You undoubtedly saw the misleading marketing claim “A Pico second is a trillionth of a second and a Nano second is a billionth of a second”. So, the Pico laser is a thousand times faster, right? Nope! It’s all marketing hype, because the fastest “Pico” lasers on the market are 950 -450 Pico seconds (.95 – .45 nano seconds) That’s only 5-11 times faster than a 5 nano second laser.

I am sure most have heard about Pico Lasers removing tattoos faster than nano technology. I’m here to tell you that “Pico” treatment is not very effective on the first few treatments and is only about 10-20 % more effective thereafter. To partially solve this problem most “Pico” lasers provide a Pseudo nano pulse. According to Pico providers it takes 8-12 sessions or more to removal a tattoo. That’s only 2 sessions less than what a nano second laser would do. So, it’s up to you if the additional cost of Pico laser tattoo removal is worth it.

Pico vs. Q-Switch

“The reason I’m writing this blog post is to dispel some of the hype and share our own experience with Pico lasers. Maybe that will help you understand what you are buying and save you some money.

You see, we have been removing tattoos for over 10 years and have about 40K treatments of experience. Want to know what the best laser is? Ask any salesman or anyone who owns a particular laser. Moreover, know that with tattoo removal the laser accounts for less than 40% of the removal treatment quality. The other 60% in the operator!

So why should you listen to me? Because I’m a laser savant who always wants the best for my clients.

We don’t trust laser salespeople, nor do we bother watching laser demos (any decent laser will produce laser frost). It’s the results that mater and that take time. If a laser looks interesting, we ask the manufacturer to loan us one for 1-3 days. We test it in our shop with our own techs with selected volunteers. We do one side of the subject tattoo with our lasers and one with the test laser and some with our ART. Then we wait 3 months to see the results. We have tested nearly every available “Pico” laser.

Here is what we learned:

1). In our Side-By Side comparisons, the Pico Lasers we tested got worse single pass results on naïve and early stage tattoos than our Nano Second lasers on the first 2-3 sessions. Later in the removal process, Pico had about 5-10% better clearance on single pass treatments. All of the Pico lasers disturbed the skin and made multi-pass impossible. Some of the Pico lasers were better than others but none were that impressive. Moreover, none remotely compared to our advanced ART treatment.

Multi- pass was more effective than Pico in all of our tests. Our Accelerated Removal Technique (ART) is four distinct treatments in one session. One ART Session typically gets 50%- 70% clearance after 3 months. One ART is enough to prep for a cover-up (3 Months). 2-3 ARTs is generally enough to fully remove most tattoos (6-9 months). As advertised, Pico removals take at least 8-12 sessions at 8 week intervals .That’s 1.24 to 1.8 years or more.

The ART pulverizes so much ink that your body will continue removing the shattered Ink for over one year!

2). With Pico we saw much more skin disturbance so multi-pass techniques can’t be done without scarring.

Check out some PicoWay® tattoo removal before and after photos to get a better feel for the results.

3). We can’t safely do our advanced ART treatment or any other multi-pass protocols with any of the Pico Lasers we tested. When we attempted a second pass on one of our volunteer employees, we immediately stopped. Unfortunately, she now has a small scar. There is no way we would ever attempt that again!

Schedule your treatment today!

Our ART is much faster in removing tattoos. Here are some examples: