First Tattoo Guide: All You Should Know

Tips to Get Your First Tattoo

According to statistics, three in ten Americans had at least a single tattoo in 2019. The younger population under 30 years old considers this body art particularly attractive. Do you believe now is the right time to get your first tattoo?

If the answer is yes, you want to ensure the process goes smoothly. Preparation is always the key, which is why we prepared important tips for anyone considering this step!

Get Started With a Research

It might seem cool to visit a tattoo parlor and get things done. However, it’s much better to approach getting a tattoo methodically. You want to explore possible options and learn what to expect. Fortunately, it’s much easier to research anything these days because of the internet.

The first thing to consider is what you want to feature on your tattoo. Stylists claim it’s not common that aesthetics are the primary factor behind the desire for this bodywork. Most people want the first tattoo to have a deeper meaning related to their life or personality.

Here are some first tattoo ideas to consider:

  • Dedication to someone you love. It can be a partner, family member, or even a friend. Some people decide to go with simply tattooing that person’s name. Others choose a symbol and a deeper meaning related to that special someone.
  • An important event in your life. Are you starting a new chapter in your life? Did you have a major event you want to reflect on in your tattoo?
  • A personality trait. Do you want to show courage, pride, purity, or any other trait you believe in having? There are various symbols and designs that can help you convey the desired message.

There are many different tattoo styles and symbolism in different cultures. You can use Greek mythology characters but also go with tribal symbols and their hidden meanings. It all comes down to the message you want to send and your preference.

Choose the Style and Color

Choose style and color

It’s now time to learn about different styles and colors to use to present your desired tattoo.

Here is an overview of some styles you should consider:

  • Traditional. This approach focuses on black outlines and a clean design, but a stylist might add colors from the primary palette.
  • Japanese. Traditional Japanese artists use minimum shading and stick to clean lines. This is convenient for animals like tigers but also flowers, which are a common motive in female tattoos.
  • 3D or realistic. The realistic method uses color contrast and shading with the goal of making subjects look as real as possible. 3D methods involve using a similar approach to make the tattoo as it will jump out of your skin.
  • Illustrative. It’s a mix of realistic and traditional techniques. The idea is for the outcome to be cartoonish, which often requires using bold outlines.

It’s not necessary to understand styles like a professional. You can browse tattoo ideas for first-time visitors of parlors and find what you like. There’s no reason why you shouldn’t mix different styles as long as you find a suitable solution. The stylist might be able to give some tips and guide you in the right direction.

The tattoo and style you choose will dictate the colors the artist will use. For example, black and grey might look like a simple combination. However, an expert stylist can do wonders with it, and many believe the simplicity is what makes this style amazing.

When choosing colors, you should consider your skin tone. For example, white and lighter inks look better on fair skin. The same applies to purple and red pigments if you are aiming for a colorful tattoo. Royal blue and crimson red look great on dark skin tones. Another thing to note is that all colors will fade somewhat over time.

Decide on the Placement and Size

Decide on the Placement and Size

There is no best place for the first tattoo option, so everything comes down to your preference. While choosing a size, consider what you plan to tattoo. If your first tattoo is portraying a mighty Greek deity, you’ll need at least a medium tattoo. Combining images, symbols, and other motives might also require more space. On the other hand, a single symbol or name can be suitable for small body art pieces.

Now, you might be wondering, “where should I get my first tattoo?” First, consider how visible you want it. If you choose your hand, forearm, or neck, it might not be easy to hide the tattoo. But if you go with your thigh or back, you’ll need to either go topless or in shorts for the tattoo to be visible.

Pick the Tattoo Artist

You should always pick a licensed tattoo parlor. Illegal places run a huge risk of infection and severe problems, which is not something to mess with. Beyond that, here are some tips on choosing a tattoo artist:

  • Research them on the web. Read comments on their website, social media, and other relevant platforms.
  • Make sure they are comfortable with your desired style. An expert stylist shouldn’t have a problem with specific clients’ requests.
  • Ask a friend for a recommendation. If you have a friend who got a tattoo, ask for their impressions. However, make sure to conduct the research yourself regardless of what they tell you.
  • Establish contact. Check Manifest Studio website to find out more about our consultation procedures. Contact our booking managers by filling in the consultation form. Consultation is essential for the artists to prepare their sessions & setting the expectations for the client on the day of their appointments. That will help you feel more comfortable when you come in to get the tattoo done. Don’t forget to also check our social pages for more updates and inspirations.

Don’t Forget About the Aftercare

The stylist will provide some pointers regarding how to take care of and maintain your tattoo. Here are some pointers for aftercare:

  • Make sure the dressing stays on until you get home. Even if you get home earlier, leave it on for about a couple of hours.
  • Remove the dressing carefully. Your tattoo is an open wound at this point. Wash your hands first and be careful when taking off the dressing. Bacteria and dirt are the biggest enemies in that area at this point.
  • Don’t use soaps with alcohol or fragrances. Any other cosmetic products with these ingredients shouldn’t be used in this area for a while. Apply the substances that the artist recommended.
  • Always use a clean towel and be gentle. If you rub the area, you might move the ink and destroy the tattoo.
  • Don’t expose it to direct sunlight. The colors could fade, so consider investing in SPF creams or moisturizers.
The initial recovery process should last more than two weeks. From there, it’s important to stick to optimal hygiene. If you notice anything weird, such as a bad odor or burning, make sure to contact your tattoo stylist or a doctor.

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