Can All Tattoos Be Removed?
Tattoo removal depends on many factors including, but not limited to:
- Type of ink
- Colour of ink
- Age of tattoo
- Whether the tattoo was amateur or professionally done and the application method
- Depth of tattoo
- Your skin type
And most importantly, your own health/lifestyle as ultimately it is your body’s immune system that will clear away the shattered ink particles. In fact in one study it was shown that smokers have up to 70% less chance of achieving full removal of the ink (after 10 sessions).
As mentioned above, some colours are very difficult to remove and may need treating by a different laser at a later time. We can advise you on this. Green is the main problem but white, yellow and pastel colours are also resistant to removal. Certain white inks (which might also have been mixed with other colours for lighter shades) may cause a reaction where the lasered ink darkens. This is one of the reasons we insist on patch testing pre commencement of any course of treatments. Be cautious of any business operating with just one laser that claims the ability to remove every colour (but especially green) ink completely.
This is part of a large tattoo which is particularly difficult to remove as it has been re-inked and contains resistant colours. However, after just 1 session considerable fading has been achieved (still 2 weeks of healing/fading to go before session 2). This customer may not need too many more sessions as he is planning a cover-up tattoo.
Black is by far the easiest ink to remove, particularly when sparsely applied to fair skin
Is It Painful?
No more so than getting a tattoo is the general consensus of opinion. However, a numbing cream may be applied 1-2 hours before laser treatment if preferred. Treatments are usually for a maximum time of 30 minutes so large tattoos need to be treated over several separate sessions.
Does It Scar?
In very rare cases (about 5% but particularly in people prone to keloid scarring) this is possible but generally no. A greater risk is hyper/hypopigmentation especially in darker skins but this can still recover over time. The skin may look and feel a little different for a while but no visible change is noted in the vast majority of cases.
How long does the treatment take?
Usually between 5 and 30 minutes as longer sessions could cause too much discomfort etc and are not recommended. Depending on the tattoo and the desired outcome (removal or fade for a cover up) anywhere up to 15 or more sessions may be required. Treatments are kept to a minimum of 6 weeks apart.
Is Everyone Suitable For Laser Tattoo Removal?
Do not come for a treatment until your tattoo is at least 6 months old.
Some medications (including herbal) and medical conditions prevent or delay treatment e.g St Johns Wort so this needs to be disclosed at your initial consultation. Also, please do not tan (fake or natural) tattooed skin and use complete sunblock when in the sun. Make sure your skin is clean, dry and free of alcohol based applications (including suncreams/blocks) before treatment. It is recommended that you avoid alcohol for min 48 hours beforehand.
As a general rule, our laser is unsuitable for treating dark skins. Asian and darker/tanned skins are assessed on an individual basis as hyper/hypopigmentation is a possibility.
How much does it cost?
Prices start from as little as £35 per treatment for a very small tattoo. The cost will be discussed and agreed with you at your consultation and patch test. We charge £10 for the consultation; however, this is then deducted from the cost of your first treatment. Tattoo removal can take as few as 4 sessions but may take 15 or more.
For optimum results treatments need to be kept at a minimum of 6 weeks apart.