Tattoo Removal Cost: Analysis of Options

All too often when we’ve made the decision to get a tattoo, we’ve gone into it without really understanding the risks involved with getting one.  The decision was a spur of the moment decision, most likely spurred on by peer pressure, and possibly driven by the influence of alcohol.  Or perhaps we thought that there would be no better way of showing our undying love for a boyfriend or a girlfriend than to permanently tattoo their name encased in a heart somewhere on our bodies, only to have moved on to somebody better a few months down the road.

girl- with tattooOf course, when we got the tattoo, we especially did not consider what kind of difficulty we would encounter trying to have it removed, or what the total tattoo removal cost would be.  It is estimated that approximately 50% of people who get a tattoo will want to have it removed someday.  It makes sense to consider the tattoo removal cost when deciding whether or not to get it in the first place.

Ways to Remove Tattoos
Fortunately today it is easier than ever to remove a tattoo and there are several different methods to consider using if you chose to have your ex-girlfriend’s name removed from that special place above your heart.  The success in removing your tattoo will vary dependent upon several factors, and it could prove quite costly.  Depending upon the method of removal that you choose, you can expect to spend anywhere from about $30 to over $100 per session, and it can take as many as 15 to 20 sessions for the tattoo removal.  The tattoo removal cost can add up quite quickly in some cases, depending upon the scope of the project.

Laser removal

One of the most popular methods used today for removing a tattoo is laser removal (more information is available here.) Even patients that have attempted to use other methods of tattoo removal in the past but have been unsuccessful, can benefit from laser removal provided that there was not excessive scarring.  The laser works by using a high-intensity beam of light to break up the color pigmentation in the skin.  Black tattoos are the easiest to remove because the black ink absorbs the maximum amount of the laser beam. Colored tattoos can also be removed, but are more difficult because a certain type of laser has to be used depending upon the color that is trying to be removed.  This can add to the costs very quickly.  Depending upon the size of the tattoo, the type of tattoo, the location on the body, the age of the tattoo, and the number of sessions it will take to remove the tattoo, you can expect to spend spend thousands of dollars for laser removal.

Surgical removal

Another option for tattoo removal is surgery or excision.  Layers of the skin will be removed in an attempt to remove the ink.  There is a more significant risk of scarring from surgery than from laser removal, primarily due to the fact that tattoo inks absorb into the skin to varying depths.  It is best to restrict the use of this option for small tattoos because of the increased risk of scarring and infection.  This method can be very successful in removing small tattoos however.  The surgeon will use a topical anesthesia and will remove the surface skin containing the ink.  The wound will then be closed with stitches.  The cost of the surgery will vary based upon the size of the tattoo to be removed, the type of anesthesia used, and whether or not it is necessary to use skin grafts.  It can range from several hundred to thousands of dollars.

Tattoo removal by Dermabrasion

Dermabrasion is another option of tattoo removal.   It is also known as surgical skin planing because essentially the skin is sanded down to remove the surface and middle skin layers that contains the ink.  It is possibly the least expensive method dependent upon several factors, but you can still spend thousands of dollars on the procedure.  It runs the risk of infection, changes in skin color, and if too many layers are removed it can result in scarring.

Tattoo removal by applying manufactured creams

Several types of manufactured creams, gels and lotions are readily available in most local shopping centers but not all are the same, not all are of the same effectiveness and some contain ingredients that can be harmful, not necessarily to everyone but some people can experience adverse reactions to certain chemicals and in certain concentrations. Moreover there have been instances where Health Authorities have issued warnings regarding certain chemicals. But even so the warnings have not been consistent throughout all countries.

Some manufactured creams come in packs. The initial cost should not be the only consideration as application of the creams needs to be continued for several months at least so the all-up cost can easily balloon to several hundred dollars.

Natural methods of tattoo removal

Natural methods of removing tattoos are easily overlooked but are nonetheless effective. Being natural they have no side effects. The ingredients probably entail the least expense of all the options and are readily available either locally or online. Many households would already have some of the natural ingredients. However, like manufactured creams, natural products do require time to work but the benefits are well worthwhile.

Indeed if you have a tattoo that you want to have removed you can consult a dermatologist for an evaluation but that in itself involves further expense. Your doctor may also be able to guide you. But be aware that in most cases the costs of procedures are not covered by health insurance. In summary, the option of natural treatment remains a convenient, relatively inexpensive and safe option with no side effects. stokke scoot