Full Arm, Light Lines Tattoo - Boston, MA

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I recently began to outline a full sleeve tattoo. ...

I recently began to outline a full sleeve tattoo. The first session included laying out ravens around my arm (for the most part the artist I went to uses very few dark lines so this was all done with 'gray lines' which basically look like pen marks.) The second session included added some background filler which were basically flowing lines throughout. He begin to fill in a few of these by my wrist and then filled in one bird silhouette completely black. It was at this point I realized how much I disliked the current work and feared proceeding.

I panicked. Spent the next two days on my couch wondering what to do. Contacted other artists about possible reworking the design. I had good feedback on a rework because the lines are so light. I also met with a laser technician (Carmen Vanderheiden of TatAway) about removal options. After weighing both of these options I think I need to commit myself to a year of laser treatment and then possibly consider reworking of the areas that will likely not be removed (the dark silhouette most notably)

I'm attaching some pictures of what currently exists. Does anyone have experience with removing lines this thin? Do you think it's realistic that after 10 sessions (I will be signing up for a membership package that means paying 250/month) the majority of this will be mostly gone?

I'm anxious to begin this process. I know that treating my entire arm is going to be an extremely painful process but I don't see another option for the sake of my mental health.

Some other factors : these outlines are new. About 2 months old. I've heard different things about old vs. new tattoo removal success. I am 25 and active and my skin tone is fairly light.

What do you think I should realistically expect from this time next year?

Anticipating 1st session

I'm having my first laser treatment on tuesday. I've become incredibly anxious and nervous in the days leading up to the start of this process.

What should I have on hand as far as aftercare? What should I expect the following day/days?

First Session

Survived day one of PicoSure treatment!
Iced up for about 20 minutes and then was able to have my entire arm treated. Darker area has already blistered but the rest of the lines just look red from now. Here's a photo during the session.... I'll update more as things heal.

Red lines?

Question for you all.... Shortly after treatment many of the lines that were once black turned bright red. As in... The ink almost seemed to turn from black to red in some areas. From previous photos I've seen I though this would go back to skin tone pretty quickly. But two days later these lines all remain completely red. Is this normal? Has anyone experienced this?

10 days after first treatment...

I've been getting requests for updates regarding being treated with the PicoSure so I'll make a quick post earlier than expected...

The fading so far seems to be going well. I'm mostly noticing a difference where I had shading. A lot of the ink from those sections has already faded and now the skin is mostly just red and peeling. I feel like I won't know the extent of fading until more of the redness begins to disappear over the next few weeks.

A lot of the thin black lines I had turned bright red in the few days after treatment and now appear to be a light pink or brown. I'm not sure if they will remain this color until after the next treatment or if they'll just fade out.

The skin damage was a bit more than I was expecting but it has begun to finally heal and I'm hoping for the best and trying to stay positive.
Carmen Vanderheiden

Carmen Vanderheiden at TatAway has been amazing, open and calming throughout this process. I initial reached out to her in absolute panic about my situation via email (as I was too nervous to even go to the office and cancelled my first consult) and she was nothing but positive and assuring. I have since met for a consult where she clearly laid out the process, offered a reasonably payment plan and allowed me time to think over my decision. I'm still nervous about this entire experience. But I truly believe Carmen has my best interest at mind and that's all I can ask for.

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