When you have laser tattoo removal, pulses of light are applied to the area to be treated. The skin is exposed to the laser for some billionths of a second, but this is enough for it to penetrate the layers of skin and reach the tattoo ink.
The laser causes the skin to release tiny bubbles of steam, which creates a temporary whitening of the skin. While this whitening generally only lasts for a few minutes, it can be followed by some inflammation which can last for several hours. The symptoms can be relieved by using an ice pack and aloe vera gel.
Another temporary side effect of laser hair removal is an increased sensitivity to sunlight. It is important to protect the skin from strong sunshine or prolonged exposure to sunlight, either by keeping it covered up or by using an SPF 40+ sunblock.
Most tattoos fade away after laser tattoo removal. Some can prove to be more difficult to remove completely and can leave a slight ‘ghosting’ of the pigment. The number of sessions required depends on various factors: the type of tattoo, the size and the colours used.