[quote=linneybaby] First heads up, do NOT use a laser designed for hair removal on your tattoo. Often times it can make it worse and harder to remove. The lasers are not the same. I am going next Tuesday for my 1st of hopefully only 8 laser treatments. Laser tattoo removal is ultimately the BEST way to go. Most effective and least chance of scarring. However, the downside of being able to remove what was meant to be FOREVER is that it is more painful (so I hear, but I will know for sure first hand next week), more expensive and takes a heck of a lot more time to remove, than the actual tattoo itself! But if its eventually completey earased, it will be worth it. I cant put a price on that! So really its kind of like whats more important to you? How bad do you want to be able to wake up one day and not see that tattoo?
I have gone to a few places that specialize in tattoo removal for consultations before picking a place to have the removal done because at this point Im a huge skeptic. The tattoo I want removed is on my wrist and is about 3"X5" and is black and red. Lucky for me because black, red and dark blues are the most identifiable by the lasers. Flesh color and neon colors cant be picked up by the lasers. Although I have been told that Im a perfect candidate to be able to achieve complete removal, Im still not expecting miracles. My worst fear is that there will be ghosting or shadowing. That scared me a bit becasue Id much rather have a vibrant and good looking tattoo than one that looks all old and faded. But after lots of hard thinking I believe Im making the right decision. Im willing to make the commitment to get this removed!
I dont know how much research you have done, but there are a few factors that go along with achieving the best results. The lighter your skin color the better. The darker the ink the better. Also placement. You have better blood circulation above your heart, so the neck and head usually have better results than the lower body. The laser doesnt actually get rid of the tattoo. The ink particles are too large for the body to absorb and get rid of, so the laser breaks up the ink underneath the skin. For the next few weeks after the treatment your body will get rid of it naturally through the blood. So with every treatment your breaking up more and more of the ink. So another factor is your immune system. The healthier you are the better your body will be able to rid the ink. At every consultation Ive asked if there was ever a point that the laser will quit breaking up the ink and they all told me that "As long as the laser can recognize the ink, it will continue to break it up." Which is where being fair complected comes in handy.
As far as the pain goes, its been described as a bad sunburn or hot bacon grease. Some say it just feels like your being popped by a rubberband. But just like the tattoo the pain stops when the laser stops. The treatments are super quick. Try watching some videos on youtube. Youd be surprised how quickly they can be done. But theyre are ways of keeping the pain down. Numbing creams, ice packs or cold air. For some of the really big tattoos they actually will give you injections to numb the area. Ive heard the worst part of the whole process is the itching. Which theres stuff you can be put on it to relieve the itching.
Sorry to make this such a long reply, but there is really so much information on the subject. Perhaps you just need to go to a consultation somewhere and quiz them over every detail. Like I said my treatments start Tuesday, June 7th and then I will have another one every 4-6 weeks after that. I also plan to start a blog, so that people who are in the same situation and maybe made a stupid mistake whether they regretted it 2 hours later or 20 years later, can see that there may be a way to just earase it all. They can follow along through the good, the bad and probably pretty disgusting at times.
Sorry again for making you read all of this! If you have any questions Ill definitely do my best to answer them for you or help you find answers. [/quote]
This is a pretty long post but an informative one!