WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Stephanie Russell got into laser tattoo removal to erase her own tattoos. From there, the passion grew.
Now, Russell serves a wide variety of clients including victims of abuse, human trafficking and former gang members looking to better their lives.
“It changes their life completely once that tattoo is gone. It is a permanent reminder for them, usually on their face or hands and they just don’t want it in their life anymore,” Russell said Monday.
As part of National Tattoo Removal day, Russell is offering free tattoo removal services all day long on August 14 and a discount for those who can’t make it in that day but still want to erase part of their past identity.
“I love seeing their reaction. Every treatment that I do, I can see it in their face. I’m helping her get past that and not have that permanent reminder when she looks in the mirror every day,” Russell said.
On Monday, Russell treated Meghan Diehl in the Wichita Laser Clinic office.
Years ago, Diehl was travelling for work and wanted a “meaningful, delicate” tattoo to remind her where she came from: the state of Kansas.
“Unfortunately, the vision for the tattoo I had and what resulted from that were two different things,” Diehl said.
For 10 years now, Diehl said she’s wore her hair down to avoid showing the thick, shaded tattoo of Kansas on the back of her neck.
The treatment was her third time, and it took about 15 seconds for Russell to trace the outline of the state.
Russell works with law enforcement to help remove tattoos of past gang members.
She says it hurts less than getting a tattoo, and the process is much quicker, too.