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Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Got Ink?

I do know.  And this is about my experience with getting a tattoo, something I’ve wanted to do about fifty years now.  This was on my bucket list with a few other things that I’m not sure I’ll get to, but we’ll see as time goes on.

Now, getting a tattoo isn’t an awful experience for those of you who think it might be.  This wasn’t ever a fear for me, although I’m not that fond of needles.  My issue was obtaining approval, which wouldn’t have been needed if I’d done this year’s ago.  None of that is important now.

The finished tattoo.  I love it!

My new tattoo was my birthday present this year.  I’d do it again in a heartbeat.  It was painless and the guy I used is such an artist.  Much research went into the best place to go in town though.  I would recommend this place highly.

When hubby gave me the gift certificate I couldn’t believe my eyes!  I was ready to get out of the house and do it that day.  Perhaps I thought this opportunity would vanish if I didn’t act as soon as possible.  So I did go to the place and introduce myself and told them what I wanted.  They set the appointment for the next day.  I was so excited.

My neighbor went with me because she wanted to see it done and didn’t have anything else to do that day.  I had to lie on a massage type table on my stomach after the guy showed me the design he’d drawn up and we decided on colors.  He uses the color wheel so everything matches in complimentary hues.  Then of course placement as to where on my shoulder I wanted it was discussed.  My neighbor gave her input too, which I was thankful for.  After all, this was so important to me and was finally happening after all these years.

But I’m getting ahead of myself.  First (after my approval) they make a copy of the design on paper that actually transfers the artwork to your skin.  The paper is then peeled off and the image is there, as if it’s drawn on paper.  I guess this is similar to putting decals on a T-shirt.

 This is the decal the artist will follow
The tattoo artist then took fresh needles out and poured all the ink colors into tiny cups.  He washed his hands several times during the procedure and then gloved up again.  This is a very sanitary place, but they have to pass a health inspection, he told me.
The tattoo artist filling up the ink cups

 These are the cups ready to go
 Another shot of the ink with the needles above the tiny cups

Now this whole procedure took three hours to do from start to finish.  I almost fell asleep on the table, no kidding.  It felt like he was drawing on my skin as he inked in the design.  It took a long time to do the black.  The color was done with four-needles-in-one.  That part just felt like scratching as if you had an itch and you scratched it.  None of it hurt.  These needles are very tiny.

 Ben working on my tattoo
The worst part of the whole thing was getting a crick in my neck from lying there in one spot for three hours.  I also got a cramp in my leg so moved it around a bit and that went away.

 Drawing the outline came first
When the artwork was finished, I could get up and stretch.  He wrapped my shoulder in saran wrap and told me to leave that on for four or five hours.  I ended up leaving it on eight hours before I took it off and washed and doctored it.

Wrapped in saran wrap

A lot of black ink washes off on the first washing.  That’s the excess ink along with plasma that comes to the surface.  He said that was normal and it would take two-four weeks to completely heal.

As I’m writing this, I’m at the end of week two and it’s still peeling because a tattoo is similar to sunburn.  By the time you read this I’ll be at the end of week three.

Anyway, so much for my tattoo story.  I love it and have had it three weeks now and am following instructions that Ben gave me.  I have to wash it four times a day with anti-bacterial soap, air dry and then apply a thin layer of aquafor for four weeks.  Black ink did get on my pillow case the first week because of the aquafor and probably more excess plasma, but it washed right out and it’s not doing that anymore.  It’s more in the itchy stage now. 

If anyone out there decides to get a tattoo, don’t scratch it so you won’t ruin it and do your homework so you go to a reputable place.

Now I have to tell you a funny story because my neighbor laughed all the way home about this.  A young kid came in while I was there (you have to be eighteen to enter the place) so we think possibly he just had his birthday.  He said he lived with his parents and told them he went to the gym but actually came there for his first tattoo.  He decided on a pair of cowboy boots with a snake twined around them.  Of course this kid thought he was so macho but he kept saying “Please can we take a break.  I need a soda.  This is really painful.”  And I was on the next table in the next cubicle, saying “Wow, this doesn’t hurt a bit.  I could fall asleep.”


  1. Looks really pretty! Very nice design and I like all the coloring on it :) Glad you had it done! I wanted a small tattoo at times in a place like a shoulder or by my ankle but hubby doesn't like tattoos so I decided to honor his thoughts about it and not get one done. If he passes before me and I'm still "young" enough, then I might consider it then :)


    1. Betty,

      That's exactly what I thought I'd have to do because hubby doesn't like them either but finally relented after forty years. I thought I might be the oldest lady in the tattoo parlor later.


  2. I used to want a tattoo on my wrist, years ago, but never did. However, my younger daughter has several, which we wouldn't let her get til after she was 18. It's body art to the new generation, not so much a rite of passage for guys as it used to be for the male sector. It looks very nice on your shoulder, as if it alighted there for a moment.

    1. DG,

      I love it and have wanted this butterfly since I was a teenager. The guy did an amazing job with the shadow.

      Thanks you. Sunni

  3. That is the cutest! It pretty much is painless. I was surprised by that when I got a dragonfly tattooed on my arm. :)

    1. Chrys,

      It's way more painless than I thought. I can see why people have them all over.

      Thanks for reading.


  4. Glad you found a place that takes sterility seriously. I've heard some places aren't regulated, so they reuse needles and such. But it sounds like that place didn't.

    Nice butterfly.

    1. Liz,

      They have a health certification on the wall and are inspected all the time, the guy told me. The place has a very good reputation.


  5. Wow! Beautiful tattoo. The artist really did a great job. It looks 3D! I'm glad you checked that off your 'Bucket List'. Congrats!

    1. Vashti,

      The artist did an amazing job! I just love it! 3'D is what I wanted. I've recommended him to several people since, so if they all follow up he should be real busy.

      I'd love to get another one, but will mull that over a while. This butterfly was on my bucket list and not several tattoos. LOL

      Thanks for reading and leaving a comment.



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