Understand risks and precautions

How are tattoos done?

Human skin is made of three major layers - epidermis, dermis, and hypodermis. When tattoo designs are created, tattoo ink pigments or dyes made of various substances are inserted deep within the epidermis and dermis of the skin.A tattoo is a permanent mark or design made on your skin with pigments inserted through pricks into the skin's top layer. Typically, the tattoo artist uses a hand-held machine that acts much like a sewing machine, with one or more needles piercing the skin repeatedly. With every puncture, the needles insert tiny ink droplets. The process — which is done without anesthetics — causes a small amount of bleeding and slight to potentially significant pain.

Layers of the skin that are affected


Allergic reactions. Tattoo dyes — especially red, green, yellow and blue dyes — can cause allergic skin reactions, such as an itchy rash at the tattoo site. This can occur even years after you get the tattoo.Bloodborne diseases:If the equipment used to create your tattoo is contaminated with infected blood, you can contract various bloodborne diseases — including tetanus, hepatitis B and hepatitis C

Tattoo removal


Lasers work by producing short pulses of intense light that pass harmlessly through the top layers of the skin to be selectively absorbed by the tattoo pigment. This laser energy causes the tattoo pigment to fragment into smaller particles that are then removed by the body's immune system. Researchers have determined which wavelengths of light to use and how to deliver the laser's output to best remove tattoo ink.