My Criteria for Getting Tattoos (Probably Why I Don’t Have Any)

Tattoos, tattoos. More permanent than most marriages, and gotten with considerably less thought on many occasions. Let’s talk about them, shall we?


I am going to speak candidly, these are my opinions, if I am slamming any one of your decisions, know that I do not judge you as a person, this is simply how I feel about tattoos and not about the people wearing them. I don’t currently have any tattoos, doesn’t mean I won’t ever get one.

I’m not against tattoos, I’m not for tattoos. My stance on this is: I’m very much for long-term thinking and planning. If that leads you to getting a well-crafted tattoo you are proud of and that isn’t horrifying to the general public, great! If that leads you to never getting one, that works too.

Let’s talk about the content of tattoos: If you have a relative who has died and a tattoo is how you want to commemorate them, I understand. Do your thing. Names of living people do not deserve a place on your body unless they are your children. Don’t put your sister’s name on you, your dad, your cousin, your best friend, your ex girlfriend. It’s creepy.

About the girlfriend/boyfriend tattoo: What a horrible idea. Horrible, horrible, horrible. Imagine that you’re dating someone, and you’re in love. Congratulations! You rock! you know what doesn’t rock?? Getting their name tattooed on your body in the heat of the moment, and then 2 years later breaking up, eventually finding your spouse, and having children with someone else. Someday your kids will see the tattoo, and be like, “who is that tattoo about?” And then you have to tell your bright eyed children that you will forever be marked by another human’s name who is not their mom or dad. Your future spouse will have to look at your ex’s name forever. What a cruel, cruel thing to do.

The timing of tattoos is also incredibly important: drunk tattoos, while hilarious memories, are often tragic. Don’t decide to get a tattoo after you’ve slammed back 6 drinks in one hour. (5 drinks is totally fine) ((Just kidding)). If you have already decided to get a tattoo but need a little booze to, idk, numb the pain or whatever, that’s different. Do your thing. Also, sit on your tattoo idea for at least a year before getting it. If you still want it JUST AS BADLY after a year, that’s a good sign. But wait for yourself to enter a new stage of maturity, so that you know that the tattoo will transcend all life changes and be something you’ll want to brag about with your besties at your retirement party.

Where are you getting your tattoo? I’d highly recommend avoiding neck tattoos and face tattoos, but apparently that’s just me!! I also personally would only get mine in hidden places because I’d never want my tattoos to limit where I could get a job or who I could keep in my social network. I would want to keep mine small and elegant, not overtaking my entire body in a distracting way.

Is your tattoo trendy? DON’T GET IT. Trends don’t last. Unless you’re getting one tattoo per new trend as a way to become a collage of eras, don’t do it. The geometric look might be in now, but might look super dated in the future.

ALSO! You might gain/lose weight! It’s a possibility! With age and weight fluctuation, your tattoo can become distorted. How much would that suck? My old teacher used to joke that she wanted to put the flag on her bicep, so that when she got older and her skin got saggy and flappy, she could “wave the flag.” Takes notes, kids.

Alternatives to tattoos:

You want to look at this design everyday? Get a refrigerator magnet of it. Frame it and put it on your wall. Get a temporary tattoo. Make it a sticker and put it on your laptop. Make it the cover of your notebooks. (I thought I had more alternatives than I actually do.) Obsess over it in anyway that pleases you, just don’t make it permanent unless that’s the RIGHT thing for you to do!

Here is some of my tattoo criteria:

  • Wait at least a year after thinking of your tattoo idea
  • Don’t get someone’s name unless they’re dead, or your children.
  • Keep it hidden unless you have a job locked in for the rest of your life, and if your employers don’t mind.
  • Make sure it’s not trendy
  • Don’t make the decision drunk
  • Make sure you get it because it’s deeply meaningful to you and how you identify yourself, because it will represent you for the rest of your life.
  • Don’t get it “just because you wanted one”
  • I’d recommend not getting one with your best friend, because people have falling-outs every time. You don’t want to be permanently linked to someone who becomes your arch-nemesis. That’s just dumb.
  • Pay the full price, at a well-known parlor. You want this to be the highest quality possible.
  • Let it heal properly.

Let me know if I’ve forgotten anything.

So these are most of my thoughts. I enjoy ranting in posts, so this was pretty stream of consciousness. I mean all of it with love, I hope this can help people, if you don’t agree with me, that’s cool! I gotta do what’s best for me, you gotta do what’s best for you. Thank you for making it to the end of this post, tell me your thoughts in the comments!











24 thoughts on “My Criteria for Getting Tattoos (Probably Why I Don’t Have Any)”

  1. Very diplomatic. Very true. I have 4 tattoos. 3 small ( and meaningful) and a tramp stamp (my own business logo). All are hidden and I like it that way. All are over 20 years old. No regrets. You gave really great advice. Personally, when I see a woman with leg, arm or neck tattoos, I shkeeve. I guess its because I think they did it for attention. Just one tattooed woman’s opinion. No judgement, just an opinion.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Your own business logo! Haha so fun. That’s awesome, I hope that no one ever regrets their tattoos but that’s not always how it goes. I think doing things for attention isn’t the best way either. Thanks so much for your comment! Love it! 🙂


  2. I appreciate your candid opinion and thoughts on the subject! I won’t lie, I don’t agree with everything you said but the overall idea that tattoos aren’t small decisions I absolutely agree with! I’m biased entirely though as my own mom is a tattoo artist and owns her own shop. It’s given me the opportunity to appreciate the permanency and the beauty in tattoos. For example, I 100% agree that relationship tattoos and names are a BIG no no idea with children names being the exception. Same with face, neck, and hand tattoos unless a person is already planning on working in a very tattoo friendly career path and never leaving. Fun fact, it is actually illegal in most if not all states in the U.S. (no idea about Europe tattoo regulations) for an artist to do a tattoo on a drunk person and can cost them their license in most states. It’s also extremely dangerous as the thinned blood can increase risk for infection even in the most sterile environment or ink-less scarring as the body is more apt to reject the ink because of the alcohol.
    The only thing I entirely disagree with in your post is trendy tattoos. Depending on your personality, these can be the most rewarding tattoos because they are reminders of specific times of your life. I have a Legend of Zelda and Harry Potter tattoo on my forearm for example. While most people outgrow gaming and the wizarding world, to me they are timeless. A lot of people disagree and that’s totally ok but it is my favorite tattoo. Like you said it is all about personal preference! Your guidelines are good ones I think! 🙂

    Great post and discussion points!! Thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. What a thoughtful comment! I can see that some trendy tattoos can bring you back to certain parts of your life. I was thinking that like if I wanted to get a lotus flower tattoo, for example, I wouldn’t want to make it geometric style just because geometric tattoos are super fashionable right now. I’d want it to be a timeless style. But I love that certain tattoos can represent different periods and memories. I think tattoos should be/are for people who know themselves really well, and can predict what will be meaningful to them for years to come. I unfortunately do not have that gift at this point in my life hahah. Thank you so much for your thoughts, and thanks for reading!! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That makes perfect sense about the trendy styles! I definitely agree it is risky to get a tattoo in a specific style just because it is popular today. I remember a few years ago water color style tattoos were all the rage and a few friends got them only to wish they had put more thought into it later on. Like you said it’s a very big decision! You’ll surely gain that gift in due time! I think it’s more a type of gained wisdom than an inherent gift. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Wise girl! Tattoo is belived to be a passing thing! But – if you’ve got one, it’s most likely for life!
    And it will impose on the way you dress, the way you live your life and most likely the appearance of your person as well as what jobs you will able to get. Stay clear!
    A lifespan is for ever!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Having owned the top studio in my state ( another pair of shoes I’ve worn in life) I agree! I’d also add, research. Research what aseptic technique is and make sure the studio practices it exceptionally and research the artist and their work. Don’t let todays tattoo become tomorrows regret. There are no erasers.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Thats very true and others may be suprised to learn that respectable artists dont want that for their clients either. The client becomes your billboard, your name and reputation are forever linked to it. I turned away 100’s of young clients ( College town) due to content. I was a mom first and practiced responsibility. If they were going to tattoo satan on their forehead, someone else’s studio and artists were going to have to do it. Concerning names, we counseled clients that if they insisted….get them in red or green, pink, or white. These colors fade the most.
        In chosing an artist…..don’t choose a tattooer, anyone can paint by #’s and do it poorly. Choose a real artist that happens to also create in that medium too.
        I see you’ve caught flack but I agree to a great degree on many things. Its just responsible, especially because who we are today will barely resemble who we are 10 years later. And OMGOSH! When uou said ” pay full price!” YES!!!! If you pay a yardsale price, don’t be surprised you got a crappy tattoo! There’s a reason those people are so cheap…they do shite!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. That’s so true! I haven’t thought about it a ton from the artist’s perspective, but the comment about their customers being billboards is such a good point. There have been some disagreements, but that makes total sense, I love when people can have discussions based on their different opinions and experiences! I’ve loved hearing your perspective 🙂


  5. Fabulous post.
    Firstly I admire your stance on being able to speak openly and freely without wishing to stamp on anyone (excuse the pun!).
    Secondly I admire your open-mindedness about tattoos and that your future self may wish to have one. I was 46 when I decided I would finally get mine. I had, in fact, given it years of careful thought; I knew I liked small black arty ones in neat places but could never quite decide on the design. When I went through some mid-life crisis shit, followed by a year’s worth of counselling and made a couple of new friends, both of whom told me I was a star in my own life and I would always shine if I allowed my thoughts to be free, rather than trying to fit in with everyone’s else’s expectation of myself … that’s when I knew what the tattoo was going to be. A small 5-pointed star outline on the inside of my right wrist. I adored it from the second the artist made the first mark and I still adore it today.
    Thirdly, your blog is so beautiful; the photos are stunning. So pleased to have found you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for such a thoughtful comment! I am a strong advocate for open discussion, as long as all parties are respectful. I love that you thought about it so carefully and that now you have one that is meaningful that you absolutely love. And I’m glad you like my pictures! I had the privilege of visiting some photogenic places this past year 🙂 Thanks for reading! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

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