Regretting the tribal ink you got as a dare when you were a teenager? Not a fan of that band anymore? Need to make room for a more meaningful tattoo? For safe and effective laser tattoo removal in Buffalo, visit the Cosmetic Vein and Laser Center.
Considering Laser Tattoo Removal in Buffalo?
Tattoos are often beautiful reminders of your values, your passions, milestone events, and important people in your life. At the Cosmetic Vein and Laser Center in Buffalo, we know that tattoos are deeply personal and creative expressions of people’s personalities and lives. However, we also understand that you may want to remove your tattoos or at least make them less visible for a variety of reasons. Ask yourself:
Are Your Tattoos Affecting Your Career?
Do you find people looking askance at you when you go in for job interviews or annual reviews? The tattoo you got in your college days may not be appropriate to the professional environment.
Are Your Tattoos Affecting Your Relationships?
Is your tattoo a frequent subject of conflict at family gatherings or between you and your significant other? Consider whether tattoo removal would create a more peaceful atmosphere in your home.
Have Your Tattoos Faded or Blurred?
Tattoos fade naturally over time as skin cells are replaced and the pigments are exposed to UV light. If your tattoo is no longer a sharp, vibrant image, it might be better to remove it.
Have Your Tattoos Distorted?
Muscle building, sudden weight gain, sudden weight loss, and pregnancy can stretch or distort the appearance of your tattoo. You can have the tattoo removed or lightened so it can be updated or replaced.
Do Your Tattoos Fit Who You Are?
Life is change. You don’t have to be stuck with a reminder of a time, a relationship, or an experience that isn’t reflective of who you are today.
The dermatologists at Cosmetic Vein and Laser Center in Buffalo have the experience and advanced tattoo removal equipment to remove tattoos completely, lighten them, or erase just a part so tattoos can be revised or updated. Our goal is to help you achieve the look you want.
Don’t Try DIY Tattoo Removal
According to the FDA, the best and safest way to erase a tattoo is through professional laser tattoo removal by experienced dermatologists. Research has improved lasers so that most tattoos and ink colors can be removed and leave your skin healthy and unscarred. Other methods pose significant dangers.
Avoid Tattoo Removal Creams
The FDA has not approved any tattoo removal creams and consumers have been warned that these creams may contain powerful bleaching or chemical peeling agents that can burn or scar your skin without making a significant difference to the appearance of your tattoo.
Tattoo removal cream manufacturers claim that the creams work by bleaching away the tattoo pigments or by peeling away the epidermis (the surface layer of the skin). Unfortunately, tattoo inks are applied to deeper layers below the epidermis which these creams cannot reach without causing damage to your skin.
You may have seen YouTube videos for salabrasion, a process by which the tattoo is removed by sanding the skin repeatedly with table salt until the inked layers of skin peel off. The process is very painful and often results in scarring and infection without making sufficient difference to the visibility of the tattoo.
Don’t risk replacing your tattoo with scars. Choose FDA-approved laser tattoo removal in Buffalo by the board certified dermatologists at the Cosmetic Vein and Laser Center.
How Does Laser Tattoo Removal Work?
Laser tattoo removal harnesses the body’s own immune and lymphatic systems to remove the ink from your tattoo. Here’s how:
Breaking Up the Ink
Laser treatment breaks up the ink droplets in your skin into smaller particles that can be picked up by your immune system’s phagocytes. The Sinon Q-Switched Ruby laser and the PiQo4™ lasers we use for tattoo removal in Buffalo produce short bursts of intense light at wavelengths which are mostly absorbed by the ink and not by skin cells. The high energy in the light causes the ink particles to heat up, vibrate, and break apart while leaving surrounding skin cells intact.
Treating Multicolor Tattoos
Different pigments in the ink absorb different wavelengths of light, and the pigment must absorb the energy of the light to be broken up. Treatment of multicolored tattoos thus requires treatment with a variety of laser wavelengths.
Natural Waste Removal
Your immune system’s phagocytes surround and absorb the smaller ink particles and move them to the lymph nodes. The lymphatic system then has the job of removing the ink particles from the body through excretion. It can take up to six weeks after each appointment for your body to remove all the ink particles loosened by one treatment session.
One Layer at a Time
A good tattoo artist will place ink at various depths in the dermis to achieve a detailed image. Laser treatment is done layer by layer. When the ink from the topmost layer has been flushed out, we can treat the next layer.
Since we are working with a natural process, laser tattoo removal is done gradually, at six-week intervals over a period of time.
How Long Does Tattoo Removal Take?
Usually, it takes four to twelve sessions, spaced about six weeks apart, to remove a tattoo. Many factors, including the size, color, location, age, and type of tattoo, affect the speed of tattoo removal. Your general health is another significant factor. Let’s consider each of these individually.
Professional or Amateur Tattoo?
We can remove many kinds of tattoos. However, tattoos that were done by a professional will take longer to remove than one applied by a novice. Professional tattoo artists are able to achieve more vivid, detailed results because of the density and concentration of the ink they apply. Amateur body art usually has less ink and takes fewer sessions to remove.
How Big Is Your Tattoo?
A larger tattoo will take more sessions to remove than a smaller tattoo. Moreover, if you’ve layered a new tattoo over an older one, there will be a higher density of ink to remove.
What Colors Are in Your Tattoo?
Different colors can be treated with different laser wavelengths. However, treatment usually targets black ink first. Then the laser is modified to deal with the colors in the red-orange part of the spectrum and modified again to target blue-green inks. We deal with different colors over multiple sessions.
Where Is the Tattoo Located?
Because your body’s own systems must collect the treated ink particles for excretion, tattoos located closer to the core of the body and the heart take less time to remove than those on the extremities. A tattoo on your chest, for instance, will fade more quickly than one on your lower legs.
How Old Is Your Tattoo?
A tattoo that has naturally faded as skin cells died off and got replaced over the years will usually take fewer sessions to remove than a new one because there is less ink. However, if regret sets in quickly after you get a new tattoo, we can remove it once your skin has healed from the tattoo application. You will probably need to wait at least a month to begin removal of a new tattoo.
How Healthy Are You?
Smokers may find that it takes longer for the tattoos to fade following their laser appointments because smoking affects the circulatory system and the rate at which the body can collect and excrete the ink droplets.
While all these factors affect the number of sessions that may be required to remove a tattoo, if you’re patient and follow aftercare instructions, you should be able to achieve the results you want.
What to Expect at Your Appointment
When you come in for laser tattoo removal in Buffalo, you will have an initial consultation when we will discuss your medical history, examine the tattoo you want removed, and develop a treatment plan. This is a good time for you to ask questions so you can make an informed decision about laser tattoo removal and other options available at our clinic.
At your laser appointments, you will be given goggles to protect your eyes from the intense light of the laser. If you need it, a local anesthetic, applied topically, may help you feel more comfortable during treatment. You will also have a cooling device available to apply as needed. Most people find that tattoo removal causes much less discomfort than the original tattoo application.
Usually, we begin with lower laser settings to make sure we know how your skin responds to the laser. You should begin to see your tattoo fading after two to three sessions.
Aftercare for Effective Tattoo Removal
Just as you had to care for your tattoo when it was first applied, you do have to care for your skin as you progress through laser tattoo removal. The removal process will be more effective and more comfortable if you follow the instructions we give you for aftercare.
Keep the Area Clean and Dry
If your doctor applies a bandage immediately after your session, keep the area bandaged with a thin layer of antibiotic ointment for the first few days. Wash the skin when necessary and keep it clean with antibacterial soap.
Keep the Skin Cool
We will recommend a soothing cream to apply after laser treatment. If you feel some discomfort following treatment, you can apply a cool compress to the treated area. Some patients find a dose of Tylenol during the first 24 hours helps to reduce any discomfort after treatment. Avoid aspirin since it can increase the potential of bleeding or bruising.
Keep the Circulation Moving
Moderate exercise, such as a half-hour’s walk, can help your circulatory and lymphatic systems work more effectively in removing the ink from your body. Drinking plenty of water will also help your body flush ink and toxins out, so stay hydrated! You should avoid very strenuous activities or contact sports while your skin is healing.
Protect the Area from Sun
Following treatment, you may feel like you have a mild sunburn. Protect your skin from actual sunburn by keeping the treated area covered.
Wear Loose Clothing
Following your appointment, wear loose clothing that doesn’t rub on or irritate the treated area. Wear clothing without tags if you are having a tattoo removed from your neck.
Stick to the Schedule
For the fastest results, keep to the schedule for follow-up appointments.
Professional Laser Tattoo Removal in Buffalo
For over 20 years, The Cosmetic Vein and Laser Center has specialized in cosmetic laser surgery and cosmetic dermatology, all delivered in a serene environment where patient safety, comfort, and satisfaction are our highest priorities. Our entire team of dermatologists, physicians’ assistants, nurses, estheticians, and administrative staff works together to help you look and feel your best. Schedule a consultation at the Cosmetic Vein and Laser Center in Buffalo, NY today!