“Dr. Boey, how do I know which is the best laser tattoo removal treatment in Singapore?”
My answer: You probably won’t.
There’s so much medical jargon and marketing campaigns floating around in the aesthetics field these days that it’s easy to be lost in it.
Different clinics like to name their lasers differently. It can get really confusing.
You mean not all clinics use the latest proven technology?
So many lasers.. how to tell which is best?
Old technology like the Q-switched laser still works, but it won’t be as effective as recent improvements like the Pico Laser.
Pico Laser Tattoo Removal – My Tattoo Removal Laser of Choice
Having worked in several clinics, I have found that different types and brands of lasers have varying levels of effectiveness in removing Tattoo Ink.
Tattoo removal works on the concept of delivering large amounts of energy to shatter tattoo pigments which are then absorbed by your body’s immune system.
A Picosecond Laser is one of the latest and most effective Laser Technology for Tattoo Removal.
This supercedes older technology known as “Q-switched Lasers”, which are also used for Pigment/Tattoo removal.
The difference is that Picosecond Lasers can emit laser beams with Higher Peak Power and Shorter Pulse Duration, which equates to more effective and safer treatments.
Essentially, final results are achieved around twice as quickly with less risk of complications such as scarring and pigmentary changes.
Picosecond Lasers can remove tattoos with 80-90% improvement in 5-10 sessions.
*Price differences between clinics.
Picosecond lasers also saves you on recovery time and repeated clinic visits.
Pico Plus, PicoSure, PicoWay: Which laser tattoo removal treatment can permanently fade those tattoos away?
Picosecond Laser is a technology, but the brand actually determines its quality. Ask your doctor specifically for the brand of the machine and do your due diligence.
I use Lutronic’s PicoPlus Pico Laser for tattoo removal but I’m sure there are other reliable brands as well.
Additionally, look out for the reputation of the laser company, number of clinics that carry the same machine as well as the doctor’s experience in that particular Laser.
Tip: Ask your Doctor to show you Published Research Papers using their machine. While not all lasers have research publications, all top Picosecond Lasers will have these. Most doctors will be more than happy to share more about the science behind their lasers.
Different tattoo colors require different wavelengths
Apart from depth of ink, the Color of Tattoo Ink is the most important factor in terms of successful tattoo removal. Plainly put, Black tattoos are a lot easier to remove than Yellow Tattoos.
In short, different wavelengths target different tattoo colors more effectively.
This means that you should go for Picosecond Lasers with multiple wavelengths if you have multi-colour tattoos. This is exactly why I bought the Picoplus Laser recently: it has all 4 wavelengths to completely eradicate tattoo pigmentation.
Black tattoos are the easiest colour to remove. Using the 1064nm on Picosecond lasers, black tattoos can be cleared 50% faster than with traditional Q-switched laser.
Red tattoos– 532nm wavelength can clear reds 50% faster than with previous nanosecond lasers.
Green tattoos – 660nm
Blue tattoo – 595nm
Quality post-care is ESSENTIAL for best results
Research has shown that Picosecond Lasers are safer than Q-switch lasers for tattoo removal. However, there is no 100% safety. Meticulous post-laser regimes are still very important to ensure shorter recovery time and lesser side-effects.
The two most common side-effects of Laser tattoo removal are pigmentary changes and scarring.
To mitigate these risks, I use a combination of Anti-Inflammatory Steroid Creams and Antibiotic creamsimmediately post-laser as well as for home-use, until full recovery.
In addition, I also use Low Level Light Therapy immediately post-laser to reduce inflammation and stimulate recovery. Do not underestimate the importance of post-laser care! You might end up having to do even more laser sessions!
Tattoo Removal Laser in Singapore: 8 Insider Tips
1. Pico Laser Tattoo Removal is said to be the most effective laser tattoo removal.
Tattoo removal technology has improved greatly in recent years.
To get the best results and avoid wasting money, make sure you find the best combination of doctor and laser.
My suggestion is to choose a good pico laser that can utilise 4 different wavelengths for maximal pigmentation and tattoo removal in Singapore.
Remember that the doctor’s experience in using the laser matters a lot too!
2. How much improvement can you expect after tattoo removal laser treatment?
Picosecond Lasers can remove tattoos with up to 80 – 90% improvement in 5-6 treatment sessions.
The most dramatic improvements are usually seen in the first few laser sessions.
Some of my patients have 50 – 70% improvement after just 1 session.
Inferior laser machines or unapproved “lasers” used by spas may take twice as many sessions to deliver similar results.
Unfortunately, I’ve seen patients with minimal results after more than 10 sessions!
3. How much does laser for tattoo removal cost in Singapore?
Picosecond lasers for tattoo removal costs $50 – $800 per session.
Price of Tattoo Removal Laser is from $50/ session (small tattoo) at Sozo Aesthetic Clinic.
5-10 sessions are usually required, depending on individual characteristics and your tattoo type (more below).
The estimated total bill will be about $2000 for simple tattoos. Challenging tattoos may cost up to $4000 to remove.
As you can see, effective tattoo removal in Singapore is definitely not cheap, which makes it all the more important to get it right the first time!
Not to mention, these cheaper lasers also carry a much higher risk of:
The worst part is that scar tissue formed due to ineffective laser machines makes it even harder for subsequent laser sessions to remove your tattoo.
4. Tattoos on lighter skin are more easily removed
Tattoos on lighter skin are more easily removed than on darker skin.
This is because dark skin tends to absorb more Laser light. When a Laser beam gets in contact with the tattoo ink, some energy is absorbed by the dark skin, hence “weakening” the laser beam.
If you are darker-skinned, Pico Lasers can safely deliver one of the highest amount of energy in ultra-short pulses.
Do note that there are many brands of Picosecond Lasers in the market. For better results and safety, choose a doctor who uses Pico Lasers which have been specifically tried-and-tested on darker Asian skin eg Pico Plus from Korea.
5. Is tattoo removal laser painful?
Unfortunately, the process of removing a tattoo is nearly as painful as getting the tattoo.
I use a combination of techniques to minimise discomfort:
- Cooler during laser treatment
- Local anesthesia injections
6. Will tattoo removal lasers leave any scars?
There is a small risk of scarring and residual pigmentation changes, which can be hypopigmentation or hyperpigmentation.
You may be more prone to these side effects if you have:
- Darker skin
- Colourful tattoos
- Large tattoos
7. How long is the downtime for laser tattoo removal?
The downtime is usually 3 – 7 days of skin redness and mild scabbing. During this time, sun protection is of utmost importance.
Post-laser care is the difference between achieving a good result and development of complications.
8. How can you get the best results after tattoo removal treatment?
Most tattoo removal doctors rarely emphasise on the importance of post-laser care.
Similar to getting quality rest and diet after a strenuous work-out, a comprehensive post-laser recovery protocol is necessary to maximise results and minimise complications.
I speed up the recovery process of tattoo removal using a recovery protocol of medical-grade recovery creams, wound dressing and high-grade sun-block. This usually halves your recovery time.
More effective and faster recovery also means that you can achieve your tattoo removal in fewer sessions.