Tattoos continue to increase in popularity with many people expressing their personality through being inked. For some, the decision to be tattooed is the result of a lengthy period of consideration, with thought being given to the design and placement of the body art.
For others, it may be an impulse acted on in the spur of the moment. Either way, tattoos are permanent and the design you loved at the time might not be to your taste ten years later. Perhaps you’ve outgrown the ink you got as a dare or are no longer amused by a design that seemed funny at the time.
You carry your tattoo with you through life, so if you can’t bear to look at it, your body art can cause a disconnect between your mind and body. However, all is not lost! If you have a tattoo you regret, there are ways you can deal with it.
Hide It Under Clothes/Hair
Depending on the placement of your tattoo, hiding it under clothing can be the easiest way to conceal it. This is easier for tattoos that are on your arms, legs and core of your body, but you may be able to find creative ways to hide a tattoo in an obvious place. If you have a tattoo you dislike on the back of your neck, consider growing your hair to cover it. Using clothes won’t work in every case – tattoos on your hands or face can be harder to hide in this way, especially in hot weather.
Concealers and specialist cover up makeup can work wonders for hiding tattoos, although you might need to try different brands to find which best suit you. Depending on the size and placement of your tattoo, this can be an expensive option in the long run. You may also find that the coverage is not sufficient for you and that your tattoo still shows in certain lights or after wearing the cover up product for a while.
Shows such as Tattoo Fixers have proved that even the worst tattoos can be refashioned into a work of art you can be proud of, so if you like tattoos but not your current design, consider finding an artist who can cleverly create a new tattoo to cover the one you regret. Be aware that your new design will probably need to be considerably bigger, and you will always know the original tattoo is still there underneath (and may still be obvious to you).
If you really hate your ink, you have probably considered getting it removed. With treatments improving significantly over the last decade, removal is more effective than ever and will mean you no longer have to see the tattoo that is making you miserable. Some employers may specify no visible tattoos and permanent removal is popular in this situation.
Maybe the tattoo you dislike belonged to a part of your life that has passed – like your ex-boyfriend or when you went through your One Direction phase. Depending on the situation, you may be able to find peace with your tattoo by accepting that although you wouldn’t choose to get it now, it was important to you at the time.
However, if your tattoo was an ill-advised camel on your toe during a bachelor party and you have never been connected to it, or your tattoo reminds you of a time in your life you would rather forget, this may not be possible.
Although we are told tattoos are forever, there are ways to cover them or remove them for good. If you have a tattoo you regret, try the tips above – you will never regret doing what you can to feel happier in your own skin.