Unwanted Tattoos FAQs

General FAQs
  • Q1 :

    How do I remove my unwanted tattoo?

  • In order to remove a tattoo without a scar, a Q-Switched laser must be used. The term Q-Switched indicates that the laser is pulsed so quickly (billionths of a second) that it is able to dissolve the ink without destroying the live tissue in the process. Similar to running your hand over a candle very quickly, there's not enough time to burn the skin. There are only three types of Q-Switched lasers used for tattoo removal: Q-Switched Ruby (red light), Q-Switched Yag (infrared & green light) and Q-Switched Alexandrite (purple/red light). The reason for the three types of lasers is because they respond differently to different colors of ink.
  • Q2 :

    How does the laser work?

  • The lasers deliver very short pulses of high intensity light into the treated area. The tattoo inks and pigments then selectively absorb the light without destroying the normal surrounding skin tissue in the process. The tattoo is dissolved into smaller ink particles that are harmlessly removed by the body's immune system in the weeks following treatment.
  • Q3 :

    How many treatments will it require?

  • Removing a professionally applied tattoo is usually a fading process that requires a series of treatments spaced approximately 5-6 weeks apart. Professional tattoos usually require 5-10 treatments for complete clearing. The black-colored inks usually respond quicker then the bright-colored inks because they absorb the light better. The depth, color and amount of ink, as well as the location of the tattoo on your body are all determining factors in how long and how quick we will be able to remove your tattoo. Most amateur or otherwise known as "street tattoos" are removed in only 2-5 treatments scheduled about 4-5 weeks apart.
  • Q4 :

    Does this process cause scarring?

  • Very rarely have any scars been seen while utilizing this process. Providing state of the art technology helps ensure patients that the risk of scarring is dramatically reduced. There have been occasions where some lighter or darker colored pigment persists from the tattoo site, but normally after the course of treatments is complete, the treated area is usually indistinguishable from normal surrounding skin.
  • Q5 :

    Will my tattoo be removed completely?

  • Yes, in most cases tattoos can be completely removed. Though there are many factors involved in completely removing unwanted tattoos. The depth, density and types of colors are probably the biggest determining factors. After each treatment we fragment a little bit more ink and a little deeper into your skin, blistering and scabbing often follows for a week or two. We see some tattoos disappear within 2-3 treatments, as well as in some cases seeing tattoos requiring 8-10 or more treatments for complete removal. Taking care of the treated area is the most important factor in removing a tattoo without a scar. It can be said that the better you take care of the area treated the better the results.
  • Q6 :

    Is the process painful?

  • Most or our patients say that the laser treatment feels like being snapped by a rubber band and that the discomfort is roughly equivalent to having a tattoo put on. Almost all of our patients are able to resume their normal activities immediately following treatment.
  • Q7 :

    What about lightening an existing tattoo?

  • Many tattoo artists encourage customers to receive a minimum number of laser treatments to lighten an existing tattoo before covering it with a new one. This will dramatically reduce any chance of the old tattoo appearing through the new one. In most cases, a minimum of 2-4 treatments is all that's required in lightening an existing tattoo.