Amber Rose Opens Up About Her Breast Reduction: 'I Was Scared That I Wouldn't Feel Sexy Anymore'

"It was almost as if I had like a heavy backpack on my chest," Rose says of her breasts prior to the surgery

When the size of Amber Rose’s breasts started to negatively impact her health and wellbeing, she decided to have them reduced — a decision she contemplated for nearly three years.

“I was scared that I wouldn’t feel sexy anymore, but it got to the point where I literally was in pain,” Rose tells PEOPLE. “It was almost as if I had like a heavy backpack on my chest.”

Rose says her breast size also affected her ability to exercise, and to perform with Maksim Chmerkovskiy on Dancing with the Stars in 2016.

“My boobs slowed me down. And, my partner, Maks, would be like, ‘Come on! Hurry up, faster, faster, faster.’ And, I’m like, ‘Dude, I can’t go any faster! I’m like in pain. I literally cannot move that fast,’ ” she says.

Although Rose was worried about scarring, the model made the decision to go through with the surgery after the pain became unbearable.

“I got my boobs when I was 14, but I would say, over the years, as my weight fluctuated, my boobs fluctuated. And, so, after I had my son, I mean, my boobs, they got bigger. They got way, way bigger. They definitely made me look older when I was a teenager, and also, I felt it made me look heavier as well because they were so big,” says Rose, whose breasts were a 36H cup size naturally. “They weren’t implants or anything like that and so, my back was hurting me. There was times I would just walk and just stop and be like … it would kill me. And, so, at that point, I was like, this is more of like a health issue, where I have to get this done.”

  • For more on Amber Rose, pick up a copy of this week’s issue on stands Friday.

Rose had the three-and-a-half-hour surgery performed by Beverly Hills plastic surgeon Dr. Garth Fisher in January.

Amber Rose. Kayt Jones

“Amber had really large breasts that looked gorgeous, and the pressure was to make them smaller and beautiful,” Fisher says.

Now at a 36DDD cup size, Rose says “it’s like a dream come true” to wear things like spaghetti-strapped tank tops.”

“Now when I’m running out the door, I don’t have to search for the right bra to fit within the shirt or to match the color of the shirt, so, it doesn’t show and look gaudy,” Rose says. “I can kind of just throw it on and I’m like, ‘This is amazing!’ I’ve been missing this my whole life.”

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