Your friend is a talented artist. You’ve seen their sketches, and honestly, you wouldn’t mind having some of their work as body art. They just bought a tattoo kit, and now they think that becoming a tattoo artist is their next career move. To get some experience, they ask if they can give you a tattoo as practice.
At first, this seems like an easy choice. Of course! It’s a free tattoo, and you want to support your friend. However, before you go under the needle, you should consider the risks that a nonprofessional tattooist has compared to a professional.
Potential Unsanitary Conditions
Professional tattoo artists pride themselves on making their shops as clean as possible. Equipment is thoroughly sanitized, artists wear gloves, and inks are kept separate. Everything at these professional shops is done to ensure that your session is as healthy as possible.
When getting a tattoo from a nonprofessional, it is impossible to know how sanitary their practice is. An inexperienced, untrained tattooist is unlikely to take proper precautions, and it is hard for someone’s house to be as clean as a real tattoo parlor. When a tattoo artist does not properly sanitize their tools, there is a chance for contamination. This could lead to infection or disease, which could become severe.
Every artist has their medium, but that does not mean that every artist is good at every medium. A sculptor might be a master at their craft, but they might be bad at painting. Your friend might be a great artist in their own right, but you have no idea how their talents will translate to tattooing.
This is one of the biggest risks that comes from an unprofessional tattoo. Tattooing is an art, and just because someone can draw does not mean that they can create good art on the human body. Once a tattoo is there, it’s there for good unless you cover it or undergo the process of having it removed. If you do this, you’ll have to explain to your friend that you wanted to get rid of their work.
When you get a tattoo from a professional tattoo artist, you can feel more confident that they are qualified to permanently ink your body. Most artists have galleries of some of their tattoos either in their shop or online, so you can find the artist that specializes in the sort of tattoo that you want.
Improper Care Afterwards
The end of a tattoo session is a lot like the end of a dental appointment; the tattoo artist will give instructions and products to properly care for your new ink. This helps to ensure that the skin in the area of the tattoo remains healthy and that the tattoo itself looks its best when you recover.
Similar to sanitation during the tattoo session itself, it is unlikely that an amateur tattoo artist will properly dress and care for the fresh tattoo. This could lead to skin irritation or even infection. Even if the unprofessional tattoo artist’s work looked good, a tattoo with poor aftercare will ultimately not look its best.
It Could End Up Costing You
You may think that the benefit of having a friend give you a tattoo is that you’ll save money on your ink, and initially this might be true. For a professional piece, you’ll pay a professional price. A friend with a tattoo kit might do it for free. Sounds like a steal, right?
Well, your amateur tattoo might turn out to be pricier in the long run. As stated above, the art might not look exactly as you planned. If you need to get it covered up or improved, then you’ll pay for a professional anyway. If you want to completely remove the tattoo, that will be even costlier. Even if your tattoo does look to your liking, amateur tattoos may fade quicker due to improper technique, which means once again that you’ll have to consult a professional.
Tattooing is an art form, and when you decide to get a tattoo, you should consider getting it from someone who tattoos for a living. It may seem like a fun idea to have a friend give you a tattoo, but you might not get what you hoped for.
If you would like more information on why it is a bad idea to let a novice artist tattoo you, contact Chirs Alexander by calling (484) 237-8117 or visiting the Iconic Tattoo Company located at 263 Norwood, Downingtown PA.
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