In a study of random people throughout the world, 48.5% of the subjects reported having at least 1 scar on their skin. Some of these scars came from injuries. Others were stretch marks. Many were due to cosmetic procedures.
Regardless, if you have scarred skin, there are options available to help improve the scars and make them less visible. These include inkless camouflage and camouflage cosmetic tattoos, sometimes also known as paramedical tattoos.
Wondering what each brings to the table? Then keep reading because we’re going to compare them thoroughly below.
First, let’s discuss what inkless camouflage is. This is the process of microneedling scars so that they blend in with the skin surrounding them.
Microneedling breaks down scar tissue, normalizes melanocyte activity, and, ultimately, softens and plumps up the scars. In doing so, it revitalizes its appearance and makes it less visible overall.
To facilitate the microneedling process, technicians use saline solution, growth factors, hyaluronic acids, or a mixture of them. Over time, as more microneedling is performed, the affected area takes shape, returning to its former aesthetic glory.
Inkless camouflage is a natural microneedling procedure. It doesn’t involve the injection of tattoo ink. It simply involves the microneedling of the affected skin. As such, it’s less complicated and more natural to the skin overall.
Want to repair the damage of your scars instead of just covering them up? If so, inkless camouflage is the solution for you.
Inkless camouflage helps to break down the scar tissue within the scar. As this scar tissue is broken down, melanocytes are normalized. These are skin cells that produce melanin, a natural skin darkener.
Over time, this melanin balances out the color differences in the scar, thus helping the scar to blend in with the rest of the skin. So, in essence, inkless camouflage repairs damage; it doesn’t just hide it.
Early on in a scar’s existence, there’s still much potential for changes in color and texture. This is because the scar still has some healing to do. Until it’s healed fully, changes will occur.
The issue with applying a camouflage cosmetic tattoo to such a scar is that, as time passes, the color of the tattoo will not change with it. Eventually, the tattoo will become highly noticeable.
Inkless camouflage, on the other hand, is perfectly suited to fresh scarring. It’s better at rolling with color changes. Plus, it helps the scar to settle more quickly.
In some cases, it’s wise to use inkless camouflage first and then use a camouflage cosmetic tattoo years later. Note, though, that inkless camouflage alone often gets the job done, especially when it comes to stretch marks, post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH), post-inflammatory erythema (PIE), and the like.
Inkless stretch mark camouflage or dry tattooing works with all scar colors, whether they be white, red, purple, or otherwise. It also accommodates all scar depths, as it’s a terrific collagen stimulator.
This isn’t true of a camouflage cosmetic tattoo, which is really only beneficial for shallow, light-colored scarring.
Now, what is a camouflage cosmetic tattoo? This is similar to a conventional tattoo but is slightly different as well.
Like a conventional tattoo, it involves tattooing new colors to the skin in a permanent manner. However, whereas conventional cover-up tattoos are tattoos over the scars so the scars are less visible, camouflage cosmetic tattoos are meant to camouflage the scars by blending in with the surrounding skin. So they are tattoos but not to be seen as tattoos.
That said, if you look closely, you’ll still be able to tell that a camouflage cosmetic tattoo exists. And over time, as the skin changes color naturally, and the camouflage ink will change color with time, the tattoo will become more and more noticeable, as it won’t change color along with the skin.
While inkless camouflage is a natural solution, a camouflage cosmetic tattoo is a synthetic solution. It involves the injection of tattoo ink and, in particular, titanium dioxide. Over time, this titanium oxide will age and eventually look something like cottage cheese.
Whereas the inkless camouflage method repairs damage, a camouflage cosmetic tattoo only covers it up with color.
This can be beneficial in the short term. However, as time passes and the color of the skin and ink change, the scarring can become more and more prominent. This can actually result in the tattoo becoming detrimental in the long run.
Laser treatments are popular cosmetic procedures for treatments like anti-aging, scar improvement as well as hair removal.
Note, though, that if you get a cosmetic tattoo, laser treatment is no longer a viable option. Because of this, cosmetic tattoos should, more or less, be seen as a last resort.
While inkless camouflage is preferable to a camouflage tattoo in most situations, there are some situations where a camouflage tattoo is the better choice.
For instance, if the scarring is from a hair transplant, a camouflage tattoo or scalp micropigmentation, in particular is typically preferable to inkless camouflage, as it simulates hair follicles.
Those suffering from vitiligo can also benefit from a camouflage tattoo. Inkless camouflage, on the other hand, is not at all effective for this purpose.
Hypopigmentation may also be better suited by a camouflage tattoo. Inkless camouflage works in some situations, but not in others.
While both inkless camouflage and camouflage cosmetic tattoos bring something to the table, in general, inkless camouflage is the best option. This is because skin color tends to change over time. So, if you use a cosmetic tattoo to hide your scars, it eventually won’t match the skin around it, making its existence glaringly obvious.
Interested in inkless camouflage for your scarred skin? If so, and if you’re in New Westminster or Metro Vancouver, BC, we here at Vita Felice Med Spa are the ones to see.
Contact us today to discuss your inkless camouflage procedure!