How much does it cost to have a tattoo removed?

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Tattoo removal costs

Tattoo removal costs

With the growing popularity of tattoos, the number of skin images that the wearer wants to hide is also increasing. Unattractively engraved motifs or those that no longer suit your taste can be removed using a laser or another method. We clarify what the treatment costs in a detailed interview with the cost check expert, who also has many interesting tips for you.

Who removes my unloved complexion?

Cost check: Removing a tattoo is not considered a medical procedure, but an aesthetic-cosmetic procedure. This is also the reason why you always have to bear the costs yourself. This also results in the fact that, in addition to dermatologists, cosmetic studios or tattoo artists are allowed to use laser and other procedures for tattoo removal.

It is therefore important that you get good advice in advance. This applies in particular to the expected treatment period, which has a noticeable effect on the price.

How much does tattoo removal cost?

Cost check: Unfortunately, the expenses cannot be generalized as many factors play a role in the distance. First of all, however, it can be said that it is significantly more expensive to have an unloved skin type removed than to have it pierced. Overall, you should calculate at least ten times the former tattoo price.

What you have to spend depends on:

  • How big the tattoo is.
  • How many colors were used?
  • When the motif was engraved or how old it is.

What techniques are there?

Cost check: There are different methods, each of which has advantages and disadvantages:

MethodMethodadvantageDisadvantage
surgical removalThe tattooed skin region is removed in an operation.The tattoo is completely removed.The method can only be used on small tattoos. In addition, it is not suitable for every skin area. After the operation, you need to take good care of the wound so that no scars remain.
laser removalThe color particles are heated and shattered by the addition of physical energy. These are then transported away via the lymph.This is currently the most common removal method. The duration of treatment per session is relatively short. There is no large wound and usually no scars. Black tattoos can almost always be removed without leaving any residue.With colorful tattoos, traces of color can remain visible. Unsightly color changes are possible due to oxidation. Elimination via the lymphatic system is not always unproblematic, since the by-products of the colors are classified as carcinogenic. In addition, lasering is relatively expensive. In dark-skinned people, light spots can form at the site of the tattoo, which clearly stands out from the rest of the skin tone.
Dermabrasion  The top layer of skin is removed with a fine grinder or a sandblaster.      Colorful tattoos can also be removed easily. The pigments are shed via the scab.There is a comparatively high risk of scarring. Since dermabrasion is not painless, at least a local anesthetic is usually required.
DiathermicElectric current is passed into the skin where it generates heat. This burns the dye and dissolves it. In the process, the tissue dies, which is rejected by the color pigments. The skin renews itself from within.All colors can be removed in this way.This procedure almost always leaves severe scars. A local anesthetic is required. Healing is also painful and often takes several months. This is why diathermy is hardly ever used.
Chemical PeelThe top layers of skin are dissolved with chemicals so that the color-bearing layer is exposed. The color pigments are then removed.All colors can be removed.The healing phase is long and scars are almost always left behind. A local anesthetic is necessary. The surrounding tissue is also affected.

How does laser tattoo removal work?

Cost check: The lasers are aimed at the unloved skin from a short distance and emit a very intense flash of light. This penetrates the skin where it meets the color pigments. The darker these are, the more effectively they can be smashed into innumerable particles. The fragments are transported away via the lymphatic system. However, particles remain in the body, which can be problematic, since older paints in particular contained carcinogenic substances.

If large tattoos are removed in this way, it can lead to permanent cell damage. You should therefore seek detailed advice prior to treatment and carefully weigh up the risk.

How many laser sessions are necessary?

Cost check: Depending on the intensity of the colors, the size of the tattoo, and the depth of the puncture, between five and fifteen sessions, are required. There should be at least four to six weeks between these appointments so that the treated parts of the body can heal. As a result, the treatment period can extend to more than a year.

Who does this treatment?

Cost check: Since there is also a risk of scarring with laser treatment, you should only have the tattoo removed by a specialist in aesthetic surgery or a dermatologist. In addition, the tattoos can hide malignant skin changes that only a doctor can diagnose in advance.

Can very colorful and large tattoos be removed with the laser?

Cost check: Colorful and large tattoos cannot always be completely removed with the laser. The destruction of the colors yellow, brown, and violet, shadows of which almost always remain, is particularly difficult.

How much does the laser treatment cost?

Cost check: Removing a tattoo with a laser can be very expensive. Each session costs between 80 and 500 EUR. As a result, the cost of a small skin tattoo done by an inexperienced tattoo artist for what was once EUR 50 can add up to EUR 1,000.

However, laser treatment is likely to become noticeably more expensive in the future. Anyone who has completed a laser protection course and has such a device can currently remove tattoos. At the end of 2020, the new Ordinance on Radiation Protection will come into force. Then only doctors will be allowed to offer this procedure, which should drive up the costs significantly.

How does dermabrasion work?

Cost check: In this procedure, the tattoo is abraded from the skin and removed in this way. High-frequency grinding devices or sandblasting devices (microdermabrasion) are used. For medium and large tattoos, a local anesthetic or even general anesthesia is necessary. Therefore, dermabrasion is almost only used for small motifs. Depending on the size of the motif, the costs amount to between EUR 300 and 3,000.

Is chemical peeling suitable and how much does it cost?

Cost check: With this variant of tattoo removal, the skin is stimulated by chemical means to peel off. This exposes the underlying dermis, in which the color pigments are deposited. This will be dealt with further below. The paint particles are rinsed off with chemical substances or a water or sand jet. Since this is not painless, local anesthesia is used. Larger tattoos require multiple treatments.

The cost of this procedure is between EUR 400 and EUR 700 per session.

Why are tattoos so difficult to remove?

Cost check: A good tattoo artist uses all his knowledge so that a tattoo lasts for life and does not have to be reworked. To achieve this, water-insoluble pigments are brought into the second layer of skin, the dermis. Here, as the scientists from Aix University Marseille and the Paris Institute Curie have found, you are held by the immune cells. If the cell that holds the color pigment dies, it is immediately “eaten” by a new immune cell.

Doctors, therefore, advise against tattoo removal in about half of the cases. This is especially true for very large tattoos.

Do I have to consider anything before the treatment?

Cost check: First of all, you should know that tattoo removal, even with a laser, is more painful than piercing.

You should definitely heed the following rules of conduct:

  • Avoid the sun before and after the treatment. This makes it easier to remove the tattoo and prevents unsightly color differences between the skin areas.
  • Contact a qualified person, preferably a medical professional.
  • Take your time and allow your skin sufficiently long recovery periods between the individual sessions.
  • The cheapest method is not always the best. If you exchange the unloved complexion for unsightly scars, this can be optically much more disturbing.

What is a cover-up?

Cost check: The cover-up is a widely used method to conceal a badly engraved motif or a motif that no longer suits your taste. An experienced tattoo artist reworks the old motif and cleverly integrates it into a new one. So it is over tattooed.

Before you cover the skin image, you can have small parts of the previous image lasered, for example, to completely remove a name or a detail in advance. Discuss a cover-up and any necessary pre-treatment with your tattoo artist, who will also advise you in detail on the choice of motif.

Since cover-ups are relatively complex due to individual circumstances, the costs cannot be quantified.

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