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Blast Heavy Sleeve for Cover Up. -Dallas, TX

Hi, all. I've been getting a bunch of tattoos,...

Hi, all. I've been getting a bunch of tattoos, almost a full sleeve, as well as a bunch of other crap on my other arm (not pictured) lasered since December of 2012. All in all 10 treatments, split into halves, so everything has been lasered 5 times as of right now (December 2013).

After spending months and months researching laser before making any commitment I had been through it all. Jerked around by enough people and all of the misinformation out there. Luckily enough, I eventually stumbled upon a guy named Alan Faulkner of Fade Fast out in Dallas, Tx, a name that kept coming up in tattoo circles who seemed highly revered.

After doing some more research (can't stress research enough) into Fadefast, I knew this was my guy and I was going to travel out of state to see him. He uses the NaturaLaseQS laser which is the most powerful single pulse Q switched Nd:YAG laser available and also treats 10mm spot size, which is double, in some cases even 5 times the area that other lasers can treat with one zap. I'm not kidding when I say he'd just run down my arm real quick like BRAAAAAAAP and it's done. Speed and power. And yes, it hurts.

Needless to say this has been the most trying year of my life. I've heard it said before on here that it's all mental. So true. The anticipation, excitement, and relief of initially getting the ball rolling eventually subsided shortly after my first treatment. Then.. stress, lots of stress. My arm had turned into a blob and I was extremely embarrassed. Long sleeve button ups all year, that's all summer too. If there is anything I can recommend, it's to stay focused. I realized also that I wasn't always able to stay positive, and I had to accept that. I just had to stay busy and hang on at all costs.

Where I'm at now is I'm 2 weeks post the second half of my fifth treatment. I was told by the tech. in October that 5 would be it, to wait a few months, and I should be good to go for a coverup. When I saw him again at the beginning of December he told me that I was good to go. I am not relieved. I look at my arm and think I still need atleast another treatment, even though I was assured that I'd be good. I still have to wait a couple more weeks to go talk to an artist about doing a a heavy heavy traditional Japanese cover up. Dragon and floral possibly. I'm expecting the worst and stress is at an all time high. I slept 2 hours last night.

If anyone has any questions, or would just like to talk or vent, I'm always all for it. Just message me..

post 5th

What's probably going to happen now is this- I'll probably end up waiting a few more months for the full fading affect to kick in, then go get a coverup. I hope to be ready by then, and tattoos are supposed to still fade up to 6 months after treatment, but I don't know how much and everybody is different.

Some things I try to do..

Along with various vitamins and supplements that promote healthy blood flow, lymph system, immune system, clays that attract opposites likes heavy metals, toxins, etc., and antioxidents, I've ( Just recently) incorporated a couple of other things that I feel may help, but I have no evidence (I have nothing to compare it to) to say 100% that it works.

I recently got my hands on a mini trampoline. Mini trampoline exercises are said to increase the immune system by as much as 15-20 times. If interested, there's a lot of good information on the web about it.

I also have a vibrator massager thing (I got it from my mom, chill). I also have no evidence that this works, but I know that it does increase blood flow on the areas that you use it on, but also wonder if it has any affect on the broken ink particles as well.

If these things don't work, at least I think that they might, so hopefully they'll at least act as a placebo affect.

I'm going with these rituals right now, almost obsessively, full force to get the maximum results from my last treatment(s).

Good to go for coverup!

So last night I made the decision that instead of sitting around waiting for my tattoo to fade more, or stressing about if it even will, or about how it's still dark and how many more treatments I'd, and how much more longer I'd be going at this, that I was going to go visit the artist who I've been wanting to do my cover up work and show him what I've got going.

I was expecting him to say something more a long the lines of what needs be lasered more and how many times he thinks, or maybe not even wanting to take on the project all togather.

Well, one luck at my arm and he was certain that im good to go. NOT the news I was expecting. He's going to start drawing something up and them I'm booked in for early February. I did not think I was going to start the year out this way. At all. But, boy what a way too. Tonight I will have my first good nights sleep in a long time..

Cover Up Started..

Here are some pics of the cover up I started last week. The artist is Erick Melendez at Dapper Ink in El Paso, TX. He free handed it and really did an amazing job at hiding some of the spots that may have been a little too dark. It may be hard to make out whats really going on so far since no color has been added (any color that appears to be there is from the old tattoos). I should be going back in a couple weeks to get that done, then sometime shortly after that start on the upper portion of my arm, then touch ups, etc. so it's def. a journey but glad to get the ball rolling.

Pretty Frustrated..

I was on the phone earlier inquiring into laser at a clinic about an hour away from here. Over the phone I was quoted $400. That is completely unacceptable for laser removal in 2014, especially when all that is being treated is three tattoos on top of the forearm from the elbow down. At Fadefast I was getting as much as I wanted treated for $250, then dropped down to $200 because they were cutting me a break. Mike at GO! prices the same. I would make another Dallas trip, but I don't know if I have it in me anymore. The long bus rides. Overcrowded buses. Smelly buses. Buses with conflict. Getting attacked by tweakers and other general weirdos and trashy people. No way, no how. I am in New Mexico and willing to travel, if the prices are fair and has a good track record. I might look into what Arizona has to offer. If anyone can help with any ideas, please do. Thanks..

To Clarify..

If I were just starting, or had a ways to go still, I'd make the Dallas trip. Or if I were elsewhere, I'd still travel to someone else who's professional and reputable. Since this has been a journey, lots of treatments, lots of payments made, I can't stress enough how important it was for me to go see someone who wasn't "anti-tattoo" and wouldn't break my bank. I only should have one more treatment to go, and only on a small part of my arm (compared to the almost two sleeves I started out with), which is the reason I don't feel like traveling too far right now..
Fadefast

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait tmes
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Comments (56)

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Congrats on the coverup! It's going to look awesome! So happy for you!
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thank you! I go back to put color in on the 11th. then I will make more laser a priority. seems like so much to think about time wise and financially, but these things usually come togather for me when I just chill out a little..
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Good points, man--I went to two consultations at dermatologist and I felt like I was being treated differently and besides, why would I pay twice what I pay now to not even get treated by the doctor. At one of my consultations, the doctor came in and looked at my tattoo for like 10 seconds (I'm not joking). I'm glad I ended up going to someone that is well known in the tattoo community.
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That's frustrating to feel judged, not good for business that is forsure. My clinic is very accepting and not judgmental at all, the first time I went in I was crying so hard I could hardly speak, they were so kind and explained everything to my husband and as I sniffled and hung my head down. I realized that they were not there to judge me only to help. Never accept that treatment from anyone...
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thanks for the comments. sometimes im pretty quick to jump on the offense when I think things are ridiculous, and it never helps me out any. ill go see these people next week and see maybe where some kindness can get me..
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Looks great dude!
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How exciting!!! I am so glad you posted the start of your cover up, looks like it's going to be beautiful, can't wait to see the finished result!
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thanks, eva! I dry heal so my arm is itching way worse than any post-laser right now. also, after all of that laser you can tattoo on my arm for hours and ill sit like rock not feeling a thing. its kind of cool.
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So the laser is clearly more painful and you can handle anything! Please keep us posted, so excited to see the final result. 

Oh...I went to see my artist this week and she is so excited, she is starting to draw up my piece, we are going to start on the hip, the phoenix tail will wrap around the lower him and work up from there. We are going to try and save the large lotus flower, and keep it more of a fix up, rather than a full cover....she totally gets me too - we really connect and she is a wonderful artist. 

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nice. so youre really going for that large hip and back piece? that's going to be next level.
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Yep, I am going to go for it :) 
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Glad you started your cover up. Is it possible that your tattoo did not fade that fast, cause the spotsize was that big and so there was not that much energy on the ink? Maybe i am wrong...
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I don't know, the energy was pretty high. but youre right, there was a lot of ink. nobody ever said that would slow down the fading. but I could imagine it would. my body was trying to dispose of a lot of ink, so im sure that played a part.
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That looks like it's going to turn out great! Looks like your in the hands of a very talented artist. Can't wait to see it finished.
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thanks, I cant wait either.
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Looks awesome so far!! :-)
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thanks.
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Hi. How did the cover up session go???
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hey, thanks for asking. it went good. so far we just got the bottom half of the arm done, outline, shading, and background. ill go back in a couple weeks to add color. the artist works pretty fast. I have some pictures on my computer, I wasn't sure if they were good at capturing what was going on, since theres no color yet. when I get home from school ill post them on here anyway. im also in the market to get (hopefully one more) laser treatment on my other arm. I don't know if I want to travel all the way to dallas just for a little laser, but I don't know who else is trustworthy in my area, so I really don't know what im going to do.
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Great work on the cover up . The fish is in a nice light area so the colour will really stand out. When was your last laser treatment on the other arm??
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thanks, yeah the artist really knew where to place everything, its hard to tell from pictures, but it was really pretty impressive what he did. the last treatment on my other arm was like 2 and a half months ago, I don't think itll continue to fade to the point where it needs to be without another laser.
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Hmm--I have no idea what happened with my last post, lol! That's so great that you're ready for your cover up, yay! I just had my first treatment on Saturday, woo!
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=p
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awesome! its weird but cool to see things from a diff. perspective, of being ready for cover up vs. those just getting started or inquiring into the process. I don't even feel bad for you/them, because I know you guys will get to where you want to be in no time (I didn't think I ever would, but here I am). my first coverup session is this Thursday. ill keep you all posted!
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That's awesome news!!! Congrats on being ready for yr coverup; it must feel like a ton of bricks off yr shoulders :)
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