Original picture on www.shopdixi.com/
Alas, you’re probably reading this with an eye roll, tapping your tattooed fingers on the table wondering when you’re going to hear the end of this debate. Answer: never. Because equal chances are that you’ve seen some really, really cute pictures of perfect finger tattoos on Pinterest or Instagram and are looking to get one yourself (see header). Whether it’s your first tattoo and you just like the look or you’re working on a full body suit, the do’s and don’ts of finger tattoos are always a good topic.
The truth of the matter is that finger tattoos are a gamble, at best. Take a moment to think about your hands. How much you touch with your hands each day, how little muscle and/or fat you have on each finger, how much work they endure in an afternoon. Though tattoos are permanent, your hands don’t have the thick layer of skin needed to hold the ink in, resulting in a tattoo that “falls out”- i.e. a fresh tattoo that can look sloppy, unfinished, or look years older than it is. Another common downfall of a finger tattoo is a tattoo that is “blown out”, or where the ink doesn’t hold in the spot and expands under the skin, turning your nice clean line into an ink blot.
This does NOT mean you shouldn’t get what you want. Many people decide on this tattoo and love the result. We tell you this because with the rise of social media and with celebrities popularizing the finger tattoo trend, many aren’t aware of the risks that come with this sort of tattoo. You should always go with what you want, it’s your body, just don’t be surprised if you come across an artist or shop that don’t do this or try and talk you out of it. As much as it’s your piece it is also the artist’s reputation, and no one wants you leaving the shop with a bad tattoo!
Original pictures unknown
Info Graphic created by BARBERDTS.CO.UK
Last week we talked about the all important, yet often neglected, pre-tattoo care. This week we’ll be addressing its twin, the after process.
We appreciate that every artist has different suggestions for aftercare. And that’s to be expected! Each artist has a technique comfortable for them, and every body is different and thus has different needs. That being said there are a few well known moves that will greatly help you in your healing process:
- Keep the dressing on your tattoo given to you by the tattooist for at least 2 hours Your tattoo is, frankly, an open wound when finished. Like any cuts you want to put a bandage on it at first to protect it until you get home.
- Remove the dressing and wash down the area with warm soapy water. Do NOT scrub or soak the tattoo & pat the tattoo dry with a towel and leave uncovered The reason you don’t keep your fresh piece covered for very long is because you want it to scab as soon as possible. The scab helps lock in the color, so any damage to the scabbing will affect how well the tattoo looks when it’s healed.
- *Apply a lotion to the tattoo up to 3 times a day & wear loose clothing to avoid irritating the tattoo So here is where we start to verge from our helpful info graphic. Here at Witch City Ink we recommend a light, scent free lotion (our artists are also big fans of Hustle Butter) whenever your tattoo is feeling tight. For those with sensitive skin, a small amount of A&D can also be helpful. But extended use of either product will affect the scab forming and thus potentially harm your tattoo. If you are using A&D you should only use it for a couple of days, and for lotion you should use sparingly for as long as needed.
- DO NOT PICK OR SCRATCH at the scab of your tattoo. This will make the healing process longer, disfigure the tattoo, remove the ink and even cause infection. Seriously, just google what an infected tattoo or a poorly healed tattoo looks like when you feel the urge to itch and you will stop itching real quick.
- Avoid swimming and being in the sun during the healing process At the end of the day the healing process is all about taking care of the delicate scab that is covering your new tattoo. Keeping a scab submerged in water or baking in the sun will only cause serious harm to the scab and thus to your piece.
- It will take around 7-10 days for your tattoo to heal, sometimes longer depending on where the tattoo is. Personal anecdote to explain this one- when I got a small tattoo on my wrist, it formed a scab within a day and was all healed up within the week. My thigh piece though, which is much larger and has color, took almost a week and a half to heal and was still tender after that. Every body is different.
- After the tattoo has healed continue to keep your tattoo out of direct sunlight. This will prevent it from fading. This last after care instruction is a universal truth! Sunlight is death to tattoos, new or old. All tattoos fade to a degree over time, but give your piece the fighting chance it deserves with sunblock and coverage during those sunny days.
Everyone has questions about how to best take care of their tattoo but few people realize how important the pre-tattoo steps are. We love this graphic from BuzzfeedDIY that illustrates the best steps to take before you even get in the shop.
Eat a Big Meal Beforehand When you get tattooed, your body expends a lot of energy. To keep your calories up and to keep you going to the finish line, it’s good to eat a healthy meal before you sit down for your tattoo.
Drink a Lot of Water Same idea as eating a big meal beforehand. Pretty much treat your tattoo session as the physical challenge it is and do your best to prep your body as best you can.
Avoid Alcohol The Day Before This one probably is self explanatory, but alcohol is a blood thinner and that can cause problems for your tattoo artist. Also, no one wants a sloppy tattoo because you had too much fun before your session and couldn’t sit up in the chair. But after your tattoo? Go for it, friend.
No Painkillers See ‘avoid alcohol’ comments above.
Pack Snacks, Water & Cash for Your Tip Even if you’ve had a feast for breakfast it’s always good to pack fuel for later to keep that energy level going. Think of it as a great excuse to treat yourself! And while many tattoo parlors have card readers these days, it’s good to know that those systems do NOT generally have a tipping option. Artists understand that this isn’t common knowledge, but still- cash is king.
Wear Comfortable, Dark Clothes You know that cute, fitted white tee that is your favorite part of every outfit? Now imagine it with blood on it, agitating your nice, fresh, new tattoo. Not so cute.
Stretch Beforehand Like the graphic says, you’ll be in the same position for at least a couple of hours. Be your body’s friend and it will thank you!
Stay Calm. Listen, tattoos don’t tickle (except for sometimes). But as our artist Jae says, if they hurt that bad then no body would get them. The important thing to remember is to keep breathing and find your center. It’ll be over before you know it and after you’ll have a beautiful piece of art that’s all yours.
Set Aside More Time Than You Think You’ll Need Whether it’s because of parking or because you want to tweak your idea or because the appointment before yours wanted to tweak their idea, tattoo scheduling isn’t an exact science. It’s good to remember that even though we’re trying our best, we aren’t perfect but we want your tattoo to be. We’re trying our best but it’s not something to rush.
Of course each shop and tattoo artist will have different ideas on whats best for you and your tattoo, and at the end of the day you know your body best. But these are all steps we strongly recommend that will help you get through your tattoo session like a champ!
Original Post in Buzzfeed DIY, illustrator unknown
We hope that you will join us December 3rd anytime between 10am – 11pm! For each tattoo that we do, the wearer will be able to choose from the following list of charities:
American Civil Liberties Union
Council on American-Islamic Relations
Human Rights Campaign
National Association for the Advancement of Colored People
NARAL Pro-Choice America
National Immigration Law Center
Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network
Southern Poverty Law Center
For more information on all of these charities, go here
For more information on what wearing a safety pin means, check out this great article.
For more information on the Solidarity Pins Event at Witch City Ink you can check our Facebook or call the shop at 978-366-4924
Witch City is proud to be part of the 1st Annual Massachusetts Tattoo Convention, this Labor Day weekend, September 2nd-5th in Worcester, MA. Both Jaesun Duggan and Steve Gillespie will be tattooing at the convention, call the shop for availability!
If you are not looking to get tattooed, there is still so much to see and do each day of the convention – live painting, performances, contests and more! Just check the schedule for each days line up.
For more information on the Massachusetts Tattoo Convention, check out their website www.masstattooconvention.com
Witch City Ink is excited to be hosting guest artist Amanda Marie from L.A., April 11th – 17th, 2016
Amanda got her start tattooing in New York about 6 years ago. She loves to put her all into every tattoo she does, no matter how big or small. Amanda values making an inviting atmosphere for her clients and loves to create unique, custom tattoos. She currently works at Evermore Tattoo Company, Los Angeles, California.
To book an appointment with Amanda contact her directly.
Natan has been working away on a whole new crop of work lately. Check out the following pieces he has recently finished up:
Cock fight backpiece
Big and bold, this backpiece on the friendly Will Means speaks for itself; an old fashioned cock fight! All black and grey with an attention to line density, repeating patterns and varying textures, this piece was just finished up the other week.
Tribal Battle Axe
Steve Johnson soldiered through this large tribal battle axe piece on his ribs in one long sitting from Natan. Check out the soft black 'n grey shading lending a bit of a sculptural and three dimensional shape to the organic patterns.
In addition to all of the projects Natan has been finishing up lately, he also has a number of multiple-session, larger pieces in the works. Check out some of his progress shots from a handful of his repeat customers below:
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At 85 years old, Colorful Bill is still chipping away at a full-body suit. Sporting a whole lot of work from Natan, Bill has become quite a regular at the shop, swinging by every week or so to hang out, chat, and usually book up some more time. Here's a peek at the latest work he's gotten.
Tribal with skull
A returning client with large sections of bold tribal work from Natan, John stopped by the other day to add in some more stuff. You can never go wrong with skulls, ever.
In progress for only the last month or so, this koi half-sleeve is steadily approaching completion. Utilizing fundamentals of traditional Japanese designs for the foundation of this tattoo, Natan has been having a blast exploring different avenues of color theory and design to customize this piece.
Natan is currently booking out for any medium to large, creative, custom pieces, so give us a call at 978 744 9393 or stop on by the shop and we'll get you a spot on the schedule today!