I think it’s pretty obvious that tattoos are a lifetime commitment, its’s permanent ink on your body; I mean, duh! But you need to be informed before you walk into the parlor and sit down to get marked.
Tattoos can remind us of a good time and place in our lives, and they can even be used to conceal scars! The sheer talent tattoo artists have to create such elaborate work is mind-blowing!
When you’re getting a tattoo for the first time, you might be uninformed or overexcited, that you can’t think straight, and forget to consider important factors. So we’ve compiled a list of things you should know before you get inked.
Tattoos, especially ones that hold a lot of sentimental value, don’t come cheap! When your artist has had the experience and taken time to study the art, they know their worth!
The price of a tattoo usually depends on the type of tattoo you choose to get; for a small tattoo, you’d pay significantly less than you would a larger one. If it’s an elaborate piece, you may even spend more than a month’s rent!
2. Don’t Blindly Trust Someone
Tattoos will be on your body forever, so if your piece is particular, you need to find an artist that is more than capable of making your vision a reality. Ask to see their prior work; make sure of their talent before you commit!
You should also find out about all the costs and how long it will take to book your appointment. Some artists are booked for months in advance before they can schedule you in, and some artists require a tip separately.
With COVID, we all should have become more aware of our surroundings and how clean something actually is. A tattoo parlor should be a sterile environment because you’re working with people’s skin!
The same way you would expect a doctor’s office to be clean, the surfaces shouldn’t be porous like marble and rock because bacteria can easily breed on those surfaces. The best material for a sterile environment is steel.
4. It’s Gonna Hurt
Getting a needle shoved into your skin repeatedly to create a pattern is going to hurt. Some places will definitely hurt less than others, and there’s a way to tell if it’s going to hurt!
You can use your fingers to pinch the skin in the area where you want the tattoo in order to gauge the pain. Usually, places with bone underneath, like your wrists and your ribs, will pain more than places that have more tissue and fat!
5. Size Matters
Size plays an important role when it comes to pain; the smaller the tattoo, the less painful it will be, or you’ll be experiencing the pain for less time at least! Larger and elaborate pieces might hurt more because you’ll have to endure the pain as the artist works on the piece.
The larger and elaborate the piece also means that you won’t be able to complete the tattoo within one session. Pieces can take months to complete because of the attention to detail!
6. Avoid Submerging Yourself In Water
Because tattoos are created using a needle on your skin, they can get infected. Neglecting to care for it can result in a nasty-looking piece. Ensure that you’re well prepared to look after the piece for the two-week minimum it takes to heal.
You should be wary of soaking yourself when you have a new tattoo. So avoid bodies of water like the ocean, pools, and even your bathtub, because soaking your tattoo can affect the result, and any exposure to bacteria in water can easily infect it.
7. Be Prepared To Have It Retouched
Just like a haircut that grows out, your tattoo will need some touching up over time. Be sure to discuss this with your artist, so you know when to book your next appointment and what it’s going to cost!
8. How To Prepare For Your Appointment
Tattoos on the ribs, feet, ankles, neck, backs of your knees, or insides of your elbows hurt the most. So if you’re adamant about getting a tattoo in these places, you should embrace yourself for the pain!
To help you get through the appointment, make sure that you’ve gotten plenty of rest and have eaten enough so that you’re able to withstand the pain. Try not to tan beforehand because if you start peeling, it can be more painful!
You shouldn’t take any medication that contains ibuprofen or aspirin, and you certainly want to avoid alcohol! These substances will thin your blood, and bleeding is going to affect your tattoo result.
If your skin is sensitive or you’ve had a reaction to costume jewelry, hair dye, or cheap fragrances, you might want to consult your dermatologist before going to get a tattoo. Red dye is known for causing allergic reactions, and it can be hard to treat!
10. Washing Your Tattoo
Your tattoo should remain dry for the first few days, so you’ll want to use a gentle cleanser to wash it, then pat it dry because abrasion can affect the outcome and let it air out. You should wash it twice a day and try not to scratch or pick at it.
It might get irritating, but if you scratch, you can remove pieces of ink that can affect your tattoo’s outcome. Make sure you use a lotion recommended by your artist, like Aquaphor, to keep the area moisturized so it doesn’t peel off!
Dr Saadiqah Hajat