Can laser remove red ink from a tattoo?

Doctor Answers 6

Pico Lasers Can Remove Red Tattoo Ink

Red is a difficult color, but it can be removed by the PicoWay laser. The lasers can be set to a wavelength that is suitable for the color being removed. Please see a board-certified dermatologist and be sure that your tattoo is 100% healed before attempting removal.

Red Ink

Pico lasers are the most advanced technology. I utilize the PiQo4 laser which has 4 Pico wavelengths including the 532 wavelength ideal for red ink. Certain colors respond best to certain wavelengths. The amount of treatments can vary based on several factors such as the location of your tattoo, your skin tone, how sharp the ink is, and how quickly your body eliminates the ink. Even with advanced lasers and multiple wavelengths complete removal is not always possible. I believe that tattoos are removed faster and safer with Pico lasers and there is less risk of scarring. I think it is important not only to seek the best technology but an experienced laser tattoo removal provider.

Daniel J. Ritacca, MD
Chicago Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

PicoSure for tattoo removal

Thank you for your question. PicoSure™ is one hundred times faster than any other laser on the market, you will require fewer sessions overall in order to achieve your desired results. Even dark blue, green and yes, red inks – which are usually the most difficult to remove – can be effectively cleared with less treatment. Hope this helps! Best, Dr. Katz

Bruce E. Katz, MD
New York Dermatologic Surgeon
3.8 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

The Red Ink Resolution

This is a harder color to remove, but can be done in a series of laser tattoo removal treatments. I recommend seeing an expert for a formal evaluation. Best, Dr. Emer

Jason Emer, MD
Los Angeles Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 159 reviews

Can a laser remove red ink from a tattoo?

Hello, thank you for your question.  The important thing to ask is; does your laser have a 532 wavelength?  532 wavelength best treats red ink. We use the PicoWay laser at this facility. The PicoWay Laser (Candela/Syneron) uses photoacoustic impact/pressure waves rather than photothermal/heat.  This process has less heat, therefore it is more comfortable and the chances of hyperpigmentation are less.  The Pico-second pulse shatters the ink into even smaller particles, allowing the body to more easily absorb the ink. This pico-second technology can usually remove a tattoo in about half as many treatments as a Q-switch device.

Good Luck!

Mark A. Blair, MD
Phoenix Dermatologic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

​It is possible to remove a red tattoo.

Thanks for your question. It is possible to remove a red tattoo.  Based on our experience, we definitely recommend a picosecond laser with 532 nm wavelength.  For PicoSure, this wavelength is an upgrade over the original models and was added specifically for treating some red inks.  The PicoSure Laser is new technology and will generally remove tattoos in half the treatments (or less!) required by older lasers,
without the risk of burning and with much, much lower risk of hypopigmentation.

Laura Riehm, MD
Fort Worth Physician
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.