Have an unwanted tat and want rid? Anouska Cassano paints an honest picture of tattoo removal procedures
Tattoos are very much de rigueur these days.
Once the preserve of sailors, soldiers, bikers and rebels, skin art now cuts across the whole population — blurring the lines between class, culture, gender and age.
We’ve embraced body art with a passion — from small discreet designs only those closest to you glimpse to whole sleeves and torso tats. Seemingly, most of us have one or know someone who has. Put simply, tattoos are no longer taboo with 44% of the UK’s workforce admitting to having tattoos.
This week, the MailOnline reported that the sideboob is the latest part of the body to play host to tattoos for body art fans, with Instagram pics aplenty of women showing off their creativity on the latest ‘it’ area of the body.
And, according to a YouGov survey last year, around a fifth (19%) of Brits have been inked, with 1% who ‘prefer not to say’. Of those, only 14% in Britain have any regrets — in other words, the overwhelming majority of people with tattoos have no regrets.
But what if your inky body modification is now an embarrassment, undertaken in haste and now repented at leisure?
Anouska Cassano is a highly experienced micro-pigmentation practitioner, who specialises in the areas of aesthetic permanent make-up, medical and reconstructive scar camouflage and reduction, correction, male and female hair micro-pigmentation treatment — and chemical tattoo removal.
She is brutally honest on the reality of what’s needed if you’re about to embark on tattoo removal.
She says: ‘Let me start by saying there is no easy way to remove a tattoo. You need to select the best method for you and your lifestyle. The aftercare is imperative — and this is your responsibility. The risk of scarring and infection is greatly increased if you don't follow the aftercare instructions you should be given as a matter of course.’
Below, Anouska answers some FAQs to help you find the best route to treatment.
I hate my tattoos — can you help? Yes. The skin will never be returned to the pre damaged/tattooed condition, but you can expect a significant improvement and in some cases near total removal.
Does it matter how old the tattoo is? No. The thoughts are that fresh or new tattoos can be easier to remove as the ‘ink’ has not settled and penetrated through the deeper levels of the skin. The other reason is that more information about the tattoo may be available. For example, what type of ink was used and how deeply it was implanted. Chemical tattoo removal can be used on any age of tattoo as long as the skin has healed. It can also be used on any colour, making it an attractive option for some people. Laser removal is not ‘colour blind’ and you will have different types of configured lasers to target the colour spectrum and this can make it tricky if you have multiple colours within your tattoo.
I’m embarrassed at my tattoo’s design/message — will you ask questions where/why I got it done?
You will be asked questions as part of your consultation. It's important to manage expectations in relation to your treatment results. In order to do, this your practitioner should be working together with you in order to agree the best treatment plan for you. Any information disclosed at consultation should be treated in confidence.
Does the chemical removal always work? Yes. One of the benefits of this type of removal is that it can take fewer sessions than other methods, but you need to weigh this up against skin damage. E.g. it's better to not try to rush the removal process.
Does the process hurt? You may feel a little discomfort, however unlike when you had your original tattoo when having chemical tattoo removal an anaesthetic will also be used for pain relief.
Will it scar my skin? There is always a risk of scarring and infection whichever tattoo removal method you chose. Not following aftercare instructions will elevate your risk of infection.
US stats on tats
- Around 45 million adults in the US have at least one tattoo
- Adults aged 26-40 are most likely to have tattoos
- Around 17% of people say they feel some regret after getting a tattoo
For more information or to ask Anouska a question click here: