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Posted: 4:22 p.m. Friday, April 8, 2016

FOCUS ON THE POSITIVE: WEST CARROLLTON

Feeling pretty again — after a mastectomy

Personal Touch Apparel helps women’s confidence.

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Feeling pretty again — after a mastectomy photo
Tonya Cross and Jeanette McDaniel stand in front of a pink police car at the annual Making Strides Against Breast Cancer 5K walk, held in October in Dayton. CONTRIBUTED
Feeling pretty again — after a mastectomy photo
Personal Touch Apparel sells post-mastectomy products and wigs. CONTRIBUTED

By Shirley Belcher

Contributing Writer

“We felt called to buy this business, and it is a mission for us to bring comfort and joy and confidence to women,” said Jeanette McDaniel, co-owner of Personal Touch Apparel in West Carrollton. It is one of the last privately owned post-mastectomy boutiques in the Dayton area.

“We are a small business who treat you like family”, said McDaniel, certified mastectomy fitter since 2004. “My friend (Tonya Cross) and I bought the business in July of 2014. The previous owner (Shirley Adkins) had it for about 16 years, at this location.”

Besides mastectomy bras, prosthesis, balance forms, wigs and turbans, Personal Touch, has mastectomy swimsuits, size 8 to 24, so women can wear their prosthesis in the water and look totally natural. There are mostly one-piece suits, but a few two-piece Tankinis (swimwear). There is also a catalogue to order one for a customer to try. “A lot of insurance companies allow a separate form for swimming,” McDaniel said.

Personal Touch also fits full-figured women with bras so they have a good fit and support.

“Tonya lives in West Milton, and I live in Tipp City,” McDaniel said. “It’s a little drive, but worth it to be doing what we love.

“Tonya, breast cancer survivor, had just been diagnosed with breast cancer when we decided to do this,” McDaniel said. “We have been friends for almost 20 years so we figured it would be a good fit for us.”

A woman came in recently with significant hair loss from chemotherapy. She had been crying and felt ugly. After trying on wigs, she found the style she wanted but not the right color. McDaniel ordered the color for her and called her when it came in. “She tried it on, and it took five years off of her face,” said McDaniel. “She almost cried again only from joy this time. It brings as much joy to us as it does to our customers when we can help them look and feel good about themselves again. That is what we are here for.”

“It is critical to get annual screening,” said Cross, who said that she waited too long. She said there are places that provide services for free or for a reduced fee for people in need; and there is a place to come to look normal again.

“We take almost every insurance, including smaller local plans as well as Medicare and Medicaid,” McDaniel said. “We work with several organizations that help women pay for their products if they have no insurance or if they can’t afford their co-pay or deductible. There are a lot of options to help women even if they think they don’t have the money for the products they need.”

Contact this contributing writer at shirl54bel@gmail.com.


How to go

What: Personal Touch Apparel

Where: 12 N. Elm St., West Carrollton

Hours: 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday. Saturday and evening appointments available.

Website: www.personaltouchapparel.com

Email: personaltouchapparel@gmail.com

Phone: 937-859-6020