Whether you’re getting a full sleeve, a tiny tattoo, or perhaps even visiting the best cosmetic tattooist in your town, there are some unspoken rules of etiquette to follow. Always arrive a little bit early for your appointment, never drink alcohol the day before, and keep the following seven points in mind:
Haggling Has No Place in a Tattoo Studio
Haggling for scarves and trinkets at a marketplace can be fun. However, the general rule in life is that you should never go bargain-hunting when booking services that will affect how you look. Even a bad haircut can leave you devastated, and haircuts grow out eventually. Tattoos are with you for life, so make your decision based on the artist, not their prices. If you can’t afford the artist you want, it’s not the right time for you to get a tattoo.
Consider Starting Small
If you’ve never had a tattoo before, you have no idea whether you have what it takes to sit through a full sleeve or back piece. Large tattoos generally take multiple sessions, with each session lasting hours at a time. So, before you make such a massive commitment, it may be a good idea to get a smaller tattoo to gauge your pain tolerance.
You Can Ask for Breaks
Many people hate to break their tattoo artist’s concentration, so they’ll sit for longer than they can really tolerate. While it is helpful to let your artist go at their ideal pace, it’s no good if you end up passing out or trembling. So, if you need a break, ask for one.
Don’t Expect an Artist to Copy Someone Else’s Work
You can absolutely bring in pictures of tattoos you like as inspiration. However, you should never come in with the expectation that a tattoo artist will copy someone else’s work exactly. Instead, the idea is to communicate what you want as clearly as possible and then have your artist create something unique for you.
Prepare for Your Tattoo
On the day of your tattoo, ensure you’re freshly showered with a good meal in your belly. Drink plenty of water, and avoid taking Aspirin or anything that might thin your blood. If you have to take any medicines like this, please consult your doctor before booking a tattoo appointment, and if you’re given the go-ahead, let your artist know about your medications.
Avoid Tattoo Trends
From barbed wire armbands to butterfly tramp stamps, tattoo trends tend to get tacky after a few years have passed. However, if you and your artist create something truly unique together, it will always be emblematic of that time in your life. Like an old photo with friends, it will never get tacky. Instead, it will only grow more precious with time.
Follow the Aftercare Steps Religiously
It’s easy to get lazy about tattoo aftercare, particularly once the pain and tenderness subside. However, your skin is in an incredibly delicate state after a tattoo, and you’re at risk of infection and poor healing. If you’re feeling lazy, look up pictures of tattoo infections to motivate you to follow your aftercare protocol.
If you’ve ticked all these tasks off your to-do list on the day of your tattoo appointment, you can look forward to having a far easier time. You’ll also keep your tattoo artist happy, which is pretty important when getting permanent or semi-permanent ink!
Image Credits: Kristian Angelo