Invisible Tattoo, An Unique Identity?

Gone are the days where chaps with tattoos are associated with gangsters or hooligans, or frown upon by societies to be for ladies who are associated in vice or shady businesses.  Indeed, sporting a tattoo seem to be gaining popularity and is now a mainstream trend for many. 

While there is no law in Singapore prohibiting minors from getting a tattoo, most of the local tattoo parlours would not accept customer who are below 18 years of age unless accompanied by their parent or guardian.  The starting cost to ink a simple design is anything from $100 to thousands for more complicated works.  It is always good to do your research on the tattoo parlour to ensure that 

The trend now leans towards sporting a smaller tattoo at certain body parts, such as the back or side of the neck, behind the ears, at the wrist, or near the ankles etc., as opposed to the typically popular tattoos in the past which cover the entire length of your back or chest.  In addition, most opt for designs or wordings that bears a particular signification to them or as a form of personal expression of themselves rather than the usual phoenix, dragon or Chinese characters that are all so common in the past.  In fact, many opt for cute designs as their favourite cartoon characters or silhouettes of their favourite animals.

While most opt for simpler and smaller designs which are not so conspicuous, there are similarly individuals who favour bolder designs. 

While society has better accept tattoo as a trend, it can still be a taboo at times.  In particular, certain industries which are typically more conservative may still frown upon having employees sporting large tattoos.  An instance would be where you are aspiring to be an air stewardess for our very own Singapore Airlines, you may want to reconsider in inking yourself as purportedly, one would most likely not be accepted if you have any obvious tattoo or body modification such as multiple body piercings.  Despite us seeing more professionals such as bankers, lawyers and even doctors sporting a tattoo these days, there still exists a tendency within the general Asian society, especially among the older generation to have a prejudice against tattooed individuals.

To get around the social stigma, there is an option to get a UV Tattoo if you are still contemplating about inking yourself.  Unlike the usual tattoo, such tattoo uses special ink that reacts only to ultra-violet light (UV Lights). 

It can be pretty cool and appeal especially to those who might want to avoid having a visible tattoo that may raise a fight with your parents but yet can’t resist the idea of making their own unique mark on their body.  It is especially popular among youngsters who frequent clubs where their unique tattoos can come alive under the UV disco lights.  You can opt to have the entire tattoo ink in the special UV ink or accentuate your existing tattoo to make it come “alive” when you come under UV lights.

UV tattoos are in general more complicated and tedious to ink as compared to traditional tattoos.  Consequentially, the cost of getting one is in general more expensive.  Do your own research if you are thinking of getting one as not all tattoo parlours offer that as well.  Another consideration when choosing UV tattoos is that you would still be able to see a faint scar design as opposed to seeing the ink of the traditional tattoo under normal lights.

Regardless of your choice, we do encourage any individuals to give it a serious thought prior to making the decision to ink yourself.  First and foremost, tattoos are permanent regardless if it’s the usual tattoo or invisible tattoos.  While you may find it cool now, you may not fancy the design subsequently.  This is especially true for couples who ink their partner’s name and having to bear with the tattoo as a bad reminder when the relationship goes south.  Do also bear in mind that the process and cost of tattoo removal is much more tedious and expensive than inking it.  And not forgetting that there is a high likelihood that the design may be distorted as you get older and your body starts to sag.  

Last but not least, we would advise you to do a throughout research to ensure that the tattoo artist is a reliable one and the artist would be able to ink the design that you have in mind.  The worse would be if you are looking to ink a picture of a Mickey Mouse but it come out looking more like a Ratatouille, or situation where you want to inscribe your name but you ended up with an irreversible spelling error!