At Nitai, we love to get technical and thoroughly explain the science behind cosmetic issues and their treatments. Just take a look back at our article on the science of a sunburn — it’ll remind you about a few things you learned in school.
We think it’s important that you understand what we do before you arrange a treatment, and we know that a lot of you feel the same way. So, today we’re bringing you the specifics on laser tattoo removal. Keep reading to find out exactly how permanent body art can become nothing but a memory.
Before we can dive into tattoo removal, we first have to understand the mechanics of the tattoo itself. Your skin is made up of several layers, and if you go to a licensed tattoo artist, the tattoo will be created by creating tiny ruptures in the skin’s top layer—the epidermis—and depositing pigment in the deep dermal layer of the skin.
Now, here’s what makes that image permanent: each time the needle ruptures the dermal layer of the skin, it creates a trauma site that your body immediately responds to in an effort to heal.
Like all traumas, an inflammatory process begins. Macrophages are the rescue cells, sent to eat up the pigment and stop the inflammation it’s causing. Technology wins out in this case, though, as there is simply too much pigment for those macrophages to clean up, and the excess dye is instead soaked up by regular skin cells that permanently reside in the dermal layer. The pigment lies trapped in those swollen macrophages and skin cells, showing through your thin epidermis and leaving your design visible for the world to see.
Until you want it gone.
The Laser Tattoo Removal Process
At Nitai, we use the Revlite system, the best laser tattoo removal option in Melbourne. A laser produces short pulses of incredibly concentrated and intense light. This light is capable of passing through your epidermis and reaching your dermal layer, and the light is completely harmless. It won’t burn your skin; that’s a common misconception about laser tattoo removal.
What it does do, though, is fragment the pigment trapped in your cells into tiny particles. The macrophages and other scavenger cells from your immune system then work to clean up those tiny particles. Your tattoo will gradually fade in the weeks following treatment as the tiny specks of pigment are systematically expelled from your dermal layer of skin.
If you’re curious what the experience is like, check out the videos on our website. For the most part, the laser feels like a rubber band snapping on your skin. The treatment only takes minutes, and most people have no side effects at all. It’s possible you might experience some dry skin, and the area will probably feel tender, similar to a sunburn, for a few days. It will hurt far less than the tattoo did.
The Complicating Factors
Most people require several sessions to completely remove their tattoo, and some tattoos will never become completely erased. Let’s take a look at why.
The laser uses different wavelengths to target specific colours in the tattoo, as certain pigment colours will not absorb—and therefore not become fragmented by—certain wavelengths. For example, black ink absorbs all laser wavelengths, making it the easiest colour to remove. However, green pigment only absorbs very select wavelengths and has to be targeted accordingly.
Also, keep in mind that there are nearly 100 different tattoo pigments on the market, meaning that each one is slightly different and responds to treatment differently. If your tattoo was done by an experienced professional, then it’s likely your pigment will be injected evenly, making it easier to remove. In the end, your tattoo will become considerably lighter, if not fade completely.
If you’re looking for a Melbourne tattoo removal option, look no further. Come on in to Nitai for experienced, professional and thorough treatment!