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Removal problems are one reason to consider corrective makeup. Despite advances in laser technology, removing a tattoo is a painstaking process, usually involving several treatments and considerable expense. Complete removal without scarring may be impossible. .Although allergic reactions to tattoo pigments are rare, when they happen they may be particularly troublesome because the pigments can be hard to remove.
Occasionally, people may develop an allergic reaction to tattoos they have had for years. Granulomas: These are nodules that may form around material that the body perceives as foreign, such as particles of tattoo pigment. Keloid formation: If you are prone to developing keloids -- scars that grow beyond normal boundaries -- you are at risk of keloid formation from a tattoo. Keloids may form any time you injure or traumatize your skin. Tattooing or micropigmentation is a form of trauma. Keloids occur more frequently as a consequence of tattoo removal. Although tattoos may be satisfactory at first, they sometimes fade. Also, if the tattooist (tattoist)injects the pigments too deeply into the skin, the pigments may migrate beyond the original sites, resulting in a blurred appearance.
Another cause of dissatisfaction is that the human body changes over time, and styles change with the season. The permanent makeup that may have looked flattering when first injected may later clash with changing skin tones and facial or body contours. People who plan to have facial cosmetic surgery are advised that the appearance of their permanent makeup may become distorted. The tattoo that seemed stylish at first may become dated and embarrassing. And changing tattoos or permanent makeup is not as easy as changing your mind.
Methods for removing tattoos include laser treatments, abrasion, scarification, and surgery. Some people attempt to overlay an objectionable tattoo with a new one. Each approach has drawbacks: Laser treatments can lighten many tattoos, some more easily and effectively than others. Generally, several visits are necessary over a span or weeks or months, and the treatments can be expensive. Some individuals experience hypopigmentation -- a lightening of the natural skin coloring -- in the affected area. Laser treatments also can cause some tattoo pigments to change to a less desirable shade. Unfortunately, knowing what pigments are in your tattoo or permanent makeup has always been difficult and has become more so as the variety of tattoo inks has multiplied. Inks are often sold by brand name only, not by chemical composition. Because the pigments are sold to tattoo parlors and salons, not on a retail basis to consumers, manufacturers are not required by law to list the ingredients on the labels. Furthermore, because manufacturers may consider the identity and grade of their pigments "proprietary," neither the tattooist (tattoist) nor the customer may be able to obtain this information.
There also have been reports of individuals
suffering allergic reactions after laser treatments to remove tattoos,
apparently because the laser caused allergenic substances in the tattoo
ink to be released into the body. Dermabrasion involves abrading layers
of skin with a wire brush or diamond fraise (a type of sanding disc).
This process itself may leave a scar. Salabrasion, in which a salt solution
is used to remove the pigment, is sometimes used in conjunction with dermabrasion,
but has become less common. Scarification involves removing the tattoo
with an acid solution and creating a scar in its place. Surgical removal
sometimes involves the use of tissue expanders (balloons inserted under
the skin, so that when the tattoo is cut away, there is less scarring).
Larger tattoos may require repeated surgery for complete removal.