November 29, 2011

Are Tattoo Removal Creams Safe?

If you have a tattoo that you really dislike, you have probably spent some time researching the numerous tattoo removal methods.  The cheapest method and the least invasive is using a tattoo removal cream.  However, with so many different brands on the market it can be hard to know which one is best and more importantly if the one you choose to use is safe.

Consult a Specialist

Before buying or using a tattoo removal cream, your first course of action should be to consult a dermatologist or a specialist in tattoo removal.  Every person’s skin is different and just because a friend of yours had no problems with a specific removal cream it doesn’t mean that you won’t.  Certain creams will only work on specific skin colours, and specific tattoo colours too and a dermatologist will be able to advise you further.

Visit the Brand’s Website

Due to the popularity of tattoo removal creams, there are now hundreds of people selling these products individually.  Although the creams may sound safe you should be aware that many people will do anything they can to sell the product and they may not list the possible side effects on their website.  In these cases you should visit the official website of the tattoo removal cream of your choice for further information.

The official website will give you information regarding the ingredients of the tattoo removal cream, as well as any possible side effects.  They may also have an FAQ page or further contact information so that you can obtain further information before going ahead with your purchase.

Ingredients in Tattoo Removal Creams

If your dermatologist has given you the go ahead to use a tattoo removal cream, you will want to know what ingredients the creams contain.  The most popular tattoo removal creams such as Tat Be Gone and Wrecking Balm include a chemical which works its way under the skin where it is applied and dislodges the tattoo ink.  This then works its way to the surface of your skin where it can be removed with an exfoliator – these are known for being the safest types of tattoo removal creams.

However, some brands on the market contain a product known as Trichloracetic Acid which is basically a form of chemical dermabrasion.  These creams work by burning away the top layer of skin until they get to the tattoo.  Whilst they can be effective they can also cause some serious scarring and have caused some very bad scars over the years.

Even more worryingly perhaps are the creams that include hydroquinone.  Used to lighten acne scars, freckles and age spots, hydroquinone is often included in tattoo removal creams to lighten disliked tattoos.  However research has since shown that this has been linked to cancer, especially when contained in high quantities.  With tattoo removal creams including a 2 to 4% dose of hydroquinone, it is unknown as to what the risks are and although the FDA has proposed banning it, the jury is still out.

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