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Going flat ... clothes?

Hi. I am months out from my surgery. But will be having a double mastectomy with no reconstruction. My initial instinct is that I will go flat most, if not all the time. I have searched everywhere and can't find pictures or advice of dressing after this. And I don't mean to cover it and hide it. I mean will I be able to dress and feel sexy again? For example wearing a beautiful evening gown for a party? I mean there are plenty of women out there that are just naturally flat and they seem to do ok. Am I missing something? I mean I know that there is going to be an emotional side to it and there will be scars. Just curious.

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Comments

  • ksusan
    ksusan Member Posts: 461
    edited August 2019

    image

    I'm not a gown-wearer, but here's me flat. I'm not using any prostheses and although I've had to get rid of some tops that no longer drape well, most have been fine.

  • annecordelia
    annecordelia Member Posts: 15
    edited February 2016

    This looks great ksusan. I am happy to go flat but my trouble is that I'm overweight and my tummy now looks enormous!  Most flat-chested women are naturally slim so they look fine.  I am trying to lose weight but still look a very strange shape 5 months on from my bmx!

  • Nel
    Nel Member Posts: 597
    edited February 2016

    I am a uniboober. I use tunics and often scarves. The winter here in New England, sweaters are heavy and tho my uniboober status can be obvious, it is a bit less so. I do have a fake boob for those outfits where I absolutely need one. I typically did not wear a bra before MX, so the thoughts of wearing one now to look "even" really goes against my grain. The buddah stomach - yep! Just more obvious without breasts. Loose tunics are great

    Be well

    Nel

  • Erica
    Erica Member Posts: 237
    edited February 2016

    If you want to be flat and look fashionable, here's a terrific blog (with lots of photos) by a woman from Australia: http://thebreastlessyears.blogspot.com/.

  • heidi s
    heidi s Member Posts: 398
    edited February 2016

    ksusan, you look great!

    Nel, the Buddah belly. Know it well. I'm thinking about charging people to rub it for good luck.

    I had my BMX last June, and have not been fitted for a prosthetic. I love not having to wear a bra, and being able to wear tight tee shirts and tank tops with out one is very liberating for me.

    After I healed from my surgery, I bought tops and dresses that I couldn't wear in the past. I was small chested to begin with, but at 48 gravity definitely took a toll. I'm attracted to funky, flowy tunics that are cut high in the front and low in the back. I also like halter tops and dresses, silky dresses with spaghetti straps. I have a dress that is cut low in the front and back that never looked quite right on me before surgery, but now hangs quite nicely. I thought that wrap dresses would look odd with a completely flat chest, but it doesn't bother me at all. I also like empire cut tops and dresses. Covers the tummy quite well.


  • azrescue
    azrescue Member Posts: 15
    edited February 2016

    I love all of your comments. I thought the same about being able to wear things I never could before. But thought I might be wrong in my thinking. At my "prime" I wore a 32DD. I have lost a bit of that with breastfeeding & gravity. Lol. I'm on the thin side (5'7" & 110). The surgeon said it should be no problem getting a nice clean line.

    I know I have a lot to accomplish before I get to this stage but I have so many questions, concerns, ideas.

    Thank you all

  • littleblueflowers
    littleblueflowers Member Posts: 391
    edited February 2016

    no recon here either! When Im feeling fancy, I love silky drapey tops. I have some dresses with bold patterns, and I love funky necklines. If you are going snug, I've found very tight looks better than just kind of tight, dont know why. High halter necks look great. Good luck and happy dressing!,

  • glennie19
    glennie19 Member Posts: 4,831
    edited February 2016

    ksusan,, how nice to see you! Looking awesome, girlfriend!!

  • ksusan
    ksusan Member Posts: 461
    edited February 2016

    Thanks, all! annecordelia, that photo is with a BMI of 31.4.

  • badger
    badger Member Posts: 24,938
    edited February 2016

    hi azrescue, I'm six years out from BMX no recon. I don't wear prosthetics and just go flat. I was self-conscious at first and wore a lot of black then realized most people really didn't notice. As my self-confidence grew, I broadened my wardrobe to include more color and tighter-fit clothes. The only thing I avoid is tops with bust darts. Flat is one thing, empty is another.

    Erica's excellent website BreastFree.org was a great help to me, check it out! http://breastfree.org/

  • cupcaker
    cupcaker Member Posts: 2
    edited February 2016

    What a great topic! I'm about a week out from BMX with no recon. I'm currently a 40D. I've gone through my clothes, mind you I'm a clothes horse, and pulled out several items that I can tell will just not look right after I'm flat. However, I'm left with still a packed closet. During my recovery I plan to do some shopping online and pick out several scarves. I'm also thinking I'm going to start wearing more lightweight business jackets - as this change in appearance coincides with an increasingly visible role at work. Heck, maybe this is a good excuse to just get a whole new work wardrobe.

    I've started getting into running and doing races. Going flat means that I have an excuse to do running cosplay and wear fun costumes with decorations to distract from the differences between my tummy and my flat bust.

    One funny thing I've realized is that my sister is flat-chested naturally and she was always the man-magnet growing up. So in deciding on no recon, I know what I'm going to look like because she's the same shape as me, just a different bust-line.

    There's also a bathing suit I tried wearing last year and my bust was too large - it'll be perfect now with some small waterproof pads stuck inside the top.

  • SuC
    SuC Member Posts: 11
    edited February 2016

    Bilateral no recon here. About 2 years out and love being flat. At first I used to try and disguise it but now I forget about it so often I have stopped doing so. I just avoid darts or dresses that are shaped over the breast area. I got a great cowl neck dress from Ted Baker and another one with bits that drape from Willow. I wear a lot of jackets - they look better with flat chests than with breasts. I wore a lot of scarves before so continue to do so now. Patterns are good if you like them but I prefer plain. I got a great dress from Target - A line dress with no attempt to disguise the flatness and all I get is compliments. No-one even notices now

  • crystalphm
    crystalphm Member Posts: 277
    edited February 2016

    Azrescue, you will get a real feel to it all when you see your new figure. I am five years out and mostly always Flat. But the truth is I am not flat, I am distinctly concave.

    It is just the way surgery goes sometimes especially when removing cancers.

    I wear looser cloths to not conform to my concaveness, but I also wear beautiful clothing draped with a faux fur scarf or some luxury scarf to sort of trick the eyes away from concave.

    Don't make any clothing choices until you see how your surgery goes. And always remember "sexy" is a state of mind.

    Yes, there is a huge emotional facet to all of this, mourning the loss of breasts as well as comparing yourself to others. Each of us deal with this differently but there are many posts here about how we feel. Or start a new thread!

    OF COURSE you are going to be sexy again!!! No question about that. Hugs, denise

  • Longtermsurvivor
    Longtermsurvivor Member Posts: 738
    edited February 2016

    Hi Azrescue,

    Great questions and my sense is, we grow into our new shapes and make our new attractive, our new sexy. After my bmx no recon, no prostheses 25 years ago, I worked out and did lots of yoga. My shape was very pleasurable to me and my partner. And I dressed to emphasize other body parts - legs, back, arms - with less emphasis on breasts or bust line.

    I've continued to change shape with advancing bc, weight loss, an implanted port and now a drain tube in my belly. Don't feel very sexy, but certainly still attractive.

    Tight clothes, textures and patterns more attractive than clingy, draped or thin fabric clothes (better a form-fitting tank than a cheap, clingy t-shirt. Watch out for darts, but also for shaped clothing. I've a cashmere sweater that sags in the chest area and clings in the belly. That gets worn under a jacket, vest or shawl, because I don't like the look, but I love the color. :)

    The only limits are imagination and you're welcome to borrow ours, if yours hasn't flexed into your new look yet, Azrescue.

    Am pasting some resources below to stir imaginations.

    warmest wishes, Stephanie

    Breastfree

    http://breastfree.org/

    I Love my Boobless Chest at FORCE

    http://www.facingourrisk.org/messageboard/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=32088&hilit=boobless

    The Scar Project – nude and semi-nude women with and without reconstruction

    http://www.thescarproject.org/gallery/

    xox

    Fashion specific advice:

    Flattops wardrobe advice

    http://www.flattops.webs.com/notwearing.html

    Wardrobe pics for breastless days

    http://community.breastcancer.org/forum/82/topic/737036

    For younger women

    http://www.pinterest.com/pinkpenguintex/clothing-ideas-for-flat-chest/

    An artsy look

    http://www.pinterest.com/cyndeejane/linen-clothes/

    for older women of all shapes and sizes - my favorite fashion blog ever!

    http://advancedstyle.blogspot.com/


  • Jackbirdie
    Jackbirdie Member Posts: 1,617
    edited February 2016

    and if you want to experiment with an occasional prothesis (maybe keep a dress or blouse or two that you particularly like and want to hang right?) without all the hassle and expense, there is a charitable org that make and donate nice, breathable

    "Knitted knockers"

    http://www.knittedknockers.org

    They only ask for shipping and are very soft. After getting my pair I found I like knowing I have them, but rarely use them. I just go flat. I have some lacy compression vests/camisole things that I use for Lymphedema, but they make nice base garments for layering also.

  • metta
    metta Member Posts: 9
    edited March 2016

    Ksusan, you look awesome! Azrescue, yes, there's hope. Erica has a wonderful site (thank you, Erica!), and the Australian blog she mentions is wonderful and inspiring.

    Just channel the 1920s flappers when you dress up. There are SO many flat-friendly styles out there right now, including that ruffled look (I have a cute top from Bebe with tiers of ruffles). Halter tops look great on us. Draped necklines are in and are ideal. Don't know if cowl necks are in, but they work, too. Nordstrom's has a line of 1960s clothes that seem perfect for skinny, flat-chested model types (and check out this cool top, which is pretty pricey but so lovely).

    It's true that you never know what you'll look like until after surgery. Instead of being flat and smooth, I'm bumpy, with ugly divots in my chest. It's not very pretty, so I avoid low-cut tops. In a few years maybe I won't care about my scars showing. Last night on the Oscars I saw Robin Roberts' underarm scar. I only recognized it because I have one, too, and when I Googled and found that yes, she had triple negative b.c. Anyway, she looked awesome (but she's had reconstruction).

    Good luck and try to make it fun. It is kind of fun, after all. (And hi to Jackbirdie, you darling soul, you!)

  • ksusan
    ksusan Member Posts: 461
    edited March 2016

    Thank you! I have chest divots, but I'm pretty happy with the overall package.

  • cubbie2015
    cubbie2015 Member Posts: 773
    edited March 2016

    I've been going flat, and for me it's opened up a lot of fashions I couldn't wear when I was a D cup. I've gone button shirt crazy! It was so hard to get them to fit with the big ol' boobs. They always gaped between the buttons, or I looked like two ten pound objects stuffed into a five pound bag. Now they actually fit and look nice.

    The funny thing is that the last couple of times I've been to doctor's offices, like for my second opinion, I've had to point out that I had a double. They'll start talking about the opposite boob, like about mammograms in the future and stuff, and I'll have to point out that I had a BMX. I asked my ROs nurse about it after she made this mistake, and she said she honestly didn't notice. So I guess it must not be that noticeable. My biggest problem is that I'm shaped like the Grinch these days, so I need to lose some weight to balance the whole picture.

    I found that Australian blog very helpful when I was recovering from surgery. She has some great pictures on there for ideas. And she's right about patterns making it less noticeable. And remember scarves are still very in, and are the perfect accessory if you're looking for a diversion for the eye in the chest area.

  • RuthElizabeth
    RuthElizabeth Member Posts: 2
    edited April 2016

    hi all, I had bilateral June 2015, and am also going flat. Unfortunately, I'm 56, overweight, and all I see now is my gut. I'm really struggling dressing. I also had grama arms before BC, and now have lymphedema in my right arm, and can't find tops that fit my arm. Any suggestions would be appreciated.... Thanks, Ruth

  • RuthElizabeth
    RuthElizabeth Member Posts: 2
    edited April 2016

    hi all, I had bilateral June 2015, and am also going flat. Unfortunately, I'm 56, overweight, and all I see now is my gut. I'm really struggling dressing. I also had grama arms before BC, and now have lymphedema in my right arm, and can't find tops that fit my arm. Any suggestions would be appreciated.... Thanks, Ruth

  • Mizzoh
    Mizzoh Member Posts: 17
    edited April 2016

    imageOMG, except for the lymphedema, this is me! I'm 50 and a month past bilateral mastectomy. I was never large breasted before, just fat, but yeah...the belleh!! Eek!

    Right before diagnosis I's started an exercise regimen and was down 20 pounds, working on the belly, and then BOOM: three surgeries, no swimming, etc. Gained 15 back, not happy.

    But, I'm me. Such is life, I guess. I go back to work Monday, so I'll get exercise again, and I'm looking forward to swimming again once all incisions are healed.

    BTW, left the house tonight for something other than doctor appointment. Didn't bother with makeup other than lipstick, but I went flat. Granted, I wear scarves a lot, which helps, lol. Here's a pic I put on facebook to prove I was out of the house, and flat:




  • glennie19
    glennie19 Member Posts: 4,831
    edited April 2016

    You look FAB, Mizzoh!!

  • Mizzoh
    Mizzoh Member Posts: 17
    edited April 2016

    thank you

  • azrescue
    azrescue Member Posts: 15
    edited April 2016

    you look great !!!! It is encouraging to me. Wow only a month out.

  • Mizzoh
    Mizzoh Member Posts: 17
    edited April 2016

    Thank you!

    I'm having some seroma issues--tomorrow will be five weeks from bmx--so I'm having to wrap my chest in Ace bandages, which I hate.

    However, this weekend we went to Duluth for a little mini vacation before chemo, and it totally restored my soul.

    I'm posting a picture of me there, yesterday, because you can really see the flat. I'm finding that I'm more self-conscious of the big belly without any boobs to bakance than no boobs, lol. But also a bonus: we did a bit of hiking today, and no under-boob sweat! Woo hoo! ;)

    image


  • ksusan
    ksusan Member Posts: 461
    edited April 2016

    You look great, Mizzoh!

  • azrescue
    azrescue Member Posts: 15
    edited April 2016

    you look great

  • glennie19
    glennie19 Member Posts: 4,831
    edited April 2016

    You are rockin', girlfriend! Sorry about the seromas and having to wrap. I might suggest EAB Medical and their lined breast binders. I live in these to hold up the Swell Spot that I need for my truncal LE. You might get the compression you need from the breast binder w/o the hassle of the wrap,, and they come in different colors too. Let me get you a link.

    https://www.eabmedical.com/product/breast-binder/ Edited to add link. You can get the little straps to help hold it up,, or not,,, I don't use them myself. Just thought I'd mention as you will see them in the pictures as you surf around.

  • karen1956
    karen1956 Member Posts: 4,501
    edited April 2016

    Mizzoh, you look great!!! Hope the seromas resolve quickly. Karen

  • BarredOwl
    BarredOwl Member Posts: 261
    edited April 2016

    Keep posting!

    ksusan, your pic inspired me to buy a new blazer, because I don't fill out my existing blazers very well even with forms. I picked a boy's blazer from JCrew - no darts!

    Mizzoh: You look terrific. Great style, patterns, and accessories!

    BarredOwl