Laser Removal and Tattoo Cover-Ups

Frequently, we find during our consultations that instead of complete removal a client wants to have a particular tattoo covered up by another tattoo. Often, they are looking into laser removal because a cover-up would be difficult due to the presence of thick black lines or dark, heavy shading. Luckily, laser tattoo removal is perfectly designed to assist a tattoo artist in covering up difficult tattoos.

When one of our laser beams strikes a tattoo, the light is absorbed by the ink molecules within the skin. The laser light does not pass far beyond the first layer of ink particles because our lasers are tuned to be heavily absorbed by the ink we are targeting. Because our lasers remove tattoo ink in layers, our process can make your skin more receptive to the ink that you want, by removing the ink that you don’t.

We currently work with tattoo artists in St. Petersburg, Largo, Seminole, and Clearwater to provide clients with skin that is ready for the artwork that they deserve. If you’d like to learn more about the process, please call or click to schedule your free consultation!

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April Questions & Answers

Every time I take a new consultation, I learn more about what people think, believe, and wonder about laser tattoo removal. Because asking and answering questions is one of the best ways to learn, I thought I would take a couple of the questions I have been asked during consultations and answer them here.

Why does it take multiple sessions? (Asked by G.B. from Largo, FL)

There a many reasons that laser tattoo removal takes multiple sessions, but I focus on the two that are most important to me: safety and tattoo depth.

Laser tattoo removal works by breaking ink molecules into smaller pieces, which your body removes through the immune system. The top layer of skin and ink absorbs the energy from the laser, which is very important for the safety and health of your skin. If we were to use a higher energy laser pulse in order to remove more ink per session, we would be risking your skin health in the process.

Once we determine what a safe amount of energy is for the skin, we then begin to remove the ink layer by layer. Essentially, each removal session is removing one layer of ink. I use the analogy of the tattoo as a cake which must be eaten from top to bottom, instead of eating the cake in slices we would eat it in layers. If the tattoo artist puts the ink very deep into the skin, we have a larger cake that will take more sessions to be “eaten.”

How large of a tattoo can you do in one session? (Asked by K.F. from Pinellas Park, FL)

Another safety related question, the simple answer for K.F. is that we can do an area about the size of a sheet of paper per session, which is approximately 10 x 10 inches.

The reason that we can only do this much area is twofold. First, the ink that is treated by the laser must be removed from the skin by the body’s immune system. Ink is seen as an invader within the body, so when ink is removed the body may have a second immune response that is similar to when the tattoo was originally placed in the skin. If we try to remove too much ink at once, that immune response could cause a person to feel ill or overload the immune system.

Secondly, there is a small amount of energy absorbed by the skin every time we fire the laser. This energy does not do much per pulse, but the aggregate amount of energy absorbed could cause sunburn like effects when spread over a very large amount of skin. While a sunburn isn’t as bad as overloading the immune system, we still don’t want to cause damage to skin that will require multiple treatments for removal of an unwanted tattoo.

Thank you for taking the time to read a quick Q & A about laser tattoo removal! If you live in Largo, St. Petersburg, Seminole, Pinellas or the greater Tampa Bay area, please feel free to reach out to me with any further questions you might have or schedule your free consultation!

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Why Do We Use Three Wavelengths?

When we remove tattoos here at Evanesce, we use three wavelengths of light: 1064, 694, and 532.  Each wavelength carries a different amount of energy, and is used for different colors of ink.  The 1064 wavelength of light is outside the visible light spectrum, so unlike the other two wavelengths it does not have an associated color.  This makes the 1064 wavelength a multi-purpose laser that can be used to remove most of the colors of tattoo ink.

On the other hand, our lasers that use the 694 and 532 wavelengths are within the visible spectrum of light. These higher energy wavelengths come in two colors – the 694 wavelength is red and the 532 wavelength is blue-green.  These wavelengths are used to treat stubborn tattoo colors that are not easily removed by the 1064 laser.  A good example is a tattoo with light blue and light green ink.  Because ink absorbs light that is different from the color that it reflects, this means that energy from our 694 ruby red laser is heavily absorbed by these types of tattoo inks.  Between all three of our lasers, we can remove every color of ink in the spectrum.

The takeaway here is that laser tattoo removal requires the right tools for the right ink.  If you are considering getting your tattoo removed, here are a few questions you might like to ask at your consultation:

  • How many wavelengths of laser light do you use?
  • Which laser do you use for stubborn ink?
  • Can you remove all of the colors in my tattoo?
  • Which laser do you start with and why?

We hope that these questions will help you to better understand the process, and will also illustrate why we chose to purchase the full Astanza laser suite here at Evanesce Laser Tattoo Removal.  Thanks for reading!

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Pain and Laser Tattoo Removal

Let’s discuss the question that I am hearing the most – “How much does this hurt?”

It is a good, important question and it has a simple answer: it most often feels like a rubber band snapping the skin.  However, there is a more complicated answer that I would like to give to you.

Laser tattoo removal, much like tattooing itself, works on the dermis of your body’s skin.  The dermis is where your skin’s collagen fibers, nerves, sweat glands, and blood vessels live and function.  When you get a tattoo, the needle pushes the ink through your epidermis into your dermis where your nerves live, and that is why getting a tattoo is uncomfortable.

In order to remove the ink from your dermis, laser tattoo removal sends light energy down into the dermis to break up the large ink pigment molecules into smaller pieces.  The body can then absorb and remove those pieces over the course of several weeks.  Because the laser light heats and breaks up the molecules, there is a small amount of pain associated with this process.  In addition, there can be pain when the skin absorbs a small amount of the laser light into its own pigment.

The good news is that both of these sources of pain can be minimized.  Here at Evanesce, we use an additional technology called the Zimmer Cryo.  It pushes out super cooled air at -30 degrees Celsius.  This process both numbs the skin, and greatly reduces heat related damage to the skin.  This is why we feel comfortable telling potential patients that even though the process is not pain free, our technology makes it possible for anyone to experience laser tattoo removal at Evanesce.

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Grand Opening!

Grand Opening!

Thank you for visiting our website for Evanesce Laser!  We are so excited to have you as a visitor to our website!  Moreover, we appreciate the opportunity to tell you about our mission and show you our amazing laser tattoo removal technology and services.

That being said, we have some big news… our Grand Opening is November 2nd, 2018!  In honor of our grand opening, we want to offer a discount to the first 20 people who call to schedule a consultation between now and November 2nd.  When you call and mention this blog post during your consultation you will get an extra 10% off any treatment or treatment package that you choose to purchase!

Posted by evanescelaser