Laser removal is extremely safe and effective for one main reason: It allows your body to do the heavy lifting to remove tattoo ink. Using the best available technology, clinical protocol, and aftercare allows your body to take action as efficiently as possible. Maintaining optimal health also enables the body to carry out this work more quickly. 

Let’s take a more in-depth look at how the body removes tattoo ink and how you can enhance the process.

What happens during laser removal?

During a laser removal session, the laser breaks down some of the ink that makes up the tattoo. The energy emitted by the laser shatters the ink into smaller particles that the body will then flush out. This process requires multiple sessions because tattoo ink lies at different depths within the dermis; the laser targets it one layer at a time. In between sessions, the body works to heal the affected area. The body may continue removing tattoo ink for weeks after the session—during the laser removal session itself, the body’s work is just beginning.

How the body eliminates ink during tattoo removal

The lymphatic system handles ink elimination after laser removal because its role involves removing toxins from the body. It comprises a network of lymph vessels, lymph nodes, and a substance called lymph, a clear fluid holding white blood cells. The lymphatic system transports lymph throughout the body to eliminate toxins and waste from the tissues, and the bone marrow and spleen produce the white blood cells it contains. The body has 600 to 700 lymph nodes located in various areas, which act as filters for the toxins captured by the lymphatic system. A vital part of the body’s immune system, the lymphatic system guards against disease and infection. It transports any waste materials into the bloodstream, where the liver and kidneys remove them from the circulatory system and excrete them via bowel movements or urination.

What happens during the healing process?

During the laser removal healing process, you may see a temporary reaction called “frosting” occurring on the skin. Frosting has nothing to do with scarring; it occurs directly after removal and typically does not last more than half an hour. It merely involves the release of carbon dioxide gas from the skin. 

During the early stages of the healing process, the skin usually looks very red and often swollen, as inflammation represents a normal part of the healing process. This reaction will subside within the first week. You may experience some discomfort on the first day, but that sensation usually resolves after day one.

Clients typically see more noticeable fading after the redness and swelling have diminished, even though the body carries away a sizable proportion of the ink during the first week. 

How optimal health affects tattoo removal

Maintaining optimal health plays a central role in effective tattoo removal. That means not only making healthy choices directly before and after a removal session but also in your daily life. 

How does optimal health affect tattoo removal outcomes? It allows the immune system to focus on targeting the ink that the laser has broken down rather than on eliminating other toxins, infections, or diseases. When you allow the immune system to focus primarily on tattoo removal, you’ll see results much sooner. Plus, the immune system itself will be more robust when the body is in better condition. Thus, it can respond more rapidly to “invaders” it detects, like tattoo ink. 

The top 5 health influences on tattoo removal

You can take action in five key ways to improve the body’s response to tattoo removal.

Things that negatively affect tattoo removal

Smoking is the number one reason why some tattoo removal cases require more than ten sessions. Cigarettes contain toxins such as nicotine, carbon monoxide, and hydrogen cyanide, which slow the healing process. Nicotine decreases the blood flow, carbon monoxide reduces the oxygen carried to the tissues by red blood cells, and hydrogen cyanide restricts the enzymes that transport oxygen. Alcohol has a similarly negative effect on tattoo removal, diminishing the body’s health and the effectiveness of the immune system.

If you’re planning to remove a tattoo, book a consultation with a Removery specialist. We’ll consult with you on any additional health-related concerns as well as any general questions you may have about the process!