What You Need to Know Before Getting a Tattoo
It seems tattoos and motorcycles are synonymous with each other, a sort of stereotypical accent. Yet they’ve also come into fashion not only for women motorcycle riders but women of any activity.
And we’re not the first to say it, nor the last. The decision to get tattooed is a big and important one, and shouldn’t be taken lightly. Here’s what you need to know Getting a Tattoo and before you prepare to go under the needle.
Getting a Tattoo Don’t KNOW, Don’t Go
Tattoos are expensive, painful, and permanent and so is their removal if successful. If you have doubts –wait until you know exactly what you want permanently inked on your skin, why you want it, where you want it, and exactly what it means to you.
Getting a Tattoo and Choosing Your Design
Choose your body art carefully. Dig deep when trying to select the right design for you.
- Don’t use Google or Pinterest for ideas – your tattoo will look like everyone else’s. Books and tattoo magazines are a great source.
- Choose a design that holds personal meaning or work with an artist to create entirely original artwork. Think long about a design that you’ll be happy with for years to come.
- A good tattoo comes out of good communication. Don’t be shy – most tattoo ideas are a collaboration between the customer and the artist. Let the artist know what aspects of the tattoo you’re not willing to change and where you’re flexible.
- If you’re getting a tattoo with words, proofread. Don’t get too wrapped up in looking at a tattoo and forget to pay attention to detail. You and the tattoo artist will probably make a few edits during the sketching and stencil process, so make sure you spell-check after each round of edits. This way you can avoid being a walking typo.
The Tattoo Artist
Do your research! There are irresponsible, untidy tattoo artists out there. You can get scarred and/or infected if you end up getting work from a poor one. It’s worth your while to do some digging.
- Good tattoos’ are not cheap, and a cheap tattoo isn’t good. Pricing a tattoo depends on the size, area of the body you want covered, and the artist, but typically a good tattoo will cost you anywhere from $50 for a small design to over a $1000.for more elaborate art. Prices are non-negotiable; bargaining with a tattoo artist is not possible.
- Most tattoo artists use their Instagram feeds as portfolios to showcase their recent work and the pieces they’re most proud of. If you find an artist you’re really drawn to but don’t know what to get, reach out to them and ask for advice. Many tattoo artists have tons of designs they’ve created on the side and are dying to tattoo on people.
- Unlike at most places of business, a tattoo artist doesn’t have to help you if they don’t want. They can and will send you away. They do enough business that they can choose whom they want to work with
- Do a Background Check. Ideally a recommendation from a friend or acquaintance who’s had a positive experience working with a local artist is best. Otherwise, consider group review resources.
- The most famous artists have a wait-list and could be up to a year or more.
- Gather your facts/get a feel for the tattoo business by calling around and inquiring before making appointments.
- Visit the shop before you go get your tattoo. Check that the place looks clean, if the staff is friendly, and then schedule a consultation with the artist to talk about pricing and any questions you might have. You can should also ask to see the artist’s tattoo license to make sure he or she has completed the necessary safety course on blood-borne pathogens (i.e., HIV, AIDS, hepatitis, etc.)
- If you’re allergic, you may also get a reaction from a tattoo. Some of the same dyes used in tattoo inks are used in cosmetics – have your dermatologist run some tests beforehand to see what types of ink you should avoid.
It will Hurt
- If you’re really afraid of needles, you’ll probably want to pass on a tattoo. The sensation of a tattoo as being similar to how to feels when a nurse draws blood is by no comparison. Realistically, it feels like a touch of pain coupled with an annoying, intense vibration and the sensation that someone is dragging a needle across your skin. A tattoo needle doesn’t go very deep into the skin like a needle does, but that doesn’t mean it’s pain-free either.
- Your ribs, feet, and butt will hurt the most. So bring along a mild pain-killer to take after your appointment. It’s not advisable to take before as these meds tend to thin your blood and possibly make you bleed more during the process.
- You can get just about every part of your body tattooed. Designs on your hands and feet will fade the fastest. The most difficult part of your body to tattoo is the area between your shoulder and your hip. Tattooing the torso area usually requires a lot of breaks for both the artist and the customer because it’s an incredibly sensitive, and painful spot.
- Before a tattoo session, get a good night’s sleep, eat a full meal, and don’t drink alcohol before. You’ll need energy to tolerate the pain of a tattoo, and alcohol tends to thin your blood and make you bleed more during the process.
- Most likely you’ll feel the pain lessen after about 15 minutes. Your adrenaline will start kicking in around this time and help manage some of the pain. Most tattoo artists will only work in two-hour sessions at a time, so if you have a very large design, you’ll have to schedule a couple of appointments two weeks apart, first for the outline and then to complete the shading.
Your new tattoo will need care and should be treated like an open wound. It needs to be regularly washed with only mild soap and water; never using abrasive sponges/loofah or cloths. Pat the tattoo dry after don’t rub with paper towels to avoid infection.
- While the tattoo is healing, it’ll scab like a cut and feel sensitive like a sunburn. Right when it’s finished, the tattoo will look perfect. After a few days, it’ll start to dry out slightly and may peel. You also might get a few scabs, but it’s important not to pick at them or it won’t heal correctly. After a few weeks, it should be all healed if you’ve kept it clean properly and moisturized.
- Care should be taken when choosing and applying a healing ointment. Many tattoo parlous can suggest a brand to buy (and some offer their own formula for purchase), but whatever ointment you choose, make sure it contains no petroleum or lanolin.
Tattoo Removal is possible, but it doesn’t come easy or cheap.
Lasers are the most common method of tattoo removal. The laser causes the tattoo’s ink molecules to dissolve into smaller ink particles which are harmlessly removed by the body’s immune system in the weeks following treatment. This procedure, is expensive – usually around $200 per session, and always requires multiple treatments.
It hurts just as much, if not more, than getting tattooed. The sensation is comparable to the pain of being repeatedly snapped by rubber bands on one area of the skin.
If laser removal isn’t an option; it’s also possible to cover up a tattoo with another tattoo. You should look for someone who has specific experience in drawing over tattoos, as not all artists are skilled in this particular craft.