Cancer survivor Samantha Paige uncovers mastectomy scars in Equinox photograph campaign

“What do I have to do to feel stunning about myself, notwithstanding or as a result of my injuries, and possess them as something that is beautiful?”


It’s a serious question postured by Samantha Paige, 41, of Santa Barbara, California — with a moving picture in Equinox’s 2017 “Commit to Something” effort to coordinate.

Paige had a double protection mastectomy in 2008 in the wake of testing positive for a quality change that demonstrates an uplifted hazard for female-specific cancers. Having watched her mother battle breast cancer, she wasn’t taking any risks — for her particular purpose or that of her then-baby girl.

As I sat by the fire this New Year’s Eve contemplating my word of intention for 2017, I struggled for a moment to capture the essence of how I want to feel in one word. After much contemplation with @lisafield12, the word landed, and it is “freedom.” When I launched Last Cut last year, I wrote, “Last Cut is a book project about those big life decisions {last cuts} made to bring us closer to living truth and more freedom. I believe freedom comes when we identify, honor and live by our personal truth.” That is the point. We ask the questions, commit to the truth, and take action to line up who we are on the inside with the life we are living out in the world. When our internal and external worlds are congruent, we feel greater freedom. This freedom starts on the inside and radiates out into world. {Link in bio to full essay} #ownyourscars #lastcut {Thank you, @sammymourabit for making me feel so at ease and free.} {{Photo by @lisafield12 #behindthescenes at @equinox shoot}}

A photo posted by Samantha Paige (@lastcut) on

In the wake of getting the double mastectomy, Paige picked reconstructive surgery, which she was told can help numerous ladies feel more joyful and more typical. But, she couldn’t shake the inclination that the silicone embeds simply didn’t have a place in her body — and throughout the following couple of years, she felt her wellbeing, and her feeling of self progressively decay.

“I couldn’t look myself in the mirror,” she said. “I’d had a horrible breakup; I decided to close my company … I realized I had a choice: I could distract myself further, or go inside and start asking the questions.”

For Paige, that implies getting her inserts expelled — a decision she recognizes is distinctive for each lady, however helped her vibe more advantageous and all the more consistent with herself. Resolved to live without disgrace and spread a message of strengthening, she began Last Cut, a photograph narrative and book extend that locations how individuals can grasp their scars and live legitimate lives. When the open door emerged to take an interest in the Equinox battle, it was basically another stage for the message she’s been touting from the beginning — and an approach to reach considerably more individuals.

“When I look at myself in that image, I don’t feel like I was showing up just for women who have had that kind of surgery,” she clarified. “We all have internal and external scars. For some people that may be illness, could be divorce, something related to career or politics.

“What we’re told we should look like, how we’re told we should act, creates inner turmoil … I’m letting people see someone who is comfortable in their skin.”

Her message synchronizes well with the Equinox crusade, which investigates how duty characterizes our identity as people.  “The 2017 campaign challenges viewers to take action and celebrate dedication to what they commit to within themselves,” clarified Elizabeth Nolan, Equinox’s official inventive executive.

She proceeded with, “Samantha … embraces a new definition of beauty within herself after a double mastectomy. Equinox’s Commit to Something campaign is helping Samantha spread her message that we can all find greater happiness, wellness, and freedom by sharing our truths and committing to something.”

On the rose tattoo seen on Paige’s trunk in the crusade picture, it’s not genuine, yet rather an “incredible piece of art” that was drawn on for the photo. “I have lots of tattoos, but not on my mastectomy,” Paige clarified. “At this point, I don’t want to cover up my scars … They feel precious to me because they mark so many important chapters in this 20-year journey.”

Paige’s 9-year-old little girl stays one of the best sparks for her message. “I always say we’re perfectly imperfect, and that’s where the magic is,” Paige said. “That is the thing that I need to show her.

“I’ve had a ton of stuff happen to my body, and willingness to share is my purpose,” she proceeded. “I can finally look myself in the mirror and love the person that I see.”

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