Over the years, we have been faced with news story after news story proclaiming that various substances cause cancer. Some of those, such as tobacco, asbestos, and ultraviolet radiation, actually do cause cancer, while the carcinogenic properties of others, such as sugar, artificial sweeteners, and soy have been ultimately disproven. You may be concerned that lasers used to remove tattoos can cause skin cancer, but that is not the case.

Some tattoo inks may contain carcinogens, but laser tattoo removal does not cause cancer.

This can be a confusing subject; some people may confuse tattoo ink with tattoo removal, but they are not the same. Research shows that some of the inks used in tattoos contain cancer-causing chemicals. A 2016 report from the European Commission found that some tattoo ink contained hazardous chemicals, and a 2016 Australian government report warned that chemical compounds known to cause cancer were found in 22% of the inks they tested. However, according to an FDA spokesperson quoted in The Guardian newspaper, the FDA is not required to approve tattoo inks because of “a pervasive lack of evidence of safety problems specifically associated with these pigments.”

FDA approval for laser tattoo removal devices

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the use of both of the lasers we use for tattoo removal, the Quanta EVO, and the PicoWay. FDA approval means that the device has been reviewed for safety, quality, and effectiveness. 

Dangers of UV radiation

First of all, we want to underscore the fact that lasers used for tattoo removal do not use UV radiation – not in the slightest. They use extremely short pulses of light energy that are both effective and safe. You can read more about this in our blog: How Does Pico Laser Tattoo Removal Work?

What does cause skin cancer?

  • Solar (sun) radiation 
  • UV radiation
  • Tanning devices that emit UV radiation

The American Cancer Association recommends:

  • Staying out of the sun (look for shade)
  • Wearing sunscreen (we recommend using a product with an SPF of 50 or higher)
  • Wearing a hat and also clothing that covers your arms and legs
  • Wearing sunglasses
  • Avoiding tanning beds

At Ink-B-Gone, we also recommend staying out of the sun, both before your treatments begin and between each session. Exposure to the sun produces increased melanin in your skin, which makes it difficult for tattoo removal lasers to differentiate between the color of your skin and the pigment in your tattoo. You can read more about this in our blogs, Can I Go in the Sun After Laser Tattoo Removal? and I’m Post Tattoo Removal. What Should I Be Doing Now?

More reasons to trust the technicians at Ink-B-Gone:

We hire only certified technicians, and our owner, Shelley Novello personally trains each one. Additionally, technicians work under her supervision for a year before treating people on their own. We have performed over 68,000 treatments on more than 23,000 clients during the past 16 years.

Every person and every tattoo is different, so ask our experts! 

When you’re ready to look into laser tattoo removal, it’s important to find a professional and expert technician you trust. Before you commit to anything, you can come in for a free consultation here at Ink-B-Gone, the leading laser tattoo removers in Colorado.

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