tattoo myths

Does dark skin make a difference with tattoos?

There is plenty of advice out there for getting a tattoo if you're white, there’s not much out there for those with darker skin.

People from African, Indian and Pacifica backgrounds are often forgotten about when it comes to basic information and advice, that's why we’ve put together this short article to explain a couple of things about getting ink when you’ve a higher melanin content.

Talk to your artist first

Good advice for anyone getting a tattoo, regardless of skin colour. Talking to your tattoo artist before going under the needle is always a good idea.

By booking a consultation, you can get a better feeling of what’s possible and understand the limitations involved.

If you have darker skin, your initial idea might not be plausible, or won’t come out as you’re expecting. Talk to your tattoo artist first, they are the ones with the experience and know what they're doing. Let them help you make the right choice.

Avoid lighter colours

Despite what bullshit you may read on the internet, there are NO special inks for dark skin. Tattoo ink isn’t made for skin types, but the quality of the ink can vary widely.

Tattoo ink is generally translucent, so the skin underneath will show through. This means, the darker your skin, then less lighter-colours will show.

Black or grey ink usually works best on darker skin, evidenced by this cool MF.

Genetics can affect scar tissue

If you're of African ancestry, your skin may be prone to keloids, which is an overgrowth of scar tissue.

Knowing whether or not you are prone to keloids can help before getting a tattoo, as your artist may need to use different techniques to limit the scar tissue, including reducing power to the tattoo gun, and not going over the same area twice.

Call us today at Sunset Tattoo, and we can help you with your first tattoo.

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Tattoo Myths Busted (Part two)

Following on from last week’s article about tattoo myths, here’s part two. How many of these do you believe?

Myth: You can’t donate blood after getting a tattoo

You can absolutely donate blood after getting a tattoo, but there is of course a waiting period. It differs from country to country, but here in New Zealand, you can give blood six months after getting a tattoo. We recommend donating- you can save someone’s life, and maybe someday someone will save yours.

Myth: Anyone who can draw can tattoo

This one always gets us. Remember that one kid in class who was amazing at drawing, but pretty dumb at everything else? He could draw Eddie from Iron Maiden and it looked AWESOME, so one day his friend decides he wants a tattoo. “I’ll do it for free!” Bad idea. Just because someone can draw, doesn’t mean they can tattoo. Without the proper training, equipment, health & safety knowledge or technical ability, all you’re going to end up with is a mess that will need to be covered up by a professional anyway. Don’t even think about it.

Myth: Black ink tattoos will turn blue over time

While this may have been true 50 years ago, the advancements in tattooing ink have made sure it doesn’t happen today. That old, faded blue tattoo your uncle has isn’t a true representation of tattoos in the modern world. With the latest tattoo supplies, your new ink will look awesome for years to come!

Myth: You should take a painkiller before getting a tattoo

This sounds like a good idea, but it’s not. A lot of painkillers have anticoagulant properties, which will thin your blood and make it difficult to clot. This in turn means you’ll bleed more, and that brings its own problems, such as a higher risk of infection. Popping a couple of aspirin before going to get your tattoo may seem like the sensible thing to do, but please don’t.

 

 

Tattoo Myths Busted (Part one)

For those who would never dream of getting one, a tattoo can seem like something dangerous, rebellious or even crazy. Of course, if these people would simply sit and talk with anyone who has a tattoo, they would soon realise they are just normal, everyday people.

Unfortunately, there are a lot of myths about tattoos. Some of these myths go back hundreds of years, but others appear along with new technology or cultural watersheds. In this article, we bust a few of the most common tattoo myths.

Myth: Only gang members have tattoos

Oh please, do we even have to debunk this one? Especially here in New Zealand? We have perhaps the most tattoos per capita in the world, and obviously not everyone is a gang member! And yes, it’s true gang members are notorious for their tattoos, but that doesn’t mean everyone with a tattoo is in a gang. That’s like saying both Hitler and Stalin had moustaches, so everyone with a moustache is an evil dictator!

Myth: Tattoos only hurt if you’re a wimp

Ask any 'tough guy' if his tattoos hurt, and you’ll probably get a “Of course not!” in response. Maybe even a “I fell asleep during mine!”. Here’s the thing- pain is subjective. What hurts one person may not hurt another. People have different sensitivity, especially when it comes to skin. And of course, WHERE you get a tattoo is also a huge factor in how painful it will be. It’s true some people feel nothing, but it’s also true others scream the studio down. You just don’t know which one you’ll be until you go!

Myth: Getting a tattoo can be a health risk

Ok, let’s be clear here; anything can be dangerous if not done correctly. Tattoos are no exception, but as for the myth that you’re risking catching Hepatitis or HIV, well the statistics don’t agree. Licensed tattoo studios must undergo strict health and safety checks by the council, and for this reason, there has NEVER been a single documented case of HIV transmission from a tattoo in New Zealand.

 

So how many of these myths about tattoos did you believe? Check back next week for part two of our bullshit-o-meter!

3 incredible facts about tattoos

Tattoos are as old as time, and if we're not covered ourselves in them, we all know someone who has one. Here's three amazing facts about tattoos you can whip out at the next party to impress someone.

Tattoos and the law

You’d think that because it’s your body, you can do what you want with it, right? Guess again. Tattoos have a long and complicated history with the Law, all over the globe. Tattoos in Japan were illegal during parts of the 19th and 20th Centuries, and even today are banned from many public sectors, such as bath houses or Government jobs. And it’s not just a history lesson. New York City banned tattoos between 1961 and 1997, due to health concerns. Even today in turkey, tattoos are banned by law.

Prison tattoos

While tattoos can be a form of expression, rebelliousness, or even just a drunken mistake, some tattoos are a lot more serious. Prison tattoos are fraught with symbolism and meaning. From the Yakuza in Japan, to White Supremacist groups in the States, tattoos are a way to tell a story, or to tell others who or what you represent. Tattooing in American prisons is strictly forbidden, but of course that doesn’t stop it from happening. The tattooing equipment can be anything from modified ballpoint pens, to guitar strings.

Battle of the sexes

Did you know more women have tattoos than men? A recent survey (admittedly in America), showed that 59% of people tattooed were women, compared to 41% of men. Women may be more adventurous when it comes to getting a tattoo, but they also tend to regret it more than men, with a higher percentage opting for tattoo removal. This is due to the fact that women tend to add more significance to their ink, usually having a deeper meaning for them.

So there you go, three simple, yet incredible facts about tattoos. If you’re interested in getting your first, or fiftieth tattoo, come see us here at Sunset Studios. Call us today to book an appointment, or if you've any questions.

Myths about tattoos - Part 2

Here’s the second part of our “Myths” feature, see how many you thought were true beforehand.

You should take a painkiller before getting a tattoo

This sounds like a good idea, but it’s not. A lot of painkillers have anticoagulant properties, which will thin your blood and make it difficult to clot. This in turn means you’ll bleed more, and that brings its own problems, such as a higher risk of infection. Popping a couple of aspirin before going to get your tattoo may seem like the sensible thing to do, but please don’t. MYTH BUSTED

You can’t donate blood after getting a tattoo

You can absolutely donate blood after getting a tattoo, but there is of course a waiting period. It differs from country to country, but here in New Zealand, you can give blood six months after getting a tattoo. We recommend donating- you can save someone’s life, and maybe someday someone will save yours. MYTH BUSTED

Only gang members have tattoos

Oh please, do we even have to debunk this one? Especially here in New Zealand? We have perhaps the most tattoos per capita in the world, and obviously not everyone is a gang member! And yes, it’s true gang members are notorious for their tattoos, but that doesn’t mean everyone with a tattoo is in a gang. That’s like saying both Hitler and Stalin had moustaches, so everyone with a moustache is an evil dictator! MYTH BUSTED

Black ink tattoos will turn blue over time

While this may have been true 50 years ago, the advancements in tattooing ink have made sure it doesn’t happen today. That old, faded blue tattoo your uncle has isn’t a true representation of tattoos in the modern world. MYTH BUSTED

 

If you’re interested in tattoos or have any questions, please feel free to give Sunset a call. Our friendly staff will only too happy to help.