FAQ | FINGER TATTOO

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A couple months ago I got two finger tattoos. They’re two palmistry/alchemy figures that look unfortunately similar to a ‘5’ and a ‘4’ (a lesson to think ahead about this kind of thing). I wanted to do a post on my experience because I feel it was pretty different than others. From pain and regret to the healing process and would I ever get another? I know some of you have at least considered finger tattoos, so I hope this is informative and helpful. Let me know if it is!

THE PAIN

Although many people say that your fingers are one of the worst places to get tattooed in regard to pain, I’ve found this is the exact opposite for me. It wasn’t a painless experience. But it wasn’t any worse than my inner forearm tattoo. But this is just me! So far I seem to have a really good pain tolerance for tattoos.

TATTOO REGRET

I’m not going to say that I won’t ever regret this tattoo. How am I supposed to know? But I will say that I’m prepared to deal with that regret if it comes. I’m not against tattoo removal or even using a bandage to cover them if necessary! There are options.

THE HEALING PROCESS

Oh my god, this was the worst part of the entire process. Healing hand tattoos is a bitch. You don’t realise how much you use your hands until you need to keep them dry at all times, and keep them clean at all times. Oh! And don’t forget how much you move your fingers. The more you move the skin around a fresh tattoo the higher chance of fading and blow out.

I’m not sure about other people but personally, a side affect of my anxiety is a bundle of OCD style characteristics. Which leads to me washing my hands alllllll of the time. Upwards of thirty/fourty times a day. And well, that was something I struggled to deal with during healing.

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THE PLACEMENT

Finger tattoos have a lot of stigma. Lots of tattoo artists don’t offer them for a series of reasons.

Visibility. One
is that they’re super visible – along with neck tattoos – and lots of
artists don’t want to be responsible for any future job difficulties.
Apparently they’re a deal breaker for some employers.

There was actually a popular case of this recently where a writer attempted to out a tattoo artist for his sexism, when in fact he just
didn’t want to be responsible for any mess-ups.

Fade. Another
reason is that hand tattoos fade super easily. It seems to be a rule of
thumb that if they past the six month mark, you’re pretty set to go.
But lots of hand tattoos don’t make it days, weeks or months.

Blowout. Blowout is common in areas with a lot of movement. Blowout is a blurry haze around the edges of the tattoo. Like leaking! It’s not pretty.

Lastly, some artists won’t tattoo hands and necks on some people as these parts are considered a right of passage in some tattoo communities. They believe you need to be at least heavily covered before tackling these areas.

DO YOU HAVE A FINGER TATTOO?

After all of this, I don’t think I will ever get another finger tattoo. The experience was so worrisome! I had fears that the scab would peal off and I would find a blank finger with no ink in it, or worse a blurry mess!

What about you? Do you have one? Was it a completely different experience to mine? If so, I’d love to hear about it!

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9 Comments

  1. Thanks for the info, this is something I've been considering myself lately. I really hadn't thought about the blowout and since I type for a living keeping my hands still isn't really an option. I tend to heal quick, but every time is different. Definitely something I'll keep in mind when deciding on a design. Yours look great!

  2. i am sure it would not hurt as much as inner upper arm, but the blowout would be a possible issue. I know my wrist tatt has a bit of really mild blowout where it hit a vein. Also like you I am pretty OCD about germs and handwashing.

    Finger tatts are among the first tatts I ever wanted (after I saw them on the homeless robber in an episode of The Outer Limits, lol) so I would still consider getting them but it is good to know all the facts. Let us know how yours holds out.

  3. If those are recent photos, they seem to still be looking awesome. When I was shopping around for finger tattoos, no one would do them on me since I had zero tattoos. I just wanted a few dots, but they cited the above reasons and especially the job thing. Like, I'm not getting a swastika or LOVE/HATE or something. And they've got tattoo-covering concealer that works really well. But it's a sign of a good artist if they take those sorts of things in account. Thanks for the post and I hope all goes well with your healing. So far, so good it seems!

  4. i definitely need to finish my pokemon sleeve but finger tattoos are on the to do list ^^ already said that but totally love yours and sure, if you have a job where those probably are not the best thing to have, covering with a simple plaster-tape is a good thing to do 🙂

  5. i had a finger tattoo 2 weeks ago and already i've had "blow out" and colour has dropped out in places, but getting it touched up in about 3 weeks when i have sleeve work done and when ive got the money, kinda sucks that finger tattoos fade so much! i guess if you are lucky to have them not fade quick then its great!

  6. I do all my own tattoos and I have found that my finger tattoos only last 2 weeks before they need touching up.. the ‘blow out’ does not look nice!

  7. I jut got a finger tattoo 5 days ago and the healing process has been soo painful. I was a bit worried but after reading this, I guess it’s normal. I kinda regret getting ot because of the pain but here we are lol. I can’t wait for it to heal already.

  8. I’m pretty heavily tattooed and was still refused a finger tat at a few places. Had to drive 8 hours last week to get a college friend to do it. Didn’t hurt at all for me, rubbing lotion on it hurts more than the process!

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