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What to consider before getting a tattoo

The most painful part of getting a tattoo is the regret

You need to think very carefully before getting inked to ensure you are happy with your tattoo, even years into the future. Here is your guide on what to consider long before stepping through the doors of a tattoo parlour.

Is your tattoo artist reputable?

Scrolling through your local tattoo artist?s Instagram page does not count as sufficient research. It is certainly important to look at their previous work and see if is up to your standards and fits your tastes. It is crucial to expand your research beyond the portfolio, though. That is their very best work- it doesn?t show any horrible tattoos that they may have done. Delving into the artist?s reputation is arguably more important than sighting their past work. You should religiously read reviews, and ask others their opinions. If you have a friend with great tatts, ask for their advice.

Do not go for the cheapest tattoo artist you can find. You will have their design on your skin forever. It is worth paying top dollar for the peace of mind that comes with a good reputation.

Can you handle the pain?

You have no idea what you are in for when getting your first tattoo. Consider your pain threshold when planning out the location and size of a tattoo. Bony areas of the body can be the most painful; ask your tattoo artist to recommend a good location that won?t hurt too much. For a first tattoo, you should pick a small design. It would be awful to have a half-finished tattoo because you can?t handle pain as well as you thought.

What to people think of it?

Your own opinion is the most important when it comes to making changes to your body, but it is also helpful to find out what others think. You may be so happy with the design your tattoo artist sketched, that you have not noticed that it actually looks like a gang symbol. Get opinions on the design from as many people as possible; you never know what people will pick up on.

An easy way to check that you haven?t missed the fact that your tattoo looks weird: put up a Facebook status asking for opinions. Anyone with a strong opinion will come out of the woodwork to tell you NOT to get that tattoo.

Will you love it for life?

Pick a design which will not make you curse your younger self later on. It is hard to know what you will despise many years from now, but there are particular choices which you can rule out. Never get the name of a significant other. In fact, do not get the name of any living person inked on your body- you never know what will happen. Do not get any couples tattoo. Ring tattoos to commemorate a marriage are a terrible decision, as is half of a heart that matches up with your girlfriend?s matching heart tattoo. Try to pick something which is guaranteed to be meaningful for life, such as a symbol from your culture.

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About Natasha Abrahams Natasha Abrahams is a writer and journalism student from Melbourne, Australia. When she is not busy with being a principal writer on Weekendnotes or skipping lectures, she can be found emptying her wallet at the nearest shopping centre. You can read more from Natasha at:

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