If you have ever wanted a finger tattoos, you may know that many tattoo artists simply won’t do them. They’ll tell you that the ink wont stay, they don’t look good or that they’re just temporary. Fingers are a tough one because you’ll see so many artists and musicians with their hands tattooed, the problem is they’ve probably been having them redone pretty often. There are five big things you should know before you get your fingers tattooed.
1. Listen To Your Artist
You’re likely to be refused for a finger tattoo if you haven’t got a lot of other visible work. Finger tattoos are impossible to hide which can affect jobs. Many tattoo artists won’t do it for ethical reasons if you’re younger and not already heavily tattooed. Similarly, the area is quite small so it’s almost impossible to get good designs into it and have them come out well. At the very least you should expect a good discussion with your artist first.
Finger skin is especially thick and tough, plus the epidermis layer is constantly shedding. The anatomy of the skin on your hands and fingers is different than that on an arm or leg which means it’s difficult to get the ink to stay. Over time, and even just over normal healing, you can expect significant fading and there’s a good chance of it falling out. This also means many artists won’t do them because if they do start to fade the dilapidated tattoo reflects badly on them even if it’s not their fault.
This is especially true of tattoos on the sides of the fingers.
3. Expectations do not Equal Reality
Yes, Rihanna, Wiz, and a host of other celebrities have finger tattoos. Chances are they’ve either just been done or they’ve had them touched up often. If you can afford that then great, your finger tattoos will continue to look crisp and awesome. In reality, they’re probably not going to look that good. Social media has given many people unrealistic expectations of what their finger tattoos will look like and unless they’re brand new do not expect them to look like that for long.
4. Finger Tattoos Hurt
Your fingers have tons of nerves in them. Touch is an important sense and some of the most vulnerable and delicate nerves are in the hands. They also have multiple joints which don’t have a lot of “meat” on them which can add to the level of pain you should expect. This is one of the worst areas for pain, and it’s likely you’ll have to keep going through it every time you touch it up. Forever. OUCH!
5. Healing Sucks
Many artists have their own tips and tricks for healing finger tattoos specifically. This is not like healing any other area because your hands are constantly dirty/being washed not to mention in contact with any number of different things that could affect the healing. The best solutions are either to let it be, or cover it with ointment and then wear non-powdered nitrile gloves over them for the first 4-5 days which should be changed and the tattoo cleaned often. This will help protect it from anything getting in and allow it to heal.
Still want a finger tattoo? Make sure you know what’s possible and what’s not so you don’t waste your time at the parlour. It’s a commitment to constant touchups if you want it to look good.