A TATTOO artist who uses creative designs to cover-up the scars left behind by breast cancer treatment has been banned from accessing her business page on Facebook.

Lucy Thompson, the owner of Yorkshire Mastectomy Tattoos, was blocked from the social media site for 30 days for posting a photograph of a 3D nipple tattoo.

UPDATE: 'Banned' tattoo artist's Facebook page reactivated

The 29-year-old works out of her Rawson Place studio, in Bradford city centre, and has been trained in Canada to ink nipples onto scarred breasts or cover them with designs.

One customer described the work as "empowering" and said it gave her some confidence back after both of her breasts were removed.

Lucy regularly posts photographs of her work on her Facebook page and urges people not to report them to the social network if they are offended.

Facebook said the post had breached the company's standards on nudity and sexual activity, but the explanation has left the artist frustrated because it does allow mastectomy photographs to be published if they raise awareness about breast cancer.

"It's a nightmare and so frustrating," she said.

"The problem I have now is that I can't access my business.

"The last time this happened I was trying every single day to e-mail them and get in touch.

"It's so frustrating because I need to have access to it.

"I'm going to a convention soon and I need to use it."

Facebook has banned the tattooist for 30 days once before, but she claims when Facebook looked at the photograph they agreed it was not offensive.

She added: "I offer a number of different services online and in person and people want to get in touch with me because of the things I offer.

"I don't think the photo is as bad as something of the other posts on there.

"There are some horrific things I have seen with people and animals being treated badly, but this is something raising awareness and showing people and their families what is possible.

"It's a good thing and is positive.

"It's life after cancer and giving people hope, so to restrict it doesn't make sense - it's not fair."

Lucy has been able to contact Facebook's Help Centre and asked them if they allowed post-mastectomy photos.

They replied: "Yes. We agree that undergoing a mastectomy is a life-changing experience and that sharing photos can help raise awareness about breast cancer and support the men and women facing a diagnosis, undergoing treatment or living with the scars of cancer.

"The vast majority of these kind of photos are compliant with our policies."

Vicky Kayley, from Haworth, won a competition to work with Lucy after both her breasts were removed in 2012.

Her chest was covered in flowers and she said the work helped her leave the house again.

"She gave me a new lease of life.

"I didn't like going out because I had no confidence whatsoever.

"I was going to have a reconstruction in 2017, but I suffered a massive heart attack and that went out the window.

"This competition came about and I went for it and it gave me back my dignity.

"Wearing clothes didn't feel comfortable and not being able to look at the scars in the mirror was horrible.

"Now I can look in the mirror and have those beautiful flowers across my chest.

"As soon as she did it I was able to look in the mirror again."

Mrs Kayley has hit out at the decision to ban Lucy from Facebook because of the impact the tattoos has on women.

She added: "I felt so much better after I had the tattoos. I started to get my confidence back and getting dressed up.

"I think what has happened is appalling.

"Lucy is empowering women and they are taking it away from her.

"She has worked so hard to set this up.

"So many people come from all over the country to see her and she changes people's lives."

The Telegraph & Argus has contacted Facebook for a comment.