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Tattoo removal FAQ's

How does tattoo removal work?

"laser" originated as an  acronym for "light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation".[

A laser incorporating q switched technology creates short pulses of light energy.

The ink in your tattoo absorbs this energy, shattering it into to tiny fragments which are removed by your immune system.


How many treatments will I need ?

A number of factors will influence this usually around 3 to 6,  ask your laser practitioner for more information

Before after and during photos

photos courtesy of Antanza Laser College
How many Sessions will it take to remove my tattoo?

Results vary between clients and removing your tattoo may take more or less treatments, depending on a number of variables.
  • age of tattoo
  • physical activity
  • health of client
  • depth of ink
  • location on body
  • damage of skin from tattooing
  • amount and type of ink used in the tattoo
  • other factors
How Painful is Laser Tattoo Removal ?

This depends on several factors, the main ones being 
  • type of ink used in tattoo
  • how thick the ink is
  • your pain tolerance
  • health and medications
Our Registered Nurse uses a few methods to control and minimize pain
  •  ice packs before, during and after the laser treatments which help a great deal
  • our laser strength can be turned down so together we can set a treatment frequency that is ok for you pain wise and provides a good removal result
  • most clients tell us its about the same as getting a tattoo
  • we can divide the tattoo up and do small sessions rather than it all at once
  • some medications can make your skin more sensitive to the laser treatment, that is why we do a comprehensive medical questionnaire and get our Registered Nurse to access this before treatment
  • we also have an excellent cream to put on as soon as you have finished your removal that cools, calms and soothes.
We want you to succeed with your removal, the first treatment is always the worst because of the amount and thickness of ink.

What does the Pain feel Like?

  • Most clients describe it as a hot feeling, some say a burning feeling.
  • The occasional person thinks it feels like a tattoo being done.
  • This is why the ice packs are so effective we can numb the area before hand and stop any burning during and after the treatment.  
Will the Laser remove the hair around my tattoo?

No the laser we have does not remove hair.

Hair removal lasers should not be used for tattoo removal.
Hair removal lasers (IPL) are nowhere near as effective for tattoo removal and there is more risk of scarring with those types of lasers.
What is the pain like after the removal?
  • most clients tell us its a cross between a new tattoo and sunburn, which goes away after the skin cream is applied.
  • there can be the odd blister, bruising and swelling that is a little painful. If you do experience these you will find they subside very quickly usually within 24 hours  

What side effects will I experience?

The laser will cause a reaction in your skin, and your body's immune system will respond to remove the shattered ink.
  • You are likely to see redness, swelling, and experience tenderness.
  • Some clients will have the odd blisters and scabbing as the skin heals.
  • Most clients describe it as a cross between a bad sunburn and a new tattoo

In darker skinned clients you may see your skin get lighter or darker as the healing progresses in the treated area, this is usually a temporary thing but healing times do vary.


How often can I have Laser Treatments?

  • A series of treatments at 6 week intervals will see your tattoo fade away returning your skin to its original condition.

Am I a good candidate for Laser Tattoo Removal?

  • All skin types can be treated, although dark skin may require some extra care.
  • Your practitioner will conduct a basic medical history to access you.
  • Clients that are pregnant or breast feeding are excluded.
  • Clients on some medications will be excluded.
  • If you have an active sunburn or some other medical conditions you may be exclude please contact us for more details.

Will there be scarring?

In most cases no, there may be some discolouration that gradually heals over time.

Occasionally the tattooist may have scarred you at the time of tattoo, this you can often feel before commencing laser treatment, if we think this is the case we will inform you  

If you are worried about this, talk to us about Bioptron light therapy to help heal.

Can you tattoo over an area that has been treated with a laser?
  • Yes
A lot of tattoo artists prefer when doing cover up work to remove/ lighten the old tattoo first. We have 2 wonderful examples of this in our before and after page.
  • But do wait at least 6 weeks after your last laser treatment and make sure the skin looks healthy and normal
If you have any concerns about this come and talk to our staff.
Are there any colours that are more difficult to remove?
  • Red can often take quite some treatments to go, we have a special laser tip for dealing with reds.
  • Some black removes very easily, other Japanese type blacks take longer but can be removed
  • White is full of metallic pigments and does shift but can leave traces behind
  • Blue can be difficult often we can lighten it but there are still traces of it there. Technology is moving rapidly and there are new laser tips being made for blues, when they are released we will be getting one.

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