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Tattoo Removal Scarring: Is it True or False?

You have wanted a tattoo for a long time. So, you meticulously search for the best artist in your area and even pick the best design. You’re so ready for this tattoo!

But what if you suddenly changed your mind and already have the tattoo? Or a new job that prohibits tattoos could be your dream come true, but it’s also your nightmare. The only option you have is to get a tattoo removal treatment.

The question is would it scar if you undergo a tattoo removal treatment?

What is Tattoo Removal?

A tattoo is a permanent design on the skin made with needles and ink. It is permanent because the ink does not simply stain your skin cells. The macrophages on your skin pass the ink from one another after they die. It means that removing these tattoos is not easy and is going to be expensive.

Tattoo removal is the process of removing unwanted tattoos. There are several ways of removing a tattoo, including laser removal, surgical removal, chemical peel and dermabrasion.

Laser removal is the most popular tattoo removal procedure and is often considered the most effective. It uses intense pulses of light to break down the ink in the tattoo.

Surgical removal involves cutting off the tattooed skin and stitching the wound closed. This method is for smaller tattoos. It is not practical to use it on large tattoos.

Chemical peel tattoo removal uses a mild acid known as Trichloroacetic acid (TCA). It is applied to the area of the tattoo to remove the outer layer of the skin.

Dermabrasion is a method of tattoo removal that involves using a high-speed rotating wire brush to remove the top layer of skin.

Will it Cause a Scar?

The answer to this question is that it depends. The possibility of scarring depends on the type of tattoo removal used and how you take care of the post-removal healing process.

Tattoo Removal Used

Laser Removal

This removal is considered the most effective. It will appear red, swollen, tender, and scabs and blisters may also develop. The possibility of scarring is low. In some cases, scarring will occur depending on the skin type. Discolouration like hypo- and hyperpigmentation are side effects that would go away with time and proper care.

Surgical Removal

Since this removal involves cutting and sewing the skin, it possesses the highest possibility of scarring. The development of scars is unavoidable.

Chemical Peel

This treatment will result in open wounds making it possible to develop scar tissues when healing.


If you choose this removal for your tattoo, permanent scarring and discolouration of the skin are common. Bruising and swelling are likely to happen because bleeding will occur when the tattoo’s sanded.

Keep in mind that the possibility of scarring depends on each patient. What has worked with your friend does not mean it will work for you as well.

Post-Removal Healing Process

All types of tattoo removal will lead to an open wound. Have days or weeks of healing time. When healing, scabs will eventually form. It is a crucial time since proper healing will help avoid possible scarring. Tampering with the scabs and not applying the prescribed medications can lead to infection and also increase the possibility of scarring.

The post-procedure care that you should follow is:

  1. Daily cleaning with soap and water
  2. Apply antibiotic ointment
  3. Keep the wound covered with a dressing

How to Avoid Scarring for Tattoo Removal?

  1. The most important way to avoid possible scarring is to consult trained physicians in tattoo removal. Visit a clinic rather than a spa that offers tattoo removal. This way, you are sure that you can get the best option and advice.
  2. Do not try to use DIY home tattoo removal. These tattoo removals may contain acids that are harmful to your skin. These acids can burn your skin.
  3. After tattoo removal, make sure that you maintain your post-procedure care to avoid infections.
  4. When scabs are forming, let them be. These scabs will eventually fall off on their own. Forcing to remove the scab will only make the wound bleed and build scar tissue.
  5. Lastly, wear sunscreen or avoid staying in the sun for a long time. Since the skin was exposed to chemicals or is healing, it tends to be very sensitive.

Is Tattoo Removal Painful?

It is important to note that tattoo removal can be painful and may require several treatments to remove the tattoo completely. The procedures also result in an open wound, so pain is inevitable. The only difference is your pain threshold.

Local or general anaesthesia is applied in Tattoo Removal, such as surgical and dermabrasions. For the other procedures, numbing creams lessen the pain that you may feel.

Take Away

Tattoos are supposed to be permanent. With the development of technology, it is possible to remove these inks in the body. Removing these inks has risks like skin discolouration, infection and even scarring.

It is true that tattoo removal can cause scarring. The likelihood and severity of scarring can vary depending on each individual. Some people may experience minimal scarring, while others may experience more significant scarring.

The best way to get rid of an unwanted tattoo is to consult a qualified practitioner and never try doing an at-home treatment without any prescription.