What Should you Expect When You Get Your First Tattoo?
If this is your first then your first question will be, does is will it hurt? Well, yes, of course it will but not too much. Some people say it feels like a bee sting on a sunburn. Personally, it did not bother me much at all. Everyone is different and it depends on what part of the body you are having tattooed.
Naturally, tattooing involves needles. Who do you trust enough with sticking a needle in you? You’re Doctor, right? Who else do you trust? A trained and licensed tattoo artist. The only people that you should trust are those properly trained in good needle hygiene. No one else.
Scope out your tattoo studio. You want to make sure everything is on the up and up. You want to be sure the studio and artists are clean. The artists might look super cool in how they dress with lots of piercings and body art, but if they don’t look clean, don’t give them another thought. Just walk away.
Choose your tattoo artist carefully. This is a serious decision. Ask questions if you want. Ask about their training and background. Ask about how they are safe and clean and any other questions you want to ask. If you don’t feel that you can comfortably ask questions, turn on your heels and go somewhere where you will feel comfortable asking questions.
Specific things to look for when scoping out a good tattoo studio:
Ask if they use a brand new sterile needle every time.
Ask if all other tools that are involved in the tattooing process are either sterilized or disposable (and, of course, are they either sterilized or disposed of after each customer?)
Is everything personally laid-out for your tattoo? You don’t want to share in a big communal bottle of ink with your fellow tattoo-lovers; you want little individual disposable containers of ink just for you. Latex gloves. Vaseline should be dispensed with disposable instruments – not by hand. Insist on this!
Insist on having non-disposable equipment sterilized with an autoclave (an apparatus which uses superheated steam under high pressure to sterilize instruments), not an ultra-sonic cleaner or a dunk in a tub of rubbing alcohol. Ask the tattoo artist if his autoclave is FDA-regulated. Anything else should be unacceptable to you.
The majority of good tattoo artists maintain spotlessly clean and scrupulously hygienic studios. Just be sure to find yourself one and don’t settle for anything less.