Tattoos are an amazing form of self-expression. They allow us to make a statement that is uniquely our own through art that lasts a lifetime.
But… They can also be a source of immense regret. Sometimes that design you thought you’d always love turns sour and you end up with a tattoo you just are not happy with.
Laser tattoo removal can help you feel comfortable in your own skin again and blot out that regretful tattoo. We put this guide together to help educate you on the factors that affect tattoo removal cost.
Read on to learn what they are!
What is Laser Tattoo Removal?
Laser tattoo removal is a complex process that will enable you to get rid of a tattoo you no longer desire. In simple terms, the laser breaks up the pigment in your skin, allowing your white blood cells to carry it away and you to expel it through urination.
Check out these facts for more information on how laser tattoo removal works and how to get it done.
Factors that Affect Tattoo Removal Cost
The cost is a huge aspect of deciding whether or not to have your tattoo removed. For anyone working to get their finances under control, it is important to understand what factors affect the price of tattoo removal and whether your tattoo will be a costly one to remove.
Most, if not all, tattoos will require multiple sessions for the laser to do its work. Laser tattoo removal is essentially fast-forwarding your tattoos natural fading and aging process and helping your body break it down more quickly. Normally, a tattoo is permanent because the body cannot break down the pigments on its own over the course of your lifetime.
Unfortunately, the more sessions your tattoo takes to remove, the more it will cost you because of laser tattoo removal specialists bill per session. For a lot of practitioners, a single session for an extra small tattoo will probably cost somewhere between $75-$125.
A general estimate of the overall cost is about 10 times what you paid for the tattoo originally, depending on several of the variables described below.
1. Do You Qualify For Assistance?
In most cases, insurance will not help with laser tattoo removal. Even though it is a medical procedure, it is an elective procedure like some forms of plastic surgery. Since you could choose to keep the tattoo, insurance will not cover it.
Insurance may help in the rare circumstances that you are allergic to the tattoo ink or it is threatening your life in some other way. A doctor must deem removal “medically necessary” and even then it’s a toss-up how much your insurance will cover.
The color of your tattoo actually affects how easily it fades from laser treatment and how many sessions it takes to get rid of.
Black ink is the easiest to get rid of and takes the most basic type of laser. Color ink is more difficult so it will end up being more expensive to remove, both in session count and the fact that the practitioner may need to use other special lasers.
The composition of the ink also affects how many sessions it will take to break down. Unfortunately, unless you have documentation of exactly what kind if ink the tattoo artist used, your practitioner won’t be able to tell before starting treatment.
Reputably mass-manufactured inks are the easiest to remove because they have a standard composition. For one reason or another, some tattoo artists mix their own ink, which means there is no way to know exactly what your tattoo ink is made of if you got the tattoo a long time ago and the shop has closed down.
If your tattoo is very vibrant, it will take more sessions to get rid of and cost more to remove. This is because there is a higher amount of ink in your skin. That means it could be cheaper to remove an older tattoo that has faded some on its own than a fresh tattoo.
If your tattoo is a coverup, it will be hard to remove because there is a lot more ink present.
3. Skin Color and Tattoo Location
Skin color actually has a bearing on how easy your tattoo is to remove. Light skin makes tattoo removal easier than dark skin. The reason is that light skin does not absorb the laser light so the energy of the laser is more efficiently focused on the tattoo pigments, breaking more of it down in a single session.
Dark skin absorbs some of the laser light, causing it to not be as effective. Additionally, people with dark skin can be more susceptible to the adverse side effects that can come with laser tattoo removal. Because of this, many practitioners use a lower power setting on people with darker skin.
The location of the tattoo also has an impact on how easy it is to remove. Areas with high circulation will take fewer sessions for the ink to fade because the white blood cells are the ones carrying the pigment away. Some areas that take longer are the feet, hands, and lower legs.
Is It Time to Shrink that Ink?
Now you have more information about the factors that affect tattoo removal cost. Understanding what aspects of a tattoo can make it more difficult to remove will give you the tools you need to determine if laser tattoo removal is right for you.
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