Laser tattoo removal is an effective way to get rid of your tattoo ink without causing any side effects to your skin. The procedure is fit for all tattoo sizes and has minimal recovery time. However, sun exposure may have an impact on tattoo removal.
Before going in for your tattoo removal appointment, here is all you need to know about the effects of sun tanning on laser tattoo removal:
How the Sun Affects the Skin
Lying in the sun to get a bit of a tan is quite a common practice. When the skin is exposed to substantial sunlight, there is a rise in the production of vitamin D and melanin in the body.
While there are several health benefits of vitamin D, melanin can be problematic at times. When melanin absorbs radiation, it can cause the skin to turn a shade darker. Excessive browning can result in burning, which can be harmful to your skin.
The Impact of Sun Tanning on Laser Tattoo Removal
Before going for a laser tattoo removal treatment, make sure your skin is as close to its natural tone as possible. Increased levels of melanin produced by sun tanning can increase the chances of sunburn. As a result, your skin may not be as protective, strong, or receptive as it should be for a successful treatment.
On tanned skin, it becomes harder for the laser energy to break down the tattoo ink beneath the skin surface. If you have a dark tan, you may require more sessions to get rid of your tattoo.
Make sure your tattoo has not been exposed to sunlight for at least 6 weeks before getting your tattoo removed and 6 weeks after your session. This will give you the best chance of having your tattoo removed in the least number of sessions and will help avoid hypo-pigmentation, the lightening of the skin during removal of the ink and removal of the increased melanin from the sun.
What About Self-Tanning?
Self-tanning, just like sun tanning, is not recommended before getting a tattoo removal treatment. Make sure you do not use creams, suntan beds, or spray tan products a minimum of two weeks before and after treatment. Certain self-tanners consist of elements that may react to laser treatment and result in skin hypo-pigmentation.
Once you self-tan, it may take several more sessions to get your tattoo removed when the process could have been completed in fewer sessions.
After getting your tattoo removed, make sure you do not visit a tanning bed or use self-tanners for at least 2 weeks. This could lead to discoloration of the treated area after your removal.
Laser tattoo removal gets the job done without damaging your skin. However, sun tanning or even getting a self-tan can hinder the process.
Sun tanning produces melanin, which can darken your skin and make it difficult for the laser to eliminate tattoo ink. Similarly, self-tanning products contain activators that can lead to skin pigmentation if tattoo removal treatment is performed. Therefore, it is recommended to stay away from sunlight for 6 weeks and tanning salons and topical tans for 2 weeks before and after laser treatment.