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Getting Inked: Tattoo Basics

Updated on August 17, 2016

History

Tattoos date back in the fifth and fourth millennia, BC. They were first found on the skin of ancient Alpine populations, where they were made of carbon and consisted mainly of lines and simple dots. They are thought to have been used as a way of healing, not unlike acupuncture.

Through the second millennium BC, the tattoo tradition spread, and many ancient people were heavily tattooed.

Nowadays, it is seen as an art form. Even though women wear them, it is still mostly men who get tattoos.

Why Not Get a Tattoo?

You should get a tattoo to remember places, people, events, favorite movies, motivating quotes, or life-changing moments. You can get a tattoo just for the pleasure of getting one, or just because you like the way black ink looks on your body.

But what are the reasons for not getting one?

  • People say that it is harder to find a job, because employers do not take you seriously when they meet your. Even if you do great in interviews, popular perceptions of tattooed people can make it harder.
  • You may regret the tattoo or the design, and won't be able to get rid of it.
  • As you age your skin will sag and distort the image.
  • You can't donate blood for three years after getting one.

5 Things Not to Do

Avoid these common mistakes!

  1. Getting a relationship tattoo for your girlfriend when things aren't going well, in hopes of proving your love. You think it'll get the relationship back on track, but if it doesn't then you're stuck with her name on your body.
  2. Throw caution to the wind, get drunk and head to the nearest tattoo store and pick out the one that looks a lot like a hot pink rose, thinking this will show everyone that you’re just a big flower.
  3. Getting something that you think looks cool; who cares if it doesn’t look good in the future? It will look awesome to everyone no matter what, right?
  4. Getting inked at home by someone who’s only been doing it for a few months. As a matter of a fact, do it with your buddy who just got out of prison; he’s probably seen enough of these things done that he’s an expert already.
  5. If you don’t have the money or a person or anything, just doing it yourself! It’s incredibly easy, just go melt some crayons and mix it with ink, right? Wrong! Go to a real tattoo artist.

What to Do Instead

  1. Procrastinate! You need to do a good search for at least a few weeks before you decide what design you want. During this process you have to decide what you want. A text or a picture? Do you want it in simply in black, or colors? What language will you use if it is a text? What does it mean to you? Think hard. You do not want to regret it later on. Do something that has meaning for you.
  2. Decide where on your body to put it. I would suggest to get it somewhere that you do not look at too much during the day, or you may get obsessed with how it looks. Over time you may start to think there is something wrong with it even though there isn't.
  3. Carefully look for a tattoo artist you will like. Take advantage of your relatives' or friends' experiences. Find an artist who is better at what you want to do, not the one who is good at everything. For example, if you want a small tattoo, go to the artist who does the small ones better than the artist who is good at all sizes.
  4. Check your artist's tools. Check them out well. Remember to ask him if he is using clean tools. He must use tools that are only usable once.
  5. Take good care of your tattoo after you have it. Do not wash it with shampoo. Do not get out in the sun. Do not wear clothes that usually irritate your skin. Do not scratch it. It will heal eventually. Use Vaseline to keep the area smooth, and don't let water or other elements penetrate.

The Buddha Head Tattoo

The tattoo that you choose to design on your body has to has a meaning, a right way to show the world who you are, or to remind yourself something important. Sometimes it is a heartbeat, sometimes it is a flower, sometimes it is the hand of the person you love, and other times a quote to remind you to walk on your path with strength and determination. Whatever your choice is, be sure to be meaningful.

So, what when you decide you want a Buddha Head tattoo? First of all, before getting one, be sure to check on the Buddha history, and Buddhism, which is a religion. It may not apply well to your religion, so do not forget to check.
Secondly, lets get behind the meaning of the Buddha Head tattoo. You should know that Buddha was known as a curly hair boy and he is usually drawn like that. He is also drawn in gray, not in the usual black color of tattoos. People who draw this one on their skin, most of the time, they do it to show they belong to the Buddhism religion. Others do it because it means something to them, or to bring them luck.It is said that the person who carries a tattoo like this one, it is blessed and will have a good destiny. The Buddha Head Tattoo brings enlightenment in ones life, because this is what Buddha himself brought among his people.

Designing the Buddha Head, to some people, means to drive into a further and deeper state of meditation, it means having a more peaceful mind. However, remember, every person it is different, and every tattoo it is different even though it may resemble the same. This comes as the matter of fact that every single tattoo, no matter how much similar to another, carries a different meaning for the person who has it, and for the others who know this person. It is special, because it is a piece of art they you own. If you decide to have a Buddha Head tattoo, have it, and give it your own special meaning.

Will the tattoo hurt?

It depends where on the body you are getting it, and how much you can tolerate pain. This image below shows the points on your body where most people will feel more pain. This is because the skin is thinner and closer to the bone. In the more painless places you will feel like somebody's scratching your skin, or like you're getting a sunburn but not unbearable pain. I cannot explain the pain on the more painful places because I have never gotten them tattooed.

Will I regret getting a tattoo?

If you get something that has meaning to you, the answer is no. Over time you will think that you feel regret about it or its placement, but this is just an illusion. This is a natural reaction to change, but doesn't mean anything. A tattoo represents change and growth. You learn and you grow.

Kylie Jenner Hair Tattoo
Kylie Jenner Hair Tattoo

Cover Up a Tattoo Using Red Lipstick and Foundation

If you want to cover up your ink, go over it with red lipstick before going over it with foundation.
If you want to cover up your ink, go over it with red lipstick before going over it with foundation.

Do you have tattoos?

See results

White Ink: Beautiful but Costly

Anchor tattoo at the finger.
Anchor tattoo at the finger.

© 2014 Enchi

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      Mollydee 19 months ago

      I have 5 tattoos and I am ready for my 6th. I wish I had this to read before I started. I love my first tattoo. I need color touch up there. The second was a drinking night one. And it's big so I am glad I got it in a place that is hidden. My third tattoo had a lot of meaning. I want to build around it now. My forth I could have done without and they screwed up my 5th one. Mostly size wise. So I was talking to a very good friend if mine who just started getting tattoos. I mentioned a few of my ideas to her for my sixth tattoo. One was my husband's name. He prefer that I not do that. My friend said she felt the same as far as her and her husband. He wants her name snd she does not want that. So she told me as about her two recent tattoos. She told me what they meant and how they represented her and her husband's love. I thought that was an awesome idea. Now I am reading this as and, if I could give any advice it would be the following. Research. You want to have someone who has a lot of experience and is a skilled artist. Ask to see their portfolio. If you don't like what they sketch out for you, speak up. Also there are many different styles of tattoos. Make sure your artist specializes in what you want. For example portraits. If you want a picture of say your daughter on you, know that your artist knows their anatomy and has done lots of amazing portraits. Also make sure they are opening their tools from a heat sealed bag which shows they have been sterilized. Ask them to see the sterilizer if you want. Next - relax. If you tense up it does not help your artist and it can hurt worse. The old saying goes if you pinch the area you want tattooed and it hurts, the tattoo will hurt. I have not found that to be true. I can take a lot of pain but I would not describe tattoos as painful. The only places it was uncomfortable was the two I got directly over a bone. Next follow all of the instructions they give you. It makes a big difference in the healing and keeps risk of infection down. I have seen a few people that did not take care of their tattoos after. It was not good. Then I would have to say the most important thing is make sure it is meaningful. You may love Batman but are you obsessed with him? Do you know all about him? Do your friends know that about you? You get the idea. And if you get something like what they show on the wall, thrur is nothing wrong with that, just make it your own. Change something about it so no one else has it. Bring an image with you to help out your artist if you know what you want. You do not want to have regrets.

      Their are tons of images on the Internet so look at what you think you want and you will feel it when you find the right one. And trust your artist as far as coloring. You can ask for certain colors or maybe just one but based on the design and what it is, if your artist has a suggestion take it into consideration. If you got through this whole thing thank you for reading. HAPPY TATTOOING!!!

    • Engelta profile image
      Author

      Enchi 19 months ago from Albania

      Thank you for this long personal reply :)

    • profile image

      TxKiwiGirl 12 months ago

      I'm not sure where the author is getting the information on blood donation, but here in Texas, I give blood frequently and can donate no matter when I have gotten my tat, because tattoo shops here are regulated. I just have to show the receipt from the shop.

      Per the Red Cross:

      Wait 12 months after a tattoo if the tattoo was applied in a state that does not regulate tattoo facilities. Currently, the only states that DO NOT regulate tattoo facilities are: District of Columbia, Georgia, Idaho, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Hampshire, New York, Pennsylvania, Utah and Wyoming. This requirement is related to concerns about hepatitis. Learn more about hepatitis and blood donation.

      A tattoo is acceptable if the tattoo was applied by a state-regulated entity using sterile needles and ink that is not reused. Cosmetic tattoos applied in a licensed establishment in a regulated state using sterile needles and ink that is not reused is acceptable. You should discuss your particular situation with the health historian at the time of donation.

    • Engelta profile image
      Author

      Enchi 12 months ago from Albania

      Thank you for the information!

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