PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- October is breast cancer awareness month, and a Philadelphia company is creating lingerie for women going through treatment. It's called AnaOno and the woman behind the brand found a need for specialized bras after she went through the treatment herself.
Inside her showroom, Dana Donofree talked about a challenge that's been very close to her heart for the past 12 years.
"I underwent six rounds of chemotherapy," Donofree said. "I had to amputate both of my breasts and go through a double mastectomy with reconstructive breast surgery."
Diagnosed with breast cancer just at 27 years old, her body, like so many women with a similar diagnosis, was drastically different.
She found a need to create lingerie for women like her. A line of intimates "designed differently."
"I didn't have any nipples. I had scars across my chest. I had implants under my muscle. I didn't look normal. But I decided I was supposed to feel like I'm back to the woman I was before," Donofree said, "That's really when I dove in and was like 'Why doesn't anything fit me anymore? Not my clothes, not my bras, not anything I had in my wardrobe.' I never expected that my underwear drawer would be disrupted."
AnaOno is a version of Dana Donofree, without the double D's.
The company is the first of what she calls, a boob-inclusive brand. Bras for all body shapes, sizes and skin tones.
With 4 million breast cancer survivors in the United States and one in eight women diagnosed in her lifetime, there's a need for these alternative undergarments.
"I think that's a huge part of why I wanted to create a better product. A better bra. More fashionable. Prettier. More feminine," Donofree said. "Because quite frankly, the bras that had been designed for mastectomy have been designed for the last 40 years by men. So I understood they were looking at it as a medical device and it is. It is a medical device but it doesn't have to look like one."
Focus groups with women who had undergone treatment for breast cancer helped create her designs, which get her customers through the entire recovery process.
"So if it's post-surgery recovery where you need loungewear to help with the drains that are a part of that recovery process. If it's adaptable bras that hook in the front that allow you to get in and out of. Or even have some bras that you can step into because you have such a limited range of motion," Donofree said, "There's sexy styles. There's comfortable styles. That's because we have many things in our life that have to be replaced and I just want to be there through the whole journey."
October is breast cancer awareness month and AnaOno is announcing a collaboration with celebrity stylist Lori Goldstein. She recently lost her sister and hopes to raise awareness.
"We've got a great program supporting Triple Negative Breast Cancer Foundation. 10% of all the sales are going to support awareness and research in support of the Triple Negative Breast Cancer community," Donofree said.
Women feeling beautiful about their bodies is what Donofree says drives her to continue creating.
"We're here to just grab your hand and guide you into that next phase of life. If I can help be that vehicle for just one person a day then I feel like I've had the best day ever," Donofree said.
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