We all grow and we all make mistakes.
Sometimes we fall for the wrong person or find ourselves in a weird punk rock phase.
Maybe we think it’s time to get our lover’s name scrawled across our back or have that heavy metal skull inked onto our arm.
Then a few years down the line, relationships end or we get our dream job and suddenly those tattoos don’t seem like a very good idea anymore.
Luckily, tattoos aren’t diamonds, and they aren’t forever.
Two of the more common methods people turn to in Oklahoma when they want to remove their tattoos are over-the-counter creams and doctor-administered laser tattoo removal.
Tattoo Removal Creams
These creams are widely available online and at pharmacies. One of the most common active ingredients in many of these creams is trichloroacetic acid, or TCA. These creams are often designed to remove several layers of skin, causing peeling and burning. Peeling and burning mean that the treatment actually reaches into the dermal layer where the pigments of the tattoo reside and break them up. This has been shown to lighten and fade tattoos over time; however, direct application of acid to your skin does cause burning, pain, blistering, scabbing, and scarring.
Other creams contain a substance called hydroquinone that reduces the production of melanin (the pigment that gives your hair, skin, and eyes their color) to gradually fade your skin’s overall pigmentation. Hydroquinone has been used in creams and ointments to fade the appearance of liver spots and freckles. Just like TCA, though, it can cause unpleasant side effects like swelling, stinging, itching, redness and blistering.
There are also a variety of natural creams on the market that contain ingredients like white licorice, kojic acid, lemon extract and lemongrass. These all claim to lighten skin with their various natural compounds; however, like many other holistic medical products, none of these have been approved by the FDA.
Laser Tattoo Removal
Laser tattoo removal has been shown to be effective with minimal scarring and is one of the few methods for tattoo removal approved by the FDA. Meaning, the use of lasers to remove tattoos complies with requirements for safety and effectiveness. Using a laser also allows for more accurate removal that does not alter or harm the skin not implanted with tattoo pigment.
Laser tattoo removal devices like our Medlite C6 use what is known as a Q-switched laser to break up the tattoo pigments under the skin. These pigments are then expelled from the body through your lymphatic system. Usually this process takes several treatments, each utilizing different wavelengths to break up varying pigment colors.
If you’re the reluctant owner of a tattoo you no longer want and are sick of painful and ineffective over-the-counter remedies, contact us for a consultation today.