Breast cancer survivors bare their scars in response to “sexualised” #ShowYourStrap charity campaign

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Penelope Travers

A group of breast cancer survivors have started a social movement of their own in response to Marks & Spencer’s #ShowYourStrap campaign.

#ShowYourScar was created by women who became friends after joining online support group The Younger Breast Cancer Network.

It urges those who have undergone cancer surgery to show their “real” scars, rather than their bra straps, which they say “sexualise” the disease.

Meanwhile, the #ShowYourStrap campaign was started by Marks & Spencer to raise money for charity Breast Cancer, and has been supported by celebrities such as Rosie Huntington-Whiteley and Game of Thrones’ Maisie Williams.

It encourages people to take selfies showing their bra straps and to donate £3 by text for Cancer Research.

Kim Feast, 31, told the Mail Online she came up with the idea in the waiting room as she was about to have her second mastectomy. 

She said, “I decided to post a picture straight after the operation to show the true face of cancer. I was nervous to upload it at first, but then I thought, “After everything I've faced, why not?”

“Thankfully, the response has been really positive so far, and I hope it stays that way.”

She added that the M&S campaign was “insensitive”, saying, “What about people who've had double mastectomies and don't wear bras? Or men? Breast cancer affects them too, and none of them have bra straps to show.”

A post shared by Rosie HW (@rosiehw) on

(Rosie Huntington-Whiteley showing her strap as part of the M&S campaign) 

A range of post-surgery bras was also launched by M&S, however it was criticised as only one model was appropriate for those who have suffered a double mastectomy without reconstructive surgery.

Many have lauded the new social campaign on Twitter, with user Kayleigh writing, “I love the #ShowYourScar , now that's real! Having a breast removes is difficult both physically and mentally it doesn't matter how old. You are! Support these people, there the real faces of breast cancer not your bra strap!”.

Meanwhile, others claim that anything that raises money and awareness is a good thing. 

Images: Twitter, Instagram, Thinkstock

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Penelope Travers

Penny Travers is a freelance writer covering anything from beauty and fashion to travel and lifestyle. She has a penchant for cheese, karaoke and shoes. Not necessarily in that order.

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