Who gets a tattoo, is not only spoiled for choice with the motif, but also with the colors. Red is popular, but is said to cause allergies and rashes like no other color. But is that really true? Tikbow has asked an expert about it
According to a survey by the Ipsos Institute, the number of Tätowierten has almost doubled between 2012 and 2019. Today, one in five people has a tattoo. Most of them choose the classic color: black. In trend, however, are also red tattoos – just like the timeless motifs of roses and hearts. However, red tattoo color has a bad reputation and unfortunately not without reason. Researchers at the University of Graz examined 73 tattoo colors and published their results in June 2021: they found the often incompatible metals nickel and chromium everywhere, but the red dyes contained the most frequent impurities. In addition, mercury sulfite was found in them. "With this heavy metal the risk is clearly greater"that the body reacts allergic", says Dr. Alice Martin, dermatologist and co-founder of the telepractice Dermanostic. "This does not necessarily have to happen, but the probability is increased. "
Possible allergic reactions
Red tattoos are more likely to cause allergic reactions than other colored tattoos. How strong these reactions are varies from person to person. Mild reactions may occur, and some people may experience itching or burning of the skin. In severe cases, there is also nausea, fever or shortness of breath. These symptoms do not have to appear immediately, but can also become noticeable later,” warns the dermatologist. Depending on the severity of the symptoms, a doctor should be consulted. If possible, ask the doctor to show you the ingredients of the paint used. Then, if necessary, a specific allergy test can provide information and the treatment can be adjusted accordingly.
If you are having a laser treatment for the first time, you naturally don’t know how your body will react. If you want to be on the safe side, you should try a black tattoo first. However, Dr. Alice Martin points out: “No matter what basic ingredients are contained in the colors, they are all substances that are foreign to the body, and the skin can react allergically to any of these substances.” The dermatologist recommends avoiding tattoos altogether if you have a general tendency to allergies or skin problems such as neurodermatitis or psoriasis.
Red tattoos are more difficult to remove
Heavy metals, increased risk of allergies – unfortunately, there is something to be said against the signal color red when it comes to tattooing. And even when it comes to removing tattoos again, you have it comparatively difficult with this color. Some tattoo colors are difficult to laser away," Dr. Alice Martin knows from her many years of practical experience. One of these is red. The laser device is less able to detect their color pigments than others;