You’re not alone in hating a regrettable tattoo. Almost 100,000 tattoo removal procedures were performed in 2011 – an impressive increase from the 80,000 that took place in 2010.
So many people are now opting for tattoo removal that DIY tattoo removal kits have been cropping up all over the Internet. While they may seem tempting, offering a quick fix at a bargain-basement price, they’ll end up costing you more than you bargained for.
You Get What You Pay For
Many of these supposed tattoo removal kits contain dangerous acids or dermabrasion tools that remove the top layers of skin. The instructions of one popular tattoo remover prompts you to first use a dermabrasion tool to scrape the top layers of your skin off, and then requires you to apply a gel of unknown origin on your tattoo. Does that sound safe? You’ll most likely end up with scarring and skin discoloration.
At-home tattoo removal kits can’t possibly remove tattoos because professional tattoo inks are embedded deep within the dermis – peeling off the top layers of the skin wouldn’t even affect most tattoos. Only laser tattoo removal can safely and effectively penetrate the skin, getting rid of even the most stubborn tattoos.
Scarring, Infections, and Nerve Damage…Oh My!
Other tattoo removal methods people attempt at home are nothing short of harrowing:
Salt removal of tattoos works like dermabrasion, essentially removing the layers of the skin to reach the tattoo. The idea is that the abrasion process will gradually wear through the epidermis (outer layer of skin) and down into the dermis (where the tattoo ink actually lies), allowing access and removal of the ink in that fashion. You should avoid this at all costs because the chances of scarring and infection are very high. You’re also highly likely to be unable to reach the tattoo pigment.
Some people with small tattoos try to remove them by cutting the top layers of the skin off. Once again, this doesn’t work because tattoo ink is embedded deep within the dermis. Cutting or scrapping off the top layers of your skin just results in a giant scar, and you’ll risk bleeding, infection and nerve damage.
Many people try to remove their tattoos by applying a chemical to the region. However, superficial or even deep chemical peels will not work for complete tattoo removal. Instead, you’ll risk scarring and incomplete removal of your tattoo if you opt to “burn” it off. Chemicals and abrasive exfoliants can damage and irritate the skin, leading to severe damage and infection.
Many ill-informed people in a desperate attempt to remove their tattoos try to burn them off using a blow torch or a lighter. The idea is that the tattoo will turn into a scar and scab off. Nothing could be further from the truth. Since tattoo ink is embedded deep within the dermis, a scar will form on top, but the ink will still be visible. If you’re stupid enough to try this method, you’ll risk scarring, infection, and nerve damage.
The take home message is clear: never try to remove a tattoo at home with a kit or any other method. The only way to safely and effectively remove a tattoo is with laser tattoo removal.
Laser Tattoo Removal Is the Only Way to Go
While other methods can permanently damage and irritate the skin and are largely ineffective because they can’t penetrate the skin’s deeper layers, laser tattoo removal technology can safely remove even the most stubborn tattoos. Laser tattoo removal works by targeting pigment colors in the skin’s dermis, the layer of skin between the epidermis and subcutaneous tissues. Light beams radiated by the laser are absorbed by tattoo pigments, which then fragment. The body then absorbs and eliminates these pigment fragments.
The Q-switch is the most common type of laser used in tattoo removal. It produces pulses of light boasting an extremely high peak power. Several types of Q-switch lasers exist, and each one targets a different color spectrum at different wavelengths. Because Q-switch lasers are so precise and intense, tattoo pigments fragment instantly, resulting in minimal damage to the surrounding tissue.
Will You Be a Good Candidate?
Because each tattoo is unique, removal techniques—including the type of laser used—must be tailored to your particular needs. And some tattoos are especially stubborn. Green, yellow and fluorescent inks are notoriously difficult to remove. Their absorption spectra often fall outside most lasers’ targeted color spectrums. What’s more, tattoo inks sometimes contain chemicals like iron oxide or titanium dioxide, which makes it even more difficult for laser beams to “explode” color pigments.
You can consider yourself a good candidate for tattoo removal (meaning you won’t suffer scarring) if you have medium to fair skin and a tattoo that contains dark (but not dense) ink and a superficial ink depth. Why? Medium or fair-skinned people react well because the laser can selectively target ink. If your tattoo happens to be on your arms, chest, buttocks, or anywhere else with good circulation, all the better. Areas with poor circulation (think ankles or fingers) are tougher to treat.
Don’t despair if you have darker skin. Laser tattoo removal is still possible on people with darker skin tones, but your physician must use lasers with specific wavelengths to minimize potential complications.
Pure and Simple Laser Tattoo Removal
Before the session starts a medical professional will apply an anesthetic cream, and you’ll be given protective eye gear to wear, along with a cooling device. The medical professional will then gently place a hand piece against your skin and deliver laser pulses to the tattoo pigment. With each laser pulse, most people experience a sensation similar to a rubber band snapping against their skin. The amount of laser pulses depends on the tattoo’s size, but most treatment sessions only last a few minutes.
You may experience minor bleeding, redness, swelling and blistering for several hours or days following treatment. The next several weeks may see the treated area flaking, peeling and scabbing. Handle the treatment site gently. While the site is healing, you should avoid sun exposure and public swimming pools. Once the skin has completely healed (usually four to six weeks after treatment), you can undergo additional sessions.
LaserAway Gets Results
There’s no other choice, really. Laser tattoo removal is the only safe and effective method to remove unwanted tattoos. After a series of successful laser treatments, most tattoos are pretty much gone. Keep in mind, however, that how fast your tattoo disappears depends on its color pigments, depth, and age. But even stubborn cases aren’t hopeless. Though colors such as yellow, green, or light blue are more difficult to remove, they can certainly be faded. The same goes for ink that rests deep within the dermis.
So what are you waiting for? Schedule a free, no obligation consultation today by emailing LaserAway.net or calling the staff at LaserAway at (888) 965-2737.