Why Laser Treatments Are the Only Way to Remove Your Unwanted Tattoo

There are a ton of products claiming to fade and completely remove unwanted ink, but what these products don’t mention in their flashy ads are the risk associated with them, how damaging they can be to the skin, and most importantly, how ineffective they actually are.

Some people waste hundreds of dollars and many months on these kinds of treatments that all promise success, all to save a few bucks. In the end, these products only add to the cost of your tattoo removal and can even destroy your skin to the point where removal might no longer be possible.

So, before you spend your money on products that will end up at the bottom of your trash can, learn why skin tattoo removal will ultimately save you some money and a ton of frustration.

Skin Damage is No Joke

When it comes to tattoo removal, most at home methods try to fade the appearance of ink by removing layers of the skin. They contain harsh chemicals that leave the skin feeling raw and sensitive, which might make the user think it’s working when in fact it’s not. Tattoo ink is actually found in the deepest layer of the skin, the dermis, so when people use wrecking creams, chemical peels, and dermabrasions, many layers of the skin need to be removed before the layers where the ink is kept is even reached. By the time this happens, however, the skin tends to be so damaged that it looks worse than the original tattoo.

While skin damage is usually temporary, it can be permanent as well. People who use the tattoo removal methods are doing them at home, so in a fit of impatience, many will apply the chemicals too often and in excess, which leads to scarring. Hyperpigmentation, or the removal of the skin’s natural pigmentation, is also a common side effect from using these tattoo removal methods, especially for those with tanned or darker skin. The skin damage can be so bad that receiving laser tattoo removal or even a cover up becomes impossible.

The lasers used for laser tattoo removal are designed to target the pigment of the ink, without damaging the outer layer of the skin. Technology advancements allow licensed medical technicians who perform the laser procedures to personalize each treatment based on their client’s skin color, skin sensitivity level, tattoo colors, and the tattoo’s location to ensure they get the best results. This significantly reduces the risk of scarring, hyperpigmentation, and blistering.

You Aren’t a Professional

Most ulterior tattoo removal methods appeal to the masses by offering products that can be used at home. They’ve been approved for use by anyone, but the slow progression of these kinds of products often leads to people disregarding the instructions. Like anyone, they assume using more of the product more often will lead to faster results, but it only ends up leading to skin damage.

The same goes for spas who offer chemical peels and dermabrasions for tattoo removal. These kinds of places are trained to perform these treatments to improve the appearance of the skin and aren’t trained to remove tattoos. Often these professionals deal with the surface of the skin, and as mentioned before, tattoo ink is kept deep in the inner layers of the skin. Only a person specifically trained in tattoo removal should perform these kinds of procedures if it’s going to be successful.

A laser clinic should only employ professionals who not only hold a medical degree but who have undergone extensive training on how to use each laser they carry. It’s not enough that someone only knows about the skin in order to perform a successful tattoo removal. They also need to know about different tattoo styles, techniques, and even be able to tell the difference between a professional tattoo and an amateur one. All of these factors will affect how the tattoo is removed.

Beauty Doesn’t Have to Be Painful

While a cheap cream you can buy on the internet doesn’t seem like it would cause any pain, by slowly removing the layers of the skin, it can actually be pretty excruciating. Wrecking creams will slowly remove the skin and feel raw for an extended period of time, while chemical peels and dermabrasions will remove a lot of layers at once. Depending on the area of the body and how badly the procedure was done, pain can range from a minor annoyance to extreme discomfort. What makes the painful effects of these procedures so frustrating is that they last for an extended period of time. Sometimes the pain simply gets worse with each treatment and the skin never gets the chance to fully heal.

While lasers have a reputation for being painful, most people find it less painful than getting the initial tattoo. Additionally, most laser clinics provide their clients with numbing creams to improve their comfort. They also use a cryogenic cooling system that keeps the treated area cold throughout the process, ultimately reducing pain. Afterward, the skin will usually feel sunburnt and could possibly be a bit swollen, however, these effects fade within the hour. Since laser treatments are done at 10-week intervals, the skin is given the opportunity to completely heal so the next treatment is on fresh skin, rather than raw, sensitive skin like other methods.

Lasers Are The Only Effective Method

The goal with using any of these tattoo removal methods is always complete removal of the tattoo, but not all methods can provide this. Even though wrecking balms and chemical peels all claim to get rid of your ink quickly, the truth is that most people find little or no difference in their tattoo even after months of treatments.

Laser treatments, however, are proven to be effective in removing tattoos completely in just a few months. Most people will actually notice their ink significantly fading after just two or three treatments. Also, unlike spas or at home treatments, most laser tattoo removal clinics will offer payment plans that provide you with treatments until you’re satisfied with your results, so you won’t have to worry about being stuck with a half finished tattoo removal.

When it comes down to it, laser treatments are the only way to go when you’re looking to remove your unwanted ink.

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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.