Every tattoo and person is completely different and it is impossible to know how one tattoo will fade compared to another. Because of this, we base our pricing on size, location, colour and age of the tattoo and work with you to come up with a tailored pay-as-you go treatment plan. Consultations are always free and this will give our certified laser technicians the opportunity to asses and evaluate your individual tattoo and create a treatment plan specifically for you!
This is always the most important question for clients and we pride ourselves on being honest and realistic with people. The short answer is we don’t know due to all the variables that go into the removal process. However, amateur tattoos many times take just a few sessions while on average a black professional tattoo can take anywhere from 5-10 treatments. When colours get thrown into the mix this becomes much more difficult to estimate. Another option is lightening to cover-up which can usually be done in 2-5 sessions for most tattoos depending on what you have planned as a cover-up. Our technicians are excellent at setting realistic and tailored programs for your specific situation.
In most cases yes, our lasers are extremely effective at targeting just the pigment within the tattoo while leaving the rest of the tissue unharmed. This process is known as selective photothermolysis, essentially using light to selectively heat and damage particular areas of tissue while leaving surrounding tissue unharmed. Our lasers create minor temporary damage to the skin which includes some swelling, redness and potentially slight blisters which if properly taken care of will heal up just fine if aftercare instructions are followed properly.
In some cases depending whether someone has pre-exisiting scar tissue, hypersensitivity or allergic reaction to the ink when the tattoo was applied or if a tattoo is extremely saturated skin texture or dyspigmentation can occur but this is quite uncommon.
Tattoo removal has traditionally be very painful, however with our ultra-short pulse lasers this discomfort is greatly reduced. In addition, we typically apply a cold compress and cooling devices in order to aid in minimizing the discomfort. Many small tattoos take a few minutes to complete the treatment and large tattoo treatments are usually no longer than 10 minutes. Many of our clients have mentioned that this is a non-issue for them while undergoing treatments.
We advise our clients to wait a minimum of 8 weeks before returning for their next treatment. The reason for the long interval between sessions in two-fold.
1. We must insure that the skin has healed properly since the last session otherwise we risk further damaging the skin.
2. Once our laser has broken down the ink in to tiny particles your immune cells, macrophages must begin the job of cleaning up the debris. This process known as “phagocytosis” can carry on for many weeks after the treatment and it is advisable to give your lymphatic system enough time to clean up the ink before starting another treatment. Many clinics will advertise 4 week intervals which is just not enough time for this process to run its course.
We can not guarantee 100% removal of any colour, including black which is the most effective for tattoo removal. However, we can guarantee fading of all colours and during your free consultation our technician will be able to advise you on other options if some ink still remains post-treatment.
Aftercare instructions will be verablly addressed to you immediately after treatment and followed-up with an email that will detail step-by-step the instructions for taking care of your tattoo and skin. Our aftercare instructions have been carefully created by our medical directors and must be adheared to to insure proper healing and results.
Your skin will be red and swollen immediately following your treatment. This usually subsides with in the first 48 hours and we advise to apply a cold compress to aid in reducing the inflammation. After the first 48 hours you will notice the area can become itchy and we advise using a hypoallergenic cream ans if persistent and prolonged itching occurs to apply a 1% hydrocortisone from your local drugstore. In some cases you may experiece a slight blister or bruising to the area, we stongly suggest following aftercare instructions that will be given verablly and sent in a pdf following treatment to insure that your skin is properly taken care of in its initial healing process as this will maintain the integrity and look of your skin in the future.
We advise reducing your sun exposure prior and directly following treatment. Prolonged exposure to UV can further damage the skin further when it is in its initial stages of healing, we generally advise giving your skin a minimum of a week before re-exposing it to the sun or atleast wearing a heavy sun block sppf 50+. We also suggest you stay away from submerging the tattoo for the first several days following treatment as this will also potentially compromise the healing process.
If you are pregnant or breastfeeding
Have taken Accutane in the last 6 months
Have diabetes and lower extremity tattoos
Need approval from your physician
Use blood thinners such as Warfarin
Prone to keloid scarring
We do not treat any cosmetic tattoos
From the moment that you are tattooed and ink is injected into the skin, your body is trying to remove the pigments that makes up your tattoo. Your white blood cells and more specifically your macrophages try to eliminate and remove this ink but are largely unsuccessful due to the size of the ink particles in comparison to the immune cells. The laser operates by firing different wavelengths of light into the skin depending on the colour of the ink resting in dermis. The extremely short pulses of light energy result in rapid absorption by the ink causing it to shatter and fragment in to much smaller particles of ink. The immune cells are then able to more effectively remove the ink through the lymphatic system. We are essentially trying to speed up a natural process that has been going on in your body since the day you got that tattoo!
Black and dark inks are the easiest colours to remove with reds being another very successful colour for removal. Pinks, Oranges and Purples also generally see success with time. Blues, greens and yellows traditionally have been the hardest colours to remove, however Fade Away has invested in the leading tattoo removal lasers including the Quanta Q+C and the PicoWay which have the capability to treat the toughest of colours, utilizing a 1064nm, 532 and 694nm (Q+C) and 1064nm, 532, and 785nm Titanium Sapphire (Picoway).
The location of your tattoo is a big factor in the length of time it can take for your lymphatic system to remove the ink debris. This is due to the fact that there is a higher concentration of lymph nodes on your torso, neck and head as opposed to your lower extremities (hands and feet). Another factor is the reduced blood flow to these areas which makes the process generally longer for most people.
The age of a tattoo can play a factor, generally as tattoos age 10+ years natural ink migration and cellular regeneration can impact the saturation and density of a tattoo rendering it more susceptible to additional breakdown from light energy.
Heavy, dark and layered tattoos will generally take longer to achieve fading and removal due to the amount of ink in a tattoo. For example, A heavy black tribal tattoo will take longer to breakdown as opposed to something lighter such as a shaded portrait. The amount of ink will be a big determining factor as to how quickly ink will fragment and fade.
Needle depth, machine speed and thickness of skin have a large effect on the removal process. Generally the deeper the ink is injected into the dermis the longer and more difficult the process can be. The reason behind this is due to the fact that as light energy enters the skin it begins to scatter thus losing energy the deeper into the skin the light travels. If ink is tattooed very deep into someones skin it can take a long time to fully resolve the ink and is the reason we can never promise 100% removal of any tattoo.
In North America there are very few regulations for tattoo pigment manufacturing and many of these inks can have a variety of compounds present that can be difficult to breakdown. Every ink will have a different chemical structure which can make it impossible to know how one ink will respond to treatments vs another.
At Fade Away, we only utilize industry leading Q-switch and Pico-second lasers. These have been approved by the FDA and Health Canada and are extremely effective in selectively targeting pigments without causing excessive damage to the epidermal layer of skin. Each laser is we use is designed to deliver a consistent beam profile, which means there is equal energy being applied across the tattoo. Some lasers can create hot-spots as the energy delivered disproportionately applies more energy to some areas vs others and can lead to more epidermal damage and inconsistent fading. We have carefully chosen our lasers as they have the widest ranging applications for tattoo removal while still delivering consistent results.
Our lasers are designed specifically for tattoo removal and come equipped with multiple wavelengths which are required to treat various colours in a tattoo. Different wavelengths of light are attracted to different pigments within a tattoo and in order to treat the vast array of colours specific wavelengths are required. For example, black and dark pigments most readily absorb a 1064nm wavelength. A 532nm wavelength is well absorbed by reds, browns, pinks and lighter colours. Greens and blues also require a specific wavelength which many devices have neglected to include. Both our Q-switch and Pico-second lasers have included a novel wavelength for dealing with these traditionally tough colours. Beware of polymer dye handpeices that claim to treat every colour of ink, they pass light through a dye which changes its wavelength but unfortunatley they use just 1/10th of the power of a solid state laser and are ineffective at treating any pigments.
We accept all major forms of payment such as Cash, Debit, VISA, and Mastercard. A 3% fee will be added for all card payments. No Bitcoin yet.
Yes all of our technicians go through rigorous training to be certified with all of our equipment and the latest safety standards with the ASLMS.
There is no set standard for training and insurance in the laser industry. With FadeAway we are medically directed, insured, and fully trained. Many other laser tattoo shops do not have the same standards and just think they can buy a laser and open business.