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By Dave McKenzie 30 Jun, 2017

Interesting question, the answer is; it depends. It depends on your objective and how long you want to wait to meet your objective. Lets start with the reality of average tattoo removal timeframe. The average tattoo will take a year to remove, some will be faster and some will be slower (depending on the quality of the ink, location of the tattoo, the colors of ink, the darkness of the ink etc.) but, you need to internalize that 8 treatments 6 weeks apart = approximately a year. So, if that is where we are starting then you need to decide if your priority is getting the tattoo off as fast as possible or, are you willing to extend the timing to avoid using sun screen.

It doesn’t matter when you start, you’re going to be getting treatments in the summer unless you stop treatments during the summer months and start again after summer. Most people are eager to get the unwanted ink removed but don’t want to miss the summer fun. It’s not as hard as you may think… you need to keep your tattoo covered for a few days following treatment and, after that, apply sun screen when you’re in the sun. You should apply sun screen to every part of your body that is exposed to the sun but, we are only concerned with the tattoo itself.

In summary, if you can apply sun screen to the tattoo in question than getting treated through the summer is the fastest way to get your tattoo removed. If you’re willing to extend the process and take the summer off from tattoo removal, it’s all about choice.
By Alexis Mintz 25 Aug, 2016

It’s probably safe to say that black is the most common color in tattoos. Even if a tattoo is colorful, there is probably black ink in the outline. This also means that black is one of the most common pigments targeted in laser tattoo removal, and even though the laser is designed to target and break up that ink, it can be a frustrating process for those expecting to see immediate results, and you could be asking yourself “Why isn’t my black ink fading?” Here are some things to keep in mind:

It’s working!
Remember, lasers used for tattoo removal were designed for this! The Picosure laser in particular employs sophisticated top-of the-line technology. Not only is it great at fading tattoo ink, it is the most modern piece of tattoo removal equipment available. Plus, if you’re working on removing a black tattoo, the technician will use a wavelength (755) that specifically targets black ink. Sit back relax and let the laser do the work it was meant to do.

How black ink is deposited by your artist:
It’s important to understand that when a tattoo artist is creating the outline of your tattoo, the ink is deposited deeper into the skin than with shading. Those lines act as a barrier, which keep other ink in the tattoo from blurring or fading. Overall, black ink is heavier and denser and more likely to stay put. It is meant to be a bold part of the artistry, and bolder means stronger. This means that you may need a session or two more than you would need with non-black tattoos. An amateur artist may deposit ink deeper into the skin than it should be, which may cause a need for more treatments as well. On the other hand, if your ink is not professional grade, it may fade after just a few treatments.

Thicker to thinner.
The thickness and density of your tattoo matter, because those layers can get pretty deep, and the laser will penetrate to the depth of the targeted pigment. Basically, your black tattoo will “thin out” in layers, and because black is so dense, it’s difficult to see those layers fading away. Many people notice that the edges of their black tattoos are the first to show signs of “chipping”. Once those layers of ink have been thinned out enough, the ink will break up and there will be a noticeable dispersion of pigment.

There’s more than one way to get it done.
Tattoo Removal is an art form in its own way. There are different ways to combat black ink and your technician may use a combination of techniques to help move the process along. Switching to a smaller or larger spot size after a few treatments may be necessary in some cases. You are one of a kind and your technician will manage your settings according to your tattoo and skin characteristics.

Be realistic.
This goes for tattoos of all colors shapes and sizes: Tattoo removal is a process that requires commitment. Communicating with your technician or tattoo removal consultant about what you expect from your treatment is important. Maybe you want to fade your tattoo just enough to get a cover up tattoo over it. Talk to your technician about what he or she believes is the best possible outcome of your treatment plan.

Be patient.
The “thinning out” of your black tattoo is happening at a microscopic level. You may not be able to see it, but if your tattoo is being treated with the correct settings and parameters, changes are happening! It may take up to 3 or 4 treatments to see changes. Of course, everyone is different and one size does not fit all with tattoo removal. Track your progress and stick to your recommended treatment schedule. Results are on the way.

By Alexis Mintz 30 Jun, 2016

Age spots are known by a variety of names including liver spots, sun spots, solar sentigo and senile freckles. They’re typically light brown blemishes on the skin caused by ultraviolet radiation over a long period of time. The spots are typically located in areas that are most often exposed to the sun hands, forearms, face and chest.

Although age spots are not caused by the aging process, they tend to start forming in people around the age of 40 as sun exposure compounds over time and the skin loses its ability to regenerate from the compounding effects.

This results in the accumulation of aged basal cells that form a flat brown spot. The condition is completely benign, but the spots are often considered an unattractive and unwanted sign of age.

There are a number of ways to remove age spots, including cryotherapy, topical acid peels and laser treatments. At LaserFocus, we specialize in removing unwanted pigment/blemishes using the Picosure laser with the Focus Lens Array. The Lens Array re-targets the laser pulse into hundreds of small laser pulses at different depths that lift the brown spot to the surface where it will slough off. In addition to removing age spots the laser encourages collagen and elastin production which makes you skin respond like it did years ago.

Unlike most places, LaserFocus can treat just your age spot(s), or we can address complete areas like the face, chest, hands, etc., if you prefer.

To learn more about our laser treatment procedure for age spots,  tattoo-removal-austin-tx   and schedule your free consultation.

By Alexis Mintz 25 May, 2016

One thing is certain, no one is going to say on their website that they don’t have the best available technology. Every tattoo removal website says they have the newest, best, and greatest technology in the industry. So, how does a potential consumer determine what is true and what is rhetoric (salesmanship). The answer is, you’re going to need to do your own research and find impartial perspective from professionals.

 

One of our Austin based competitors has recommended  www.realself.com  as an impartial source of information on tattoo removal technology. That competitor says to go to Real Self and you’ll find that doctors and other professionals recommend Q-switch (Nanosecond) technology over Picosecond technology. I agree that Real Self is a good data source that offers the opinion of healthcare professionals. However, the overwhelming opinion on Real Self is that  Picosecond technology is the newest and most effective technology available .

 

At Laser Focus Tattoo Removal we encourage clients to do their own research. Investigate when Q-Switch technology was FDA approved and when Picosecond technology received FDA approval.  You’ll see which technology is the latest version. When you read that a wavelength of 1064nm is the best wavelength to remove black ink, you need to read on. 1064nm is the best wavelength IF you are using a nanosecond laser. However, if you have Picosecond technology, then a wavelength of 755nm is optimal. Because a Picosecond laser pulses up to 100x faster than Nanosecond lasers, we can lower the wavelength which increases the power. It has to do with the amount of time that the tissue has to recover between pulses, the faster the pulse (Pulse Duration) the longer the tissue has to recover between pulses and the lower the wavelength can be (the technical term is Thermal Relaxation Time or TRT).

 

It can get a little tricky and, unless you were a science major it can be complicated. At Laser Focus Tattoo Removal we stand for three things: 1) a singular focus on tattoo removal, 2) the best available technology, and 3) absolute transparency. We encourage our clients not to make a decision based on any perspective other than their own. Find information that wasn’t written by a laser manufacturer or by a provider (someone that delivers treatment) and base your decision on an unbiased perspective.


By Alexis Mintz 04 May, 2016

The amount of time needed to remove a tattoo is based on a number of factors – the most relevant of which are:
• Age of the tattoo
• Colors in the tattoo
• Location of the tattoo
• Health of the client
• Technology

Generally speaking, the closer the tattoo is to your heart, the faster (fewer treatments) it will clear. Colors add time because some colors are harder to break up than others. The health of the client determines how effectively their lymphatic system is performing in carrying away the fragmented ink.

Determining factors can be summarized into two categories, each accounting for approximately 50 percent of the time that it will take to remove a tattoo: 1) technology, and 2) the client and the actual tattoo (location, health, color etc.).

Many factors that determine the time / treatments that removal will take are fixed (i.e. age, colors, location). However, technology and the client’s health are variables that can be altered. For example, you can work on your general health by exercising, quitting smoking, and eating better.

Additionally, you can find the location in Austin with the latest technology. We encourage you to do the research. Don’t just believe everything that providers say on their website. If you believe everyone’s website, then everyone has the latest, greatest and most effective technology.

When you look around in an unbiased way, you’ll find that picosecond technology is the newest and most effective technology available, which is the kind of technology that drives our laser – the PicoSure® laser.

It’s not unusual for Laser Focus Tattoo Removal to inherit clients that have been to non-picosecond locations and aren’t happy with the results. We have seen clients who have been treated as many as five times in other locations and the tattoo is just starting to fade.

At Laser Focus, we space out our treatments between six and eight weeks apart to allow the client’s body to heal and allow their lymphatic system to absorb the ink that has been shattered into smaller and smaller pieces. So, it’s going to take several months to move through the process.

Additionally, we are the only location that will give you a per treatment price, the number of treatments needed to remove the tattoo and a total price. If you need more treatments to clear the tattoo, we will do them for free. Laser Focus Tattoo Removal is the only location in Austin that will commit to a total price, which we call   Guaranteed Pricing .

Please call us for a consultation. We will gladly walk you through the process and give you a guaranteed price. The consultation is free and there is no obligation to purchase anything.

By Alexis Mintz 15 Apr, 2016

The answer to that question is, depends on who you ask. We treated a young lady a few days ago with a tattoo on her upper chest. She asked us to stop in the middle of the treatment because she needed to catch her breath as the treatment tickled. Have to admit, that was a new one for me!

We’ve had people say the treatment is not bad at all and people that say it hurts. However, everyone says that it’s remarkably fast and very tolerable (the average treatment is under a minute).

Everyone has a different pain tolerance and the location of the tattoo is highly relevant. Places that are close to bone ie. feet, ankles and hands tend to be sensitive. The underside of your wrist and your lower back have a lot of nerve endings which make them sensitive. Your arms, chest, upper back and shoulders tend to be less sensitive. Again, the process is very quick and regardless of the location we can get you through it.

We have found that the most important thing in reducing the discomfort of laser tattoo removal is the client’s mental outlook on the procedure. If you come in to the process with anxiety, if you are nervous and tense you tend to be more sensitive. If you are able to relax and know that thousands of people do this every day and they are all just fine you’ll have a better response. It’s like going to the doctor and knowing that you have to get a shot. It’s not that bad and it’s over in seconds but the “build-up” and anxiety can takeover. If you can close your eyes, breath and relax it will be much easier.

At Laser Focus Tattoo Removal we have two options for mumming the area before treatment. We use ice packs for 10 minutes before the treatment which we find to be very effective. We also offer a prescription strength topical mumming agent which we can apply 30 minutes before we apply the ice packs. However, because the treatment is so fast most of our clients choose to go with ice alone. Some places have a machine that blows cold air on the target tattoo during the treatment but, we have found that ice is just as effective and is one less thing for the laser operator to handle.

For perspective on the amount of time a treatment takes, here are four examples of clients that we have treated in the last week and how long the treatment took. All four examples show before and right after the first treatment.

By Alexis Mintz 29 Mar, 2016
Before and after cover up:
By Alexis Mintz 17 Mar, 2016

So, you’ve finally decided to get rid of that spur of the moment spring break tattoo you thought you had to have way back when. Well, the first step was making the decision to come to Laser Focus Tattoo Removal and get that memory gone! Not only do we have the newest and best technology, but the PicoSure laser is the fastest way to break up pigment and get rid of that tattoo once and for all and in half the time of other Q-switch, or nano second lasers.


The next steps are up to you! Coming in and getting your treatments every 6 weeks is paramount, but so is home care. Here are some tips that will help fade out that tattoo for good!

 

Circulation is key! Now I am not telling you that you need to run marathons or start a crazy work out routine, but keeping your body moving and having good circulation will help speed up the process. Go on walks, jog or just get moving for at least 30 minutes a day.  The more you get the blood pumping and flowing, the better your lymphatic system can drain all of the shattered ink being broken down through your body and discarded, resulting in the tattoo removal process speeding up. Your lymphatic system disposes of the broken up pieces of tattoo ink after your laser tattoo removal treatment. So get to moving!

 

Give your immune system a big boost! If you are not taking a multivitamin, here is your excuse to stock up on that Vitamin C, D, E and zinc. Keeping your body clean of toxins, and well nourished with fruits and veggies not only makes you look and feel good, but it kick starts your immune system getting that lymphatic drainage going, and that tattoo going, going, gone! While having an excuse to start eating better, why not try and resolve to drinking a little less alcohol and a lot more water while completing the treatments as well. Give yourself a big “Cheers!” when the tattoo is gone. You will thank yourself for it!

 

Rest up and stay stress free!   We all know a good night’s rest is almost as good as eating chicken soup when you have a cold. Well, getting a proper nights rest and staying stress free during treatments will help the healing process and keep your mind and body on track for successful results. Think of this time as giving yourself a “pass” for the next few months. Do that yoga class you have been wanting to do. Get that meditation app all the cool kids are downloading and BREATHE. The mind and the body are connected, so if you are not sleeping well or giving yourself a stress free breather every day, you might not be giving your body what it needs to properly heal.  

                                                                                                               

And the biggest tip of all…no smoking! This is just a tip for life, but if you are seriously dedicated to removing your tattoo, you owe it to yourself to invest wisely. The use of tobacco can seriously hinder even an otherwise healthy person’s tattoo removal success. We know from a study published in the Archives of Dermatology  that the laser tattoo removal process is 70% less effective for tobacco users. Cigarette smoke constricted the blood vessels causing the extremities to become weak, thus not enabling good circulation needed in the healing process of tattoo removal. So put that cigarettes out once and for all!

 

Get these tips down, along with your scheduled tattoo removal treatments and you won’t be disappointed!

 

Cheers!


By Alexis Mintz 11 Mar, 2016

When it comes to tattoo removal, everyone responds differently. However, we are pretty good at understanding the factors that indicate how many treatments it will take to remove your tattoo. 

Here are 11 most critical factors we consider when evaluating your tattoo:


  1. At the top of the list has to be   technology. Like in every part of our lives, technology is changing and lasers are no exception. Because we have the latest technology which operates in Picoseconds (trillionths of a second) versus last generation technology which operates in Nanoseconds (Billionths of a second) and because we have the appropriate wavelengths for the entire color spectrum we know that we can remove tattoos in approximately half the treatments of our competitors.
  2. The  colors that are in your tattoo  do  matter and, contrary to common belief, the darker colors are the easiest to remove. Black, blue, and green absorb the laser light better and breakup easier than red, orange and yellow. In addition, because there are more additives in the lighter inks that can be resistant to laser light they are harder to break up. However, with the correct wavelength hand piece, in the case of red, yellow and orange a 532nm, we can get those colors cleared in less treatments than those that are using old technology.
  3. The  location of the tattoo on your body will make a difference in the number of treatments you will need. Generally, the closer the tattoo is to your heart the better. When laser light hits a tattoo it breaks the ink into smaller and smaller pieces so that the bodies’ lymphatic system can eliminate it. The better the circulation the faster the ink is absorbed. A tattoo on your foot or hand will take longer to clear than a tattoo on your chest or shoulder.
  4. Everyone responds differently to treatment and one of the biggest factors can be the  your  age and physical health. Younger people generally respond more quickly because their circulation is uncompromised. The same can be said for healthy people as healthy/fit people will generally clear faster. The bodies’ ability to heal is dependent on how well you lymphatic system responds.
  5. The  color of the your skin can make a difference in how many treatments it will take to clear a tattoo. Every patient is rated on a scale called The Fitzpatrick Scale to determine their skin tone which is used in the laser’s settings. Because darker skin will absorb some of the laser light the laser is slightly less effective. In addition, the laser settings are lower to ensure that there is no unwanted effects. Laser tattoo removal is harder on darker skin, but the laser will work on almost any skin tone.
  6. The  age of the tattoo is a factor as older tattoos have already been attacked by the bodies’ lymphatic system. That’s way older tattoos don’t look as vivid as new tattoos. The reason why the tattoo isn’t absorbed by the body is because the ink particles are too large for the body to clear. So older tattoos will clear faster than newer tattoos.
  7. Ink quality   is another factor. We see people that have done their own tattoos or they had a friend do it. When the tattoo is not professionally done the ink is usually low quality and can be broken down faster. Ink used by professionals is of higher quality and will take longer to clear.
  8. When it comes to tattoo removal,   size   matters. The biggest issue with size is when the tattoo is too large to treat in one sitting. For example, a full arm sleeve would be divided into more than one session as the breaking up and absorption of too much ink could compromise your immune system. That’s not exclusive to the absorption of ink, it would be the same for anything that the lymphatic system is absorbing.
  9. The   density of the ink   will make removal more difficult. A good example of high density is a tattoo cover-up. When ink is placed over ink you have a high rate of density which will be harder to break up and clear.
  10. Scar tissue can make it harder to clear a tattoo. If someone is highly   susceptible to scarring   and the process of applying the tattoo resulted in scar tissue it may be harder to clear the tattoo. However, the Pico technology can help to reduce scar tissue while working to breakdown the ink.
  11. Smoking   isn’t only bad for you, it will make tattoo removal a longer process.   Because smoking reduces circulation, negatively effects your immune system and generally impacts a patient’s health tattoo removal will take longer.

 

At Laser Focus, we provide a guaranteed price on tattoo removals by taking all these factors into consideration, because all of them affect the number of treatments it will take to clear a tattoo. However, they are all manageable and the majority of tattoos can be cleared. Regardless of which factors may negatively effect the removal of a tattoo, pico lasers like our PicoSure will remove the tattoo with fewer treatments, typically half the treatments of a nano or Q-switch laser.

By Alexis Mintz 07 Mar, 2016

If you’re asking what is the best technology for laser tattoo removal, you’re asking the right question, as technology is king when it comes to tattoo removal.

Look at any website that does tattoo removal you will find the words, “we have the latest technology,” regardless of what laser they’re using. Why, because no one wants to admit that the technology they’re using is last generation technology. So, someone isn’t being honest!

Here is my input, don’t trust anyone that is trying to sell you something, do your own research… it’s not that hard and it’s very important.

There are two categories of lasers used in tattoo removal: Nanosecond lasers (also called Q-switch) and Picosecond lasers. Nanosecond lasers revolutionized tattoo removal when they were introduced in the early 2000’s. Nanosecond lasers pulse a beam of light at a billionth of a second and use a photo thermal mechanism (heat) to break up ink. Picosecond lasers were introduced in 2012. Picosecond lasers pulse a beam of light at a trillionth of a second and they use a photo acoustic mechanism (pressure) to break up ink. Both lasers operate on the same principle; they’re both using laser technology to shatter the targeted ink so that the body can absorb it. The major differences are pulse speed and the mechanism used.

When it comes to putting a laser on your skin, heat is the enemy. Nanosecond lasers use heat to break up ink while picosecond lasers use pressure. In addition, because the Pico pulses 100x faster than the Nano, the laser is on the skin for 100x shorter of an amount of time allowing the surrounding skin to disparate heat for a longer amount of time (known as thermal recovery time or TRT).

Fact is, Picosecond lasers are the latest generation of tattoo removal technology. They operate at a higher speed and generate less heat (they do generate some heat but far less than Nanosecond lasers) which means that they can be operated at a shorter wavelength to break up ink with fewer treatments. Studies show that Picosecond lasers can remove tattoos in half the treatments, even fewer if there are difficult colors in the tattoo. Fewer treatments means lower cost and less discomfort.

Here’s another fact, a Pico laser costs 2 ½ times what a Nano laser costs. If you are operating a Nano laser and it’s working (and they do work, eventually) you don’t want to write a check for $300k to buy a new Pico laser. So, you claim that your laser is “the latest and best technology”.

How do you tell if someone has a Pico laser? It’s easy, there are only two FDA-approved Picosecond lasers on the market, the PicoSure by Cynosure and the Enlighten by Cutera. Everything else is a Nanosecond or Q-Switch laser and they are last generation technology. But, don’t take it from me, do your own research and make sure the author of the research isn’t affiliated with a laser manufacturer.

Knowledge is power, be informed!

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