Tattoo Removal: An Unlikely Source of Community Service

We recently followed up with the folks at CleanSlate, who we donated a Palomar Q-Yag 5 laser to last year. Read more about that here.

Since American rapper, entrepreneur, and community activist, Nipsey Hussle’s death this past March, there has been a resurgence of peace discussions among gang members in Los Angeles and an increase in community awareness surrounding the issue. Throughout his career, Nipsey (born Ermias Asghedom), was outspoken about his gang affiliation, his vision to end the violence and his commitment to supporting his local LA community. Nipsey was true to his word – providing employment opportunities by investing in local real estate, building science and tech learning centers for teens, and setting a meeting with LA Police Commissioner Steve Soboroff to discuss the efforts. Days before this meeting, Nipsey was tragically murdered. Nipsey’s legacy lives on and in a march honoring his passing, LA gangs experienced the largest ceasefire in their community since 1992 (the year of the Rodney King riots). 

But despite Nipsey’s endeavors, gang violence remains a visible part of the Los Angeles landscape. For many trying to leave behind their gang ties, this visibility runs skin deep. In the gang world, simple tattoos – a certain star, a spiderweb, a teardrop, or series of numbers, can have big meanings. Tattoo removal has become an unlikely source of liberation. Patients who have gotten rid of unwanted tattoos have reported feeling like their dignity and self-esteem has been restored. The removal also offers them a broader range of opportunities as they enter the job market, greatly increasing their chances of employment. 

Though tattoo removal can be a major step in the recovery of former gang members and victims of human trafficking or abuse, for many it is an arduous, costly process to take on. The aesthetic laser community is changing that. At the center of this undertaking is CleanSlate, a Los Angeles-based nonprofit with a mission to empower individuals in-need to rebuild their lives. Located in the hub of Hawaiian Gardens gang territory, CleanSlate’s low-cost tattoo removal program serves approximately 150 people per month. Sentient Laser saw CleanSlate and Hawaiian Garden’s need for a high-quality laser and in 2018, donated a refurbished aesthetic laser (the Palomar Q-Yag 5 laser).

By updating their resources, CleanSlate has been able to double their impact on the Hawaiian Garden community. In just six clinics, CleanSlate serviced 216 people in need of a fresh start, the organizations biggest tattoo removal accomplishment yet. When asked about this record-breaking number, the staff said the efficiency of the laser is what helped cut their time in half.  One practitioner explained how Sentient’s donated laser “works wonderfully and hits much harder at the same settings as our previous laser.” Sentient Laser is a proud supporter of CleanSlate’s mission and their commitment to providing the LA community with both a high-quality procedure and a true clean slate for the next chapter in their lives.  

If you are a former gang member, domestic violence survivor, felon, or have a tattoo that no longer describes who you were at the time of application CleanSlate wants to assist with the changing of the package while providing support in the process of self-understanding and acceptance.  You can contact CleanSlate at (562) 945-9111 or visit their website at

Skin Inc “4 Tips To A Smart Laser Investment”

Our very own Eric Graham, VP of Sales at Sentient contributes valuable information to Skin Inc. about investing in laser procurement from overseas. Read his article “4 Tips To A Smart Laser Investment.”

Sentient Lasers Donates Aesthetic Laser to Nonprofit CleanSlate


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Hayley Kerr, Crowe PR


 Sentient Lasers Donates Aesthetic Laser to Nonprofit CleanSlate

Laser Donation Will Help Nonprofit in Community Violence Recovery Program Efforts Through Low-cost Tattoo Removal

 PARK CITY—August 23, 2018Sentient Lasers, a business solutions company and the leading pre-owned aesthetic laser company that buys, sells, warranties, and provides service contracts for aesthetic lasers and light devices, announced today it’s donating a refurbished aesthetic laser (Palomar Q-Yag 5 laser) to CleanSlate, a Los Angeles-based nonprofit.

CleanSlate, founded by Marianne Diaz, empowers individuals to rebuild their lives through services including tattoo removal, community violence recovery, and substance abuse prevention. The nonprofit is best known for low-cost tattoo removal for gang members, victims of domestic abuse, and any individuals who received a tattoo that is holding them back from opportunities to advance their career and life. CleanSlate removes more tattoos annually than most doctors, in large part because of their location in the hub of Hawaiian Gardens gang territory.

“When I got out of prison, my tattoos held me back from taking my career to the next level,” said Marianne Diaz, Founder and President at CleanSlate. “Because of my experience, I have dedicated my life to helping others reinvent themselves. Sentient Lasers’ donation is incredible and will change the lives of so many hopeful individuals. Because of companies like Sentient Lasers, we’re able to help people move forward in their lives and are beyond grateful for their generous donation to our organization and support for our mission.”

CleanSlate serves approximately 150 people per month and each of those patients remove on average of three to four tattoos. The small fee that patients pay is then filtered back into CleanSlate’s Street Dreams L.A. program, which serves to empower youth in communities with less resources through the likes of music, sports, photography, and spoken word.

Sentient Lasers’ donation of the Palomar Q-Yag 5 laser will allow CleanSlate to put less wear and tear on the one older laser they currently use and will allow them to alternate between the two, putting less stress on the number one piece of equipment that keeps the nonprofit running. As part of the donation, Sentient Lasers will provide them with ongoing service should any future repairs be needed on the laser.

“We’re thrilled to support such an amazing nonprofit,” said Chris Cella, CEO at Sentient Lasers. “Sentient Lasers is rooted in the knowledge that aesthetic lasers are costly and can be overwhelming and impossible for many to afford. Every day, we help business owners expand their company’s capabilities and today, we are proud to help CleanSlate continue to give back and more effectively and efficiently serve individuals in the process of turning their lives around.”

For more information on Sentient Lasers and its Blue Dot Certification, visit

About Sentient Lasers

Founded in 2009, Sentient Lasers is a business solutions company and the leading pre-owned aesthetic laser company that delivers the highest quality, most reliable pre-owned aesthetic lasers to physicians and med spas around the world. Sentient Lasers buys, sells, warranties, and provides service contracts for aesthetic lasers and light devices. The company is revolutionizing the pre-owned laser industry with its proprietary Blue Dot Certification, a rigorous 20-point inspection and refurbishing process that ensures quality, longevity, safety, and clinical efficacy for aesthetic lasers. Based in Kamas, Utah but relocating to Park City in a couple of months, Sentient Lasers focuses on providing the best customer experience available, making it easier for businesses to diversify their practice and help other physicians gain market share in the fast-growing space. For more information, visit