Tattoo Removal Scars: Everything You Need to Know

Did you know, 17% of people who get tattoos later regret at least one of them? In the grand scheme of things, that’s a lot of people who would rather not have that tattoo anymore.

When it comes to tattoo removal, there are plenty of misconceptions about whether or not the procedure leaves a scar. We’re here to dispel those myths! When done professionally, it can honestly be like nothing ever happened. 

Keep reading to get a sense of what impacts tattoo removal scars and the process of having your tattoo removed.

Do You Need to Live With Tattoo Removal Scars?

A common misconception is that after the ink has faded from a tattoo removal procedure you will be left with scarring and bumpy, lumpy skin. 

While it is a fair question to ask whether or not laser removal will have lasting effects on your skin, it’s also not fair to assume they’re the reason scarring may occur. 

We’ll go into more depth on that later, but we can answer this big question right off the bat. Laser tattoo removal is not likely to leave a lasting and unsightly scar.

That being said, leave the procedure in the hands of professionals to get the best results. Choosing the right people to do the work for you will minimize any chance of scarring you may have.

There is the possibility, however, of a ‘ghost’ of the tattoo remaining, which is a paler area of skin that has lost some pigmentation. In most cases, your complexion will heal itself. It’s also possible the laser treatment won’t be able to get rid of the ink completely, leaving a very fine trace of what was once there. 

This doesn’t bother most of our clients and they are all happy with their end results, even if a ghost of the tattoo remains.

How Many Sessions Are Required?

Ultimately the number of sessions you will need will entirely depend on the size of your tattoo. Other elements may include the strength of your immune system, the type of ink used, and how sensitive your skin is. These will all factor into the overall time required to completely remove the tattoo.

Plenty of people believe all tattoo inks are made equal but that’s simply not true. Colors like purple, aqua blue, and yellow are more challenging to remove

If you have colors other than black and red in your tattoo, or if they are larger than 30 square centimeters, the process of having your tattoo removed will invariably be longer. Having tattoos on your feet and legs that are more than three years old will also affect the number of sessions required. 

Plenty of surprising things can influence this number. And, interestingly, a smoker will have a lower chance of successful tattoo removal. This is because laser removal works by breaking up the dye in the skin. Smoking can slow down this process because it blocks the body’s immune system to a fairly significant degree. 

That’s not to say we can’t get rid of your tattoos for you. You may just need a bit more time.

What Affects Scarring and Pain?

Tattooing itself is an invasive process. Because of that, it’s far more likely to be the culprit behind any scarring you may see. The primary factor in this is the experience level of your artist.

While some artists are careful and considerate of the skin and don’t inflict lasting damage, others may tattoo too deeply or roughly. This will inevitably leave a visible scar after tattoo removal.

It’s likely the original design of the tattoo hid some of the damage. So even if you didn’t notice the scarring before, laser removal will bring it to the forefront.

What to Expect From a Laser Tattoo Removal

While laser removal can cause some discomfort, for most people it’s not nearly as painful as getting the tattoo in the first place. Some people opt to apply a numbing cream prior to the session but this is a personal decision. 

Additionally, some areas of the body are more sensitive than others. The skin on the wrist and neck, for example, is more sensitive than the shoulders or legs.

What to Do After Laser Removal

As with getting the tattoo, the healing process after laser tattoo removal is a vulnerable time for your skin. Handle your skin with care! 

You’re likely to experience some minor swelling and tenderness after each session, perhaps even some redness. This is all a very normal part of the procedure. There may also be some blistering and bleeding, depending on the depth of the laser treatment.

With the right care, this shouldn’t have any lasting effect.

Scarring is more likely to occur if the aftercare instructions are not followed. You must keep the area clean and covered to avoid problems. Picking at your skin during the healing process will also significantly increase the odds of a scar developing. 

Avoid tight clothing and exposure to direct sunlight and keep the site clean! You’ll be well on your way to having perfectly healed skin and the tattoo nothing but a distant memory.

It’s All Personal

Scars tell a story, that’s true. However, sometimes we don’t want those stories in our lives anymore. Perhaps you got a tattoo that no longer represents your ideals in life, or you’re just not vibing with it anymore.

That’s where laser treatment comes in. Especially if you don’t want to walk away with tattoo removal scars.

If you’re interested in learning more about what we do, head on over to our blog to get the latest news and updates.