Art is a beautiful thing, especially when skin is its canvas. Tattoos use vivid imagery, vibrant colors, meticulous shading and a unique style to tell a story, identify ethos and just look really cool. But then there are some that don’t, and equally some that lose significance.
Here are 10 reasons for those regrettable decisions.
An ex-lover’s name
To cite the old cliché, time heals all wounds when living a broken heart. But it may require a little more action if an ex’s name is spelled out on your knuckles or left cheek.
Applying makeup for a night out can seem like it takes three years. So, a simple solution is to knock out the eyeliner, lip-liner and brows forever with ink, right? Say goodbye to any chance of rocking a “natural” look.
Seriously, companies brand the masses enough. Do you really want to pay for a company’s free advertising?
Wedding bands are a cool, cheap and nontraditional way to express the institution of marriage. They are customizable and the size of the rock can be any size. But if someone slips up and something once beautiful ends in a divorce … well, you get the idea.
This one is self-explanatory and automatically makes someone the receiving end of a roast among friends.
Usually stick-and-poke tattoos are unmitigated decisions made on a whim while sitting around a bonfire after three too many drinks. They are the epitome of incompetence, the ink is sketchy and they’re likely to get infected. Do you really want Bart Simpson in brail on your arm forever?
Prison is temporary. Prison tats are not. Also, what if the dude giving you a tattoo didn’t double-check that bible verse? This is just a train wreck waiting to happen.
Professionalism should be taken seriously. If your buddy who just bought a tattoo machine on the internet is giving everyone on the block a “sick tat,” no one will take you seriously. There’s a process to honor when deciding to become a tattoo artist and it certainly doesn’t happen overnight. Do yourself a favor and don’t get an amateur rendition of your daughter’s face on your body, unless you purposefully want them to look like Nigel Thornberry.
Too many Friday the 13th tattoos
When tattoos are unusually cheap, it can be hard to say no. But when you have 13 Friday the 13th tattoos, it’s time for an intervention.
Nothing is more regrettable than losing a bet … actually there is. It’s called betting real-estate on your skin. Sometimes, if the victor is kind, they’ll let you choose the area to get it on.
Deciding to get a tattoo is like a cannonballing in a pool, buying a round for everyone at the bar or ordering Kobe steak at a restaurant — it’s all or nothing. Or at least it used to be until humans invented and tamed laser power to their aesthetic benefit.
Tattoo Consultant and Creative Director of Laser Skin Solutions Jacksonville Jennifer Sandler said several of the examples listed above are reasons patients want to get tattoos removed with a laser. But getting them removed is just as long a process as getting a tattoo is.
First, it starts with a consultation. This is where Sandler meets with a patient one-on-one to determine how many treatments it will take to remove the tattoo, and if they want a numbing agent to assist with their skin sensitivity.
Next is the actual treatment, which consists of a machine that is essentially a laser gun. Each session can last from 15 to 45 minutes depending on its size, the ink type, color and depth.
“The average tattoo is going to take about five to 10 treatments with the Enlighten, which is a dual wave length,” Sandler said. “With a regular Q-switch, it would take up to 25 treatments. So we’ve been able to cut that in half.”
Sessions are spaced out six to eight weeks at a time, so it can be a lengthy process. The Enlighten laser system operates laser pulses at picoseconds, which is one-trillionth of a second and results in fewer treatments.
Perhaps the most important part of the laser-removal process is post-treatment. Sandler said patients cannot go swimming or exercise for the first 24 to 48 hours after the session. Also, patients must avoid sun exposure because “the laser is attracted to pigment.”
“We’re kind of like a boutique practice, so we like to be more personal with our patients,” Sandler said. “We like to consider them friends and patients at the same time. Not just people who walk in and walk out.”