It happens. As we grow older, our lives change, our priorities change and our perspective changes. At some point, that dolphin tattoo we once thought was so cool just doesn’t have the same appeal anymore. As you probably know, tattoo removal happens through the use of lasers. Lasers work by emitting short pulses of intense light that pass through the top layers of the skin to where the ink has been absorbed. The laser light breaks the ink apart into minuscule particles, and the body absorbs and eliminates the particles through its natural processes.
Technology has changed over the last few years and what was considered the gold standard for tattoo removal, the Q-Switched laser, has been supplanted by Picosecond technology. Q-switch technology uses thermal energy to heat up and break apart the ink particles while Picosecond technology uses pressure to break up the ink. PicoSure® (a brand of Picosecond laser) is incredibly effective, with better ink removal (which means fewer treatments), faster recovery time, less pain, and no residual scarring or discoloration to the skin.
The PicoSure® laser is the most significant technological advance in tattoo removal in 20 years. It works by emitting ultra-short pulses (one trillionth of a second, or a picosecond ) that hit the ink, shattering it into tiny dust-like particles. The human body’s lymphatic system is not able to flush tattoo ink through the body until it is broken up in to fine enough particles. With the PicoSure® laser we are able to break up the ink in fewer treatments allowing the lymphatic system to do it’s job faster and more effectively.
The number of treatments needed to remove a tattoo depend on a list of factors like tattoo size, the location on the body, the age of the tattoo, the colors in the tattoo, the quality of the ink used, the lymphatic health of the client, etc. The easiest color to remove is black because it absorbs all laser wavelengths, while other colors absorb light selectively, depending on the hue. Lasers pulse at a prescribed wavelength, a laser that targets red ink will have no effect on blue ink and vise versa. Many lasers are only effective on black ink as they only have the capability to target black ink. However, the PicoSure® has multiple wavelengths and can target the entire color spectrum.