Some women just naturally have larger areolas. Others develop them after childbirth and breastfeeding. Areola reduction is exactly what it sounds like—a procedure to reduce the size of large areolas, and to restore your confidence and help you feel more comfortable with your body.
In women, the areola is darker in color than the rest of the breast to help a baby latch on for breastfeeding. When they’re born, babies can’t distinguish colors, only shades of light and dark. The darker shade of the areola helps them find the nipple more easily.
This is also why, in many women, the areolas darken—and sometimes enlarge—during pregnancy. After pregnancy and/or the breastfeed period is complete, your areolas may return back to their pre-pregnancy appearance. But if they don’t, and you’re unhappy with the way they look now, areola reduction can restore them.
While areola reduction can be performed as an individual procedure, it’s often performed in conjunction with breast augmentation, breast reduction, or a breast lift. Adding such procedures can raise your overall surgery cost, but keep the price lower than if you have each procedure separately.
Just like almost every other part of the body, the areola has hair follicles. If you’re unhappy with the presence of hair on your areolas, laser hair removal may be the answer. On average, six to eight sessions are needed, each about six weeks apart, and the treatment takes about 15 minutes.
Male Breast Reduction
It’s less common, but men can also sometimes have large areolas. This is a stronger possibility if the man suffers from gynecomastia, a condition that enlarges a man’s breasts. The treatment for gynecomastia is often liposuction, and an areola reduction can be performed simultaneously, if necessary.