Nowadays, tattoo regret is a pretty common occurrence. In fact, studies show that about one in four people regret getting at least one of their tattoos at some point in their lifetime.

Tattoos are a great way to commemorate an important event, declaration, triumph, loss, favorite band or youthful notion — but as a rule of thumb, times change — and so do people. What may have seemed like a great idea five years ago might not line up with one’s body image or personal identity down the road.

Given the prevalence of tattoos in today’s modern world, laser tattoo removal has consequently risen in popularity — eliminating much of the fearful permanence attached with getting a tattoo. Some clients choose to have their unwanted tattoo removed altogether, while others opt to fade their old image so that they can replace it with a new and improved tattoo design.

Regardless of your next steps, your body is a canvas — and the good news is that both of these options can be done before you plan (or don’t plan) your next new and improved tattoo idea.

What is laser tattoo removal and how does it work?

Laser tattoo removal involves the removal of a tattoo by targeting any ink beneath the skin with a highly concentrated laser beam. Specific wavelengths of light break up tattoo ink into tiny particles. Over a series of treatments, the lymphatic system will gradually process the newly-shattered ink particles, causing them to fade. 

Many also wonder if there is a formation of new skin after laser tattoo removal. If you’ve seen any tattoo removal treatment videos, you may think the tattoo fades instantly due to the white “frosting” of the skin. This is misleading, however, as the frosting is just a temporary reaction of the skin. The tattoo fading process happens over subsequent weeks after each treatment. 

The number of treatments necessary can vary significantly based on many factors — but fading for a coverup happens in fewer treatments than full removal. Experienced providers should be able to provide an accurate number of treatment estimates for your tattoo and fading goals during free consultations.

Can you get a new tattoo after laser removal?

The short answer is: yes! It’s perfectly fine to get a tattoo done over a laser-removed tattoo.

In fact, many clients undergo laser tattoo removal to make space for a new and improved tattoo. Many also undergo the procedure to fade an unwanted tattoo that they don’t think can be successfully covered up by a new design without laser tattoo removal. Depending on the original tattoo, the new design, and the skill of the coverup tattoo artist, the number of fading sessions necessary is often between 1-4 treatments.

Note that scarring and/or pigmentation changes in the skin are possible, and these can complicate the tattoo coverup design. While these occurrences are rare, they are possible — which means the risks associated should be discussed with your provider. This is another reason to always be sure you’re working with experienced professionals.

So, when can you safely tattoo over the tattoo removal site?

We strongly recommend making sure that the area where your tattoo was removed is fully healed and time to allow for maximum fading has been given before booking your tattoo coverup appointment. We recommend waiting at least 6 weeks from your last treatment before getting a tattoo coverup. 

Note that nothing in this article should be construed as medical advice — and to always contact your healthcare provider for their guidance.

Once you’ve been given the green light from your tattoo removal specialist, you should then be good to get back into the chair and bring life to your new tattoo.

Contact Bare Today

At Bare, we use Q-Switched laser devices specifically designed for laser tattoo removal. These lasers shatter ink particles using pulses with nanosecond durations. Our tattoo removal treatments are fully safe, secure and we have successfully performed thousands of laser tattoo removal procedures for our clients in the Chicago area.

Of course, this means that after undergoing laser tattoo removal, a new tattoo coverup to fade your unwanted tattoo is always an option.

To learn more about our laser tattoo removal services, book a free consultation with our team today!