What you need to know about getting a tattoo and how to care for it.
Tattoo Questions and Answers (Q&A)
Q: Do tattoos hurt?
A: Well, yes, and no. SOME tattoos hurt, but it really depends on the location, and maybe even more, the person. Some known painful areas are the hands, feet, ribs, stomach, lower back, and neck/face. That said, a lot of people get these areas tattooed with no problems. For the most part, they feel “irritating”, not so much painful.
Q: Can I get tattooed if I have been drinking?
A: Absolutely not! Anyone that shows signs of being intoxicated, whether it be alcohol or drugs will NOT be tattooed at our shop. No exceptions! In fact, consuming alcohol within 24 hours of the tattoo process is greatly frowned upon.
Q: Should I eat before getting tattooed?
A: YES, absolutely! Having a meal 1-3 hours before your tattoo appointment is ideal. It ensures that your blood sugar level is up, and you have energy to deal with any adrenaline spikes you may get from the process. People having blood sugar crashes during the process, on rare occasion, run the risk of fainting.
Q: Are tips customary?
A: Tips are ALWAYS appreciated, but not a requirement. Think of it like a server in a restaurant. If you get good service, and are happy with your overall experience, tip accordingly. Artists are ALWAYS greatly appreciative of tips, and will remember your generosity in the future most likely.
Q: How old do I have to be to get a tattoo?
A: The required age to get a tattoo is 18. Anyone 16 and up can get a tattoo with a parent or legal guardian present, with proper i.d. We STILL reserve the right to refuse anyone, at any time, for any reason, so it’s our call, as it’s OUR name and reputation on the line.
Q: How do I prepare for my tattoo appointment?
A: Please bathe/shower and pop a breath mint. (I will do you the same courtesy.) Happy, healthy people heal better. Getting tattooed when you are sick, post or pre-surgery or extraordinarily stressed out is not ideal. Furthermore, people with compromised immune systems (e.g. diabetes, Hepatitis, HIV) typically take longer to heal, and I require a doctor’s authorization.
Q: Can I get tattooed while pregnant, or while breast-feeding?
A: No. Getting tattooed while pregnant or breast-feeding can negatively impact both your health and that of your baby.
Q: Can you tattoo over a scar?
A: In most cases, yes. Scars can be hidden, and tattooed over, with a few exceptions. It depends on the severity and maturity of the scar. This is judged on a case-by-case basis. In general, a scar should be at least one year old. Tattoos that are done over scars are not guaranteed, for obvious reasons, and the client assumes all/any risk involved with the process. It would be best to consult a physician before the appointment if concerned.
Q: How long will my tattoo take to heal?
A: Tattoos take between 7-15 days for the initial healing process, but MAY take as long as 4-6 weeks to heal 100%. Follow the aftercare instruction given to you by your artist, ALWAYS keep it clean, and your healing time will be minimized.
Q: Is it normal for my new tattoo to scab?
A: Scabbing, flaking, peeling, dryness are all natural parts of the healing process. Severe scabs that are deep and thick may indicate a need to change your aftercare routine and should be addressed with your tattoo artist.
Q: Are touch-ups needed, and what is the cost?
A: One free touch-up is included within 90 days after the tattoo appointment. An exception would be blatant disregard of the rules of common sense and tattoo aftercare. The other exception to free touch-ups is if you miss a scheduled a touch-up appointment, thereby disregarding the importance of my time and efforts. Future appointments may require deposits, gifts, or cost you money.
Q: Can I tan or soak in a hot tub after my tattoo?
A: Absolutely not! Any form of tanning can and will damage and fade a tattoo. If you are a sun worshiper, I recommend a SPF 30+ sun block. In general it is best to stay out of the sun and tanning booths, especially during the healing process. As for hot tubs, or any kind of soaking, including swimming, or baths, avoid at all costs, until the tattoo is fully healed. In most cases, this will take 7-15 days. Yes, you can wait 😉
Q: How do I book an appointment for a tattoo, what is the process?
A: The process of booking a tattoo is super easy, and there are a few ways to do it. Some people like to call or email in, and book a “consult” first. A consult lets you meet the artists face to face, show them any reference pictures you have, and discuss the tattoo and how to go about it. After the consult, a deposit is taken, and the appointment is booked on our calendar. You’ll get an appointment card, with a reminder of the day/time of your tattoo appointment. Alternatively, you can just call or email, and request an appointment time, and we book you in. Emails are exchanged back & forth up until the day of your appointment, and the details of the tattoo are worked out electronically. This is ideal for people not living in the immediate area. Deposits for these appointments can be done online, using e-transfers between banks. All tattoo deposits are $80, which is NON-refundable. The deposit comes off the cost of your tattoo on the day of your appointment. If you happen to no-show, you forfeit your deposit.
Q: I have darker skin, do I HAVE to get just black ink, or can I get color?
A: One of THE biggest misconceptions is that darker skinned people can’t get color tattoos. In fact, some of the most vibrant tattoos I’ve done, have been on darker skinned people. EXTREMELY dark skin can be a different story, but typically MOST people, regardless of skin color, can get a color tattoo.
Q: How do I take care of my tattoo after my appointment?
A: Visit the “AFTERCARE” link on our home page. It will give you detailed, and comprehensive instructions on how to care for your tattoo, and assure it heals well, and infections are avoided.
Q: What happens if I have any sort of “reaction” after my tattoo?
A: In most cases, the healing process, if followed correctly will go smoothly. If proper aftercare is NOT followed, chances of infection are a possibility. In extremely rare cases, allergic reactions can occur, but that’s a VERY rare occurrence. If at any point in time, you have and concerns about the state of your tattoo, please call or email us immediately. We have seen it all, and know exactly how to deal with your concerns. In most cases, what you’re concerned about will be normal healing symptoms. Better safe than sorry though, so we NEVER get upset by you contacting us with concerns. Pictures of your tattoo can be sent by email, or you can come visit us in person. In the event that something out of the ordinary is happening with your tattoo, we will advise you to visit your family physician for a second opinion. Best thing to remember is always – KEEP YOUR TATTOO CLEAN, and chances are, it’ll heal just fine 😉
Q: Do you flat rate any tattoos?
A: Typically, we don’t like to flat rate our work, as it’s extremely difficult to pinpoint an exact time on a large piece of work, and we can’t judge before-hand how you, and/or your body will react during the process. Some people have a hard time keeping still, or need 5-6 cigarette breaks, and that makes the process longer. Some people take ink well, sit like champs, and we get done much quicker. In the event we finish an hour before estimated, a customer may be upset with us, that we flat-rated a tattoo, and they paid more than planned, for less time than expected. Our shop rate is quite competitive, and we feel our work stands up to ANY of our competitors work at the same, or higher rates per hour.
Q: Can I buy a gift certificate? If so, can I buy any as gifts?
A: Yes, we have gift certificate available for purchase anytime. You can buy as many as you like, to use yourself, or as gifts. Gift certificates can be purchased for anywhere from 1/2 hour, up to 6 hours per gift certificate. All gift certificates are non-refundable, same as tattoo deposits. If you book an appointment using a gift certificate, and no-show, that would also negate the gift certificate, so showing up for your appointment, and on time, is advised 😉