Say Hello to Confidence
Having a noticeable mark on your skin can be extremely debilitating to one’s self-esteem and confidence. Clients can have a wide range of various scarring and pigmentation issues, and thankfully, with the help of scar camouflage tattooing, insecurities can be erased and the skin restored to its full glory.
What Is Scar Camouflage Tattooing?
Scar camouflage tattooing (sometimes known as paramedical tattooing) is achieved using micropigmentation techniques. The practitioner carefully matches a skin tone pigment which may involve mixing a blend of colors to discreetly camouflage into the surrounding area. The pigments are then deposited into the skin over the course or several sessions to ensure that it holds well and to ensure longevity of the color.
How Long Does the Procedure Take?
After the initial consultation with an optional patch test, sessions can last anywhere from 30-60 minutes, depending on the size and nature of the scar. Because the nature of some scars may make it more difficult for the color to take hold, scar camouflage should be done over a series of sessions. While you should expect to see incremental improvement with each session, it may take multiple sessions to achieve the final, desired result.
Clients should allow 7-10 days of healing after a session. Once the course of treatment has concluded, a follow-up visit should be scheduled 4-6 weeks after completion to ensure that the color has evenly blended with the surrounding skin.
What Kind of Scars Are Treated with Scar Camouflage?
The first thing that springs to mind when we hear of scarring is unsightly blemishes caused by accidents, injuries, burns and surgeries. However, scar camouflage tattooing can be used to successfully conceal skin imperfections resulting from a wide range of conditions.
Along with traditional scarring resulting from trauma or surgical incisions, camouflage tattooing is particularly well-suited for pigmentation issues such as hypopigmentation, vitiligo, as well as areola tattooing and re-pigmentation for clients who have had reconstructive breast surgery.
Are All Scars Suitable for Scar Camouflage Tattooing?
No. To be eligible for scar camouflage, scars need to be at least 12 months old and should be paler than the surrounding skin with no residual redness. While both hypertrophic and depressed scars may additionally benefit from the skin needling effects to produced a more even surface, any skin that has a propensity or history of keloids are generally not suitable.
How Long Do Scar Camouflage Tattoos Last?
Similar to other forms of cosmetic tattooing, tattoos for scar camouflage will also gradually fade over time. Depending on the underlying scar and the lifestyle of the client, the tattoo might last about 3-5 years. At any time after this, a touch up may be necessary.
Factors that cause premature fading of camouflage tattoos include prolonged sun exposure, frequent swimming in chlorinated pools and the repeated use of skin exfoliants or harsh chemicals.
Is Scar Camouflage Tattooing the Same as Regular Body Tattooing?
No. Different tools and techniques are used for both, but the main difference between the two is intended effect and the colors that are used. Body tattooing can very well camouflage a scar with a piece of art inked into the skin while camouflage tattooing simply aims to help make a scar look less noticeable. Cosmetic tattoos generally rely on mineral-based pigments composed of iron oxide which are deemed to be safe and hypoallergenic. Body tattoos use ink that may contain mineral pigments but also modern industrial organic pigments, a few vegetable-based pigments, and some plastic-based pigments as their bright bold colors can seldom be achieved using iron oxides alone. Pigments and tattoo inks are not regulated by the US Food and Drug Administration and only investigates when there is a reported problem. All tattoo inks and pigment manufacturers should have a Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) for their products. While the MSDS won’t be able to identify all chemical reactions or risks associated with chemical interactions within the ink or the skin, it should have the basic information about each component to provide an idea of the possible risks associated with a particular tattoo ink or pigment.