Regret-ink it?

Body art has become progressively popular over the past years, but as the number of people getting tattoos increase, the ones regretting it do not fall behind.

Nowadays, tattoos are perceived as a form of self-expression. Through body art, one can shape a version of their identity, culture, personal background or religious beliefs. Tattoos grant freedom to their owners when it comes to expressing oneself.

In the past, some cultures used tattoos as a way to mark bravery, personal experience, or for slave-marking. Whereas others, used it to demonstrate wealth and status. However, today the modern reasoning for tattoos have enhanced beauty, individuality, rebelliousness and body makeover. They could also carry a message, for instance, a person could ‘declare’ their love for their partner by getting an ink, and what better promise than marking your skin for life? Well, this is where a lot of people’s regret comes in. No matter the reason or the meaning behind a tattoo, this personal expression cannot be simply erased, at least not cheap or pain-free.

Take a look at Voice of London’s tour into the world of tattoos and hear what a professional tattoo artist has to advise you on the topic:

Camden Town; Tattoo Artist: Robert Makaveli

Every now and then there comes a time when someone will walk out of a tattoo studio and either hate what they’ve just gotten inked or would grow to like it throughout the time. Even some tattoo YouTube vloggers such as Zmashd  , Qcknd, Treacle tatts and Diana Moore have shared their personal experience and advise on tattoo regret. Yes, it’s that common.


Infographic courtesy of Advanced Dermatology

However, tattoos don’t have to be forever and painful removal isn’t the only answer. Nowadays, there are a lot of options and reliable tattoo professionals that could help you in covering up this ‘mistake’ of yours.

1.Cover-up with another ink – Covering up the old tattoo with a new, hopefully, better one, is like giving yourself a second chance. However, this time you have to think it through, do your ‘homework’ on tattoos, their design, the artist and the tattoo-studio you would like to get. Moreover, take into consideration that you may need to undergo a few laser sessions in order for the old tattoo to fade a bit, as Robert Makaveli suggested in the video. If you are afraid from the laser-treatment, keep in mind that the result of a new ink over an old one may result in looking worse and you could end up even more disappointed. Find a reputable artist who will present you with all the options for you to choose the one you prefer. Beware, not all tattoos can be covered the exact way you want to, so prepare yourself to make some compromises. If you choose the cover‑up option, take all things above into consideration and you can end up with the perfect tattoo you wanted from the beginning.

Take a look at some coverups:


2. Laser removal – Permanently removing your tattoo. As with the cover-up, you still need to do a research. Take time to find the right specialist and let them explain the procedure so you can set your expectations from the start. Some tattoos require fewer treatments to fade than others, but the general rule is the simpler the tattoo the easier it is to remove it. After starting the process, there will be determined how much time it will be required for the absolute removal of the ink, but it usually takes up to 8-10 sessions.

The recommended minimum between two sessions is six to eight weeks, but it may take longer in some cases. Another important factor is the location of the tattoo – usually, the ones closer to the heart fade faster because of better circulation. Take into consideration that this is a costly procedure that can have some side effects such as hyper- or hypo-pigmentation of the skin that usually disappears after some time. If laser removal is your choice, choose the right specialist (not the cheapest one!), go prepared and you should have a safe procedure that will most likely leave you with a fresh start.


3. Temporary cover up with make-up – What do you need to cover a tattoo with makeup?

High coverage foundation/concealer
Blending sponge
Stippling brush
Setting spray/powder
Red colour corrector

Check here for professional tattoo coverage guidance from L’Oréal.

So, there you go, you have three completely different solutions to one problem. Choose the one that suits you most and choose wisely, let this one be the last time you’ll have to deal with regretting your tattoo choices. Voice of London’s advice to you is to think before you ink.


Feature Image: Céline PREHER on Unsplash

Words: Debora Kirilova | Subbing: Peony Hirwani

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