In a world that still emphasizes unrealistic beauty standards through filters and marketing, many women find themselves grappling with body image issues. Breast augmentation, once hailed as a pathway to confidence, has come under scrutiny due to Breast Implant Illness (BII). In this quick read, we'll explore the complex relationship between body image, the struggles associated with breast implant illness, and the empowering journey of finding confidence after explant.
The Allure of Breast Augmentation
For years, breast augmentation has been marketed as a solution to boost self-esteem and body confidence. Many individuals, influenced by societal pressures and unattainable beauty standards opt for breast implants to enhance their appearance. However, the tempt of a seemingly perfect body can often lead to unforeseen health challenges.
As our Founder recalls, "I truly thought breast implants were the key to unlocking confidence that I never had." After a decade of struggling with body image then having babies, she no longer recognized her reflection and felt emotionally disconnected from her body.
What is Breast Implant Illness (BII)?
Breast Implant Illness is a term used to describe a range of symptoms that some women experience with breast implants. These symptoms can include fatigue, joint pain, memory issues, auto immune diseases and more. The debate surrounding BII has gained momentum, prompting women to reconsider the impact of implants on their overall well-being. As awareness grows, we hope for change.
"It can be a frustrating and discouraging journey." Our Founder, Meg Smith, can recount the numerous appointments she had with specialists who were trying to pin point the source of her sudden health issues, including autoimmune diseases. The doctors couldn't connect the dots.
"Many doctors are still struggling with the reality of breast implant illness because they're lacking concrete data to support a proper diagnosis. This led to feelings of despair and loneliness. Once I self-diagnosed, I bounced back and forth between numerous plastic surgeons who told me I would be miserable if I took the implants out since I didn't have a significant amount of breast tissue. 'You won't be happy.' The experience was horrible," she admitted.
Luckily, Meg found an explant surgeon (an advocate for Breast Implant Illness) who understood BII and made her feel supported, heard and safe. "Finding an experienced explant-focused surgeon is incredibly important," she advises.
The Decision to Remove Implants
As awareness about Breast Implant Illness grows, more women are making the courageous decision to remove their implants. Explant surgery, while a personal choice, can be a transformative experience, allowing women to reclaim their health and embrace their authentic selves, scars and all.
Although, it's not all rainbows and butterflies. For some, the post-explant journey is smooth and empowering. For others, it's an emotional rollercoaster often leaving patients feeling lost in their pursuit of finding confidence in their new body. The ebs and flows of the explant journey make this community stronger, without a doubt, but it may take some longer than others to get to a place of peace, acceptance and self-love.
Support systems are important when navigating the decision to explant. We're excited to see more and more explant advocates and mentors supporting one another and creating a space for those trekking through the emotional journey. These support systems, including our own team of explant warriors behind the scenes (firstname.lastname@example.org), are incredible sources of knowledge, advice, education, resources and the sound-boards that many women need when trying to find their way.
If you or someone you know are experiencing breast implant illness or explant, please have them reach out to our team. It makes our souls happy to be the light and help guide patients through their new chapter(s) with ease, grace and enlightenment.
Navigating Body Image After Explant
The journey to self-acceptance post-explant surgery is both empowering and challenging. Here are a few effective steps women can take who are navigating explant and seeking to regain confidence:
- Connect with friends, advocates, and individuals experienced in the field, including explant nurses. The healing potential of camaraderie and connection cannot be overstated. Whether it's in the virtual realm or physical presence, surround yourself with women who empathize with your journey. The explant process is distinctive, creating a special bond among women who have undergone it. Emotional support is huge.
- Practice patience, as the healing journey can look different from one woman to another. Don't rush the recovery process or compare your post-explant body to others on social media, instead, redirect your focus inward. Embrace your "new" body and take the time to acquaint yourself with your scars, viewing them as badges of courage and strength. Recognize the warrior within you, acknowledging that the healing journey encompasses physical, emotional, and psychological aspects. Approach your recovery with grace and kindness, understanding that you possess the power to define what beautiful looks like.
- Wear things that make you feel pretty and comfortable. Top suggestions from our explant community are: a lovely robe, a (comfortable) beautiful bra set from Love, Lexxi, a Dear Body Crew Neck to remind you of how incredible you are, and self-care products to nurture your skin & body. Although these suggestions may sound cliche' or obvious, there is a psychological connection between wearing things that make you feel pretty and boosting confidence. Do what makes you feel good, from the inside out.
- Rewrite your new chapter. Consider explant the beginning of a beautiful new version of yourself, a better you. This is a great time to start new routines focused around self-love, self-care and mental health. Make a list of things that make you feel good and plug those into your schedule. Journal your thoughts and get comfortable with writing down daily affirmations. Take time to meet with friends for coffee, lunch or FaceTime and try not to cancel. Consume content that fills your soul with inspiration and positivity and filter out anything that makes you feel less than (which may include unfollowing certain accounts on social media).
Perfect is boring.
The reason why many women opt for breast implants in the first place is striving for what society considered the perfect body for decades. Although the general public is making strides with body positivity, amplifying the voices of body image advocates, we're still very far behind as social media simultaneously feeds us filtered content and certain industries feed off our insecurities. Ew, just stop!
The biggest boss move that women can make is coming together and redefining beauty on our own terms. We can't erase the past or our scars, but we can build a better future for ourselves and the younger generations of female who deserve to feel enough. At Love, Lexxi, we're striving to do just that. We're a new brand in a noisy category and it takes a village to make the level of impact we're on a mission to achieve.
Our mission at Love, Lexxi is to revolutionize the intimates industry by creating a space where every woman feels celebrated, confident and comfortable in her own skin. We are committed to crafting intimates with our community that go beyond conventional standards, embracing the diversity of women's bodies, honoring scars & imperfections and promoting positive body image. Founded by women, for women, we're dedicated to inspiring a sense of empowerment and fostering a supportive community.
We believe in the transformative power of comfort and self-expression, and we are on a legendary journey to redefine the way women experience intimates. Join us in the celebration, as we pave the way for a more impactful, authentic and revolutionary future in the world of lingerie.
The journey from body image struggles to confidence after explant surgery is a testament to the resilience of women reclaiming their authenticity and erasing the notion of "the perfect body." Breast implant illness serves as a wake-up call, prompting a shift in the conversation surrounding these toxic standards. By fostering self-love and embracing confidence, women can inspire others to celebrate their unique selves and challenge conventional beauty norms. Let's do this, together.
If you have any questions or need support on your journey, please email us at: email@example.com. You're not alone, we're here for you.