Before and After Tattoo Removal: I Don't Want To Wear Turtlenecks To Work

Tena G on 11 Oct 2013 at 9:00am

before and after tattoo removal photo chest

RealSelf community member, Tena G, is a 23 year-old graduate student who began tattoo removal in 2011. This is her journey, in her own words.

I was actually going to pick a quote that was worse -- something from the Twilight books. But I’m really glad I didn’t. The quote is from Romeo and Juliet and doesn't mean a lot to me. I essentially thought tattoos were really cool, and just wanted one that everyone could see.

But during college I started to think - who is going to hire me with this horrible tattoo? I didn't want to wear turtlenecks to work for the rest of my life. My other tattoos can be easily covered -- the tattoo on my back is actually the one I hate the most ... now, don't laugh, but it's Jonas Brothers lyrics ...

before and after tattoo removal photo chest

I was very nervous for every tattoo removal session, because it hurts. I’d be there squeezing my sister’s hand, yelling and kicking my feet --  [getting lasered] really does feel like splattered grease all over your chest. My skin reacted differently with each treatment, sometimes I would have GIANT blisters, small blisters, or none at all. For me, the pain is gone after 1-2 days.

I’ve had seven sessions (over the span of two years) and there's a huge change. It's not exactly what I want, because I want it gone, but it’s about halfway there. I'm still wearing shirts to cover it, because I have to [repeatedly] explain why it looks so terrible. But, I don’t mind talking about the removal that much, because it’s more interesting than, "I just got this dumb tattoo because I was 15 years old."

before and after tattoo removal chest

Overall, I'm happy about the progress. I can see bits and pieces that are already gone. Honestly, I would be happy to have it [disappear] just enough, so I could put [concealing] makeup on it every single day. 

I do think that tattoos are "me". I just need to be smarter with my decisions in getting them, and not throw out a random tattoo idea and stick with it ...

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