Areola Tattooing – Post Mastectomy

Areola Tattooing

Areola Tattooing is one of my favourite treatments to carry out. Here’s a little more information about the treatment and why I love it so much.

What is Areola Tattooing Treatment

Just wanted to thank Anita for bringing my smile back. Following breast reconstruction Anita recreated my areolas. I feel complete again, thank you. You are incredible xxx”

The above message from one of my townsville clients is the exact reason I do what I do! Areola tattooing post mastectomy and areola enhancement treatments have come a long way over the last few years. When I first trained a few years ago, I immediately knew I was going to love providing this treatment.

Areola tattooing has been one of the fastest developing medical tattooing treatments. There has been a huge advancement in the pigments used, together with ever-evolving artistry techniques.  Having been a keen artist at school, this treatment has allowed me to explore my creativity and provide an extremely realistic result for my clients.

What kind of Areola treatment is suitable?

If you have had a single mastectomy or a lumpectomy, then then aim of the treatment is to match the existing areola and nipple as closely as possible.  For some clients this involves tattooing a 3D nipple and for others it’s areola colouring only.  Whilst it is impossible to get an EXACT match with pigment, we will get as close as we possibly can!  If you look closely at your areola, there is a lot of detail and different colours in there……that’s where the artistry comes in, as I look to replicate the detail during the treatment.

If you have had a double mastectomy then we will work together to design areola and nipples that suit your skin tone, colouring, breast size and of course, your preferences!  Many ladies will bring photographs of their breast prior to surgery, so please feel free to bring any photographs you like to a consultation.

How long will the tattoo last?

It is permanent so nearly all clients will retain some colour in their skin long term.  However, you will require colour boosts to keep the colour fresh.  Typically this is every 2-4 years, but some clients will need to come back sooner and other will go much longer.  This is very much dependent on your skin type and your lifestyle.

How soon after surgery can I have a treatment?

This is a question that I am often asked. Post surgical timescales vary for treatment.  Typically this ranges from  3-6 months post surgery and is also dependent on whether you are having any further treatment.  It is really important to let your reconstruction heal and settle before tattooing the area. Your surgeon is the best person to advise you on when your reconstruction will be ‘settled’, so do ask for their advice. We want to make sure that your nipple and areola are in the correct place, which can only be done once the swelling has reduced and tissue (including implants) have had time to find their natural place.

It is also worth mentioning that scar tissue plays a part in when you can have an areola tattooing treatment.  Scar tissue is unpredictable when it comes to tattooing, as it can either grab pigment or reject it. It’s impossible to know how scar tissue will respond until it’s tattooed. I often carry out 2-3 micro needling scar treatments before tattooing, as this helps to break down the scar tissue and improve the quality of the skin. This is something we will go through at a consultation.

I have had the pleasure of treating many ladies at the end of their breast cancer journey and there have been many happy tears along the way (mine as well as my clients!).  This treatment is about so much more than an aesthetic end result for most ladies. I’ve had so many ladies tell me that it’s ‘the final piece of the jigsaw puzzle’ at the end of their treatment and that they feel like it’s a new beginning. With confidence restored and a feeling of completeness, it’s really a wonderful thing to share the end part of the journey with these brave and inspiring ladies.

Is this treatment only available to breast cancer patients?

No, absolutely not. This treatment can be adapted for clients that have had breast reductions/lifts, cosmetic enhancement to improve symmetry or colour and also those that have undergone gender transformations.

What are the costs involved?

As for costs I charge simply for my time and to cover my consumable costs. I do not believe in charging high for this treatment. Yes its true we should charge for our worth and skill level, but honestly, my breast cancer patients have been through enough! The smile and confidence this service brings is more than enough reward for me. A lot of health insurers will also contribute to or cover partial fees.  So please do ask your insurance provider. I am happy to send a pro-forma invoice to you, if required. I offer free advice to ladies who are going through cancer, wherever you are in your journey. I have many wonderful connections who can help and support during and after treatment. So please get in touch if you’d like some advice or support – even if you’re not interested in my treatments. We have had clients from all over North Queensland coming to our Townsville clinic for Areola Tattooing x

Why we are obsessed with Brow Tattoos

How many times have you tried to draw your brows on in the morning and become frustrated that they never quite look right? Is that you? It was definitely me before tattooing!

OK, so I will apologise in advance, as some of this may be hard to hear …..

Did you know that none of us have a symmetrical face? It’s true.  We all (well, 98% of us) have one eye bigger that the other, a round and flat side to our heads, different facial muscles, crooked noses and wonky ears.  If you meet me I’ll point out that I have one eyebrow that shoots right up when I smile, just so I can demonstrate this very fact!

The reason that this is relevant is because it’s near on impossible for you to get your brows looking 100% perfectly symmetrical, taking into account all of the above.  This is something we discuss and analyse in great detail at your appointment, because all of this is super relevant to designing brows for you.

On top of that, most people pull the equivalent of ‘mascara face’ ( you all know what I mean by this!) when drawing our brows on.  When drawing on our brows, most of use look in the mirror and raise our eyebrows. We draw them on like this then sit back and relax our faces…… sound familiar? Then when you look in the mirror…..WONKY!  You’re not alone in this, we ALL do it.

Permanent eyebrows are the perfect solution to this. Imagine waking up in the morning with beautiful brows, without the need to do battle with the brow powder in the morning – BLISS!

Many women have thin, sparse or non-existent eyebrows and this can be down to many reasons. It can be a result of over plucking (ME), or from medications, medical conditions or treatments such as chemotherapy.

While we often think of the aesthetic side of permanent makeup, it’s really much more about the confidence they give us.

So many of my clients have had their daily lives impacted when they have experienced loss of eyebrows.  The worry of those carefully penciled in brows disappearing is really quite stressful!  Permanent eyebrows are brilliant, as they stay put 24/7. So if you’re swimming, exercising, on holiday or dancing the night away somewhere – you can be confidence that your brows will still look beautiful.

My gorgeous client in this picture was doing all of the above.  So she treated herself to permanent eyebrows for her birthday. 

Dollhouse Beauty is well known across Townsville for producing beautifully natural and stylish brow tattoos. You can look though our gallery here for numerous before and afters to give you an idea of how they look.

If you’d like to know how this treatment could benefit you, then please get in touch for a consultation or jump right in and book your appointment!  Gift vouchers are also available if you’d like to surprise someone too.

Can I get Permanent Makeup Whilst Pregnant?

Can I get Permanent Makeup whilst pregnant?  This is a question I am asked a lot, as you may well be looking at all of the possible ways to save time if you’re about to become a busy mum!

Permanent Makeup is a great time saver!  The most popular treatment for new mums is an eyebrow tattoo, with Lash Line Enhancement being a close second.  These treatments give you a fresh faced, wide awake look that will leave you feeling confident as you go about your busy, busy day! 

Whilst there is no known link to permanent makeup treatments having any negative effects during pregnancy, the answer to this question is ‘No’ I’m afraid. 

Pregnancy is a contraindication to all cosmetic treatments that I offer.  This is because the insurance companies will not insure anyone in this industry to treat someone that is pregnant. 

Insurance / contraindications aside, there are a few other reasons why it’s not a good idea to have treatments whilst you’re pregnant.  Your body is going through so many changes and your hormones will be fluctuating all the time.  Skin, hair, nails – all of these can be affected during pregnancy.   Then there’s the issue of causing trauma to your skin and the fact your body would then have to focus on healing, whilst it really needs to be focusing on supporting you through your pregnancy.   So all in all, it is much better for you to wait until you’ve had your gorgeous new bundle of joy!  

That said, you are very welcome to come and see me for a consultation whilst you’re pregnant. We can have a chat about the Permanent Makeup treatments you’re interested in. I can even show you a quick way to draw your brows on, to help you in the meantime

Energy Drinks and the negative effect they have on the body.

Did you know…

For every 600ml Energy Drink you consume, it takes 22 litres of water to flush it out of your kidneys. 😳 It would take the average person more than 14 days to consume that much water.

The average person drinks less than 2 litres of plain drinking water a day. 

☠️ Energy drinks hyper-stimulate your adrenal glands, to increase hydrocortisone and adrenalin production, and then the GABA amino acid comes in to suppress the hyper-stimulation so you don’t feel jittery. All this extra work for your adrenal glands can lead to adrenal fatigue or crash. The extra hydrocortisone your adrenal glands are producing also makes you resistant to insulin. 

☠️ Throw in all those artificial sweeteners that energy drinks contain, and your pancreas will be working overtime. This can lead to weight gain that shows up specifically in the abdomen. All of this hyper-stimulation and production can cause metabolic syndrome, the initial symptoms of which include abdominal obesity, hypertension, diabetes, and high cholesterol.

As metabolic syndrome progresses, it leads to heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, and nerve damage. 

☕️ Each energy drink contains anywhere between 40 to 240 mg of caffeine in them. While they might increase mental alertness for a few hours, energy drinks have also been known to cause irregular heartbeat, anxiety, jitters, increased blood pressure and thickening of the blood.

☕️ Caffeine increases the brains alertness, and while that’s great first thing in the morning or when you are trying to get that report to a client, it’s not great when you are trying to sleep!

☕️ Research shows that it takes between 15-45 minutes for caffeine to take full effect and temporarily relieve fatigue and drowsiness, it does, however, stay in your system for about five-six hours, so make sure you time that last caffeine hit earlier in the day if you want a to enjoy a good night’s sleep.

☕️ Many of us rely on a morning hit of caffeine as a ritual to get through the day, and without it often experience irritability. Headaches and Migraines can also occur as a symptom of too much caffeine, but once you’re hooked, headaches are also a symptom of withdrawal.

☕️ Caffeine is also a diuretic so ultimately it dries out your skin. and drinking too much caffeine can make your skin look dull and aged.

☕️ There are high levels of acid in caffeine that can trigger a stress response in your body and this response alerts your adrenal glands to go into overdrive and release excess hormones – which can alter your blood sugar levels and release excess insulin. The increase of insulin results in more oil being produced and more oil means clogged pores which can lead to acne.

If you are experiencing skin or health issues and and a regular energy drink consumer, this is likely to be a huge part of the issue!

What Brow Tattoo Is Right For Me?

Which brow tattoo style is right for me?

Clients often have some idea of what they would like their brows to look like. After all, who knows your morning brow routine, lifestyle and signature look better than yourself?

But when it comes to a cosmetic tattoo how are you meant to know what style will suit you.

To help determine which brow tattoo technique will be best suited to each client, I always start with a few key questions to get to know you and your brow goals.

If you have been considering a brow tattoo but are unsure of what type would suit you, pop your name and email down below and you will receive a link to a brow questionnaire, that will determine the style that will suit you best!

Do you really need an Eye Cream?

Are eye creams worth the money? Do they actually make a difference?


Here’s why! The skin around our eyes is thinner, more sensitive, fragile, more prone to dryness (the eye area has no oil glands) and quicker to show age and fatigue. We are constantly squinting and moving the eye area causing fine lines and wrinkles. For some people fluids collect under the eyes and cause puffiness and dark circles, eye cream can really address this.

But aren’t eye creams just more-expensive moisturizers in a smaller package?

Not necessarily, eye products are formulated specifically for the delicate skin around the eye, the active ingredients like muscle relaxing peptides are a lot more concentrated and anti-oxidants (to protect from free radical damage) are formulated to the right percentage, so not to cause irritation around the eye area.

Because your eye area is so sensitive and the skin is so thin, it’s extremely important to be aware what we are using around that area. Your favourite creams may be too heavy and cause irritation, blocked pores or even yellow lumps(milia) under the skin. Also it can contain synthetic fragrance or perfume, essential oils or plant extracts too strong to use around the eyes.  

Good eye products should contain: anti-oxidants, cell-communicating ingredients such as peptides, fragrance-free formula, hyaluronic acid (for hydration), vitamin c and retinyl palmitate (gentle form of Vitamin A) to boost collagen production.

Dark circles under the eyes come from genes, sun damage, age, blood build-up and/or liver problems. Vitamin A can thicken the skin and help conceal dark circles after about 6 months. Niacinamide vitamin B3, and kojic acid can lighten dark circles. Vitamin K constricts blood so that can be used in eye creams to lighten up darkness.

Puffiness is a build-up of fluid and blood under the eyes. Other studies show that cold temperatures are just as effective to treat puffiness. That’s why some people refrigerate their eye creams.

Don’t waste your money at a supermarket, chemist or even department store. Anything you can pick off the shelf won’t contain enough active ingredients such as peptides, anti-oxidants and vitamins at strong enough percentages. My top picks are DMK’s Eye Tone, Eye Web and Fine Line Cream!

Why EFA’s are so important for your skin

Why EFA’s are so important for your skin

EFAs are important structural components of cell membranes throughout the body. They help cells stay fluid and flexible, allowing nutrients to enter the cells and wastes to exit. EFA also “waterproof” the skin, creating an antimicrobial barrier against the elements. Without enough EFAs, your skin can suffer from dryness, free radical damage and premature ageing.

EFAs can enhance your complexion by improving the skin’s texture and softness. They also help to keep skin cells moist and strong by reducing the amount of water lost.

Acne and congested skins

EFA’s help thin out the oil (sebum) in your skin so it doesn’t get stuck or trapped or stick to dead skin cells and clog your pores, it also makes extractions a lot easier for us and prevents the skin congestion from happening so frequently once it’s treated. The thicker your sebum the more chance for the P-Acne bacteria to come to the surface causing acne & breakouts.

Dry skin

Some people don’t produce much oil and although you might think this is great, what it means is you will age faster than an oilier skin type. You don’t have that natural lubrication or moisture in the skin from natural oil. You are also lacking a skin barrier as your skins barrier (protection) is made up of oil and water. Oil stops water loss from cells


Additionally, EFAs can help reduce the occurrence of cellulite, which happens when waste, water, and fat molecules become trapped below the skin’s surface. On top of controlling your intake of EFAs, drinking plenty of water daily will also help with the breakdown of cellulite.

Oily skins

Perhaps the most surprising fact about essential fatty acids is that they are able to help in the fight against oily skin. Because they help the cell transference process (which helps to flush the fats and oils that tend to clog pores) as well as provide a healthy balance of moisture, they help reduce oiliness.

High cholesterol

People with high cholesterol needs to increase good fats, not be scared of them. EFA’s break up cholesterol, while aiding in fat transportation and metabolism.

If you still need more convincing here’s more benefits:

EFAs help organ muscles to contract, regulate stomach acid, help lower blood pressure, help maintain body temperature, regulate hormone levels, conditions which may be helped by EFAs: arthritis, attention deficit disorder, cardiovascular diseases, constipation, diabetes, diarrhoea, fatigue, immune deficiency, menopause, obesity, osteoporosis, premenstrual syndrome, rheumatoid arthritis, and skin conditions such as dry skin, eczema, and psoriasis.

Obviously it depends on what type and brand of EFA you choose to take, I recommend DMK EFA Ultra for skin as it has a blend of all EFA’s that are fantastic for healthier and more hydrated skin with results being seen in only 2 weeks or less!

Blackheads vs. Sebaceous Filaments: What’s The Difference?

Blackheads vs. Sebaceous Filaments: What’s The Difference?

Blackheads are pretty easy to spot. They’re those pimples at the surface of the skin that appear black because as open comedones  – they turn that colour due to oxidisation when exposed to air. There are a different kind of black dots that can pop up on your skin though, commonly mistaken as blackheads. They’re called sebaceous filaments!

What’s a sebaceous filament?

Our skin is covered in hair – everyone has some peach fuzz on your face. Every single hair follicle contains that tiny little hair and a sebaceous gland that produces sebum (oil) that’s meant to keep your skin naturally moisturised.

This is where sebaceous filaments step in: Comprised of triglycerides, waxy esters and squalene. Sebaceous filaments reside in the lining of your pores, and their primary function is to channel the flow of sebum along that lining into the skin to moisturise it.

For many people, sebaceous filaments will never become super noticeable – these filaments only become visible when the lining of your pore fills up with sebum. But for others with oily skin or enlarged pores, sebaceous filaments can be more visible like blackheads, but more of a light grey or tan, rather than black. Some people have quite a thick waxy sebum, which makes them appear like blackheads. This can occur if your sebum is of low quality (diet, environmental factors and dehydration can affect it)

Sebaceous Filament


How are sebaceous filaments and blackheads different? 

Sebaceous filaments and blackheads can look very similar, but they work very differently.  Sebaceous filaments exist to help oil flow seamlessly to the skin, without pore-clogging back ups. On the flip side, when too much sebum is produced, and mixes with dead skin cells, dirt and bacteria, this clogs the pores and can lead to the formation of a blackhead.

So why do sebaceous filaments pop up on my T-zone?

Because sebaceous glands are highly concentrated around your nose and forehead, sebaceous filaments are more robust in those areas, too. You can extract these tiny grey specks, but just know that this won’t eradicate them, they will naturally fill back up within 30 days because they are a part of your pore structure. What you can do: Adopt a regular regimen of cleansing and exfoliating to keep pores clean and clear of excess sebum and debris.

How can I treat blackheads and/or sebaceous filaments?

The best way is to use an exfoliating face wash or treatment that clears out clogged pores. DMK’s ACU cleanser is great for that reason, it’s able to dive through the oil on your skin to get deep into your pores and clear away all that dirt, bacteria, and dead cells that are clogging them up. Salicylic Acid effectively breaks down the natural sebum that fills up those pores to form sebaceous filaments. Another amazing product is DMK’s Essential Fatty Acid supplement (EFA’S). EFA’s help thin out the oil (sebum) in your skin so it doesn’t get stuck or trapped or stick to dead skin cells and clog your pores, it also makes extractions a lot easier for us and prevents the skin congestion from happening so frequently once it’s treated. The thicker your sebum the more chance for the P-Acne bacteria to come to the surface causing acne & breakouts.

Try your best to resist the urge to pick at or squeeze sebaceous filaments or blackheads as you could exacerbate the problem by spreading bacteria and dirt or, worse yet, cause irritation and permanent scarring. If you simply can’t keep your fingertips off your face, book in with us for facial and extractions so we can give your skin a deep cleanse and professionally extract any actual blackheads from the skin.