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Tattoos and Body Art: Are They Still Fashionable?

Tattoos have been a part of human history and culture for more than six centuries now, and it seems that they’re not going anywhere. Around 36% of people between the ages of 18 and 30 in the US have tattoos. The stigma against tattoos seems to be a thing of the past, as standards and techniques in body art improve.

Tattoos, once upon a time symbols of slavery and punishment, are now accepted expressions of creativity, individualism, or belief. They can also be symbolic of special people or memories. Every tattoo tells a unique story. Does your tattoo—or what you’re thinking of getting—tell a good one? 

Tattoos Over the Years

Over the years, tattoo trends have taken many shapes or forms. Some of the more famous types of tattoos that trended include:

  • Naval souvenirs
  • Tribal markings
  • Symbols of slavery
  • Symbols of patriotism
  • Gangs and prisons
  • Japanese or Chinese characters

Tattoos were regarded with indignation in the past because of their heavy association with “drunken sailors” or ex-convicts. Soon enough, according to a veteran tattooist to the stars Lyle Tuttle, tattoos evolved into a kinder, more subtle art form. He attributes this transformation to the onset of women’s liberation, and more women partook of individualism.

Tuttle has been known to get a tattoo from each place he visited throughout his life. He’s been to seven continents and put tattoos on world-famous rock stars and celebrities all over the world. But now, this 80-something artist, who is a rock star in his own right, shares this advice to the younger generations: “Don’t get a tattoo. Stay unique.”

Tuttle remains negative on tattoos on the face, neck, and hands. He believes a tattoo should be a hard-earned marking from one’s travels, such as men in uniform assigned to service in distant lands. Now, Tuttle says, tattoos have become a fad. “And fads end,” Tuttle adds.

Tattoos: Yay or Nay?

Of course, still many fashion experts believe that tattoos are more than just a fad. In fact, tattoos have just grown in popularity in the world of fashion, especially after Issey Miyake’s avant-garde Autumn/Winter 1971 Tattoo Collection.

Renowned tattoo professionals believe that there is genuinely good reason to get a tattoo, including:

  • A story to tell
  • Self-expression
  • Memories or commemoration=”Yw==” data-rule=”EN_UNPAIRED_BRACKETS”>trong>
  • Heritage

However, the same experts advise against tattoos for specific reasons:

  • Conservative workplaces
  • Possible regret later in life
  • Getting inked while intoxicated
  • Getting a tattoo out of impulse

Tattoos You Should Avoid

While tattoos are now generally accepted in society, certain tattoos can still be regarded poorly or, worse, cause you remorse when you grow older.

Yes, tattoos tell your unique story, but it’s generally safer to avoid getting tattoos like: 

  • Names of past lovers: You’ll never know how a relationship will end. But a past love who passed away is another story, altogether.
  • Hand tattoos: Overt tattoos are still heavily-frowned upon at specific workplaces or industries.
  • “Tramp stamps” and tribal armbands: Tattoos on the lower back have a stigma for being too erotic, hence the colloquial term. Similarly, tribal armbands have become a cliché that’s earned so many derogatory jokes in pop culture. If you are confident enough not to let that kind of stigma or cliché bother you, good for you. But if it will create obstacles for you, it’s best to move on to your next tattoo options.
  • Facial tattoos: Let’s face it (no pun intended), tattoos may sometimes fail. You can do without subjecting your face to that kind of risk. Same with “tramp stamps,” facial tattoos may cause negative impressions of you.
  • Offensive symbols: They refer to historical or cultural symbols that promote hatred or fear.

Tattoo removal service providers have observed a common point among their usual clients:

  • Juvenile impulse tattoos, like a man who had the word “meth” inked onto his head
  • Names of ex-lovers
  • Failed tattoos such as misspellings or botched jobs

If, for any reason, you do find yourself with a permanent body marking that you regret or want re-done or updated, the good news is that you can contact licensed professionals from established clinics like These professionals are experts at tattoo removal, so you can rest assured that the inked area won’t be damaged.

Tattoos have transcended the ancient associations with slavery, punishment, or stigma and are permanent body art that ideally expresses uniqueness, a story, memory, or belief. In the same way that you should make your own mind whether you will get inked, you should not let others dictate what kind of tattoo you will get. Just always remember that it is something you will live with and tell your story. Make it a good one. 

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