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Going Nipple-Free: Why Some Folks Skip Nipples During Top Surgery

life top surgery Jun 22, 2023
Why didn't I keep my nipples?

Top surgery is a transformative and important procedure for transgender and nonbinary individuals seeking a more masculine (or less feminine) chest. While each person's journey is unique, some folks (like me!) opt not to keep their nipples during this process. Below, we're going to look at two common reasons people decide to forego nipple grafts, as well as the particular reason that helped me decide.

Embracing Nonbinary Identity

For non-binary individuals, the decision to remove nipples can be a way to challenge traditional gender norms and express their identity more authentically. It is increasingly popular among non-binary people undergoing top surgery to forego keeping their nipples, as it results in a chest appearance that deviates from conventional masculine or feminine aesthetics. By removing the nipples, these individuals find themselves in a space that transcends binary definitions, embracing a more fluid expression of their gender identity. How cool is that??

Simplifying the Healing Process

Nipples tend to be the most challenging area to heal and often require additional care and attention. Complications such as delayed healing or infection can occur, extending the recovery period. By opting not to keep their nipples, individuals can potentially reduce the risks and challenges associated with this specific aspect of the healing process. Simplifying the healing journey allows them to focus on overall recovery and well-being. That said, if you specifically want them, it's worth the extra work.

My Reason: Problematic Nipples lol

While both of the above reasons were a part of my choice to not have free nipple grafts as a part of my top surgery, the major reason was that for years I have had a borderline antagonistic relationship with my nipples. To be TMI for a second, I had every kind of silly nipple problem - chronic ingrown hairs, pimples, boils, and extremely itchy and chronic eczema on only my nipples for some reason?? After years of fighting for my comfort, I jumped at the opportunity to evict my nipples hahaha


When it comes to top surgery, there's no one-size-fits-all approach. Going nipple-free is a personal decision influenced by various factors. Whether it's about embracing non-binary identity, simplifying the healing process, or waving goodbye to nipple-related troubles, each individual has their reasons. It's crucial to support and respect their choices, knowing that it reflects their unique journey and aspirations.

I adore my nipple-free chest! I finally feel like me!! If yo want to learn more about my top surgery healing journey, you can sign up for my private top surgery feed.

Hi, I'm Renée! (they/them)

I'm a queer, nonbinary, and disabled singer, songwriter and gender-affirming voice teacher. 

I've been a voice teacher for over twelve years, I have four full-length albums out, and I have degrees in physics, jazz, and songwriting.

I love creating, I love figuring things out, but most of all, I love helping people.

Learn more about me

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