Laser tattoo removal works by using the energy in laser light to break apart the ink molecules in the tattoo. Our lasers are carefully developed to deliver a very very short burst of energy, enough to fragment the ink but not enough to damage the skin. Much of the fragmented ink is then removed by the bodies own white blood cells causing the tattoo to fade. Repeated treatments with the laser break down more and more of the remaining ink until the tattoo fades away. That’s the basics. If you want to know more detail then try our FAQs.
So how will we remove your tattoo?
Well we need to meet you and your tattoo – this will be your initial assessment. This is your chance to check that laser tattoo removal is right for you and your tattoo. Your initial assessment will cost £25, paid at the time of booking.
The Initial assessment will be carried out by a doctor or nurse and involves checking:
We’ll run through your past and current medical history as there are some medical conditions and some medications that mean there are more risks of complications with laser treatment. It may even be that you have a medical condition that means we suggest you don’t have laser treatment. There are some uncommon but important possible side effects or complications you need to know about and we’ll discuss these and any other questions you have.
Discussing your medical history, medication and possible side effects is very important to safe treatment and one of the reasons why we think you should have your treatment with a medically qualified practitioner
There are some uncommon but important possible complications or side effects you need to know about and we’ll discuss these.
We will then look at your tattoo and talk about where you got it, who did it, what kind of inks were used and any skin reactions you might have had when the tattoo was first done. We will talk about the importance of sun exposure pre and post treatment. We can then talk about what you want to aim for – reducing for a tattoo cover up or a ‘complete’ removal of all or part of the tattoo.
We will give you a fixed price cost for removal – this will depend on the size, colour and location of your tattoo. The larger your tattoo, the more colours it has in it and the further away it is from your heart, the more sessions it is likely to take and this will be reflected in the price. See our Cost page for further details.
If you are happy to go ahead with laser treatment then we will patch test you. This is an important pre treatment test of how your tattoo will react to the laser. We will laser several spots on the tattoo – particularly areas of different colour with different lasers and adjust the laser to get a ‘good response’ – we use these settings when we start full treatment. If your tattoo is very small then we can treat the whole tattoo for the first time at this assessment but ideally after the patch test we wait at least a week to see the response to the patch test. Doing it this way gives you the best value for money.
Laser tattoo removal does hurt – the more powerful the laser the more energy it packs so the more pain it causes. So we have a simple way of dealing with that – local anaesthetic. Exactly the same as would be used for minor skin surgery or dental treatment. Does sting a bit as it goes in but nothing like the laser. Being numb allows us to treat your unloved ink at a higher energy level. So better all round.
Once you’ve had your patch test you can go home and decide over the next few days and weeks if you are ready to remove you tattoo. If so then book your first full treatment. We’ll give you a pre lasering advice sheet to take home. The initial assessment takes approximately 60 minutes. It’s the best opportunity to ask about anything you haven’t understood while reading this website.
Each full treatment session involves a quick review of your medical history in case anything has changed and answering any questions you might have. We will then review your tattoo and the settings used at the last treatment or patch test. Once the new treatment plan is agreed we’ll crack on with the anaesthetising the skin then lasering. The treatment itself is really pretty quick – these sessions should last less than 30 minutes. Once the treatment is finished the area will be numb for typically 4-6 hours. Next day the skin feels like its been sunburnt but this will settle over a few days. We will give you a written after-care plan including advice on common side effects and how to get in touch if you’re worried about anything.” If you feel you are having a problem with the skin after treatment then contact us and we will try and see you as soon as possible. As medical professionals we are used to seeing skin reactions and will be able to advise you whether we feel you have a ‘normal’ skin reaction to the treatment or, rarely an infection.
Tattoo removal with lasers continues to be researched and we will update you as we hear about the latest advances.