How Much Does Laser Tattoo Removal Cost?

Truthfully, there is no quick and easy answer for the question “How much does it cost for laser tattoo removal?” How much your tattoo removal will actually cost depends on a number of factors.

Based on the average pricing model for a clinic that uses quality laser equipment and has licensed laser medical professionals, it can cost anywhere from $50 to $2,000 per session.

When you are paying for laser tattoo removal on a session-by-session basis, you may be surprised to find out how many sessions it will eventually take to remove your tattoo completely. As a result, session-based pricing will always be unpredictable when it comes to the final total.

Going to a laser tattoo removal clinic that has state-of-the-art technology ensures that your results are more effective and more permanent, with fewer sessions. Being able to adjust the laser and having access to licensed medical professionals gets you higher quality results more quickly.

In addition, laser tattoo removal clinics that are willing to offer a free lifetime guarantee package charge a single up-front price to remove your tattoo, no matter how many sessions it takes. Purchasing tattoo removal as a package may seem more pricey up front, but the result is that you know how much you’re going to pay for the complete tattoo removal with no hidden costs.

Factors of Tattoo Removal Cost

Other factors in laser tattoo removal cost have to do with your specific tattoo. Its size, number of colors, location on the body, and your own skin biology all play a part in the final price.

The most effective way to know how much your removal will cost is to book a free consultation with a laser tattoo removal clinic. You will receive an estimate from an experienced laser technician based on your tattoo and other important factors.

Take a look at the following five factors to help you estimate how much your tattoo removal might cost:

1. Your Tattoo’s Size, Colors, and Location

Laser tattoo removal works by breaking up ink particles embedded in your skin. Smaller particles are easier for your immune system and lymphatic system to remove.

Because of how the process works, larger tattoos will take longer to work on and require more sessions to remove completely.

The color of your tattoo also matters. Certain pigments used to color tattoos are more difficult to remove with a single wavelength of laser. That’s because the color of light coming from the laser has to be absorbed by the tattoo ink.

Lasers with adjustable wavelengths, like the PicoWay, can be used to effectively break up a wide variety of colors, meaning your tattoo removal goes by quicker no matter how many colors your tattoo has.

Location of the tattoo matters, too. Certain areas of skin hold onto tattoo ink longer, while areas such as the elbows to fade quickly. The closeness of the tattoo to your heart also matters. Being close to your heart means higher blood pressure in the area, which means your lymphatic system cycles through the ink more quickly, enabling a quicker removal.

Where You Got Your Tattoo

Certain tattoo parlors use more effective equipment, which can embed ink more deeply and permanently. Therefore, depending on the equipment used, your tattoo could be harder to remove and take more sessions under the laser.

Since tattoo ink isn’t very well regulated by the FDA, there’s no way to know exactly how the ink will respond to the laser treatments. As a result, where you get your tattoo can have a huge and unpredictable effect on the speed of the laser removal process.

Your own skin tone and biology in general can affect the removal process, too. Some people’s skin tends to hold onto ink more readily than others, requiring more sessions.

The Expertise of the Person Doing the Removal

The saying “you get what you pay for” is true with almost every service, and it is especially correct when it comes to laser tattoo removal.

Laser tattoo removal clinics in states that don’t require a certain level of licensing are allowed to let inexperienced and relatively untrained techs provide laser tattoo removal treatments. Techs will have less experience and less medical training. They may be more prone to make mistakes or use techniques that dull the effectiveness of the removal laser.

You should go to a service provider that has licensed laser medical professionals (ARNPs and PAs) who have been trained to perform the medical treatment. Your laser tattoo removal clinic should also be staffed with professionals who have plenty of experience from seeing a lot of patients every week.

More experienced and trained staff perform better work, but it usually comes at a cost. A facility that only allows Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioners (ARNPs) and Physician’s Assistants (PAs) to perform removals will have more consistent results in a safer environment for patients.

The Level of Technology Used by the Laser Tattoo Removal Clinic

The level of technology used also affects the price. Again, cheaper services often mean a lower level of technology which means slower and less effective results.

Cheap lasers will be more likely to cause higher levels of pain along with possible complications like scarring, rashes, or permanent skin damage. Lower quality lasers also can’t be adjusted, which means if you have a tattoo with multiple colors or you have a darker skin tone, you’ll be going to more sessions and need more effort to have the tattoo removed.

Many dermatologist clinics don’t want to invest in the more expensive equipment, though, because they may only do a few tattoo removals a year.

A specialized clinic, on the other hand, will invest in the best technology.

PicoWay lasers, for instance, are the state of the art in laser tattoo removal technology, and they can be adjusted for multiple skin types, tattoo types, and other factors for maximum effectiveness. The PicoWay laser is different from the Picosure laser, which is not as advanced as the PicoWay laser and does not have as many wavelengths.

Whether You Get a Package or Pay by Session

One of the most important factors in how much your tattoo removal will cost is how you pay.

Paying by session may seem cheaper, but in the long run it can tend to cost more. Nearly every tattoo requires at least five sessions to remove. Some may take as many as 15 to 20 sessions.

Since you have to heal in between sessions, you may find out that your results weren’t very effective, and you’ll need to go into more sessions than you expected. This is especially common if the quality of the laser used or the expertise of the person using it was low.

Many clinics offer packages that include multiple sessions at a discount when you pay up front. Others will provide a quote for the total cost of guaranteed laser tattoo removal based on the provider’s evaluation of the tattoo and their experience with how long it might take to remove it.

Having a free lifetime guarantee with no hidden fees ensures that the cost you pay for removal is the final cost, with no hidden surprises later. These arrangements give you the confidence to know that your tattoo will actually be gone — forever! — with a set price.

Find out how much it might cost for your specific tattoo to be removed when you schedule a free, no obligation consultation at a Body Details laser tattoo removal clinic near you.

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Paul A. Boulos
Dr. Paul A. Boulos is an excellent and versatile cosmetic surgeon, passionate about his vocation and helping others. Dr. Boulos is an alumni of Rowan University School of Osteopathic Medicine and completed his General Surgery training at Inspira Medical in Southern New Jersey. He studied and learn under Dr. Joseph Castellano, one of the premier breast and body Cosmetic Surgeons in South Florida. He currently works as a Cosmetic Surgeon at Jolie Plastic Surgery in Miami, FL.