It’s Not All Sun and Games: How to Protect your Tattoo After Treatment

Spring’s finally here and summer is just around the corner. We know you’re planning to spend as much time outside as possible because so are we!

Now we’re not for scare tactics, but beware! Sun exposure can negatively affect tattoo removal. (REMINDER: our policy is no sun exposure within 2 weeks pre- or post-treatment!)

The Risk You Run in the Sun

Sun exposure while undergoing laser treatment can:

  • Delay your removal results
  • Permanently damage your skin
  • And is the #1 cause of skin dyspigmentation

Why all the risks? It gets pretty scientific! Sun exposure stimulates our melanocytes which are responsible for producing pigment. Melanocytes remain in this “stimulated or active” state for approximately two weeks post sun exposure.

Laser is light, so if we treat skin with the PicoWay® Laser during this active state, your melanocytes will panic and either begin to produce more pigment (hyperpigmentation) or shut down entirely and lose pigment (hypopigmentation).

Remember our bodies produce pigment to protect us from the sun’s damaging UV rays. It’s our natural defense mechanism!

Be Smart About Sun Exposure

Some quick tips below.

  • Buckle up: sun rays are strongest between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
  • 50% of sunburns occur when you’re hanging around the yard, enjoying BBQs, gardening etc.

So, you get it. But, how do you protect yourself?

  • Avoid direct exposure
  • Wear clothing that covers your tattoo
  • Put a bandage over your tattoo if you can’t wear protective clothing
  • Apply sunscreen to your tattoo
    • Use physical base sunscreens with ingredients like Zinc Oxide and Titanium Oxide that reflect UVA and UVB.
    • Avoid sunscreens with chemical base ingredients like Avobenzone and Oxybenzone.

Just because you’re undergoing tattoo removal treatment doesn’t mean you have to put fun on hold. Cover up in the sun and keep on living your life.


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