Avoiding Tattoo Regret

John Dietrich

One of the most common fears when it comes to tattoos is that, later down the road, the design will lose its appeal. And, luckily for people who do have a change of heart, there’s access to laser tattoo removal. But when you’re planning on getting a tattoo, and you want to make sure that it’s one you’ll love and keep forever, there are several important factors to keep in mind. Read on, and learn the steps to finding a timeless and tasteful tattoo design!

Who Opts for Tattoo Removal

First, we collected some statistics about people with tattoos: it turns out that, in 2015, 23% of people with tattoos reported some degree of regret, and 77% of people with tattoos reported no regret. Of all the people with tattoos, only about 6% of people actually opted to get their tattoo removed–and 69% of these people were college educated women between 24 and 29 years old.

Graph of Tattoo Regret Stats

Reasons Behind Tattoo Regret

We then asked ourselves: why is it that these people are experiencing tattoo regret, to the point of getting their tattoos removed? A 2015 poll by Harris Interactive shows that the most common reason for tattoo regret is that the wearer was too young when they got their tattoo. By this, they mean that they have “outgrown” their tattoo, and it no longer suits their lifestyle. The next most common reasons were that the wearer changed his mind, the person who the tattoo was named after was no longer in the tattoo wearer’s life, the tattoo was poorly executed, and that the tattoo was simply no longer meaningful to the wearer.

How to Get a Tattoo You’ll Always Love

To prevent these issues, we came up with a couple of simple solutions ensuring you get the perfect tattoo:

Design Preview

There are several steps you can take to ensure that you’ll like what the design looks like on your body, before actually taking the plunge. First of all, you can get your design as a digital file (this is something we offer here at Custom Tattoo Design) before you go to the tattoo parlour. Once you have a file of your design, you can use an app like InkHunter to see a preview of the design superimposed onto a photo of your skin. With this app, you can manipulate the placement and size of your design to see how it looks in each configuration.

Benefits of A Custom Tattoo Design

Those who get custom tattoo designs are more likely to keep their tattoo because it retains its meaning over time. When people get a generic tattoo design, they’re more likely to grow tired of it because of the frequency with which they see other people with the same one. In addition, personalized designs have a more intimate tie to the wearer’s unique history and aesthetic sensibilities.

Practical Matters

There are a couple of other practical considerations, such as your work environment or family. Will you need to be able to cover your tattoo for work? Will you be around conservative family members who would take offense to it? These are all important factors to consider, and these matters will inevitably impact how you view your tattoo years down the road.

Things to Consider

  1. Good artists work for good tattoo shops , so finding a great shop can cut your search in time in half
  2. Social media is a great place to see if an artist is well liked and reviewed. A quick glance at an artist’s page and you will see if they’re frequently followed.
  3. A good artist is always booking well in advance; if a tattoo artist says they can do it now, it means they don’t have clients because they’re not busy.  Not busy typically means poor quality.
  4. Most artists specialize in a specific style, be sure that your end vision is in line with that artists best skills.  (Artists who love what they’re tattooing will do a better job)
  5. If the potential artists does not have a portfolio it probably means you’re one of their first clients.
  6. Clean tattoo shops mean good tattoo shops.  The number one thing you will know instantly when you’re in a good tattoo shop is how clean it is. Like any business first impressions should help you in your decisions.
  7. Unless you’re at an amazing tattoo shop, never let an artist freehand a tattoo without a stencil or showing you a solid piece of artwork. This just shows laziness and a lack of care for your tattoo.
Now, for the list of the most commonly removed tattoos:

  1. Fairies
  2. Zodiac Signs
  3. Celtic Designs
  4. Chinese Characters
  5. Butterflies
  6. Stars
  7. Barbed Wire
  8. Misspelled words
  9. Dolphins
  10. Name Tattoos
  11. Face Tattoos
  12. Hand Tattoos
  13. Tribal Pattern Tattoos
  14. Foreign Symbols or Words

Despite your credo of “no ragrets,” designs can still lose their meaning and tattoos can become less enticing as you mature. If you take the time to plan your design, and you don’t get your tattoo in the heat of a fleeting youthful phase, there are good chances that you’ll look fondly at your tattoo years down the road. If you know of any remarkable tattoo regret stories, let us know about them in the comment section below!