Scar Camouflage

HIDE SCARS IN PLAIN SIGHT

What is Scar Camouflage?

Skin or scar camouflage is tattooing of the skin with different colors of flesh tone pigments. Its purpose is to disguise a scar or skin area that is missing pigment or color. It is a specialized area of permanent cosmetics that falls under the category of medical or paramedical tattooing.  This process is also called Corrective Pigment Camouflage (CPC), Skin Re-pigmentation, Skin Camouflage, Camouflage Tattooing, and Skin Color Tattooing. The science behind pigments and the physiology of human skin and tissue must be understood by the specialist performing these procedures. These procedures require advanced knowledge, training, skills, and experience in permanent cosmetics as well as an artistic eye for color and skin tones.

How People Can Benefit from Scar Camouflage Tattooing

Psychological studies have shown that self-confidence increases when a person’s appearance and body image is improved. This can be achieved with paramedical tattooing.  Skin color loss/de-pigmentation can occur from medical procedures, trauma from burns or accidents, congenital anomalies, or different types of skin diseases. Medical treatments and surgical procedures can correct or improve the appearance of many types of scars and skin abnormalities. However, some patients still need the skin color of the treated area to be “re-applied” so it appears more “normal”.

Are You a Candidate for Scar Camouflage?

You might be a candidate if you meet the criteria below. Your scar should be:

  • Healed and no longer pink or changing color: Your scar should be at least be 12 months old with stable color.  If it is red or pink or still changing color the scar tissue may still be healing.  A reputable, experienced medical tattoo artist will not work prematurely on scar tissue because it may cause further damage to the skin.
  • Smooth and relatively flat: Camouflage tattooing cannot disguise or correct extreme changes in skin texture. If your scar tissue or surface area is irregular or raised, the process may not be effective. You may consider scar revision treatments to smooth out the scar prior to scar camouflage.
  • Without dark edges: Dark edges or borders around a scar indicate Post Inflammatory Hyper-pigmentation (PIH) from the initial trauma or surgery. It is possible that the camouflage tattooing process may increase the hyper-pigmentation and create a wider, darker border. The risk of this happening is usually greater with darker skin tones.
  • Do not have one of the following: Keloid, scars with raised dark edges, Port Wine birthmarks; spider veins; freckles; age spots; under eye circles; hyper-pigmentation; or unstable vitiligo (not in remission). These can be improved with non-tattoo medical treatments such as lasers, sclerotherapy, or chemical peels. Please consult with a physician regarding the best course of treatment for these conditions.
  • Have realistic expectations: Camouflage tattooing will not completely restore skin to the way it looked before it was injured. The process will not “erase” a scar or skin anomaly so it appears completely gone and the area looks “perfect” again. It improves color differences to help disguise the scar or anomaly and make it less noticeable to other people.
  • Do not spend time tanning: A scar camouflage tattoo will not be a “perfect” match to the surrounding skin color. This is due to the constant changes in skin tones from blood flow, body temperature, and tanning. The pigment in the tattoo will not darken if it is exposed to sunlight or tanning booths, so the tattoo may appear lighter if the surrounding skin tans. When the tattoo color matches tanned skin, it may appear darker once the surrounding tanned skin fades. Therefore, if you spend time outdoors, you will need to adjust your lifestyle or decide to match the tattoo to “winter” or “summer” skin and live with the changes in between.
  • Do not expect results in one session: Camouflage re-pigmentation is a process, not a one-time “cure”. It is performed on “unhealthy” skin that has been damaged or altered. Its response cannot be predicted—a scar or vitiligo patch may have areas that absorb pigment, reject it, or both. The area will look dark and red immediately after a tattooing session, and then it takes several weeks to show the healed color (or not). This requires time and patience.

The Consultation

At the consultation we will determine if you are a candidate for scar camouflage tattooing and discuss your options. If you are a candidate, the next step will be to set an appointment for a “Spot Color Test”. Other permanent cosmetics professionals sometimes refer to this test as a “Patch Test.”

What is a Spot Color or Patch Test?

Scar camouflage is an unpredictable process. Therefore, a spot color/patch test is the starting point for determining an appropriate combination of pigments to match the skin. In all cosmetic tattooing, including permanent makeup, the final healed color looks very different from when the pigment was initially implanted. The healed result equals the pigment color formula that was inserted under the skin plus the patient’s skin color and tones. The healed spot will indicate if that same formula can be used for the first tattooing session or if it will need to be modified.

At your spot color/patch test appointment, your skin tone is analyzed. Several combinations of pigments will be mixed to determine what appears to be a good match. You will receive a tattoo at least one spot about the size of a pea using at least one “formula.” All pigments that have been used will be recorded in your chart for future reference. When the patch test is finished, you must wait 4 to 8 weeks to see how the healed color will look. Your tattooing sessions can then begin after healing and color stabilization of the spot tattoo.

Scar Camouflage Tattoo is a Multi-Sessions Process

Once the spot test has healed and the color stabilizes, the damaged skin can be tattooed. Anna Burns will determine if the spot formula should be adjusted, if needed, she can do so at that time. Cosmetic tattooing is a “partnership” with clients because it is a multi-step process. The results after the first tattooing session may be very good. However, due to the “unpredictable” nature of most scars and skin abnormalities, a second, third, or even fourth session may be necessary for the best outcome. Fortunately, the color formula or technique can be modified at each session to improve results. Sessions should be scheduled approximately 6 to 8 weeks apart to allow for complete healing and color stabilization.

Scar Camouflage is a type of medical tattooing which helps reduce the appearance of scars from accidents, burns, surgery, or the repair of congenital disorders such as Cleft Palate. Other forms of medical tattooing include hair simulation which helps restore the appearance of missing hair lost to disease (Cancer or Alopecia), trauma, or natural thinning within an eyebrow, or scalp. Restorative camouflage like areola re-pigmentation helps post-mastectomy patients by creating a nipple and areola on the new reconstructed breast. The appearance of areola incision scars from breast surgeries for augmentation, reduction, and breast lift can also be masked.

Contact us. Your Atlanta permanent makeup professional can help you take the focus away from your scars.

VIDEO TESTIMONIAL

I suggest you come to see Anna for all your cosmetic needs

– Pam

Scar Camoflage

SCAR CAMOUFLAGE

Regardless how a scar is acquired, some wear it like a badge of honor while others find their scars causing unnecessary anxiety. For the latter, scar camouflage is great solution. Scar camouflage tattoo blends white scars with the healthy skin around it. Tattoo pigments are implanted into the scar tissue that is lacking color. The healed result calls less attention to the scars after completing the treatments and color is restored in the scar tissue.

BEFORE AND AFTER

Want to call less attention to your scars? We can add color to your white scars resulting in matching skin tone with scar camouflage tattoo.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Anyone who wants to call less attention to their scars, whose scars are smooth, flat, and lighter than the surrounding skin.

Anyone who suffers from hemophilia, seizures and epilepsy, cold, flu, covid-19; has active acne, eczema, psoriasis, keloid scars, hypertrophic scars on the area to be treated; women who are pregnant or breastfeeding, anyone undergoing chemotherapy, who has a pacemaker or major heart problems, has immunodeficiency, organ transplant, is currently using or has been on Accutane for less than one year.

Pigment particles exposed to the UV rays of the sun breaks down over time.  Pigment particles in your skin used to create your scar camouflage tattoos are exposed to the UV rays of the sun.  To prevent premature fading, you will need to use sunblock consistently.  Avoiding the sun, tanning beds, retinol, alpha hydroxy, and use of glycolic acids such as fruit acids commonly found in some toners, cleansers and moisturizers will help with the longevity of your scar camouflage tattoo.

On average scar camouflage tattoos last anywhere between 2 to 5 years.

Scar camouflage tattoo may cause some discomfort.

Different needle sizes are chosen depending on the sizes of your scars to be treated. With any tattoo procedure, pigment particles are deposited into the skin when the tattoo needles carrying the pigment particles break your skin barrier and enter your dermis.

We specialize in enhancing your natural beauty.  We choose colors that complement your skin tone. Our years of experience, investment in continuing education, advanced techniques and equipment give us an edge in creating realistic, natural scar camouflage tattoos.

While scar camouflage is meant to improve the lack of color and lightness of your scar, it cannot bring back an exact match of color and shade to your skin prior to your injury. Realistic expectations should be set to 70-80% improvement in scar appearance.

Right after Scar camouflage, the tattoo pigment on your skin appears dark, your skin is red and inflamed. Inflammation lasts between 2 to 3 days.

Please avoid wet shaving for 10 days post procedure.

Most people do not need to take time from their employment.  If you have travel plans, wedding or other special occasions to attend, please plan your scar camouflage procedure accordingly.

The final healed result can be seen after the initial consecutive treatment sessions. This is generally six to eight weeks.

Yes. Scar camouflage can be removed with saline tattoo removal. Saline tattoo removal is a natural way of lifting the pigment out of your dermis, out of your body through the process of osmosis and scabbing.

Cosmetic surgeries are done prior to receiving scar camouflage tattoo. You must wait one year for the incision scars to fully heal before you could go through the process of scar camouflage.

Yes.  You should always be cautious, as it is possible to be allergic to the pigment.  We may perform a patch test, at your request, with the chosen pigment to be used to reduce the chance of an unexpected allergic reaction.  But, keep in mind that you can develop an allergy to anything at any time.  Many doctors recommend that people who have sensitive skin or allergies to cosmetics have permanent makeup procedures done because they are great alternatives to cosmetic products that they are sensitive to.

There is no downtime to begin your Scalp Micropigmentation journey. You can come in for a consultation during your lunch or after your work.

Each session is between 60 to 120 minutes.

Patch tests are required before proceeding with treating all your scars. The cost for a patch test is $250 per session. It takes several sessions to get the correct color and shade that matches the surrounding skin. Once we are able to achieve an ideal color that closely matches the healthy skin around the scar, we will proceed with treating all your scars. Prices vary depending on the amount of scars that needs camouflage tattoo. The average cost of scar camouflage is $300 per area per session.

It depends on many variables like the condition of your scar and skin cells. However, we can safely say this treatment is a multiple step process that requires several treatments.

Each consecutive session is booked every six weeks.

Procedures are done under strict sterile standards in keeping with those set by the Centers for Disease Control. We use sterile disposable supplies.

Any time the skin is open there is potential for an infection. The treated area must be kept clean. There are usually no major complications.  To prevent infection during the procedure, we use:  Pre-sterilized disposable for each new client and each new procedure on each client.  New wipes, gauze, cotton and swabs, new pigment cups, new gloves, new barrier film, new equipment barrier control bags between clients and throughout the procedure.  Hospital grade disinfectant cleaners and medical sterilization procedures that kill microorganisms like HIV, Hepatitis A, B, and C, MRSA, Staph, Tuberculosis for all equipment and working surfaces are used.

All contaminated needles are disposed of in a recognizable sharps container.

It is ideal to have minimal or no bleeding during the procedure.

Please refrain from blood thinning NSAIDs like ibuprofen, Naproxen, Aspirin; blood thinners like Coumadin; vitamins like B & E; alcoholic and caffeinated beverages; fats like fish oils, flax seed oil, walnut oil; herbs like curry powder, ginger, paprika, thyme, cinnamon, dill, oregano, turmeric, liquorice, peppermint, cayenne pepper, garlic, gingko; vegetables like avocados, cabbage, broccoli, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, onions, kelp, kale; and sodas 48 hours prior and up to the day of your procedure.

Please get plenty of rest and hydrate yourself starting at least 24 hours prior to and up to the day of your procedure.

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