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  • Writer's picturePaper Plane Ink

Tattoo Etiquette - What are the do's and don'ts of tattoos?

About tattooing

Getting a tattoo design from any tattoo shop may not seem like a big deal but it's good to know some information to minimize errors and correct negative assumptions. No matter if it's your first tattoo or your fifteenth, by following proper tattoo etiquettes, you can rest assure to have a much more pleasant tattoo experience. This article contains SEVEN tattoo etiquettes to help make your next tattoo session experience as comfortable as possible. Do share additional pointers in the comment section for everyone to take note of as well!

Let's begin.

1. Be Prepared

Before getting a tattoo do your research and be clear about both your tattoo design and tattoo style before searching for an artist as more often than not, tattoo artists have their own preferred and distinctive style. When you're ready and with a concrete tattoo idea in mind, search and narrow down on a tattoo studio or tattoo artist you would like to get your tattoo from. Next, reach out to your tattoo artist or tattoo studio and be extremely clear and concise with your objective, and schedule your appointment. You may use the following as your reference when communicating with your tattoo artist:

- Tattoo Idea

- Tattoo Style

- Tattoo in Colour or in Black and Grey

- Tattoo Placement

- Tattoo Size

- Provide References

2. Do Not Bargain

Good tattoos aren't cheap and cheap tattoos aren't good. To receive a tattoo artwork and masterpiece from your desired tattoo artist, you’re looking at an average range of SGD$150 to SGD$250 per hour depending upon the size and complexity of the tattoo design. You may highlight your financial constraints and work something out with your tattoo artist but you're strongly encouraged not to bargain with your tattoo artist.

While there is no arguing the value of a work of art that you will wear on your body for a lifetime, you do need to budget for it, which may require some cost-cutting in other areas of your life and it will be worthwhile.

In addition, tattoo artists do not receive a salary on their off days, neither do they receive bonuses nor medical benefits. With all things considered, your investment starts from the designing process to pre-session preparations and actual tattooing session, and finally the post-session and aftercare guidance.

Good tattoos are definitely not cheap and they are an investment worth making. If you're not financially ready, getting a tattoo is definitely not a priority and you should probably reconsider or shelve this idea for the time being.

3. Show Up Clean

Personal hygiene helps you to stay clean, giving you a boost in confidence and positively impacting your personal relationship with your tattoo artist and the tattoo studio, as well as reduce the risk of any negative outcomes of your tattoo that stem from bad hygiene. It’s recommended that you take a shower or wash the desired tattoo area of the skin before going in for a tattoo session.

4. Go Aone

Avoid inviting your entourage unless they plan to get inked as well.

You're encouraged to consult with your tattoo artist if you're planning to ask a friend along to your tattoo session as most artist prefers to work without any distractions.

5. Don't Fidget

Tattooing requires a lot of concentration and it doesn't help you're moving or distracting your tattoo artist. Tattoo artists have to be in uncomfortable positions for hours trying to create permanent masterpieces and it can be exhausting if you're not doing your part to remain still during your tattoo session.

Bring a book to read or keep yourself occupied with Netflix, Disney+, Sportify or take a nap if you're able to do so. If you're vibing well with your tattoo artist, then chat along with them but if they are quiet then you'll need to remain silent too.

6. Keep Your Schedule Clear

Know that the tattooing process is not a quick one and the last thing you'd want is to rush your tattoo artist.

7. Don't Be Late

You're either early or you're late. It's a good practice and courteous to update your tattoo artist if you're going to be late in advance but do not make it a habit, and above all, don't pull a no-show.

Don't forget to show your gratitude.

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