If you’re thinking about getting a tattoo, congratulations! Prepare to join the more than 20% of adults who sport their ink loudly and proudly. The number is growing, too, as more and more people take the plunge and turn their bodies into beautiful canvases. From planning your piece to caring for a new tattoo, here are some things to think about before you get inked!
- What design are you going to get? – Maybe the most important step, you should really have a good idea about what kind of design you’d like BEFORE you decide to get a tattoo. There are many different styles to choose from, but old school tattoo ideas have seen a big surge in popularity. Some of the most popular tattoo designs involve roses, pin-ups, swallows, and/or anchors, but can really be comprised of just about anything and designed in a similar style. Doing some research about the style of tattoo you’re looking for could help you decide on the subject matter. Just make sure you let your design marinate in your brain for a little while; you definitely don’t want to regret making an impulse decision that stays on you for life.
- Where are you going to go to get it? – Where is the best place to get a tattoo? It all depends on where you are. Researching local shops and artists is essential to a good tattoo experience. To become a tattoo artist, there is a lot of practice and portfolio work involved, so it’s usually pretty easy to spot a pro. They’ll have a decent body of work, across multiple styles, and will be able to customize your idea. They also will be able to help you with caring for a new tattoo, which is essential in preserving the pigment strength and permanence. Finding a shop that meets your needs shouldn’t be too hard, considering the 21,000 tattoo studios across the U.S. So get searching!
- Are you ready for the pain? – Many people report different levels of pain for different areas of the body, but generally speaking, it’s a safe bet to say tattoos hurt. Finding the right artist can help you to be confident that the pain will be as minimal and tolerable as possible. But do some browsing and read some reviews to find out which areas are a definite “no” on your pain tolerance threshold. Caring for a new tattoo is relatively easy, but it is useful to know that it will feel like a bad sunburn for the first week or so. Make sure you apply lots of tattoo-safe ointment and keep it out of the sun and the water. (To take a shower, it’s advisable to wrap your new ink in plastic wrap to keep it safe.) Otherwise, you run the risk of your ink healing improperly, which could result in scabbing and discoloration.
If you think you’ve got what it takes to get inked, then go for it! But don’t forget to consider all the factors, and make sure you do your research.