Probably a lot of serious tattoo folks will laugh at the idea of laser tattoo removal but there are actually several pretty good reasons for having a tattoo removed–even if you love tattoos. Now for everyone else who perhaps went through a wild period and doesn’t want to carry the reminder forever, laser tattoo removal may be a good option for you. And on the subject of tattoo removal, I recall a comedian’s act about a tattoo of a butterfly on a ladies breast turning into a condor after her boobs began sagging.

Laser Tattoo Removal

People choose to get tattoos removed for many reasons. In some job markets, it can be a little difficult to find a job with a mega-death flaming skull of Satan on the side of your neck. While tattoos are gaining in popularity in Japan, they still have an association with the Yakuza and people sporting tattoos are often denied entry into public baths and pachinko parlors. I have one friend, an English teacher who suffers through the hot and humid summer months in long-sleeve shirts because his arms are covered in tattoos. People trying to get out of gangs can also often choose to have tattoos, especially gang-related ones removed. Finally, a lot of people just have buyer’s remorse, after getting a tattoo.

How Tattoo Removal Works

Your skin is quite adept at getting rid of a small foreign particle that may find a way into your skin. Tattoo pigments on the other hand are too large for your body to get rid of and it’s these aspects that make tattoos so permanent. Laser tattoo removal uses a variety of differently colored lasers to blast the pigment into tiny fragments of ink small enough for the body to get rid of on its own. Different colored lasers are used because on color of laser in more effective on a certain color of ink. Green lasers are most effective on red ink for example.

Expectation

This is where most people are going to have problems with tattoo removal but I should stress that you should focus on your goal of being tattoo free rather than on the trouble of having a tattoo removed. So first off, it takes a lot longer to remove a tattoo than it does to get one done. At the very least, you’ll need three sessions and probably closer to twelve. The sessions aren’t exactly cheap either at $150 to $300 per session. It’s also quite a bit more painful that getting the tattoo. Most people choose to use a Dr. Numb Numbing Cream or even get a shot to numb the pain. Again, think of your goal to have the tattoo gone.

Tattoo Removal after Care

If you do decide to have your tattoos removed, here is what you can expect to go through after the procedure. Just like when you got the tattoo, there may be some bleeding and swelling as well as some redness. Similarly, the tattoo may crust over. You’ll also need to keep a topical antibiotic ointment on your tattoo. And I’m not giving medical advice here, but my experience and talking with doctors, being fastidious with the ointment can go along towards preventing scarring. That’s not medical advice, just passing along what I was told.

Tattoo Removal Risk

Finally, there are some complications to having tattoo laser removal. Are you surprised? Well like I mentioned above, it can cause scarring. Another complication is burning of the skin. The laser that are used for targeting dark pigments may be just as effective on the body’s natural melanin, the pigment of the skin that causes freckles, or is dominant in black and Hispanic people. The point is that black and Hispanic people, especially, run the risk of skin becoming lighter in color at the removal site. Likewise, some pigments like yellow, can become darker after a tattoo removal session.

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