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Tattoo Removal in Australia

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Tattoo Removal in Australia
  • Published

    March 24, 2014

  • Written by

    Dr Garth Dicker

Tattoo removals are becoming an increasingly common way for people to get rid of unwanted tattoos that, for any number of reasons, aren’t appropriate anymore. Maybe your relationship with a former lover has broken down, or perhaps that arm-sleeve tattoo just isn’t suitable for your new workplace. Whatever your reasons may be, choosing to remove your tattoo is a simple choice, one that’s easy and free of complications.

When we look at some of the statistics related to tattoo removals, we can get a sense for just how common “tattoo regret” appears to be among those who have gone under the pen. Consider, for instance, that:

  • Up to 22% and 29% of Australian men and women respectively, aged between 20 and 29, have had at least one tattoo done;
  • Of those, a staggering 35% have regretted getting tattoos, with a further one in seven having considered removing it altogether;
  • Studies in the US have found that of those who have considered removing tattoos they’ve regretted, over 50% have removed it within one year of getting it.

Now, it is a recognised fact that some tattoos are more difficult to remove than others. Often, this is due to them either being done poorly by an inexperienced tattoo artist, or more commonly as a result of using particular colours which are more difficult to remove – such as red, black or blue – resulting in a faded looking tattoo.

Statistics on tattoo removal success rate indicate that:

  • Almost half of tattoo removals require up to 10 sessions to remove successfully;
  • Over a quarter of removals require more than 15 sessions to remove successfully;
  • People who smoke; have tattoos that use colours other than red or black; have tattoo’s that are larger than 30 square centimetres; or have a tattoo on their legs or feet that are more than 3 years old, decrease their chances of entirely removing their tattoo.

Why do people get tattoos in the first place then, if so many are regretting their decisions and opting for removals? Is it just a decision driven by impulse that can be attributed to youthful exuberance?

Some people get very visible tattoos, stretching down their entire arm for instance; others prefer more discrete locations that are not visible when clothed. Here are some statistics outlining the attitudes and trends Australian have developed towards tattoos:

  • It’s not just the youth getting tattoos: While a number of individuals reported getting tattoos when they were younger, 40% of people got their first tattoo aged 26 or older, while 10% of Australians got their first tattoo in their 40’s or older.
  • It’s mostly just a one off thing: Of those who have tattoos, 54% only have one tattoo, 23% have two to three tattoos, and a further 15% have four or five tattoos. The traditional approach of inking your body with tattoos is not a contemporary lifestyle choice, with only 8% of those with tattoos having more than five.
  • It’s a symbolic thing: For a third of tattooed Australians, the most common tattoo was a word or symbol. Names or initials of family members, children or spouses are particularly popular.
  • It is a highly regrettable impulse: As mentioned above, tattoos tend to lead to regret. One third of Australians with tattoos say that they regret, to some extent, getting a tattoo. Moreover, 15% have commenced or looked into getting a tattoo removed.
  • It’s still not broadly accepted: Whether tattooed or not, 76% of Australians would discourage or strongly discourage their adult children from getting a tattoo. In fact, only 5% of Australians would encourage their adult children to get a tattoo, while 20% of parents would remain indifferent as to whether children got tattoos.

If you’re looking to get a tattoo removed in Greater Melbourne, visit Collins Cosmetic Clinic.

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