21 Things To Know Before You Get A Tattoo
1. Start small.
If you're new to tattooing, there's no shame in starting small. Give yourself a chance to learn the process, how your skin takes ink, and how your body heals.
2.Know your pain tolerance.
Nothing wrong with pushing yourself, but on a first tattoo it's more than fine to respect your body's limits. If you're very sensitive, avoid choosing ribs, backs of knees, elbows, or groin areas for your first tattoo.
Sun exposure and water submersion can damage a new tattoo, so beach bums in particular will want to avoid getting a new tat in the summer. Spring and early autumn are the most practical. You won't burn, but you can also leave any arm or leg tattoos exposed rather than covering them up with irritating fabric while they heal.
4.Don't do it on the cheap.
Unless you have several trusted friends who can vouch for a suspiciously cheap tattoo parlour, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. You're altering your body for life. If that's not worth a decent investment, I don't know what is.
5.Research your artist.
Look into who you’re trusting your body with. Choose an artist at least a week in advance, and look over their portfolio before committing. Make sure you’re happy with their work and that their style fits yours. Shots of their work should be available in the parlour and online, and reading reviews of parlours and artists on Facebook, Yelp, etc. will help you determine if you’re comfortable.
No matter how madly in love you are right now, putting your S.O.’s name on your body is a risky choice. Be 100% sure that you can stand behind your choice for the rest of your life. As a tattooist of mine once said, "You want it removed? OK, let me get the saw."
7.Keep your face out of it.
Your cat's face anywhere on your body but your face is totally fine.
8.Know how things are going to work in the shower.
You don't want to keep a scabbing tattoo wet for too long, and if you like scalding water, you'll make it sting. Once you've decided on your placement, have an idea of the most convenient bathing and showering method for the first couple of days. This may include placing cling wrap over the area, or gently washing before keeping it out of the stream for the rest of your rinse.