Breast cancer strikes people of all ages, races, backgrounds, lifestyles, and gender. We all know someone living with cancer. But, do we consider the challenges of dressing for breast cancer?
When I was going through treatment, it was difficult to find clothing, particularly tops, that were soft against my skin and comfortable to wear; easy to slip on and off without lifting my arms over my head; and looked good on. I wanted to look and feel like myself in spite of having no hair, eyebrows & eyelashes, looking pale, and feeling nauseous. Or, maybe I wanted to because of those very things.
There are plenty of button up shirts and blouses out there. But, they can be rather stiff and restrictive to wear especially during chemotherapy and radiation. And, the soft and comfy t-shirt tops have to be pulled over your head. This is difficult to do after surgery when you can’t lift your arms. You can wear baggy zip-up hoodies or even your partner’s big shirts. But, you look and feel sloppy.
I found a lovely camisole at a mastectomy boutique that did up in the front. And, I have to say, I lived in it post surgery but, what was I to wear overtop? It was quite surprising to find racks and racks of swimsuits and undergarments but very little in the way of tops. At that point in time, a swimsuit was the last thing on my mind.
So, I came home and googled adaptive clothing. Let’s just say the word “stylish” did not come to mind. And “breast cancer clothing” brought up pink ribbon t-shirts.
If you have a loved one, friend, or colleague who has breast cancer, or mobility issues, or skin sensitivities, then please pass this along, or keep it in mind when looking for ways to help. And, if you’re looking for a thoughtful gift, then check out my COKANNA tops which are soft, comfy, and easy to slip on and off.
Until next time,
Colleen Kanna is a recovering Chartered Accountant and Breast Cancer Champion turned Fashion Designer.
She is the creator of COKANNA Canadian made bamboo clothing for women that’s all about comfort and style.
Five percent of direct to customer sales are donated to Rethink Breast Cancer’s metastatic breast cancer support, education, and advocacy work