Tattoo Removal

Can You Drink Alcohol After Tattoo Removal? Does Smoking Affect Healing?

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Published: 07.04.2014
Updated: 10.31.2023

A large part of the tattoo removal process depends on you! Your daily habits and lifestyle will affect the removal outcome. So, can you drink alcohol after tattoo removal? Yes, but keep in mind that drinking alcohol and smoking will slow down the removal process. Read more about how you can speed up laser tattoo removal here.

Naturally, your body breaks apart the tattoo ink particles over time, laser tattoo removal just speeds up that process by breaking the particles apart layer by layer for your body’s immune system to carry away. The immune system will be able to pull out more ink particles from a person who chooses a healthy lifestyle vs someone who does not. Read more about the effects of alcohol and smoking below.

Can You Drink Alcohol After Tattoo Removal?

Drinking large amounts of alcohol can hinder the ability of your liver and kidneys to flush out the tiny ink particles that are broken apart during laser treatment. It’s best to supplement the alcohol with large amounts of water, which will be able to flush out those particles much faster. Therefore, yes you can drink alcohol, but it can prevent your tattoo from being removed in an optimal amount of time.

Can You Smoke After A Tattoo Removal Session?

Technically, you can smoke after a tattoo removal session but smoking can cause the removal process to progress slowly. Your body is already working hard to remove smoking-related pollutants from the body, and smoking restricts your body’s circulation which hinders the blood flow near the surface of your skin. This means that your body has little opportunity to actually flush the shattered ink particles and carry them away from the tattoo.

Does Smoking Affect Tattoo Healing?

It is well known that smoking has a negative impact on wound healing. Cigarettes have countless pathogens in them that affect the tattoo removal healing process. Toxins like nicotine, carbon monoxide, and hydrogen cyanide have been shown to increase wound healing time. Nicotine constricts veins, causing decreased blood flow, carbon monoxide reduces the amount of oxygen red blood cells carry to the skin, and hydrogen cyanide inhibits the enzymes need to transport oxygen and increases the metabolic profile of your body.

A study of over 352 tattoo removal clients at a laser surgery canter in Milan, Italy showed that people who smoked were 70% more likely to experience prolonged tattoo removal. The tattoo removal industry’s average for complete tattoo removal is 10 – 12 sessions. That study showed that those who smoke could take up to 15+ laser removal sessions to see complete removal results. Therefore, smoking does affect the tattoo healing process.

Does Smoking Cannabis Affect Tattoo Removal?

While cigarettes have a number of toxins that directly impact the tattoo removal process. Smoking cannabis also affects the ability of your body to heal quickly. Given the same wound healing principles, inhaling smoke can cause tattoo removal to take longer, due to restricting the circulatory system.

Tattoo Removal With Removery

As a rule, we recommend drinking lots of water, eating a healthy diet, and regularly exercising to speed up the removal process. Adopting a healthy lifestyle tends to keep all systems of your body in balance and ensures you get the blood flowing. At Removery, we offer free consultations and will happily answer any questions you may have about laser tattoo removal. Book a free consultation with us today and learn more about the best tattoo removal aftercare practices.

Dr Josh Weitz Dr. Josh Weitz Board Certified Physician

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