What is Next when Laser Tattoo Removal Does Not Work?

My eyebrow Tattoo's were applied much too high and I am so upset. Over the last 8 years having to live with this mistake has been hell. I am embarrassed and sad and I have to apply makeup several times a day. What else can I do to remove this tattoo?

Doctor Answers 7

Laser Tattoo Removal

Thank you for the question. I would suggest seeking consultation with several different physicians who specialize in the use of laser technology. I would not recommend any other modality including surgical excision. I hope this helps.

San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,499 reviews

See an expert surgeon

Surgical excision can be done, but there is always a scar if you look closely enough. Depending on the width of the color that was tattooed, the surgical excision could create too much of a defect once the skin is removed and then the suturing might bring the eyebrow up too high. Make sure that you have consulted with an expert laser surgeon who has multiple lasers available, before you say that laser won’t be your answer.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

Finding the right treatment for laser tattoo removal

Having a permanent tattoo that is unwanted and unappreciated is in itself frustrating. Permanent tattoo removal is treatable in the eyebrow area especially. Black color is the easiest to remove although it can take several treatments to achieve benefits expected.

William J. Hedden, MD
Birmingham Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 321 reviews

Eyebrow tattoo removal


Laser tattoo removal will remain your best option for clearance of the misplaced eyebrow tattoos.  Even black inks, which historically have been the easiest to remove, can be resistant and may require more treatments or treatments with a laser of a different wavelength.  As was mentioned already, the Scition ProFractional laser can also be used to provide improved clearance with resistant tattoo ink.  Find a provider who has extensive experience with tattoo removal and has multiple lasers to achieve the best results.

Kind Regards,

Jacque P. LeBeau, MD
Pensacola Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

Laser Tattoo Removal

A q-switched laser is a good option for permanent makeup removal. Please seek out an experienced laser technician in your area for your individualized treatment plan.

Tim Sayed, MD, MBA, FACS
Newport Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Last Options when lasers do not remove permanent eyebrows

Like the other panel members suggested, you may want to make certain that you've been treated with the correct technology - lasers with the correct wavelength and power to treat the remaining ink.  As ink or color degrades and fades, the "recipe" for the treatment will need to change as well.

If you've exhausted the options of Q-switched lasers, you may want to consider tattooing of flesh-colored ink to cover what is left that you dislike.  Also, some practitioners are reporting good results with resistant permanent make up ink using the Sciton ProFractional laser.

Harold J. Kaplan, MD
Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

Go To Expert

You should find out who specializes in laser tattoo removal. They will have the most up-to-date and variety of lasers for this purpose. Realize that it may take a number of visits, but the laser should work. Assuming your tattoo is black, this should make the chore a bit easier.

In the event the laser fails, you should consult with an expert facial plastic surgeon, especially one who is skilled in working around the eyes.

Good luck.

Arnold R. Oppenheim, MD
Virginia Beach Dermatologist
4.7 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

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.