Introduction To

Laser Tattoo Removal

The total number of Americans that have at least one tattoo exceeds 45 million. The majority of tattoos are cherished as they are associated with special people and/or events in life. However, for multiple reasons, body art may become undesirable. At Advanced Plastic Surgery, we aim to provide the most comfortable and effective Laser Tattoo Removal in Grand Rapids, MI. If you have some ink that you would like to get rid of, keep reading below to find out if Laser Tattoo Removal is best for you.

Curly haired woman with tattoos
Close up of laser tattoo removal behind a woman's ear.

What is Laser Tattoo Removal?

Our PicoLazer is a multi-wavelength laser system that includes: 532nm, 1064nm, 595 nm, and 660nm wavelengths. This device “fractures” the pigment into particles small enough for the ink to be removed using the body’s natural filtering system.

It can remove a wide range of tattoo ink colors with minimal risk. Multiple treatments may be required depending on the size, type, and depth of a tattoo. The PicoLazer is ideal for removing unwanted body art. In addition, the PicoLazer includes a Focus Lens Array for treating other benign, pigmentary skin conditions as well as acne scars. The PicoLazer features a 450-picosecond pulse duration that provides patients with safe and effective treatments with minimal downtime.

*Another way to deal with tattoo removal is surgical excision, however, this would pertain to smaller tattoos located in aesthetically non-important areas, such as your fingers or other areas of the body that are more hidden. While it can be a more effective or faster way to get rid of a tattoo, please keep in mind that with surgical excision there will always be a scar.

What are the Benefits of Laser Tattoo Removal?

Our Grand Rapids Laser Tattoo Removal patients were able to get the following benefits out of their treatment:

  • Able to target specific spots or the entire tattoo
  • Can break down all ink colors
  • Effectively fades and eventually removes tattoos 
  • High satisfaction rate
  • Less painful than traditional methods
  • Minimal recovery time
  • No scarring 
  • Non-invasive
  • Safe with minimal side effects or risks

Who are the Best Candidates for Laser Tattoo Removal?

The best candidate for Tattoo Laser Removal can be anyone who has a tattoo that they either regret, or just don’t wish to have on their body anymore. While your age, depth, and color of the tattoo pigment can factor into the effect the laser has on the results, anyone can be a good candidate. It helps if you have some of these characteristics:

  • Avoid smoking during the period of your treatments 
  • Be overall physically healthy
  • Maintain realistic expectations for the procedure results
“Enjoy your beautiful self!”

– Ewa Timek, MD


What’s The First Step?


If you are interested in getting Laser Tattoo Removal in the Grand Rapids area, the first thing you should do is contact Advance Plastic Surgery and schedule your consultation. When you come in for your appointment, you will be able to meet with a member of our aesthetic team and discuss what you would like to have removed. You will be asked a series of questions regarding your medical and tattoo history, followed by an examination of the tattoo(s). Once they have a good idea of which degree to set the lasers at and the surface area you need to work on, the technician will create your treatment plan. If you agree with the plan made for you, you may be able to have your first session right then, or you will be able to meet with our Patient Coordinator to make a better date and time.


What to Expect on the Day of Laser Tattoo Removal

When you come in for your Laser Tattoo Removal, we will make sure that you are comfortable and provide you with some protective eyewear. Laser tattoo removal is usually associated with mild discomfort, so at our office, we strive for painless tattoo removal. We eliminate the potential discomfort before it even starts by applying numbing cream, injecting local anesthetics, and using a freezing chiller during each treatment. The technician will then turn the machine on and dial in the proper energy level. The laser is attracted by the particles of the pigment that are in the skin. When deposited by the tattoo artist, the particles develop a capsule which is a membrane that surrounds the pigment. For us to eliminate the tattoo, we have to break the capsule so your cells (phagocytes) are attracted to that spot and “eat up” your tattoo. 

Laser tattoo removal relies on chromophores that act like magnets for a specific wavelength of the light that is delivered to the tattoo. Each color has its specific wavelength of light that it’s sensitive to, so the best color tattoo to have removed would be black or dark blue. Green or orange tattoos are not as easy to remove and may require a special laser. At our office, we use the latest tattoo removal technology with the Pico Laser, a high-energy, short-pulse laser that can remove tattoos of all colors. Once the energy is delivered to the pigment, the pigment absorbs it and then breaks up the capsule that surrounds it. Then the pigment becomes available to the phagocytes, the cells that are going to “eat it up” and then be processed by your body, eventually excreted by your liver.

Laser Tattoo Removal Recovery

After your treatment, we will offer you an ice pack to soothe the treated area, apply some antibiotic cream or ointment to prevent infection, and carefully wrap the treated area with a bandage for additional protection. You will be able to return to your daily routine, but you should be mindful of your skin as it will be tender. As you recover, you should always use sunscreen when you are outside (usually an SPF of 30 or higher). We will provide you with other tips on how to have a healthy and more comfortable recovery, as well as schedule your next appointment date. 

Due to the sheer nature of the treatment, tattoo removal takes many steps. In most cases, it can take between six and eight sessions of laser tattoo removal to get rid of a tattoo. We space these treatments by four to six weeks to allow the skin to heal and the cells to come into the site and remove the pigment.

Woman posing behind a blue wall with lots of tattoos


how much does Laser Tattoo Removal cost in grand rapids?

The cost of Laser Tattoo Removal in Grand Rapids will vary due to multiple factors, such as the size and location of your tattoo and the color of the pigmentation. After speaking with a member of our aesthetic team, they will have better knowledge of what you will need and they will create your treatment plan. 

Why Choose
Advanced Plastic Surgery

Maybe due to a misspelling, a breakup, or an inebriated bad decision, whatever the reason is… we won’t judge you but are happy to help! Advanced Plastic Surgery is owned and operated by Dr. Ewa Timek who is a board-certified plastic surgeon and a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. With nearly two decades of experience, our practice looks forward to helping you achieve the tattoo removal you need to either start over or rid your body of a “mistake”. 


Become a Patient

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Tattoos are fun to have but there does come a time in some people’s lives when they don’t like the tattoo or they’ve changed their minds about being marked. If you are ready for a Laser Tattoo Removal in Grand Rapids, then call Advanced Plastic Surgery today to schedule your consultation. You can reach us at (616) 323-3102 or request an appointment through our website and one of our friendly team members will be in touch with you. 

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Patient Resources
Advanced Plastic Surgery

We’re here to help, with a number of patient resources designed to make your experience as comfortable as possible. Read through the materials below, and don’t hesitate to reach out.

Patient Resources


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