The procedure of getting a tattoo is defined by our state health department as “any method of placing indelible ink or other pigments into or under the skin or mucosa with needles or any other instruments used to puncture the skin, resulting in permanent coloration of the skin or mucosa”. Now of course this is just a fancy legal way of saying we break the surface of skin with needles forcing ink under it. YES you will feel it.
The real question should be is. How “bad” does it hurt?
The answer to this varies from person to person. No one is going to be able to accurately describe to you how bad it will hurt “you”. I’ve heard many descriptions trying to accurately describe the sensation and the only one that is accurate is it feels just like being tattooed. I’ve always said there is nothing that you can do to yourself that compares to it, yes it hurts, but it is a very tolerable sensation. Certain areas of the body may be more intolerable (i.e. like boney areas, tendons, or softer skin like the back of the arm) and even certain needle setups can sting a little more. All in all it’s not bad and even people who say they don’t handle pain well do just fine with getting a tattoo. Do not compare it to getting a shot. Those types of needles go deep into our bodies and are usually extremely large so fluid can be injected through them. Nothing like a tattoo needle that is similar to a stick pin found in at a seamstress shop.
The nice thing is our bodies have a natural defense against pain sensation, this is a chemical called endorphins. The funny thing is tattooing is such minor trauma to the body that it only trickles out these endorphins to deaden the nerve endings. It usually takes 5-10 minutes for your body to react enough to make a difference. Now it doesn’t completely go numb but it will take a step down and get a bit easier over time.
The best thing to do is try and come in as relaxed as you can be. Some people are afraid if they eat before coming in that this will cause them to vomit. It's actually the opposite, having something in your stomach will help settle the acids down that can cause you to get queasy. I think one of the biggest things you can do to help yourself is NOT to listen to people who say it's so painful or you're not going to be able to handle it. No one can tell you how it will feel on your body. You are volunteering to get this procedure done and once committed to it, the only thing that will help is for you to relax and accept it. Do not try and come in after drinking or getting high, this can actually slow down your production of endorphins and a lot of times actually make it hurt worse. Not to mention is illegal to be tattooed drunk or high.
As of July 2010 it is illegal to tattoo anyone under the age of 18. Yes even with your parent's permission. But shops that perform piercings can still pierce minors with parents consent. They usually require the parent to be present. Both the parent and minor must have a state or federal ID with matching last names and address. If there is different last names then some type of paper work to show the why they are different such as birth certificate, marriage license, or divorce papers
The first few weeks after a tattoo are especially important to how your tattoo will look when fully healed. You gone through the pain and probably shelled out some good money for it, so take the time to care for it correctly in this time frame.
One thing is not to soak it underwater like in a lake, river, pools or oceans. This can saturate the scabs which can they make them fall off prematurely pulling color out. Getting wet in the shower is ok and important to keeping it clean.
The other thing is no sun or tanning beds during the healing process. This includes no sun block as well. Sun block has large amounts of chemicals in it and can actually cause a chemical burn to your tattoo. Many people that insist on using tanning beds during the healing process can risk the chance of nasty infections from germs and bacteria found in some tanning rooms even stand up units. Spray tans again have chemicals and cause a chemical burn like sun block.
Sunburn should not be tattooed and getting sunburned after a tattoo WILL destroy everything you just went through to get your tattoo and in most cases void and guarantee that our shop or other shops may give you. We can tell when tattoos have been sunburned.
Every artist has their opinion on what will work the best on care, but most experienced artist will be similar in care. Washing your tattoo with soap and water 2 times a day or after performing duties where you may get dirty or sweaty. Then applying some type of moisturizer, preferably an unscented lotion like Lubriderm or Curel. In my opinion Aquaphor is the best, and I see tattoos heal faster and stay brighter then the use others I don’t recommend Neosporin or antibiotic creams unless I have diagnosed your tattoo as being infected, and care should be taken using such products that you don’t have an allergy to antibiotics. Creams or ointments with aloe or vitamin E in them should be avoided, along with straight Vaseline. A+D ointment can be used but only in thin coats and it my opinion that most people use this product incorrectly and to thick. This can suffocate a tattoo and prolong healing. Always ask your artist which they prefer so you don’t void your guarantee with them.
Yes. Anytime you break the surface of your skin you risk a chance of infection. That’s why it is so important to follow the aftercare that’s been recommended to you. Most professional studios take many precautions to making sure your procedure was done in a clean aseptic method as not to introduce any unwanted germs and bacterium. But you encounter these things in everyday life and your body can fail to fight it off causing what we know as infection.
Signs of infection are usually yellowish to green scabs, don’t mistake color of ink for infection. Tattoos can be irritating to the skin and can cause some redness but it is usually light red to pink but dark red or purple color around it may indicate a problem. Tattoos generally feel like a sun burn while healing but if it gets excessively painful this may be sign. You will get some blood, blood plasma, and even a little ink coming out for the first couple of days, but continual weeping may be another sign that there may be a problem. If you think you see any of these conditions happening see your artist or studio immediately, always try to the artist first before seeing doctors, unless none are available. In most cases doctors will always prescribe an antibiotic whether you need it or not and tell you all kinds of scary things may or may not be true. Doctors may even give bad advice like removing jewelry in case of an infected piercing, which can be one of the worst things to do. I have seen many misdiagnosed infections all in the name of more money in a doctors pocket so be careful when seeing them.
Feet tattoos have several issues that come up and most shops, including FYT charge more, have higher minimums and don’t guarantee them. We try and discourage them as much as possible.
The art work itself can have issues. Tattoo ink once in the skin will spread out a little over time but feet/hands/neck tattoos tend to spread 2-3 times more than other parts of the body. This problem can cause your tattoo to blur out over time and even lose a lot its fine detail. To add to the art problem some of these areas usually have size limitations
Healing can be difficult due to having to wear socks and shoes which can suffocate your tattoo and prolong healing. Flip flops are the best thing to wear during healing, but even those can scrape off scabs prematurely. You have to make sure to keep it moisturized but not gooey.
If you get through the healing of your tattoo with no problems there are still issues that can come up. In most cases feet tattoos will actually get a wear mark through it, just from wearing shoes. These wear marks can destroy a tattoo removing bits and pieces through out the design unevenly. These can be touched up but the more times you get into it and touch these up the more they blur together and spread. This whole process can snow ball eventually turning your tattoo into a big blob of nothingness.
Yes but it doesnt work very good for us. Although technology now days is allowing us to find our images on our cel phones. When you bring it to the shop please print it out first. You need to think of how difficult it would be for us to draw your image from a phone when it shuts off every 10 seconds or the fact that it may have lots of detail and to get the detail in it we would need it in a larger image to start with. FYT2 does offer to find your image and/or print your image for a fee of $2 but stores like walmart and walgreens can also print it for you.