Getting Inked: Your Guide to Your First Tattoo

What do you need to know before getting your first tattoo? Photo by Mariano Nocetti on Unsplash

Getting your first tattoo is exciting yet intimidating. The latter sometimes overtakes the former, but it’s fairly easy to overcome. It all boils down to preparation. As a major decision with permanent outcomes, doing your due diligence is only right.

Let Modern Filipina help you keep your cool as you prepare for your first tattoo.

Choose a design that’s right for you

At the end of the day, you’re the one that has to live with it. So, make sure you love your design.
Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

Tattoo artists have been honing their craft to execute designs that were unheard of in the past. These days, you can choose anything from watercolor to glow in the dark. But all these choices can be intimidating, especially if it’s for your first ink.

Getting a tattoo that you won’t regret means choosing a design that is right for you.

Your first tattoo doesn’t have to have a deep meaning behind it. What’s important is that you like the design and you are happy with it. As a form of self-expression, your tattoo should serve your personal interests. Otherwise, you might end up regretting it down the line.

Find a shop you can trust

You should be as picky with your tattoo shop as you are with your clothes.
Photo by Allef Vinicius on Unsplash

Tattoos, right after application, are open wounds. As such, you should only get them from shops that have been certified by the Department of Health (DOH). This way, you can be sure that you are getting your tattoo from a safe and hygienic shop.

If you’re still unsure of their status, there are some things you can look out for:

  • The tattoo artists are wearing sterile gloves
  • The artists take great care in sanitizing their chair or bed
  • The shop’s tattooing equipment is wrapped in plastic
  • Their needles and tubes are new and come sealed. Used ones are disposed of properly.

These factors are present in all professional tattoo shops. When one of them is missing, use it as a sign that the shop might not be the safest.

Prepare yourself for the pain

Pay attention to your tattoo care as much as your regular skincare routine.
Photo by Gabriel Nunes on Unsplash

Your first tattoo will most likely hurt.

Although it varies from person to person, it can still sting. Generally, any body part that has thin skin will be the most painful. This is because there is little flesh to absorb the impact of the tattoo gun. If you want to avoid as much pain as possible for your first tattoo, consider getting it done on your arms or legs.

Take good care of your tattoo

Take care of your tattoo to keep it looking new and fresh.
Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Aftercare plays an important role in how well your tattoo turns out.

Your tattoo artist will give you a slip of paper with instructions on how to care for your new ink. Although these are often specific to the artist, here are some general rules to follow:

  • Wash your hands before touching your new tattoo and the skin surrounding it
  • After taking off the bandage, gently wash the area with antibacterial soap and rinse off with lukewarm water. Let it air dry instead of using a towel or tissue paper.
  • Regularly apply moisturizing cream on the tattoo. Ask your tattoo artist if they have a specific brand in mind.
  • NEVER SCRATCH YOUR TATTOO. It’s normal for scabs to form, but you have to resist scratching and picking at it.

Every person has the right to self-expression, whether it’s through their clothes or the ink on their skin. What’s important is that you’re happy with the results.

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