How Does Laser Tattoo Removal Work?

Laser Tattoo Removal

Tattoos are for life – or are they? Modern treatments for tattoo removal are better than ever, so if you want to refresh your skin by removing unwanted tattoos, then you may want to consider laser tattoo removal at Perfect Skin Center in Scottsdale, AZ. Learn everything you need to know about this treatment before you schedule your consultation.

How Does Laser Tattoo Removal Work?

To put it simply, laser tattoo removal works by using the thermal energy generated by laser technology to break up tattoo pigment in the skin. Over time, your body’s immune response will eliminate damaged ink and the superficial appearance of your skin will be restored. The RevLite laser used at our clinic can effectively remove tattoos without leaving any “ghost” of the tattoo behind. Some steps of your treatment will include:

Preparing Your Skin

To ensure your treatment is comfortable, your skin will be prepped by applying a local numbing cream. Although the laser treatment is designed to be safe for your skin, the sensation of the treatment may feel similar to snapping rubber bands or may feel similar to getting the tattoo originally. For some, it can make the experience more comfortable to numb the skin before each appointment.

Laser Treatment

The laser portion of your appointment will likely take about 30 to 60 minutes. The RevLite laser will deliver high-energy wavelengths to remove tattoos with less heat, but with more power than other lasers. The special technology in this laser can remove tattoos with up to 60% more power than other systems.

Pigment Elimination

When the thermal energy from the laser treatment detects the pigment in your tattoo, it emits a high pulse of energy that breaks apart pigment layer by layer. As the pigment is broken up within the dermal layers of your skin, it will gradually be eliminated through your body’s immune system. Your immune response will gradually carry away broken pigment from the skin as the skin sheds surface skin cells.

How Many Treatments Do You Need?

In general, you’ll need quite a few treatments to fully remove a professional tattoo. Most people will need a range of six to 15 treatments to completely remove an unwanted tattoo.

Of course, the number of treatments you need for your tattoo removal will be determined by several factors, such as where the tattoo is located, the age of the tattoo, and even the type of ink that is used for your body art. Let’s break down some of the factors that will determine how many treatments you will need.

Why It May Be Easier to Remove Old Tattoos

As a general rule, older tattoos are easier to remove than newer tattoos. This is because new tattoos have fresh ink that is more resistant to laser treatment. Older tattoos, on the other hand, will likely have ink that has naturally faded over the years and is easier to remove with laser treatments.

If you have a newer tattoo that you want to remove, then you will likely need to wait at least six months after getting the tattoo to have any laser treatments. This is because your skin needs to be fully healed to have laser treatment, and also because the pigment of your body art will have faded somewhat over six months.

Why It May Be Faster to Remove Grayscale Tattoos

Tattoos that are done in grayscale or black ink are also much easier to remove than colorful tattoos. This is because of the different chemicals and oxides that are used to create tattoo pigments. Colorful tattoos, such as blue, green, and yellow, typically have pigment chemicals that respond less readily to laser treatments.

Additionally, the natural tone of your skin may also affect how easily certain pigments are removed. This is because the laser treatment works best when there is a high contrast between your skin tone and the pigment of the ink, so if you have very light skin and pastel colors in your tattoo, it may be moderately more difficult to remove your unwanted tattoo.

Why It May Be Quicker to Remove Small Tattoos

It’s also faster to remove small tattoos than large tattoos. This is a matter of surface area. Small tattoos will take fewer treatments to remove because they cover less skin and use less pigment, whereas larger tattoos cover a larger area and use more pigment that will require more treatments to adequately address all areas of the tattoo.

How Should You Prepare for Treatment?

Preparing for your laser treatment is important, as you want to ensure that your skin is in good condition to withstand the energy of the laser and to promote faster healing. For that reason, you may be asked to reschedule or postpone your treatment if you have a sunburn, psoriasis, dermatitis, or any other skin condition.

You should also prepare your skin for treatment by avoiding other laser treatments for at least two weeks, such as laser hair removal. Additionally, you will need to avoid direct contact with the sun for at least two weeks before your appointment, as this greatly reduces the risk of skin damage and hyperpigmentation. If you are outside, you should wear SPF 30 to 40 to protect your skin from UV rays.

Will You Have Aftercare Guidelines?

You will likely have several aftercare guidelines you will need to follow to ensure your skin recovers as intended from the laser tattoo removal treatment. For example, you may have instructions to avoid excessive sweating and excessive heat for at least one week after your treatment. This means that you will not be able to engage in intense cardiovascular exercise, outdoor activities, hot showers, saunas, or hot tubs.

Caring for Skin

It’s very important to care for your skin well after your treatment, as laser treatments may cause the skin to become dry. Many studies show that when skin is moisturized, it is more healthy and more likely to heal quickly. You may be instructed to use simple moisturizers such as CeraVe or Aquaphor during your recovery period. You may also be instructed to use aloe vera gel or other skin-soothing products to protect your skin and enhance healing.

Protecting Skin

In addition to moisturizers, you will need to continue protecting your skin from potentially harmful sunlight for at least two to four weeks after your treatment. You should be sure to apply SPF 30 to 40 to any treatment area each day, even if you don’t plan to be outside.

How Soon Will You See Results?

It will likely take several months for you to see any significant results from your laser tattoo removal treatment. This is because it will take several weeks for your body to eliminate pigment from the skin. Most people will be able to see early results about three to six months after their initial appointments. You may not be able to fully remove a tattoo for at least 12 months.

Why Should You Consider This Treatment?

There are several reasons why people consider tattoo removal. For example, some people may want to get a new tattoo in the same area of the body, so using a laser treatment that can fully or partially remove the tattoo can open up a new canvas on the skin. Other people may want to fully remove tattoos to have a fresh start, such as those who are working in certain occupations.

Other reasons you may want to remove a tattoo can include tattoo errors, such as misspelling, damages to the tattoo that can’t be corrected, or outgoing the sentimental value of a tattoo.

Are You a Good Candidate?

You are likely a good candidate for laser tattoo removal because the treatment can be customized to suit the precise needs of your skin type and the tattoo you want to remove. This particular laser is designed to remove stubborn tattoos without causing skin damage. You’ll need to schedule a consultation to assess whether this laser treatment is a good option for you.

Give Your Skin a Fresh Start With Laser Tattoo Removal

If you want to remove an unwanted tattoo for any reason, then a laser tattoo removal treatment can be a good option. Modern treatments to remove tattoos are easy on the skin and more effective than ever. You will still likely need at least six to 15 treatments to fully remove a tattoo. Please contact Perfect Skin Center in Scottsdale, AZ today to schedule your consultation.


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2177 E Warner Road, Suite #105
Tempe, AZ 85284

Phone: 480-418-8277


115 N Scottsdale Road, Suite #2
Scottsdale, AZ 85250

Phone: 480-418-8277