10 Secrets Before Getting A Tattoo You Won't Regret

Last year in 2013, 45,224 people in America had tattoo removal. Most of that had nothing to do with employment or tattoo acceptance in the workplace. The majority said it was because they regret the tattoo they got. A giant 5.1% of the entire United States has a cover up tattoo! That’s millions. At the Support Tattoos and Piercings at Work movement we’re constantly asked about tattoo advice. So here’s info on 10 secrets before getting a tattoo you won’t regret.

Getting a Tattoo

Should I Get a Tattoo

There are 2 rules to answering, “Should I get a tattoo?” It’s for the rest of your life. There’s nothing wrong with getting a tattoo. Some statistics: 43% of tattooed people felt more beautiful, 57% actually had more confidence!

  1. Do you have the money? Should I get a tattoo, isn’t a question if you don’t have the money for your design!

  2. Did you plan out the meaning, colors, design and the font?

Really Bad Tattoos

Really bad tattoos almost always result from rash decision making. Don’t think, “Should I get a tattoo?” if you’re drunk. Don’t get a tattoo if you’re “in the moment.” Women are often more impulsive and emotional decision makers than men. Guess what? The percentage of women getting tattoo removal is 73%! People who wanted tattoos for more than one month were astronomically more likely to keep their tattoos.

Did you know:

Tattoo removal is just as painful, but longer than getting the tattoo.

Worst Places to Get a Tattoo

Besides getting really bad tattoos, here’s some interesting painful stats on the worst places to get a tattoo. The most painful places to get a tattoo are:

  • Ribs

  • Foot

  • Elbow

  • Face

  • Spine

Note that pain degrees vary between people.

Getting a Tattoo While Pregnant

Personally if you’re already going through the pain of childbirth, hormone changes, and all the additional stresses, adding your first tattoo or a large tattoo to the equation isn’t wise. The primary concern is adding the risk of infection to the equation. If you’re at a licensed shop with sterile equipment that uses gloves and an autoclave your risk is incredibly low. However, you’ve got another little human involved, so it’s worth playing it safe.

Tattoo Fad

Thinking about if you should be getting a tattoo that’s super hip. The number 1 way to land in a tattoo removal chair is getting a tattoo fad. Some examples of tattoo fad styles are:

  • Trend Designs

  • Movie Designs

  • Band Designs

  • Song Quotes

  • Fraternity Symbols

  • Sorority Symbols

  • Club Symbols

This doesn’t mean you’ll regret getting a tattoo with these designs, these are just the top 7 designs that tattooed people regret.

Meaningless Tattoos

Really bad tattoos start with meaningless tattoos. Your tattoo doesn’t have to hold so much meaning that it takes a short novel to explain it. However, even just 2-3 intrinsic tattoo meanings can put you on the road to being proud of your ink for the long haul. Try to get inked with tattoos that hold at least 1-2 of these elements you’ll never regret:

  1. Meaning

  2. Values

  3. Memories

  4. Family

Finding a Tattoo Artist

Finding at tattoo artist is the hardest task for someone with virgin skin. It’s also difficult for veteran tattoo fans. Often people move or their artists moves away. What then? Here’s some tips:

  1. Even if you “know” what artist you want, shopping around never hurts. Finding a tattoo artist you love is important

  2. Get referred. Ask all your friends on Facebook with tattoos which artists and shops they like.

  3. Always look at previous tattoo work. A cool looking tattoo artist doesn’t equal cool looking tattoo work.

  4. A lot of old school artists still have an attitude towards first time tattoo subjects. Getting a tattoo should be fun and memorable. Don’t settle for a grump. Tattoo shops are a business and should provide quality customer service

  5. Just because tattoo artists can do great tattoos doesn’t mean they can do the style you want. Find similar work tattoo artists have tattooed.

  6. Is your tattoo artist an apprentice? That might make for a great deal, and it might make for really bad tattoos. Check out their work.

Getting a Good Deal on a Horrible Tattoo

Great tattoos aren’t cheap and cheap tattoos aren’t great. Getting a good deal on a horrible tattoo basically defeats the reason of getting a tattoo. The American national average tattoo hourly rate is $100 - $150.

Tattoos in the Workplace

Always consider if your current or future employer will let you get tattoos in the workplace. While discrimination against tattoos in the workplace is declining, there are still certain professions that have stereotypes. Incredibly there are also professions that tattoos increase your chance at getting hired. Find out about tattoos in the workplace here.

Best Times to Get Tattooed

Don’t forget to think about the best times to get tattooed!

Tip 1: Tourist towns during slow season often have high quality artists that drop their prices just to increase business. On a $1,000 tattoo it might be worth it to save $250.

Tip 2: The best times to get tattooed are colder times like winter months, not summer months. Heat will irritate the healing process of a new tattoo.

Tip 3: The best times to get tattooed are when you have nothing planned for a few weeks. Don’t get it right before Spring Break, moving your house, or festival season, or vacation. Tattoos heal better without pools and sunlight.

Beauty is subjective, so everyone is different. The most important thing is think through your work and remember it lasts forever.

Speak out below with your thoughts on getting a tattoo you won’t regret.

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