment stretch far beyond just the improvement in the physical appearance of the breast(s). They finally give the client their confidence back and make them feel in control again.
So while the feeling of relief is priceless, you may be wondering how much does areola tattooing cost?
Read PMUHub’s guide to find out the results of our market research into areola tattoo cost.
The average areola tattoo cost is around $500 for one nipple tattoo, and around $815 for two. Most artists give discounted prices if both nipples are done.
However, since it’s part of breast reconstruction after mastectomy, the areola repigmentation cost should be covered by health insurance, and in most cases, it is. Check your provider’s policy.
The areola tattoo is a form of advanced micropigmentation that recreates the nipple and the areola for clients who’ve lost their natural nipples. It can be done in combination with nipple reconstruction, for the best results possible.
Although it’s called a tattoo, it’s not the same as traditional body tattoos. It’s done by injecting pigments of natural origins, not inks, and it’s done on the surface layer of the skin, so not as deep as traditional tattoos.
As a result, it lasts 3-5 years. The pigments gradually fade, but they can be refreshed.
Want to find out more about areola micropigmentation? Follow the links:
Image source: Instagram @martinaurban.perfectacademy
The nipple tattoo cost varies depending on location, and the skill and experience of the artist.
In the chart below, you can find the results of PMUHub’s research into how much does areola tattooing cost in different locations across the USA. However, the primary factor is the skill of the artist. Experienced technicians who can create extremely realistic tattoos charge more than those just starting out.
NOTE: Most technicians do not disclose their prices and only determine them upon consultations. Depending on the state of the area, working on it may be more or less difficult. Furthemore, some technicians charge per hour. The best way to find out the areola tattoo cost is to schedule a consultation appointment.
Getting satisfactory results will probably take multiple sessions. Most techs include the first follow-up in the initial price. Further sessions are charged extra, usually at a discounted rate.
Taxes and additional fees may apply.
|City/State||One Side||Both Sides|
$550 ($390 - $1000)
$940 ($590 - $2000)
$530 ($350 - $850)
$920 ($500 - $2000)
$560 ($500 - $685)
$600 ($295 - $900)
$795 ($495 - $1300)
$290 ($250 - $325)
$575 ($550 - $600)
$500 (400 - $600)
$1000 ($800 - $1200)
$575 ($400 - $700)
$690 ($500 - $950)
Los Angeles, CA
$730 ($650 - $825)
$1200 ($850 - $1400)
San Diego, CA
$315 ($250 - $350)
$570 ($500 - $700)
$375 ($350 - $400)
$500 ($450 - $600)
PMUHub’s research – areola tattoo prices
At most salons, the initial price includes a consultation appointment, an initial tattooing appointment, and a touch up done 6-8 weeks later.
The first touch-up is necessary for the majority of clients in order to build up the color, so most techs consider it part of the treatment.
Further touch ups are charged additionally, but most techs charge less than the initial one.
In most salons, the price also includes a patch test that makes sure you’re not allergic to any of the products used, but some charge additionally for it.
Image source: Instagram @kally.co.uk
There are several factors that determine the areola tattoo cost:
Higher prices are often justified. Experienced artists can create tattoos so realistic they’re practically indistinguishable from natural nipple at first glance.
Skin type does not affect the nipple tattoo cost.
However, the state of the area might. The degree of scarring in the area and the texture of the skin may make the tattooing process problematic. It may take longer than usual. That’s why many technicians only give a rate upon seeing the area.
The total areola tattoo cost depends on how many sessions and further touch ups you’ll need. Lighter shades tend to fade more quickly, so more frequent touch ups are necessary.
Yes, in most cases, it is.
The Women’s Health and Cancer Rights Act of 1998 – WHCRA is a federal law that requires group health plans and health insurance companies that offer mastectomy coverage to also pay for reconstructive surgery after mastectomy. The coverage should include all stages of reconstruction, and therefore, the areola tattoo cost should be covered.
PMUHub Tip: Insurance coverage and criteria vary by state, so it is best to check with your insurance provider first.
If, for any reason, your insurance provider doesn’t cover the areola tattooing cost, you can do a bit of research and look for artists who do pro bono work for cancer survivors, or charge heavily discounted rates.
There are many lovely artists out there who charge a symbolic rate that only covers the supplies.
The areola tattoo is the final step in breast reconstruction after mastectomy. As such, it’s usually covered by insurance. The average areola tattoo cost is around $500 for one breast, and $815 for both. The price usually includes consults, a patch test, the initial micropigmentation session, and a perfecting touch up. Since the tattoo eventually fades away, it needs occasional color boosts.