Working as a laser hair-removal specialist, Carmen Vanderheiden heard a common sentiment from the clients who had tattoos: "Please, hit it. I want it gone." The Tataway founder told the Back Bay Patch that as many as 80% of these tattooed clients asked her not to shield their ink from the hair-zapping laser. Since opening her tattoo-removal parlor, Vanderheiden has found out why, listening keenly to the story beneath each inky regret. Some clients have told her that they're tired of a tattoo's design or its placement on their body. Others have confided that the tattoo feels like a stain from some painful time in their life.
These stories make no difference to Tataway's tattoo-removal chart. During free consultations, the clinically published Kirby-Desai scale tells Vanderheiden the number of laser treatments each client can expect based on skin type, lifestyle, the tattoo's pigments, location, and number of spelling errors. After each treatment, topical ointments and sterile dressing help sooth the skin and prevent infection.