Tips To Minimize Scarring With Laser Tattoo Removal
In our complete guide to laser tattoo removal aftercare, we provide detailed information on how to avoid tattoo removal scars and other complications. Fortunately, these issues are usually completely preventable. These aftercare instructions provide thorough guidance on proper aftercare procedures so you can help your skin heal as quickly as possible while preventing a tattoo removal scar.
Do Tattoo Removal Scars Go Away After Healing
When it comes to laser removal, there arent generally scarring issues if the procedure is done by a trained professional at a reputable clinic. But, in case you do experience scarring after laser removal, you can expect it to be long-term.
The same applies to other tattoo removal methods, especially surgical tattoo excision. Dermabrasion scars are also long-term, while the scars from chemical peels can be minimized even if they form after the procedure.
Note: If you notice a scar after your tattoo is removed using a laser, chances are youre looking at a scar formed after getting tattooed. Sometimes the skin gets pretty damaged during tattooing, so as the tattoed skin heals, it also forms a hidden scar.
How Do The Lasers Work
The lasers penetrate your skin to the dermis layer, which is where the tattoo ink was deposited. But dont worry unlike tattoo needles, the laser doesnt actually penetrate your skin.
Instead, the laser fires natural infrared light at different wavelengths. The ink absorbs the light and breaks down from a semi-solid state to a solid state. Basically, the light turns the ink from large, permanent particles to smaller and smaller particles.
Once the ink has fractured into very small particles, your immune system can get to work. Your body will naturally try to flush out the foreign ink particles that were too large to tackle before. Macrophages slowly remove the ink via your blood.
It sounds a bit scary, but laser tattoo removal is completely safe. Its actually the recommended method of tattoo removal , and a lot of laser tattoo removal equipment is checked and approved by the FDA too.
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Consider A Doctor Or A Tattoo Removal Specialist
I’d previously had one tattoo zapped at a spa , where an aesthetician used an outdated heat laser that ended up burning and scarring my skin. This time around, I got my treatments done by John F. Adams, M.D., at the New York Dermatology Group, where everything is done under medical supervision. I suggest you find your own removal expert by asking friends, influencers, or even by stopping people that you see with removal in processwhich, yes, I have done.
What About Home Treatments
Tattoo removal creams and chemical peels are the most widely available and least expensive option. Theres a reason why: Theres no solid evidence that they work.
At best, they might slightly lighten a tattoo, according to anecdotal reports. At worst, they can result in a serious chemical burn .
Due to the high risk of skin irritation and allergic reaction, experts dont recommend using DIY tattoo removal creams to get rid of your tattoo.
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How Does Laser Removal Work
Laser tattoo removal works not by burning the tattoo but by sending light energy into the skin. It uses different wavelengths of light, depending on the color of the ink being removed. Black pigments arent the easiest color to treat because it absorbs all light wavelengths.
When the ink particles absorb the energy from the laser, they shatter into small pieces. Your bodys immune system then goes into overdrive to eradicate the ink over a few weeks. Several laser treatments later, and after some moderate pain, the tattoo should no longer be visible.
Does Tattoo Removal Leave Scars: Everything You Need To Know
Getting a tattoo means youre getting a permanent piece of body art meant to last you a lifetime. However, sometimes people dont like their tattoos and how they turned out, or they get tired of having certain tattoos. In some cases, tattoos start fading away and lose their initial vibrancy. So, what can one do to get rid of a permanent tattoo? Well, there are a few options to remove a tattoo, laser tattoo removal being the best and most effective one.
Now, tattoo removal is difficult and it takes time, effort, and money to work. Furthermore, it generally hurts like hell and carries a number of other potential side effects, including scarring. Therefore, if youre thinking about going for tattoo removal, youre at the right place. In the following paragraphs, well discuss several tattoo removal methods and their potential of leaving a scar in place of your tattoo. So, lets dive right in!
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Chemical Tca Peel Tattoo Removal
Chemical peel tattoo removal is done using the TCA or the trichloroacetic acid to remove tattoos in a similar fashion to the dermabrasion method. The acid is applied to the tattooed skin which then removes the outer layers of the skin, as well as the tattoo pigment.
Now, compared to dermabrasion, a chemical peel is painful but at bearable levels. It usually doesnt require local or general anesthesia but in certain cases pain alleviation is welcome.
But, even though chemical peel removal sounds almost perfect, we need to mention that the acid does create an open wound, just like in dermabrasion. The wound takes time to heal, so proper aftercare is essential to avoid inflammation and infection. It can take the wound anywhere between 5 to 10 days to heal, depending on the size of the tattoo.
Generally speaking, there will be some scarring left after a chemical peel, but it isnt as severe as in dermabrasion removal.
Natural Methods To Remove Permanent Tattoos
All of the methods that weve discussed so far can leave scars. If you want to remove your tattoo but do not want a scar , you can try any of these natural methods. Theyll take longer to remove your tattoo but wont leave a scar.
- Apply a mixture of honey, yogurt, Aloe Vera, and salt. Not only will the regular application of this scrub remove your tattoo, but itll do wonders for your skin too. Your skin will feel softer and more nourished. The tattoo will take time to fade away, though, but you dont have to worry about scarring.
- Make a scrub of lemon and salt. Salt will penetrate deep into the skin and make the tattoo ink fade, and the vitamin C in lemon will replenish your skin. All youve to do is dab a cotton ball into the mixture and rub it over your tattoo for a good one hour. It might leave you sore and tired, but your tattoo will fade away without leaving any scars.
- Other methods include homemade tattoo removal creams, apricot scrub and salt, and continuous use of balm. None of these cause any scars.
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It Might Be Worth Getting A Cover Up Tattoo Instead Of A Full Tattoo Removal
One tattoo removal method that isn’t talked about as much is semi-removali.e. If you don’t want to take your tattoos all the way off, you can simply lighten them enough to get some good cover-up work done. I have a friend who had a bird piece lightened enough to have a tattoo artist ink a lightbulb over the top. I thought it was smart because it meant her new tattoo didn’t have to be heavy-handed.
Scarring From Tattoo Removal Is Highly Unusual
Reassure your patients that you use proper protocols and a professional-grade system that is safe for their skin. Ultimately, as a practitioner, you’ll still want the patient to sign a consent form addressing the risks of the procedure and promote a strong emphasis on personal aftercare outside your practice.
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Can You Get A Tattoo Removed Without Scarring
Again, a tattoo removal scar is extremely rare when working with an experienced specialist. When you have a specialist who understands your goals and how to achieve them using the best available technology, youll be almost certain to avoid any scarring.
Does laser tattoo removal leave scars if you go to a less reputable facility? That is a distinct possibility. Thus, its vital to avoid working with anyone who uses an inefficient method or does not have a lot of experience in laser tattoo removal.
At Removery, we use the PicoWay laser, a highly advanced technology that removes tattoos as gently and efficiently as possible, resulting in no scarring. The PicoWay is the most trusted laser in the industry because it targets every color more effectively than any other laser and has a minimal effect on the surrounding tissue. This means that less disturbance to the skin occurs than with other methods, and the skin heals as quickly as possible. Scars after tattoo removal are incredibly unlikely when using this equipment.
Connect with us to start your tattoo removal journey
Connect with us to start your removal journey
Diy Laser Tattoo Removal
With laser tattoo removal sessions costing so much, its understandable that so many people are looking to remove their tattoos at home. So, this is where the DIY laser tattoo removal industry steps in.
There are a few options out there, from buying your own laser removal machine to trying some of the creams and ointments available .
There are some important things to note:
- Most professional lasers can only be bought by certified professionals,
- You need to take safety seriously that means wearing eye protection, reading the manual, etc.
- Never buy any device, cream, lotion, or any other product that claims to remove tattoos unless it has been checked and approved by the FDA.
In general, it is always best to pay for a professional to remove your tattoo. They know what theyre doing. and you are guaranteed a great result. Its worth saving up for!
Oh, and if you are yet to get your tattoo, but are worried about the costs of removing it if you dislike it, keep scrolling. We have a section on temporary tattoos below that youll find very interesting.
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Can I Use Kenzzi For Tattoo Removal
We understand that our IPL handheld device is similar to laser treatments. But, that being said, you cannot use IPL on tattoos. You can go around tattoos when you are using the IPL device to get rid of unwanted hair.
The laser process used to remove tattoos is very specific and cannot be replicated with a device like ours. However, the IPL handheld device is a great alternative to laser hair removal treatments. It can be a lot cheaper and even less painful. The best part is that you can do it yourself and you dont have to make any appointments.
Answer: Scar Formation Need Not Occur In Laser Tattoo Removal
Every tattoo has some form of scar holding it in place, most times a very fine un noticeable scar. When ever I see a patient come in with a scar its usually from one of two things. the wrong laser such as a long pulse laser most commonly used in hair removal or a correct laser but at a setting to higher the tissue.
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Most Frequently Asked Questions From Laser Tattoo Removal Patients
The initial tattoo removal consultation is an important moment for every patient and every practice.
It’s an opportunity to showcase your knowledge of the procedure, establish rapport with your patient, and gain their trust so they decide to proceed with treatments.
You’ll want to answer their questions thoroughly and express your expertise in laser tattoo removal.
We’ve gathered the most common patient questions about laser tattoo removal for your reference. Anyone that interacts with a patient from the receptionist to the practitioner should feel confident discussing these topics.
Neglecting Tattoo Removal Aftercare
The aftercare following the removal of the tattoo can help ensure that there is no scarring since it allows your skin to recover fully. Make sure the area is clean and dry.
Laser tattoo removal requires multiple procedures, so you should ensure that you practice proper aftercare after each procedure.
As part of the aftercare, avoid picking at your skin once the laser procedure is completed. Your perfectly done removal might scar if the skin is disturbed.
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Intense Pulsed Light Vs Laser Tattoo Removal
But the most common methods of tattoo removal use intense pulsed light or Q-switched lasers. These are often thought to be similar methods of removal and many clinics that use IPL refer to it as laser tattoo removal, although this is not accurate. IPL is not actually a laser, but rather a broad spectrum of light that often includes carcinogenic ultraviolet light. It causes more redness, pain and swelling, and is much more likely to result in scarring and can also cause serious damage to the eyes. Monash University Professor Alan Petersen notes that IPL is largely responsible for injury and unsuccessful tattoo removal. Nadia Maqiq from Victorian Cosmetic Dermal Clinics agrees, IPL is very unhealthy for the skin because it is not a precisely targeted wavelength of light.
Many IPL machines sell for less than $10,000, whereas a Q-switched laser machine costs upwards of $100,000. Q-switched lasers are lasers that shoot in short bursts in order to maximise intensity. The light they produce is monochromatic, so it is strictly one wavelength, rather than a broad spectrum like IPL. This means that the wavelength can be tuned specifically to target certain colours in a tattoo, thus minimising damage to the surrounding skin. The safest method of tattoo removal is that which uses a Q-switched laser that employs an Nd-YAG crystal. These lasers have adverse reactions in an extremely rare amount of cases and damage is much less likely to be permanent.
If The Tattoo Already Features Scarring Expect That To Remain
What many people don’t know is that any scarring that remains after a tattoo removal procedure is often left over from when the tattoo was originally applied by the tattoo artist.
When the proper laser protocols and patient aftercare are utilized, it’s very uncommon for a patient to scar from a Q-switched laser treatment. However, it is very common for a tattoo to feature pre-existing scarring from when it was applied.
When a Q-switched laser treats the skin, it targets and breaks down the tattoo pigment in the skin. If pre-existing scarring is present, it will break down this pigment within the scar tissue. Once the tattoo removal process is complete, the ink will have been eliminated from the location but any of the scarring from the original tattoo will likely still remain.
During the initial consultation while you are assessing the tattoo, touch it and see if pre-existing scarring is present. If so, mark it as such in the patient’s records and inform the patient that the laser will not eliminate scar tissue, just their ink.
A Q-switched laser is not the best device to use for scar revision and will not provide significant improvement to remaining scarring. Some skin specialists use fractional lasers to resurface scarred skin after the tattoo removal process.
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Lather Up On The Sunscreen Prior To Your Sessions
Once you know you’re unhappy with a tattoo on your body, immediately start using a zinc oxide sunscreen on it, says Cirlin. The most common reason people can’t get lasered is because their tattoo has had sun exposure. By using a zinc oxide anytime you’re outside, you’ll help protect your tattoo, which will allow you to get lasered regardless of the season.”
Does It Hurt More
Everyones body is different, so everyones level of pain tolerance is different, too. Thats why some people experience a lot of discomfort when getting a tattoo and others dont.
However, as a rule of thumb, scar tissue is generally more painful to tattoo than unscarred skin. And in some cases, it might be extremely painful.
Experts say that scar pain is common, especially for people whose scars have caused nerve damage or compression, like amputation scars.
Some types of scars tend to more painful, such as:
- hypertrophic scars
- burn scars
Scars that are deep or large will also be more painful to tattoo. Tattooing over mild scarring is easier and a bit less painful, because theyre smaller scars that lie mostly flat to the skin and remain in the boundaries of the old wound.
There are a few more considerations to keep in mind when youre thinking of covering your scar with a tattoo.
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Tattoo Removal Before And After
Yes, you can actually see it working like that! There are plenty of videos online showing you tattoos being removed via laser it isnt a big secret in the industry at all. In fact, if a tattoo removal specialist doesnt tell or show you the equipment they use and how it works, thats a bad sign. They should always be upfront.
In this picture, you can see how the tattoo fades over multiple sessions. This tattoo was comprised of very thick and heavy black lines, which are actually one of the easiest and quickest colors to remove. After four sessions, you can see that the tattoo is really fading away.
This highlights the importance of multiple sessions. If you can only pay for one or two sessions, youll likely be unsatisfied with the results. You need to commit!
It Hurts But It’s Bearable
When discussing pain with patients, it’s important to share that while they may experience some level of discomfort, the pain is relatively manageable and tolerable. It may take some tough love to encourage patients concerned about sensitivity.
The vast majority of tattoo removal providers offer some form of soothing to the skin during the treatment. Offering skin numbing during the procedure allows your practice to stay competitive, provide better patient care, and have higher patient satisfaction.
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