Many people get tattoos these days for various reasons. A lot of tattoos are beautiful pieces of art but for some people, tattoos might be regrettable. Either some have the name of their ex on the arm or the tattoo artist just didn’t do a good job, there are some possible options for a tattoo you don’t like or want anymore
In this article, we’re going to look at different ways the premium medical aesthetics clinics such as 1Aesthetics, Medical & Surgery use to remove tattoos in Singapore.
First off, let’s talk about which tattoos are easier to remove than others.
- Older tattoos are easier to remove than new ones.
- Brown, black, dark blue and green is easier to remove than very colourful tattoos.
- Larger and darker tattoos are harder to remove.
- It would be harder to remove tattoos if you have darker skin or a skin condition.
How is tattoo removal done?
Tattoo removal in Singapore is usually done with a laser. There are several types of laser removals which include the Q-switched laser, fractional laser, and extracorporeal shockwave therapy.
Lasers work by focusing energy in a pulse that heats the ink in your skin and dissolves it.
Most people need more than one treatment over a period of time.
And more often than not, lasers don’t remove the tattoo entirely but they just lighten it.
Here’s how the different types of lasers work:
- Picosecond Q-switched laser: has shorter pulses producing more photoacoustic effect but with less damage. It’s effective on all colors.
- Fractional lasers: it’s absorbed by water in cells. It penetrates deep into the skin with less damage. It’s used to prepare the skin before the q-switched laser.
- Extracorporeal shockwave therapy: penetrates deep into the skin and minimizes the side effects of lasers.
In some clinics, they use a combination of fractional ablative lasers, shockwaves, and Picosecond q-switched lasers which makes the procedure a bit less painful and reduce the chance of scarring and shorten downtime.
Do I need to see a specialist?
Yes! It’s important that you see a dermatologist or other medical doctor who’ll use the proper equipment and won’t burn your skin in the end.
Of course, in Singapore, there are strict regulations about this but you have to be careful nonetheless.
Also, even if they’re dermatologist you have to make sure they are certified to work with lasers because in Singapore doctors have to take training to operate lasers.
During consultations, Dr Wan from 1Aesthetics always reminds his potential patients that in Singapore it’s against the law to advertise before and after photos. So any clinic that has those is probably not MOH-licensed. He welcomes anyone for a consultation, without obligation or pushing you to choose his service. You will find his clinic at #14-90 The Central, 8 Eu Tong Sen St, Tower 1, Singapore 059818, but you’ll have to schedule an appointment via phone first +65 6612 5173. He will answer any and all questions regarding the procedure, the outcome you can expect and anything else.
Can I expect fast results?
Yes, and no. While lasers get better and better, it’s hard to say that you’ll get your tattoo 100% removed from laser sessions.
Also, as mentioned previously don’t expect to get your tattoo gone in just 1 session.
For most people, it takes months (around six or more sessions) because your body has to absorb the ink broken down by the laser. The regeneration period can take around eight weeks and the next time you’d go; new pigment pieces would be broken down until the tattoo is reduced.
Is tattoo removal painful?
For most people, it’s as painful as getting a tattoo. In some clinics, they’ll apply local anaesthesia or icing. Some patients note that they feel metallic taste while the laser hits their skin which is a side effect from lidocaine getting hit by the laser.
After the procedure, you’ll probably still feel pain. After a couple of days, you’ll feel slight discomfort but it shouldn’t be too painful.
Your skin will also have slight redness for around a week and you should be careful with sun exposure. After lasers, your skin is going to be sensitive so you should protect your skin from the sun. This will ensure better results after the procedure is done.
Do I have to do anything to ensure the best results?
Your doctor will give you advice on what to do after the laser treatment to ensure maximum results and fewer complications.
In most cases you’ll have to:
- keep the area clean and dry
- wear loose clothing or clothes that wouldn’t touch the affected area
- avoid the direct sunlight onto the area
- don’t touch the area in case of itching or blisters
In some cases, you’ll be given an antibiotic cream or a healing moisturizer a couple of times a day while the area is healing.
Keep in mind that there is a potential risk for scarring or pigmentation after the procedures are over.
How to choose a doctor in Singapore?
Choose a doctor experienced in tattoo removal. Like any other procedure, you should look for experienced professionals who’ll be able to provide the best treatment plan for your case. As mentioned previously in the article, doctors who are specifically certified to work with lasers are the best possible option for patients looking to remove their tattoos.
Be careful when you pick a clinic too. Lasers are complicated machinery that needs high maintenance often. So the clinic of your choice should have new lasers and should maintain them as often as possible.
When having a consultation ask your doctor about how many tattoo removals they get and if they give you a high number, it’s a pretty good indicator of a quality clinic.
And if they tell you to have weekly treatments, consider that a red flag as it takes around 8 weeks to recover before being able to have another laser treatment.