Tattoo Removal Success Factors
Lots of factors influence how successfully a particular tattoo can be removed. The number of treatments it will take to remove a tattoo successfully also varies according to the size of the tattoo, where on the body it’s located, how dense the ink is, and what kind of device the removal professional uses, among other factors. Here are nine of the factors that go into determining how successful a tattoo removal procedure will be.
- Age of the Tattoo
Since tattoo ink fades over time, older tattoos can be removed more easily than newer tattoos.
- Amount of Ink Used
Amateur tattoo tends to be superficial, or closer to the skin surface, than professional tattooing. Tattoos done by amateur artists also tend to use significantly less ink than professional tattoos. Professional tattoos use a greater volume of ink and a greater density of ink as well as occurring deeper under the skin’s surface, so professional tattoos tend to be harder to remove.
- Ink Color
The easier tattoo ink colors to remove tend to be black, blue, and green. Our
Austin tattoo removal laser , one newer type of laser used for tattoo removal, can remove about 75 percent of black, blue, or green tattoo ink in one to two sessions. More than two-thirds of tattoos in these ink colors can be removed nearly 100 percent with this device in the first two sessions. However, orange, yellow, and red inks are consistently more difficult to remove effectively.
- Layered Tattoos
Layering occurs when the person seeking tattoo removal has covered up an older tattoo with a newer one. These tattoos are some of the most difficult to remove and require many more treatments than tattoos that have only a single layer. Since darker ink has to be used to cover up an existing tattoo, the new tattoo is larger, darker, and denser than the original design, and therefore it is more difficult to remove.
- Scarring and Other Tissue Damage
Tattoo ink that is embedded in scar tissue or other types of damaged skin is more difficult to remove than tattoo ink underneath smooth, undamaged skin.
- Size of the Tattoo
Larger tattoos always require more removal treatment sessions than smaller tattoos do. According to one study published in 2010 by the Journal of the American Medical Association, the most difficult tattoos to remove successfully are those that are larger than twelve inches on any dimension. The study looked at clients who had 10 tattoo pigment removal sessions.
- Skin Color
Those with lighter skin tend to have more successful tattoo removal results than those with darker skin. Specifically, those whose skin is rated as a 1 or a 2 on the Fitzpatrick scale – pale skin that never tans, has a tendency to get sunburned, and is associated with red or blond hair and blue eyes – have the best results with tattoo removal. This is because very light skin reflects, rather than absorbs, laser light.
Dark skin absorbs a small percentage of the light from the laser, making the treatment less effective. People with darker skin also tend to be more susceptible to scarring and other unwanted side effects from laser tattoo removal, prompting tattoo removal professionals to use the laser on a lower setting if the person seeking tattoo removal has relatively dark skin.
In a study done after 10 removal sessions, laser tattoo removal was 70 percent more effective on people who didn’t smoke versus people who smoked. Researchers think this may have to do with smoking’s ability to affect the way wounds heal.
- Tattoo Location
Tattoo removal works best on parts of the body that get a good blood supply and tend to heal quickly. Parts of the body that have a limited blood supply, tend to heal slowly, and therefore require more sessions for successful tattoo removal include the feet, hands, and lower legs. Tattoos on the chest and back tend to require fewer sessions.
The Truth About Tattoo Removal Creams
If you’ve been looking to remove an unwanted tattoo, you’ve probably come across an ad for a tattoo removal cream. These products are advertised as “miracle cures” for anybody with unwanted ink. Unfortunately, they don’t work.
Most tattoo removal creams claim that they use bleaching ingredients and other chemicals that pull unwanted ink from your body. While they might appear to work to some extent, tattoo ink rests too far below the surface of your skin to be completely removed by a topical cream. At the most, all you’ll get is a slightly faded tattoo that won’t look any different from the fading that will happen naturally over time.
To make matters worse, many tattoo removal creams can have unwanted side effects such as scarring, permanent skin texture changes, and even chemical burns. Some creams even instruct you to abrade your skin beforehand with a rough sandpaper-like substance, which can make these side effects worse. In other words, there is no miracle cream that will completely remove an unwanted tattoo, no matter how it may be advertised or what kind of ingredients it might have.
If you are serious about removing an unwanted tattoo, the only way to go about it is to seek out a professional tattoo removal service such as Austin tattoo removal. At Austin tattoo removal, we employ state-of-the-art laser technology to break up ink and completely remove your tattoo in a reasonable time frame. You won’t have to worry about any skin texture changes or any of the unwanted side effects that are often associated with tattoo removal creams.
For more information about our professional tattoo removal services or to schedule a consultation, contact Austin tattoo removal today.
Can people really be allergic to tattoo ink the same way they can be allergic to bee stings, cats, or peanuts? Yes, they can! It’s a fairly rare condition, but there is a small number of people who are actually allergic to the ink used for making tattoos.
For the tiny minority of people who have allergic reactions to tattoo ink, the symptoms of their allergic reaction can be serious, even life-threatening. Because different people’s bodies react differently to the allergy, the effects may be noticeable right away, or they could take up to two days (48 hours) – or even up to a few weeks, in some cases – to show allergic symptoms.
The tattoo ink color that’s most often associated with allergic reactions is red. The red ink used in tattooing often has some iodine in it, and a lot of people are sensitive to iodine. If you know that you’re allergic to iodine, you shouldn’t get a tattoo with any red ink in it. Even if you don’t have a known allergy to iodine, if you’ve gotten a tattoo with red ink, be aware of what’s going on with your body.
Unfortunately, some of the same symptoms that indicate an allergic reaction to tattoo ink are the same as the signs of normal healing from the tattoo process. Irritation, itching skin, rash, redness, swelling around the tattoo area, and small bumps or blisters that might ooze could all be normal healing or signs of an allergy.
Red ink is the color that most often causes unwanted reactions, but it is not the only tattoo color that can cause potential problems. Any tattoo color can cause an adverse reaction in someone, but after red, the most common culprits are brown, green, and yellow tattoo ink.
If you have concerns, ask your tattoo artist beforehand about the ingredients in the specific tattoo inks they will be using in your tattoo design. You can take the list of ingredients to your dermatologist. A dermatologist can tell you if any of the ingredients in the ink are likely to cause you any problems.
Another possibility is to have your Austin TX tattoo artist a small amount of tattoo ink on a “test spot” behind your eye to see if you’ll have a reaction. Have the test spot done, and then wait at least a week to see if your body has any reaction to it before having your tattoo inked. If you do see any kind of adverse reaction, see your dermatologist.
If you’ve had a tattoo and suspect you may be having an allergic reaction to the ink, seek help from a medical professional immediately. Treatment for an allergic reaction to tattoo ink may involve removing your tattoo completely. Sometimes laser tattoo removal is the best choice for removing tattoo ink that causes an allergic reaction.
Keep in mind that laser tattoo removal also carries a risk of complications. Consult with the Austin tattoo removal clinic and see if you need to take any precautions during the laser tattoo removal process, such as having an EpiPen on hand (just in case) or taking an antihistamine before the procedure.