Primarily due to the advent of the internet and the ease by which people can communicate and advertise though social media, tattoo marketers have become increasingly successful at marketing and propagating their message. This message says, “get a tattoo, it’s cool”.
What does this message mean though, and does it deliver? The message implies that a somehow, some way, getting a tattoo is going to increase one’s perceived social status, and as a result gives the tattoed some benefit to their life as a result of getting the tattoo. However, studies have proven this to be false, and in fact the opposite of the truth.
In reality, tattoos only provide a benefit to the tattoo parlors who get more money from mutilating people’s bodies, but this proves not only no benefit to the receiver of the tattoo, but even a significantly detrimental impact.
Tattoos significantly decrease job prospects
“We asked 327 employers how a candidate’s tattoos would affect their decision to hire or not hire that person.”
“Would a candidate having tattoos affect your decision to hire that person?”
- Yes. I would be less likely to hire them. 13.85%
- Yes. I would be more likely to hire them 0.31%
- It would depend on the role I was trying to fill. 35.08%
- It would depend on how many and where they were. 28.00%
Conclusion: A total of 77% of employers will or might be less likely to hire you if you have tattoos. (Only 1 out of the 327 employers said they would be “more” likely to hire.)
“Do you take people less seriously if they have tattoos?”
- Yes, I do. 22.04%
- It depends on the situation. 18.63%
- It depends on how many. 9.94%
- No, I don’t. 49.39%
Conclusion: More than half of employers may take someone with tattoos less seriously, and more than 1 in 5 employers and managers will definitely take the prospect with tattoos less seriously.
Business owners and managerial respondents answered such as:
“No matter how much meaning they have for the owner, they are just not attractive nor professional looking. It does affect my decision making process when hiring.”
“The quantity would not make a difference. It would be a combination of the location and role. Tattoos on a sales rep would be something to think about.”
“Looking at the miserable decorations on the skin is repulsive.”
“We would consider it inappropriate for our corporate office.”
Risk of HIV (AIDS) and Hepatitis B, C Transmission Through Standard Use Of Tattoo Needles
“A single needlestick injury from an infected host carries with it a 5-30% risk of transmission of hepatitis B (HBV), a 3-7% risk of transmission of hepatitis C (HCV), and a 0.2-0.4% risk of transmission of HIV.
(17;18) Given the rapidly repetitive process of tattooing, transmission of blood borne infectious diseases (including HIV) through unsafe tattooing practices is more likely to occur.(4) Given examples such as this and the potential for risk of infection from tattooing and piercing, it is important to better understand potential risks of HIV transmission through these means.
A systematic review published in 2001 found that seroprevalence surveys worldwide have shown that tattoos are more commonly found among HIV-positive individuals than in control groups or the general population.”
Another study from Harvard showed similar results of a high risk of disease from tattoos:
Tattoos have long-term health consequences and decrease longevity
A journal article by Dr. Greg Hall, a primary care physician, published in Medical Daily, a prestigious medical journal, described the short and long term ramifications and health consequences of tattoos.
Some of the key takeaways are as follows:
“Among the concerns are the long-term effects tattoo inks can have on the immune system, pathology specimen interpretation and other unforeseen health complications.” “The Danish Environmental Protection Agency found that one in five tattoo inks contained carcinogenic (cancer-causing) chemicals. Also, a vast majority of the inks tested did not comply with international health safety standards for ink composition, an Australian government study found.” “Even more concerning, carcinogens were identified in 83 percent of black inks – by far the most popular color for tattoos.” “More recently, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has become more involved with tattoo inks, stating “Many pigments used in tattoo inks are industrial-grade colors suitable for printers’ ink or automobile paint.” Like the studies started overseas, the agency is now examining the chemical composition of inks and pigments and how they break down in the body, as well their short-term and long-term safety.” “Metal-based ink tattoos can react with magnetic resonance imaging studies. For instance, two case studies detail patients who suffered MRI-induced burns in their tattoos that were attributed to iron compounds in tattoo pigments.” “The most common infections associated with tattooing involve staphylococcus aureus or pseudomonas bacteria arising from poor skin preparation or equipment sterilization.” “Three percent of tattoos get infected, and almost four percent of people who get tattoos recount pain lasting more than a month, a 2015 study from Tulane University School of Medicine found.” “About 22 percent of participants with new tattoos reported persistent itching that lasted more than a month.” “A study reported in Hepatology found that “tattoo exposure is associated with HCV (hepatitis C virus) infection, even among those without traditional risk factors. All patients who have tattoos should be considered at higher risk for HCV infection and should be offered HCV counseling and testing.” “Hepatitis, which is 10 times more infectious than HIV, can be transmitted through needles used by tattoo artists. It is the reason the American Red Cross restricts blood donations from individuals with newer tattoos.” “According to Andrew Timmings at the University of St Andrews in the United Kingdom, interviews of hiring managers showed that tattoos can actually hurt job prospects.” “Laser tattoo removal services have rapidly grown across the nation and have become a multi-million dollar business” which is steadily growing, indicating that a high number of tattooed individuals regret the decision enough to pay the large financial and pain cost associated with tattoo removal. “Because the laser shatters the pigment particles under the skin for removal by the body, the issues with infections, scarring and the ink spreading become a concern again. Tattoos covering extensive areas of the body are simply too large to tackle in one session, and could take years to remove.”
People with tattoos perceived as less credible, and tattoos do not increase an individual’s perceived attractiveness
Study: Effect of Tattoos on Perceptions of Credibility and Attractiveness
“This study examined the effects of tattooing on perception of a male’s and a female’s credibility and attractiveness. Analysis indicated that, although the models’ attractiveness ratings were not affected by having a tattoo, their credibility ratings were generally lower when wearing a tattoo than when not wearing one.”
Study: Tattooed individuals more likely to be perceived as criminal
A double-blind study was conducted in which over 37,000 participants in a random sample were shown pictures of tattooed individuals and non-tattooed individuals, all dressed in normal clothes with without any other defining characteristics. The results were as follows:
- Tattooed people perceived as criminal: 94.18%
- Non-tattooed people perceived as criminal: 5.82%
- Tattooed people perceived as being in a gang: 87.45%
- Non-tattooed people perceived as being in a gang: 12.55%
- Tattooed people perceived as have committed violent crimes: 93.78%
- Non-tattooed people perceived as have committed violent crimes: 6.22%
- People with tattoos are repulsive: 95.27%
- People with tattoos are cool: 4.73%
“Would you feel comfortable being alone with this person?”
- No: 94.76%
- Yes: 5.24%
- No: 81.36%
- Yes: 18.64%
“Would you consider dating this person?”
- No: 95.13%
- Yes: 4.87%
- No: 99.38%
- Yes: 0.62%
Personally, whenever I see someone with a tattoo, I think, there’s a person who makes poor life choices. I wonder how long they were in prison and whether it was for a violent or nonviolent crime. For girls it appears that they are promiscuous, and many studies have proven that tattooed girls are more likely to be promiscuous.
It is evident from the many studies done that most people who see someone with tattoos have a negative perception of them. One time a few years ago, a friend, who was obviously not a real friend, tried to pressure me to get a tattoo. I went to the tattoo parlor with them, looking for a way out, and said I wanted to go get my wallet. I drove away without them then and there, and after that I never saw or spoke to them again, because they tried to ruin my life. It was one of the best decisions of my adolescence. Had I gone along, I would have regretted it to this day.
Think Before You Ink
A tattoo has a high chance of ruining your life, and will definitely have a severe negative social impact, significantly decrease job prospects, and runs a high risk of a permanent negative health impact of lifelong diseases, and a decrease in lifespan. The more tattoos, the higher the risk. Remember: “Think Before You Ink”. It’s not worth it, and there is an overall negative social correlation, as opposed to all the marketing done by the tattoo salespeople who want your money in return for ruining your life and not delivering the social benefits promised.
If you already have tattoos, there is a possibility it can be removed, but there’s no guarantee, as many tattoo inks cannot be removed with current procedures. Even if it can, it will be extremely expensive, take an extremely long time with many sessions over several years, and will be excruciatingly painful. But, if you’re already Hepatitis C (HCV) or HIV positive, there’s no going back from that unfortunately.
Be sure to share this article with your friends, if you care about them. Don’t fall into the lie that tattoos are cool, because they are not, and tattoos will limit your life, work, and social opportunities.