How To Remove Tattoo: A Comprehensive Guide On Safe Tattoo Removal

how to remove tattoo

Do you have a tattoo? Or are you thinking of getting a tattoo? Whatever it is, one thing to know is that tattoos signify various things, and thus you must give it a second thought before getting yourself inked. This is vital; otherwise, you may be left searching; How to remove a tattoo? 

People get tattoos for various reasons like personal, cultural, or simply because of eye catching design. However, like tattoos’ popularity, the number of people wanting to go for tattoo removal is also increasing.  

To avoid this situation where the question of how to remove a tattoo arises, always think twice before getting inked. However, if you already have a tattoo and want to go for tattoo removal, there are various methods. To help you with this, we have prepared this comprehensive guide on tattoo removal methods. 

How To Remove a Tattoo?

The answer to this question lies in the fact that what type of tattoo do you have? According to the tattoo type, there are various tattoo removal methods like:

Best Tattoo Removal Candidates

The first thing to know before going for the tattoo removal is to know who is the best candidate for it as it may impact the results. Older and amateur tattoos are easier to remove than the new tattoos. Other than this, some colors are also easy to remove in comparison to others. These colors include:

  • Brown
  • Dark Blue
  • Brown
  • Green

Large, dark, and tattoos that are more colorful are comparatively more time consuming when it comes to tattoo removal. The tattoo removal cost also goes up when the tattoo design is large and colorful. 

Tattoo removal becomes even more difficult if you have:

  • Dark skin tone.
  • Any pre-existing skin ailments like eczema.
  • Health conditions like herpes affect the skin. 

However, it doesn’t mean that you can’t go for tattoo removal if you have any of the above. It just mean that you need to do some more research on How to remove tattoos? And find the best method for you. 

Your health care provider may also help you with tattoo removal before and aftercare. This is vital as if you have any health conditions, they can prescribe you antiviral medication. If they feel, then they can also refer you for further guidance to a dermatologist. This little care can prevent any flare-up in your health condition while getting tattoo removal. 

Laser Tattoo Removal

According to experts, one of the best options when searching for how to remove a tattoo is laser removal. The laser tattoo removal method is also one of the most cost-effective, along with being successful. 

One of the most popular laser tattoo removal processes nowadays involves Q-switched lasers. This type of laser sends a single strong pulse of energy. The strong pulse thus heats up the skin resulting in the dissolution of the tattoo ink. 

You will need numerous rounds of laser tattoo removal process over a period of weeks for satisfactory results.

One thing to know is that often laser tattoo removal doesn’t completely remove the tattoo. Instead, this method lightens the tattoo or fades it to the extent that it is very less noticeable. 

Laser Tattoo Removal Cost

The cost of tattoo removal through the laser method depends on the color, age, and size of the tattoo. 

However, $463 is the national average for tattoo removal, according to the American Society For Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. 

One thing to know when going for laser tattoo removal is that most insurance companies don’t cover it. This is because tattoo removal is considered a cosmetic procedure and not medical. 

Who Should Get It?

One thing to know before going for laser removal is that it is more suitable for light skin tone. This variation is because the laser may also change the skin color with a tattoo if you have a dark complexion. Thus the best bet for people with dark skin tone is going for Q-switched ND: YAG laser treatment. 


The tattoo aftercare is needed in the same way as before tattoo care. It is an essential part of the tattoo removal procedure. Your technician will give you some particular tattoo aftercare instructions. 

General instructions include applying antibacterial ointment after each laser session for several days. The ointment application helps in the healing of the skin while reducing any chances of infection. Changing the wound dressing every time when applying ointment is also essential. 

Some things to do for at least the next 2 weeks after the process are:

  • Keep the area dry and clean
  • Avoid exposure to sunlight directly
  • You should also avoid wearing tight clothes.
  • Don’t pick scrubs or blisters which may form.

These are some of the tattoo aftercare you will need to follow after the removal. For avoiding any risks and best results, you must follow the instructions of your technician. 

Surgical Removal For Tattoo

This is another method when it comes we think of how to remove the tattoo. In the surgical removal, the skin with a tattoo on it is cut off, and while remaining skin is stitched back. This process is also known by the name of excision tattoo removal. 

Surgical tattoo removal is the most intrusive method for getting rid of a tattoo. However, it is also the only way of completely removing any tattoo. 

Who Should Go For Surgical Removal?

The surgical method is one of the most surefire methods for the complete removal of a tattoo. When it comes to the tattoo removal cost, then also the surgical method is a wallet-friendly option. However, one thing to know is that the surgical method leaves a scar, and thus, it is more preferable for small tattoos. 

Surgical Tattoo Removal Cost

When it comes to the surgical tattoo removal cost, it is comparatively less costly than laser and dermabrasion. 

According to St. Joseph Plastic Surgery Center, the cost depends on the size of the tattoo. The cost generally ranges between $150 and $350. 

Insurance companies don’t cover the tattoo removal cost as it is a cosmetic procedure. Although it is a surgical procedure, it is not covered. 


Once the surgical tattoo removal procedure is complete, your surgeon will provide you specific instructions. 

In general, your surgeon will prescribe an ointment for the tattoo aftercare, which you need to apply for several days. This ointment helps in the healing of the skin as well as in avoiding any infection risk.

Some other aftercare things to do are:

  • Avoid scrubbing or itching.
  • Keep the area clean and wet.
  • Avoid direct sunlight.
  • Don’t pick at the site.
  • Avoid strenuous activities as they may put tension on the area. 

You need to follow these things for at least a week for better healing of the area. 

Dermabrasion Tattoo Removal

The dermabrasion method involves the use of a sanding device for tattoo removal. This is also an effective method when people search for how to remove a tattoo? Different layers of the skin are removed using the sanding device, which in turn allows the leach out of the ink. 

The efficiency of the dermabrasion method of tattoo removal varies from person to person. In some cases, it removes the tattoo completely, whereas in some cases, it doesn’t. 

Who Should Go For Dermabrasion?

The dermabrasion method is not recommended to people with eczema or other skin conditions and sensitive skin. 

If you use blood-thinning medications, they may also put you at risk of bleeding and bruising. Change in skin tone is also an effect of dermabrasion, and thus you must be careful. 

People with dark skin tone must be more vigilant before going for dermabrasion. This is essential as they may be at greater skin pigment change risk. 

Dermabrasion Tattoo Removal Cost

The complete cost of the dermabrasion removal varies according to the coloring and size of the tattoo. 

The total cost of this method may vary from several hundred dollars to thousands, according to the American Society For Dermatologic Surgery. The cost of the treatment covers all the aspects, including removal to tattoo aftercare. 


To reduce the scarring and avoid any possible infections, your clinician may recommend you some antibacterial cream. 

After the dermabrasion procedure, the area will look pink or red for several days, along with being painful. However, it is common and nothing to worry about. 

Your clinician will also advise the following:

  • Avoid any direct sunlight for at least a period of 3 to 6 months.
  • Use sunscreen for the area every time you go out.
  • Keep the area dry by avoiding water soaking. 
  • Avoid tight-fitting clothes. 

Scaring and Other Risks

In some cases, people may experience scarring after the dermabrasion treatment. You can lower the scarring by:

  • Properly use prescribed ointments
  • Avoid sun
  • Use anti-scar creams and oils after the site has healed.
  • Wear sunscreen

After Effects Of Dermabrasion

  • Change in pigmentation of the skin
  • Bleeding, redness, and swelling
  • Infection
  • Scarring if the dermabrasion is done poorly.

To avoid such complications, the best thing you can do is follow the advice of your clinician. Your clinician must also have a proper license along with some good reviews. 

Tattoo Removal Cream

Tattoo removal creams are one of the widely available options among the various methods of how to remove a tattoo. When it comes to tattoo removal costs, they are also the least expensive. The reason for this is that there is no evidence that they work. 

The best you can expect from tattoo removal cream is to lighten or fade a tattoo. One complication with the removal creams is that there is a high risk of allergic reactions and skin irritation. Thus always look out for these before choosing a tattoo removal cream. 

Tattoo Coverup

People generally go for this method when they don’t want to remove the tattoo but hide it. In this method, more ink is added to your skin to mask your tattoo, which you don’t want anymore. 

Bottom Line

Tattoos are one of the most popular body decoration ways, although they are permanent. For people who get a tattoo for some reason but no longer want it, there are various tattoo removal methods. 

Tattoo removal methods vary in efficiency, recovery time, and cost. Thus before choosing an option, always do a little research and select one that is right for you.