The ink itself is a major feat. Josh Sakhai, co-founder of Ephemeral, explains that the ink took six years of research and development to make and has gone through many different iterations since. You can also feel good about what’s going onto your skin. “Every single one of the materials in our ink is already FDA approved for use in medical devices, cosmetics, and drugs,” Sakhai says. “No tattoo ink is approved or regulated by the FDA. That being said, we took a ton of precautions because for us, that’s super important.”
Though it penetrates the dermis, or the inner layer of your skin, just like a normal tattoo, the ink has some major differences that make it special. “Permanent tattoos basically clump together and aggregate and become these larger blocks of ink that are too big for your body to remove,” Sakhai says. “So they stay permanent. Ephemeral ink does something similar and goes into your skin and clumps together, but our ink is made of biodegradable components that break down over time, and as [they] break down, your body’s able to remove them.”
For now, Ephemeral only has black ink, but Sakhai says other colors are on the horizon. Once the ink is mixed, it’s loaded into a tattoo pen.