Tattoos can beautify the body with unique images. They provide the chance for you to express the things that mean the most in your life. Unfortunately, the appeal of a tattoo can fade as your life changes. In fact, up to one in five people with tattoos want a tattoo removed. If you’re one of these people, then the specialists at Noveau MedSpa & Salon in Chubbuck, ID can provide you with a fresh start. We’re happy to consult with you and answer any questions you have about the laser tattoo removal process.
How Many Removal Sessions Are Required?
The big question on everyone’s mind when they’ve decided to remove a tattoo is how many sessions will be required for complete removal. This is a complex question that depends on many factors, including the size of the tattoo, the colors used in the design, the age of the tattoo, your skin type, and the type of laser used.
How Do Lasers Remove Tattoos?
Lasers remove tattoos by attacking and breaking up the ink particles beneath the surface layers of the skin. When these pigments are shattered into smaller pieces, they can then be removed by the body’s lymphatic system.
Tattoo removal is typically done with one of two laser types: Q-Switched lasers or PicoSure lasers.
Types of Lasers
Q-Switched lasers are an older type of tattoo removal laser that use heat to break up the tattoo ink. This type of treatment can take from six to 12 sessions.
Here at Noveau MedSpa & Salon, we use the newer PicoSure laser, which has many advantages over the older type. The PicoSure laser uses pressure wave technology to develop a photomechanical impact, breaking the tattoo ink into microscopic particles. These particles pass on to the lymphatic system where they are removed from the body naturally.
While the Q-Switched laser can be very effective, the new generation lasers go a step further, using light that moves at speeds measured in a trillionth of a second to break up the tattoo ink into even smaller particles. The smaller the particles, the sooner the tattoo will fade and disappear. In most cases, tattoos can be removed with the PicoSure system in two to six sessions.
What Types of Tattoos Take Longest to Remove?
Small, older tattoos (around the size of a half-dollar) with black ink are the easiest to remove. Larger or newer tattoos with more colorful designs will require more treatments.
To remove the tattoo, the laser will trace any lettering or dark outlines and then move on to any shading. Black ink is the easiest color to remove. Vivid colors such as blue, green, and purple will require more sessions.
Removing Colored Tattoos
It might surprise you to learn that, in many cases, dark colors are more easily removed than lighter colors. This is because each color has a specific light absorbent spectrum. Some colors fall more easily into this spectrum, meaning that they are more quickly removed.
Recent advancements in laser tattoo removal technology, such as the PicoSure treatment, provide faster removal of colored tattoos than the older laser tattoo removal treatments. Colors such as blue, green, purple, yellow, and even white and pastel pigments can be removed with fewer sessions than the lasers of the past.
Some tattoos are known as recalcitrant tattoos. These tattoos have been treated for removal in the past but did not completely fade. The PicoSure tattoo removal treatment works on tough recalcitrant tattoos, helping to eliminate even very large or colorful tattoos with heavy lines.
What Other Factors Affect Tattoo Removal?
The size and color of the tattoo are not the only factors that affect how many sessions are required for complete tattoo removal. Older tattoos are easier to remove than newer, fresher tattoos.
Since professional tattoo artists tend to tattoo more deeply and use higher quality ink than amateur tattooists, amateur tattoos are usually easier to remove. Finally, since different wavelengths of light are required to penetrate darker skin, people with darker skin tones may need more sessions than those with lighter skin.
What Does Laser Tattoo Removal Feel Like?
Another big question many people have is what a laser tattoo removal treatment feels like. Many people say the sensation of having a tattoo removed is like the feeling of getting the tattoo in the first place.
When you arrive for your tattoo removal session, an anesthetic gel will be applied to your skin, and you may be given eye protection. Your esthetician will use a handheld device to trace the lines of the tattoo, gradually breaking down the pigments.
Today’s newer generation of tattoo removal lasers require less healing time than the tattoo removal treatments of the past. Laser tattoo removal treatments are done in 10-15-minute sessions in four to six-week intervals. You can return to work or your normal activities immediately following each treatment. As far as the healing process is concerned, some people remark that the treated skin sometimes feels as if it has been lightly sunburned.
How to Learn More About Tattoo Removal
If you’re ready for a life free from your tattoos, then it’s time to explore the advanced tattoo removal technology that’s available today. Laser tattoo removal has greatly advanced over the past few years. Contact Noveau MedSpa & Salon in Chubbuck, ID for a free tattoo removal consultation. We’ll discuss your tattoos and create a personalized tattoo removal plan that works for you.