How to Fade Tattoos

Written by jon dayton
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How to Fade Tattoos
Tattoo work sometimes becomes regrettable. (Jupiterimages/ Images)

Tattoos have become a great avenue for self-expression. However, what seems like a good idea at the time often turns to regret when a tattoo no longer has meaning or just does not look good anymore. There are different ways to fade and hopefully remove the unwanted tattoo from the body. Each way has its own challenges and price tag, making it important to research the options before settling on the right way for you to fade a tattoo.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging

Things you need

  • Tattoo removal cream
  • Tattoo chemical peel
  • TCA or trichloroacetic acid

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  1. 1

    Check with a medical professional regarding how much it would cost to fade or remove a tattoo professionally with laser or surgical options. If you are unable to afford surgical or laser removal options, there are at-home options available.

  2. 2

    Apply a chemical peel that will fade a tattoo over time. Dermasal and Nuviderm are two premade chemical peels to use, and you can purchase either one online. Apply these products to the skin, which will start to peel and blister up. The solution should stay on for 3 to 5 minutes and then be washed off. These solutions should be applied daily, but if skin irritation occurs, wait three or four days before applying again. Repeat these steps until the tattoo fades away, which can take anywhere from three to 18 months.

  3. 3

    Place a cream recommended by the Tattoo Removal Institute on the tattoo. These creams include Tat B Gone and Tattoo-Off, both of which are available online. Wash the tattoo, dry it and place the cream on the tattoo. The cream will start to fade the ink and should be applied daily. Keep applying the cream until the tattoo fades away over time, which on average is three to nine months.

  4. 4

    Use trichloroacetic acid, or TCA, to exfoliate the skin and fade the tattoo away. This product can be bought online or at most chemists. Place the TCA acid on the tattoo. In two to three weeks, the skin should start to peel, and the peeling process continues for another two to three weeks. Reapply TCA every four to six weeks after the skin is done peeling. It takes three to six treatments for full fading to occur.

Tips and warnings

  • Complete removal of a tattoo is nearly impossible. Factors such as the tattoo's age, who did the tattoo and the body's ability to heal affect how much the tattoo will fade.
  • Some of these treatments may have unintended consequences, such as scarring and skin damage. Be careful any time you place chemicals on your skin.
  • TCA is not recommended for all people. Results on darker-skinned individuals have had unusual and sometimes adverse effects and is not recommended for use on those individuals.

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