5 Things to consider before getting a finger tattoo
Finger and hand tattoos are the latest craze to hit the local fashion scene, with loads of trendy young people rushing to their nearest tattoo shops in the hope of getting their digits inked. While finger tattoos may seem “super cool and uber trendy” (is that what the kids are saying these days?), like any other tattoo, it’s really important to give proper thought to what this type of tattoo entails before going under the needle.
We’ve seen an influx of people requesting these types of pieces in the past year alone and find ourselves giving the same advice to every excited young baggy-pants-wearing teen and twenty-something that walks through the door. So, in the interest of saving time (yours and ours) and helping you make an informed decision, here are a few things to keep in mind before getting your hands and fingers inked.
They’re hard to hide
Maybe you’re hoping to one day pursue a career in the corporate world, or perhaps you’d like to become a pre-school teacher responsible for moulding impressionable young minds… whatever, we’re not here to judge. Thing is, you need to understand that having a visible tattoo might affect your chances of landing that job, as stupid and unfair as that is, and that’s something you should consider before getting inked on a body part as difficult to hide as your hands. Unlike arm and shoulder ink, finger tattoos are difficult to cover up, and if you don’t plan on working in an environment as chilled and ink-friendly as ours, you may want to spend some time rethinking that decision.
Because the skin on hands is very thin and sensitive – not to mention constantly coming into contact with water, chemicals and abrasive materials – hand and finger tattoos tend to fade quickly. Similarly, tattoos that are exposed to direct sunlight will fade twice as fast as any other tattoo – and, because people are less likely to regularly apply sunblock to their hands throughout the day, finger tattoos fade the fastest. Because of this, we generally advise True Blue clients not to opt for these types of tattoos, no matter how cute they look in the pictures on Pinterest.
They hurt… a lot.
All tattoos hurt, but some hurt more than others. This generally comes down to the thickness of the skin on the area of the body you’re hoping to get inked – the thinner the skin, the worse the pain. Now, for some people, the pain of getting a tattoo can be quite pleasurable and even ‘addictive’ in many cases as weird as that may sound, which is one of the reasons why so many people can’t seem to get enough of the good ol’ ink stain. But, if you know you have a lower pain threshold than the average kid, maybe it’s a good idea to opt for a tattoo on another, less sensitive part of the body, like the fleshy part of your shoulder or your calf muscle.
Healing is hell
From soaping up in the shower to changing gears in traffic, we use our hands for practically everything. However, tattoos need a good few weeks to heal completely, and all those mundane day-to-day tasks are the reason why finger tattoos take ages to heal and sometimes even become infected. Bear in mind that you’ll need to be extra careful when it comes to new hand and finger tattoos, which means protecting your ink from moisture, chemicals and any irritants as much as possible. On the plus side, that also means you don’t have to do the dishes for at least two weeks…
Your tattoo artist might say no
Be prepared to have your totally awesome finger tattoo idea shot down and your dreams dashed by a tattoo artist who flat out refuses to do yet another god-damn finger tattoo. Yes, in our world, finger tattoos are kind of like the One Direction of the music world – annoyingly trendy and fucking boring to look at. Aside from our general hate and disgust for cutesy finger tattoos, a lot of us (believe it or not) have our clients best interest at heart. We’ve been in the game long enough to know all the points I’ve laid out above, and any artist that believes you’re making a bad tattoo decision will probably tell you as much.
And there you have it – some tough love and True Blue’s two cents on hand and finger tattoos.