Scars. For some, top surgery scars are considered battle wounds. Wounds that document your journey and the adversities you’ve overcome to become the individual you always saw yourself as. For others these wounds are a constant reminder that exacerbates the dysphoria experienced on a daily basis. For those of us in the trans masculine community who struggle with our scars, there is finally an answer and his name is Shyne Ink.

Shyne Ink, Tattoo Artist

Shyne Ink is a transmasculine BIPOC who transformed his gift of drawing into the art of tattooing and is on a journey to change the lives of many in our community. Born and raised in Chicago, Shyne Ink decided to transform his drawing abilities from paper to human canvas about nine years ago. What’s even more “amazing” is that he is completely self taught! After years of being denied by different shops, Shyne Ink decided to move to Dallas, Texas to perfect his craft, and create his own destiny.

For those of us that choose to pursue top surgery, there are so many emotions we feel along the way. When you remove your bandages for the first time, there is a surreal sense of relief and excitement. Unfortunately, for some of us, these emotions fade because of scarring and/or pigmentation issues. If you are unable to have a type of keyhole top surgery and, instead, must have a double incision; scars are a part of this package.

There are several reasons trans masculine individuals may choose a top 
surgery tattoo. The main three are:
1. Dysphoria
2. Living a stealth life
3. Pigmentation issues with nipples

If you fit into any of these categories then Shyne Ink is here to help.

In January 2021 Shyne Ink completed his first full masterpiece for his Top Surgery Project! Take a look at the gallery to see the before/after photos of his first two top surgery projects. Also included in this gallery is a client (she/her) who had a double mastectomy and breast implants about 10 years ago. These two photos are included to show the added areola and enhanced nipples since this tattoo option is available to trans masculine individuals with nipple or pigmentation concerns.

Warning: The last photo contains breasts & nipples.

Remember, your top surgery scars do not make you any less of a man. Some choose to wear their scars proudly and boldly. What’s important is that you are comfortable in the skin you’re in. If a coverup tattoo is the route you choose, I encourage you to seek out Shyne Ink!

If you’re interested in seeing more of Shyne Ink’s work or you want to book an appointment you can find him here!  

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Email: shyneink@gmail.com

Tattoo Shop: 1UP Tattoo Studios (Dallas, Tx)

Dani Farrell is the Founder & CEO of Trans In Color & TBuddy which are two organizations designed to uplift and support the transmasculine community. He is also the Sr. Strategy Director for the National Trans Visibility March and the new Editor In Chief for FTM Magazine. As an active member in the trans community he devotes his time to helping those who are less fortunate. He currently lives in the DMV area with his spouse.