Semi permanent Tattoos

By Andy May

Scientists from Harvard Medical School, Brown University, and Duke University have developed a new kind of tattoo pigment that can be easily removed once tattooed into the skin. It is said that this new “semi-permanent” pigment will be removable with one simple laser treatment in contrast to the 7-15 treatments required when removing traditional inks.

These pigments are made from tiny microcapsules of natural pigments, using substances such as iron oxide, carbon, and beta-carotene. Then inserted into the microcapsules are tiny “energy-absorbing targets” that rupture when a laser light hits them, causing the pigments to breakdown—which in turn makes the tattoo disappear.

As you can imagine, many tattooers are reluctant to use this new semi-permanent pigment. Many believe that if a tattoo can be removed with a single pass of a laser treatment, then what will the effects from sunlight be on the tattoo? Not to mention, tattooers are very picky when it comes to their pigments; just because one color of a brand's pigment is good doesn't mean another color of their pigment is good.

Also, the ability to easily remove a tattoo kind of defeats the purpose, right? A tattoo is a special piece of art because it takes commitment to get one and it’s not for everybody. Some people claim "its a permanent form of expression for a temporary feeling." This may be true, but odds are that the temporary feeling that made you get that tattoo made you who you are today.