How to Prepare to Get a Tattoo

Thursday 26th of February 2009 04:16:06 AM [Add To This Article]

The big day (or night) is finally here. You have tested, pondered and selected your perfect tattoo, and then you found the perfect tattoo shop to get your tattoo design inked. You know that you are going to treasure this tattoo for the rest of your life, and you are eager to get the process underway. However, just because you have decided that this tattoo is for you does not mean it is all over yet. You still have one more responsibility before you hand over the reins – and your tattoo stencil and color guide – to the tattoo artist. You need to be sure that your body is as prepared as possible to get this tattoo so that the experience is as pleasant, painless and convenient as possible.

Of course, the most important part of getting a tattoo is being prepared. You need to know what you want going in so that you can clearly communicate your desires to a tattoo artist and get the perfect tattoo. The best way to accomplish this part of getting a tattoo is to bring in your own stencil that you have already selected to be your tattoo design. A stencil is a temporary pattern that can be transferred to your skin to serve as a guide for your tattoo. Generally, stencils also come with color guides or colored images to further guide the tattoo artist as they create your tattoo. You should also have already decided on a location for your tattoo and discussed this with the tattoo artists. Some tattoo artists will tattoo anywhere, while others have a few areas of the body that they consider too painful or too personal to ink.

When the big day arrives, it pays to take care of yourself. Getting a tattoo involves sitting still for an extended length of time while a process that ranges in effect from mildly irritating to quite painful, depending on the person and the location of the tattoo, is carried out. As a result, you need to be prepared to hold a position and resist wiggling, squirming or flinching as you get your tattoo. The best way to be prepared for this process is to be well rested and well nourished. While you might think that being tired will help you hold still, in reality being tired will make you and your body less tolerant of the sensation of being tattooed and cause you to have less resistance when it comes to fidgeting. Also, make sure that you have eaten before you get a tattoo. Even though most people do not find the tattoo process particularly painful, holding still for that long and the mildly painful sensation of a needle driving ink into your skin can make you lightheaded. The best way to avoid this is to eat a healthy but light meal about thirty minutes before you get tattooed. Avoid heavy and greasy foods that might upset your stomach or give you heartburn so that you can be as comfortable as possible while you are getting tattooed.

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What you drink before getting your tattoo is also very important. You should drink plenty of water so that you are well hydrated, but avoid alcohol and caffeine. Both can make you fidgety, necessitate frequent trips to the bathroom and make the tattooing process more painful. Many tattoo shops will refuse to tattoo you if you have been drinking or are visibly drunk. While this is partly for their own protection, it is mostly for yours, as selecting a tattoo while intoxicated can lead you to make life changing – and body altering – decisions that cannot be reversed. Also, if you have been drinking alcohol before getting tattooed, you will likely bleed much more than you would otherwise. This makes it harder to tattoo you and can create hysteria if you are already drunk. Of course, you should also avoid drugs before tattooing. Many people think that some types of drugs, such as marijuana or pain relievers, will help them relax during the tattooing process. However, in reality they can make the process feel as if it is dragging on by affecting your perception of time, and also can make the process much more painful. As with alcohol, drug use generally causes tattoo artists to call a halt to the tattooing process until a time at which you are sober.

Getting a tattoo is exciting, but most people know understand that it is going to sting a little. Being prepared in every aspect is the best way to make your tattoo experience the best experience possible. By preparing yourself mentally and physically for getting a tattoo, you set yourself up to really enjoy the tattooing experience, and to eagerly anticipate getting your next tattoo.

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