How Many Sessions to Remove a Tattoo?


Getting a tattoo often feels like a lifelong commitment at the time, so the choice to remove one is a big step to take. Choosing to begin the removal process means taking time out of your life and having to make plans around treatments.

We’ve already covered the process of tattoo removal, as well as some tips for aftercare, but you may still wonder, “how long does tattoo removal take?” which is why we put together this article.

Can a Tattoo be Removed in One Session?

In short no, a tattoo generally cannot be removed in one session. There are various factors that play into how many sessions it takes to remove a tattoo, and indeed how long those sessions take, but largely, tattoo removal takes anywhere between 2–12 sessions. Sessions can last from 5–30 minutes, and for optimum results, it’s best to space them out by 6–12 weeks at a time.

Laser treatment is the safest, most effective way to remove a tattoo, and the only way that we do so at Tattoo Removal Manchester. Beyond using other more primitive methods, we have listed some of the factors that affect the number of sessions needed for an effective removal.

Factors That Affect Number of Sessions

  • The standard of the tattoo: professional vs. pin and stick etc
  • Your immune system and how strong it is at flushing the broken particles out
  • The age of the tattoo: older tattoos can be removed faster
  • The size and intricacy of the tattoo: smaller tattoos can be removed faster
  • The colours of the tattoo: darker colours actually come out quicker than lighter!
  • The laser technology used

Pico Laser vs Q-Switched

We use 2 different types of laser technology, both with distinct levels of effectiveness that influence the number of sessions needed to fully remove a tattoo. Our main system is a Pico Laser machine, while we also use a Q-Switched YAG Laser.

Removal with the Q-Switched YAG Laser utilises the heat from the laser to break down ink particles in the skin and is the cheaper option of the two. However, it is worth noting that with this technology, removals tend to take between 6–12 sessions to be completed.

The Pico system utilises the light from the laser at a much faster rate, breaking the ink particles down quicker and more effectively. This method is a little more expensive, but is largely more effective at removing colourful tattoos, leaves less marks on skin, and can be completed within 2–6 sessions. This however can always vary depending on the tattoo and above factors.

Next Steps

So, now that you understand that the process takes time, you are better prepared to take your next steps. If you are interested in booking a removal, or simply have more questions, contact us today to set up a consultation with one of our tattoo removal experts and we can work out the best plan for your removal to be as effective, and efficient as possible. Or if you are ready to start straight away just book in online.