Maybe a few years ago, getting that tattoo of your favorite band or your partner’s name may have seemed like a great idea. As you got older, however, you may have moved on from that phase and now want it gone for good.

If you’re looking for ways to get your tattoo erased, you’re not alone. According to 2015 poll, nearly 23% of those with tattoos say they regret at least one, and 17% of them had considered removing them. Dermatologists agree that laser treatment, dermabrasion, and surgical excision are the most effective tattoo removal methods in the industry. Unfortunately, these methods are quite expensive and may even lead to side effects like scarring and bruising.

Fortunately, tattoo removal has evolved over the years to not only offer you an excellent tattoo removal but also protect you from potentially damaging and cringe-worthy negative effects associated with traditional tattoo removal methods. In this article, we’ll talk about some of the most common tattoo removal methods to help you figure out what method will work best for you.

  1. Salabrasion

Without a doubt, salabrasion is one of the most common and talked about home remedies for tattoo removal with a long history of use. First developed in the Middle East, this particular technique uses salt, tap water, and an abrasive sponge to perform an at-home dermabrasion to scrub off the ink in the dermis or inner layer of your skin. The idea behind salabrasion is to gradually wear away your epidermis or the upper layer of your skin to reach the dermis where the ink is held. Unfortunately, salabrasion comes with its own set of side effects. Since you’re scrubbing off layers of your skin, the risk of bruising and infection becomes higher, which is why practicing caution is highly recommended with this method. Use an antibacterial soap or solution each time you perform this method and watch out for any infection.

  1. Cover it up

This approach is not exactly a method of permanent tattoo removal that can be performed at home, but it’s a great way to conceal a tattoo that you don’t want to show off anymore. Nowadays, there are plenty of tattoo artists who can beautifully implement this technique and cover up your tattoo with another tattoo. However, note that this method does not give you the amount of freedom a clean canvas offers. You can’t cover up a black tattoo with a red tattoo because the stronger color will stand out. In addition, you may also want to consider a highly skilled tattoo covering artist for optimum results.

  1. Tattoo removal creams

Tattoo removal creams are gels, lotions, or creams that help fade away tattoos when used according to the package’s instructions. While looking for a tattoo removal cream, choose a product that contains natural ingredients, is free of potentially damaging acids, and causes minimal side effects. Some of the most common ingredients found in popular tattoo removal creams are TCA and hydroquinone. Although touted to be effective tattoo removal ingredients, they can have a severe impact on your skin, resulting in unsightly side effects such as burning and bruising.

Some tattoo removal creams are much healthier for the skin and offer no side effects, like Trufade tattoo cream which is a gel-based formula containing tattoo-fading and skin-brightening ingredients. You can use products like these at home twice a day, without hassle.

  1. Aloe vera, vitamin E, and Paederia Tomentosa

An increasing number of people want to go as natural as possible, making home remedies a popular option for any problem. This remedy utilizes three natural ingredients to fade tattoos, without compromising on skin health. Aloe vera is largely used in the skincare industry to hydrate the skin, alleviate dryness, and fade age spots. Some people also claim that when used with vitamin E and Paederia Tomentosa, it can help fade tattoo ink at the comfort of your own home. Like with any home remedy, this one requires patience and repetition. Results may vary from individual to individual, but it’s a technique that won’t hurt to try.

  1. Sand powder and grinding stone

This is another abrasive tattoo removal method that’s pretty simple to execute at home. The method involves grinding the sand using a rough grinding stone and making a paste with the help of aloe vera gel as a liquid base. Apply the mixture on your tattoo and rub it gently to help the tattoo fade away. Abrasive methods depend on interfering with the structure of the skin to remove upper skin layers and scrub the skin treated with tattoo ink. Scrubbing is one of the most common and age-old tattoo removal techniques that are still used today. However, this method does not help you remove your tattoo quickly and effectively and it may even erode your skin and make it sore, harming it in the long run.