Full sleeve lightening

Well, I think I've spent enough time quietly...

Well, I think I've spent enough time quietly lurking this community and its time to share. Long story short I had a friend who was a tattoo artist and got a sleeve of tattoos that mean nothing to me very fast, a few years ago. As if regret wasn't enough already, I got a piece on my upper arm finished, thinking maybe I would like it more with completion.....wrong. My artist rushed, was stressed, and left me with a huge mess on my arm. I'm not willing to share photos yet because I am so embarrassed of my arm. I am trying to remain positive as my father has willingly offered to help me wth the lightening of my entire sleeve, to cover it up with a floral piece that will look pretty and feminine forever (right now I have heavy metal artwork all over my arm, what was I thinking?). I drove 100 miles out of town to consult with the only picosure laser in the state. The doctor is an MD and seems very confident in helping me lighten my arm as he has been doing tattoo removal for 17 years. Most of my tattoos are black and red but Ido have a piece with a large amount of dark blue. Hopefully within two years (spacing treatments out everything 3 monthes) and dividing my arm in half, I will be able to cover it wth a beautiful design I can be proud of. I will share progress photos once I begin my treatments in the next few weeks.

Fourth and hopefully final consultation next saturday

I am going for my fourth consultation next saturday. As I'm sure some of you can imagine, I have gone to each and every place offering tattoo removal that is somewhat in my area since this entire situation has arose. This doctor has a very small practice, offering ONLY tattoo removal. Here in florida, tattoo removal has to be performed either by or under direct supervision of a doctor, so not alot of places offer it aside from medspas which I have not gotten a good vibe from, if they tell you they can miraculously make it go away, it should be a red flag not to go there. Anyways, this doctor only offers tattoo removal, he has been doing it for 20 years, and sees patients on an appointment only basis. He unfortunatley does not have the picosure laser, but since my tattoos are mostly black and red, this might be a better option for me cost wise, meaning i can get more treatments without having to wait so long because of the high cost of the pico. I will update as soon as I have my consultation. I also want to add that i really feel better about this situation since I started coming to this website and seeing that people really do know how I feel. I feel like most of us are women, and I want to say what a strong pack of ladies we really are. These feelings are NOT easy to deal with, but the important part is that its making us better people in the end who are really learning from our mistake. So even though we all hate our tattoos, I kind of see mine as a blessing, because though this process is shitty, we will all come out stronger women in the end. Also, stress will do WAY more damage on your body than the laser removal will. I advise spoiling yourself with fun as much as you can. My boyfriend has been so great and supportive through this whole mess, constantly cheering me up with fun stuff. You can never get back the time spent stressing over something that CAN be fixed, so i'm trying to focus on enjoying my life as much as possible right now. Jeez, I'm rambling. I hope everyone has a good night, you're all beautiful, and remember, your tattoos DONT define you, and no one notices as much as you do. XOX

Final consultation and test spot

I went for my fifth and final consult today and have decided to go with this clinic. Being as my tattoos are mainly black and red I'm going to save myself some money without doing picosure and just doing the qyag. The doc did a test spot on a little area of black shading and that I have, it didn't hurt as horrible as I thought, but it was a tiny section so I'm sure bigger is worse. Here's a photos a few hours later, the black shading is pretty much gone! This is not frosting, that went away. Very excited, the tiny area is quite swollen but comfortable. First real session next week!

First treatment

I had my first treatment on 1/4 of my full sleeve (shoulder area) a little over a week ago, it seems to be pretty effective, I got some small to medium blisters on the entire thing, that then turned into relatively thick scabs which are now flaking off and the scabs are completely saturated with ink and the skin underneath appears lighter. I never heard of this before but if the ink is leaving my body any way that's good I guess! My areas of grey shading are probably about 50% reduced already and those areas didnt scab, only my heavy dense areas did. I will post a photo soon once all the scabs flake off and you can see the complete result. The treatment itself wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be, my tech is really cool and knowledgeable and talked to me the entire time and made me super comfortable. Next treatment for the next panel of my arm in a few weeks! So relieved to know its working.

Scratching skin in sleep

So I got some scabs from my first treatment and I ended up scratching the hell out of them in my sleep and ripping some of them off :/ some of the areas are raised up and shiny with no ink or pigment at all. Ugh I'm so pissed at myself. I am very fair skinned and I tend not to scar at all even when I've previously had scabs that I pick to death, they never stay raised so hopefully they will go away eventually, it will be a few months before I am ready to treat this section of my arm anyways. I go for a treatment this Saturday for the next area of my arm, a little nervous because its toward the inside of my bicep and I have alot of dark dense ink so I know it's gonna hurt alot. Not gonna do numbing unless I have to, I will have cold air though.

Picture/update

I pushed back my second session a bit because of being busy and school starting but I'm going this weekend. I am lucky because th scabs that I scratched off in my sleep seemed to take most of the ink with them and my skin doesn't seem to be raised but it is still shiny so I know it's still healing....

Had a treatment done today

Went well, frosted up nicely. I probably won't see a super dramatic result this time as the area I had treated was way more solid/not much shading this time. Went good though, my tech is awesome and he always makes very comfortable. Ill post a healing pic tomorrow!
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Any new treatments?
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Hey there, just checking in to see if you have an update for us:) Hope all is well!!


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Thank you for your storu. My journey will begin soon...i am going to my second consultation next week. My sleeve tattoo is very bold and black like yours SO please stay strong. Iwill be keeping up with your pics so maybe a can even get a insight of what I might expect in the near future. Anyways, good luck...look forard to reading more.
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Thanks for the review update! Hope you're not too sore today? Looking forward to seeing your pics! Keep positive!! - Tara
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Hi there lucy! Great fading after only one session! I pray that my shading fades as much as yours after my first session, I have my first session on my partially finished half sleeve tattoo on the 21st September with the picosure, hope we can stay in touch!
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Thanks alot! I'm sure with your grey wash tattoo and the picosure you can expect even more fading than this! Thanks for your words though, it's always lovely to be reassured and it means alot to me!! :D
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We are here to support one another! No judgemments made here..Our sharing pics and stories are only meant to help one another..and we ALL need it! :) I wish you luck in your journey to tattoo removal!
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Nicely said Canadagirl75, you are definitely catching the essence of RealSelf in that comment! :)

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Thanks Megan..my name is Tara! :)
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Welcome Canadagirl75 :) Are you planning on posting a review? B11
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Hey luc, Do you think you could upload a photo of the whole sleeve?
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I will soon I'm still so embarrassed of it but believe me it's alot worse than yours.
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I understand how it feels to be embarrassed about your tattoo, I am of mine too, but remember YOU didn't do the work, so the only person who should feel ashamed is the artist, not you, remember that. You sharing a photo really helps others on the site, so don't be shy ok :) B11
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Thanks girl, you always have a way with making us all feel better either through your updates or comments. I promise I will upload one this weekend, my tech took full pictures of my arm with an hd camera and I'm going to have him email then to me along with a shot of the progress on the treated section.
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You're welcome!!  I look forward to your updates. When I first started my laser removal it was so hard to find another person treating a large tattoo, and I was so worried I was never going to get through this. Then with each review, especially The Wraith, I gained more confidence that it is possible. I am so excited to see what we will all have to say in a few years. Have a wonderful day!! B11
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tanx for your words...
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Thanks for posting your story! I hope your first treatment goes smoothly! Let us know how you're doing!
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Awesome!!Thanks for sharing your picture! Hope you are doing well!
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I also have a very large arm piece, not quite a half sleeve. The artist is my sister, so that makes it tough. It's very well done, but just not for me and has no personal meaning. I also thought of getting it finished, thinking I'd like it better, but stopped myself and decided to get it removed. I am traveling 174 miles for the Picosure, but I have bright purple, green, pink and turquoise. From what I have read about it, it will be worth the distance. My first appointment is July 25th, and they scheduled me for same day treatment because of the distance. Good luck to you and keep us posted!
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Oh yeah, for those colors the picosure would def be worth it. The traditional laser would never get them out, are you going for full removal or to cover?
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I would love full removal, as the main reason I'm having it removed is because it's just too big. I know that may not be a possibility, so I'm prepared for a cover up if that's my only option. I'm also only getting a partial removal. There are 3 flowers on my shoulder, back, and upper arm that I'll likely keep.
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