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This Is What Actually Happens When You Remove A Tattoo

Think before you ink, guys!

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First things first, let's be clear on what you're getting rid of during tattoo removal.

Igor Terekhov / Getty Images / Via Thinkstock

Tattooing is "a process of implanting permanent pigment granules into the skin". The term comes from the Tahitian word "tatau", meaning "to tap the mark into the body", and basically means that shit is never coming off.

If you're thinking of getting a tattoo removed, here are some tips from tattoo removal technician Wayne Joyce at Reset Room.

Choose a place with a good piece of equipment. People that are willing to give you information will give you the best results.

Don't just talk to just one place.

Lasering is not a quick fix and does not happen overnight. You have to be very pragmatic about your lasering and you have to think about the longterm results.

But how does it ACTUALLY work?

Smarter Every Day / Via

A paper published in the Journal of Cutaneous and Aesthetic Surgery explains when the laser hits the skin "the energy that is absorbed by the pigment is converted to heat" and the chemical bonds inside the pigment begin to break.

That is the holy grail question that everyone asks. There are specific variables that affect each individual and their tattoo, but how many sessions it takes is always a guestimate. How old the tattoo is, the colour, its density and where the tattoo is located all determine the rate of dispersal and the the amount of sessions.

And as in any procedure, there are risks involved.

"Bad lasers and bad aftercare can create scarring" Wayne told BuzzFeed. "The best way to avoid scarring is to manage the aftercare properly and to make sure the place gives you proper aftercare instructions".