Tattoo removal is illegal in most States. Even "attempted" tattoo removal is illegal. So first and foremost go to the tattoo regulations in your State or County. Why? Because of the complications which include:

1) Infection

2) Scar Formation

3) Prolonged Redness

4) Inadequate removal despite all efforts to remove

5) Expensive

6) May be considered a medically invasive procedure to "treat" a patient and therefore the practice of medicine.


Having said this, old timers say the best way to remove a tattoo is the same way you put it in! Meaning, opening the skin with needles and forming a scab which will hopefully remove pigment in the process. Chemicals definitely lighten cosmetic tattoos over time but avoid acids which commonly create scars and have resulted in lawsuits. Also, chemicals and lasers can change the chemical composition of the tattoo and result in an allergic reaction that had not been a problem until the attempted removal occurred.

I have had success with using a handtool over a small area, an eyebrow thin line for example, and using an inert paste to tap into the desired skin. One of these pastes is Softap's Lightening which is a sea clay and lemon oil mixture. Be careful to keep it out of the eye! Others report success, or a lack of it, with the saline or salt removal method which dates back to approximately 1543. Literally rubbing salt into the wound, which you make with your needles, and letting it "draw" out cellular fluids and hopefully pigment too. Again, one is inflicting tissue injury deliberately and non-specifically and hoping the healing process will help remove unwanted color.

Surgical Removal

Unfortunately, some brows are beyond repair and need to be surgically removed by a plastic surgeon. So never try to do tattoo removal but you can try a "test" area that is small with your needles and do NOT overwork the skin. Let the skin heal DRY, no ointments, so as to encourage scab formation and removal of some pigment. Here is a case I had recently where the client had 3 sets of eyebrows plus the camouflage pigment had separated, I believe, into a "red" organic pigment from the titanium dioxide and/or iron oxide and therefore the "rash" appearance under her eyebrows. I sent her to my friend, a gifted plastic surgeon here in Hawaii, and he excised her brows. We had to decide which of the three brows to excise. She will heal for 6-12 months and I'll tattoo hairstrokes, very conservatively, into her brows.


Purple gray brows surrounded by camouflage pigment below and above. Even the camouflage pigment had separated into its components which were organic and inorganic. Here my colleague Liza Lawrence pinches the problem brow to see how much tissue can be removed.

You can see that we chose to excise the lower brow area which had the camouflage pigment and red "rash" of, I believe, organic red pigment. This will give her a pleasing "eyedlid" lift simultaneously. See how the area was excised and sutured closed. She looked better immediately after surgery that she had looked with the botched corrective areas. I'll share the final result with you in 2004.

 Surgery was October 13, 2003. This picture was taken Jan. 7, 2004. You cannot even see the scars.

The scars are invisible thanks to Dr. Robert Flowers, MD and plastic surgeon. Note: My Pient has full knowledge and has given her permission for me to show these photos to you.

Not quite 3 months have passed since surgical excision so we'll wait another 1-3 months.

After inspecting her brows I applied Goldilocks with a fine tipped makeup brush to see how the color looked over the purple/gray old color. It's fine so we'll use it next.

First color session after surgery: January 23, 2004 Bootcamp Procedure done by P.c.

Pigment exfoliation of remaining undesired pink dots/flesh color at inferior border R brow tail and superior border of R. brow tip.


Colors used: Goldilocks, Chocolate Mousse for hairstrokes (lightened slightly); used #2 sideways for hairstroke. Cashmere.