If you’re reading this, this can only mean that you’re either thinking of getting a tattoo or looking for some ink ideas to add to your current collection. For the Ink Virgins, getting a tattoo is like tying the knot (getting married) or getting a pet. It’s a lifetime commitment that you need to be sure of. Of course these days, you can get laser removal if you regret your decision but it’s going to hurt way more than getting the ink done and it’s also going to cost way more and many sessions to get it all off.
Also, after deciding on what design to get, you need to make sure you do proper research about the meaning, the background and also if you’re getting it done in a foreign language, make sure it means what you think it does. Many people make the mistake of getting kanji (Japanese characters) thinking it’s supposed to say a certain something but it end up saying something else. You wouldn’t want your tattoo to say Fat Pig when you wanted it to say Courage right? LOL.
So, you’ve found a design you really like and you’re ready to commit to it. You need to do your research next on the tattoo artist that you’d like to visit to help you bring your vision of the piece to live on your skin. Take note that an experienced, talented tattoo artist will not come cheap. Afterall, they are putting art on your skin that will last a lifetime. To be very honest, when I was in College, I had limited budget and I made some bad choices when it came to my inks. Don’t get me wrong, I never got a tattoo drunk or put an ex’s name on me. My regret was I had cheap tattoos done that didn’t turn out the way I wanted them to look on my skin and because of that, when I finally was earning better money and got to know more tattoo artists, I got coverups. Therefore, save up for the tattoo you want. 😀
What’s a coverup? Well, it’s when a tattoo artist covers your current tattoo with a whole new piece of art. A good tattoo artist will be able to completely cover the old tattoo to a point that you can’t make out what was previously there. So, that’s the second option besides getting laser tattoo removal.
- What should you do before going in for your tattoo appointment? Make sure you shower. Afterall, if your tattoo piece is a huge one, you might be seated there for hours with your tattoo artist. Who wants to be seated next to someone smelly right? A happy tattoo artist will be able to give you the best tattoo. Happy Tattoo Artist = Nice Tattoo = Happy Client. 😀
- Second thing to do is, make sure you eat something before your appointment. I’ve heard of people fainting from getting a tattoo.
- Don’t drink alcohol the night before or just right before getting a tattoo. You need to sit still during the whole process. It thins your blood and will make you bleed alot.
- No sun tanning as well. A sun burned skin is not going to be fun to be tattooed and the artist might reject tattooing you.
- No drugs. You shouldn’t be taking any meds or drugs before a tattoo appointment. I’ve heard horror stories from a tattoo artist about how he/she had to ink an intoxicated person.
How Does Getting A Tattoo Feel
For me it feels like you’re being scratch with a needle. I have pretty high pain tolerance so it might feel different for you. Plus, the thinner the skin is and is close to bone and nerves, it’ll hurt more compared to in spots where there isn’t much nerves. Btw, more needles, more pain. Ouch!! There’s more needles for bigger pieces and colouring in areas. For me, it was more painful when I got my wrist tattoo compared to getting my back tattoo for instance.
Tattoo Steps and What To Expect
- The area will be shaved and sanitized to prep the area where the tattoo will go.
- The design of the tattoo will be stenciled onto the spot where the tattoo will be. At this stage, if you’re not happy with the placement, the tattoo artist will clean it and re-place the stencil until you and the artist is happy.
- You will then either sit down or lie down in a position where it should be comfortable for you and the tattoo artist to work on you.
- This is the best part, the fun part when the needle touches the skin.
- The tattoo artist will wipe off excess ink or blood as she/he inks you.
- When the tattoo is completed, the tattoo piece will be wrapped up to prevent it from getting infected. You should remove the wrap after an hour or so and wash your new ink gently with cool clean water.
If you’re interested in getting a unique and cool piece done by Apoh, you can check her work out at: http://www.instagram.com/apohapoh and she can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org 🙂
Your tattoo will take about 4 weeks to 6 weeks to heal completely. During the first 1-2 weeks, it will start to scab and peel and it’s going to be super itchy when it’s healing. Do not pull or scratch it at any cost. You should also avoid wearing tight clothing during the healing period. No swimming or sun tanning as well. This will cause the tattoo to get infected or fade in colour as well. You should also avoid very hot showers the first week atleast. Dab dry your tattoo with a clean paper towel after each shower and apply the aftercare cream that your tattoo artist recommends.
Also, another thing to note, tattoo is very addictive. That explains why I have so many pieces. I also have a half sleeve. 😛 I feel tattoo is way to express your individuality. Btw, all my ink have special meanings to me.