Hair removal and tattoos are both ways of expressing yourself. Both are about you taking control of your body and appearance. Unfortunately, these two means of expression do not always get along. When looking into hair removal options, it is important to know how your body art may affect your process.
Hair Removal Near Tattoos
For unwanted hair issues, the two main contenders are electrolysis and laser. With professional electrolysis, an effect on tattoos is very unlikely. Electrolysis goes below your ink, to the base of the hair follicle. It destroys the growth cells in that one follicle, making it a very precise art. With laser hair reduction, the treatment can act unpredictably when presented with tattoos.
When considering laser hair removal, the location of your tattoos in relation to the treatment area is very important. Laser is attracted to pigment in both your unwanted hair and your tattoo ink. Even if the laser technician isn't working directly over the tattoo, the nearby pigment can attract the heat.
The lasers used in hair reduction are not the same as the lasers used in tattoo removal. Tattoo removal lasers are designed to act on a different layer of the skin. They use a pulsing laser to break up the ink and prevent the heat from getting too extreme. This pulsing method is not effective for hair reduction. As a result the hair reduction laser might not just distort your tattoo, it could also burn your skin.
Good laser technicians will keep at least an inch away from the tattoo, working around it. They may also use a shield to reflect the laser energy away from your ink. Regardless, the tattooed area will require a different method of permanent hair removal. Electrolysis is the only permanent hair removal method recommended for tattoos.
Check with your electrologist and see if they treat skin with tattoos. Electrolysis is the best way to combine permanent hair removal needs with body art.