Saturday, August 14, 2010

Tres Tattoos

Body art is art made on, with, or consisting of, the human body. The most common forms of body art are tattoos and body piercings, but other types includescarification, branding, scalpelling, shaping (for example tight-lacing of corsets),full body tattoo and body painting. –Wikipedia

Body modification is frowned upon in society and is a taboo topic in my family. I come from a strict Catholic family; however, my mom has always been aware of me not practicing the religion. I perceive myself to be a spiritual person as opposed to religious. This never posed a problem and I respect those with strong religious beliefs. I have always diverged from the norm and been dubbed as “eccentric” by individuals I’ve come across in the past. Painting runs in my family and though I have no talent in that field, I appreciate all forms of art. I decided to execute my own interpretation of art so I went ahead and designed tattoos for myself. I had a nose piercing in my younger years but due to the restrictions at work, I willingly removed it.

After receiving my first salary in 2008, I took my tattoo design to an artist who did work on a good friend of mine. It was a delayed 21st birthday gift for me. My first tattoo is located on my center of my upper back around the T3 area. It’s a floral design with my birth flowers; jonquil and violet. The stars are a representation of my siblings and mother. The pain was tolerable but the lining stung a bit. After an hour into the process, it began to feel like a massage.

Level of pain: 2/5

Healing period: 1 week

I never realized how addicting tattoos were until a few years later.

The next one was done in the summer of 2010. For my second encounter with ink, I had a simple cursive tattoo marked on my wrist. It’s basically black with a white lining that spells out “destiny”. It felt like I was being repeatedly cut. I’ve always been a staunch believer in destiny as mentioned in a previous post. To me, it’s a reminder of how I should apply actions in order to fulfill my preordained fate.

Level of pain: 3/5

Healing period: 1 ½ weeks

I got another tattoo three months ago. The tattoo extends from my ankle to the toes. The tattoo idea I had in mind was my favorite poem by Emily Dickinson entitled, “I Dwell in Possibility”. I was so uncomfortable with the pain that I had the tattoo artist stop until I gathered my breath. This is by far, the most painful tattoo I’ve gotten. There was a spot on my foot where there was relatively no pain at all. I used to call it a blob of muscle until I discovered the appropriate term for the area. The Extensor Digitorum Brevis Muscle spared me from a few minutes of pain. The rest of the foot area was excruciating.

Level of pain: 5/5

Healing period: 2 ½ weeks

I have a relatively high threshold for pain but despite the number of tattoos I have and considering their locations on my body, I’m not a fan of needles. I am absolutely terrified of them! Like an old saying goes, “No pain, no gain.” I’m happy with the results I got and the healing process for each tattoo differed but they all turned out great so I’ve got no complaints. Remember that there’s no way for you to anticipate the amount of pain you’ll experience so accept that beauty comes with a cost.

Right after getting inked, expect a little soreness. Apply petroleum jelly before and after showering. I chose to apply lotion towards the end of the healing process. Keep the area moisturized especially if it’s around the ankle or any other moving body part in order to avoid damaging the tattoo. Once the healing process begins, the soreness will subside and be replaced by itchiness. The most irritating part comes next, the peeling. This is a crucial stage of the healing so be sure not to pick on it. Treat the tattoo like you would a scab. Let it peel on its own. After all the peeling, be sure to limit sun exposure or at least apply sun block on the precious tattoo in order to preserve the color and quality of your art.

A few rules of thumb to go by in choosing an area to place tattoos:

1. The more nerves, the more pain.

2. It will hurt to get it in erogenous zones such as the inner arms, inner thighs, armpits, ankles, etc. (This includes the kinky parts that I’d rather not mention. mwahaha!)

3. Areas directly over the bone will cause discomfort.

4. The more muscle, the less pain you’ll experience.

5. Go to a reputable tattoo artist for some are heavy handed.

6. Consider your pain threshold because it varies from person to person.

Think twice and hard about getting a tattoo. No, wait! Think it over a gazillion times because tattoo removal hurts much more than having a tattoo done. If you’re interested in getting one in the future, try henna tattoos first and see how that works out for you. One more thing, don’t let your emotions get the best of you so clear your thoughts before you come to a decision. If you’re ready to bear the pain and flaunt the emergence of your novel artwork, visit a tattoo artist and be part of a unique experience.


  1. Thank you so much for posting this. It was super informative, and interesting. The tips were very realistic as well. I've considered getting body art before, but never really thought through all these points. In the future, if I ever have enough guts to follow through, I would definitely reference these. Your tattoos are beautiful and very tasteful in both design and placement.

  2. You're welcome, Meg! I suggest that you design your own instead of getting a generic one. Please don't get a "tramp stamp". lol. I'm pondering over getting another one on my side thought that's going to be tender. :s

    Thank you so much! I'm getting my foot tattoo retouched next week. If you intend to get multiple tattoos, have it done by one artist. :)

    I can't wait to see yours! :)

  3. i agree with the ankle pain level! hahaha, nice blog on the tattoos toni, rock on!!!! :D

  4. And strict Catholic families are always a pain. Teehee. ;p

    I know a lot of people who want to get tattoos. I can't imagine myself having one. Never really found them attractive, but I do think that the most expressive people are those who put the evidences in their own skin. Well, exempted dyan ang mga tambay na may tatoo na babaeng hubad sa katawan. Haha.

    Oh and the pain. Please don't tease me with those pretty designs I could have pirced in my body. Please. :))

    Pero masarap ang challenge na iconvince ang friends mo na uber gusto na magpatattoo at pipilitin mong huwag ituloy. Ansarap ng dillemma (spell check please) trip. :))

  5. @Pao Thanks, Pao! It hurts like hell, eh? You're crazy! That rosary tattoo of yours is wrapped around your ankle. lol. OUCH? :))
    @Vajarl My mom doesn't go to church but one of my siblings still does. Guess which one? The eldest one. :D The rest feel the same way I do though I'm the only one that's vocal about it. I claim to be agnostic but since I'm marrying Jordan and we do want to have kids someday, I'm willing to study his religion and see how that goes for me.

    Tattoos are nice depending on who it's on. You know? Some people with tattoos just look dirty. :s LOL! Di ako kasama dun ha... :)) Kanto boys na may dream girls sa sleeves nilang gawa sa ink ng ballpen sa prisinto. :D

    The pain is disconcerting yet it subsides because the area tends to feel numb after a while. Ignore the bleeding!

    Oo! Yung mga ganon na "Ay gusto ko mag-patattoo" na hanggang sabi lang ang masarap hamunin. I'm ready to call myself a "funky lola" because when the day comes, my tattoos will look odd on me which is why I chose not to place them on areas which will sag.

    Tattoos on the stomach, arm, boobie or whatever = hello BIG BLOB! :)

    You're so evil that it makes my skin crawl and I revel in it. I just wanna go, "mwahahahaha!" then flash a sinister smile! :D

  6. Love your pics of tattoo's .. love your blog as well . Its lovely to be able to see what other people are doing in the world ! Many thanks also for the lovely comment that you left on my blog ..Bless you ! hugs Melita xx

  7. @Melita Thank you for taking the time to post a comment on my online home. It fascinates me to see what people around the globe write about as well. You're welcome! I enjoyed reading your post. :)

  8. love your tattoo's and i love your blog is well i like the flower one very nice

  9. @Lauren Thanks so much! The flower tattoo was my first design and a lot of thought went into it before I had it transfered from paper to my skin.

    Thank you for the compliments! :)

  10. Hi. That's very interesting but I don't know much about it. Thanks for visiting my blog.

  11. I've never been through the tattoo process yet, but I plan on it soon. I don't know if I'm a little bit crazy but I already have so many tattoo ideas that I must get done. Mostly songs lyrics that sum up my life and forever will. However, I am a wimp when it comes to pain, but like you said "no pain, no gain". :)

  12. @Scott You're welcome! You gotta try the Frosty again! I believe it's worth the calories. :))

    @Just_Andie It's good to have tons of tattoo ideas beforehand because it shows that you really want one. Choose a design and stick to it. You can always ask the artist to tweak it to your liking. Lyrics sound good to me so get inked and tell me about it! ;)

  13. Almost got a a friendship tattoo once and I'm glad I didn't pursue as it turns out that I really didn't have the strong tight bond with the girls as I thought we did. Boy was that a relief!
    Been in and out of tattoo parlors but chickened out. I kind of want one, but can't make up my mind on the design or location. I figured if this will stick on me forever, it needs to be meaningful.
    If it needs to be a life story like those Russian gang tatts than my body would be covered in it and that's just not ideal for corporate setting. Anyhow, this is insightful and perhaps I could work up a courage to get a tiny little one.

  14. @Dhila I'm so relieved that you put some thought into getting the friendship tattoo! Majority of my friends are overseas already so I'm not pressured into such things.
    Get something sentimental. Think of something that you won't mind seeing every waking day until you're old and gray.
    I know what you mean! In my case, I think of Yakuza wives since their backs look like scratch paper because of all the tattoos! I'm planning on teaching in the future so I have to search for great cover up though tattoos are permitted at some schools. Tell me when you do decide to get one! ;)

  15. hi,

    thanks for the tip. i am seriously considering getting a tat. but you describing the pain makes me think it over more since i have low tolerance for pain. :)

  16. @noisy me You're welcome! Do you have a design in mind? I intend to make a post in the future about tattoo sites that I personally recommend. You can get tattoo ideas from there. I'll do it soon!

    Where on your body do you plan to place it? It's not so bad on the back. I promise, it's tolerable. Avoid the sides of your torso because that will be tender.

    Thanks for taking the time to drop a line! :)

  17. Lol guess you weren't lying about how painful they are. Seems like a horrible pain but then again, "One must suffer for their art."
    I really like that you designed your own tattoo, you're making me feel self-conscious as an artist for taking someone else's tattoo design. I might try my hand at doing my own design but I feel I'll come short. Thanks for the tips!

  18. @Mike Hey! Anyone who tells you that it doesn't hurt is giving you a huge ball of BS. :)) It depends on where you get it but a few minutes into it, you'll feel pressure more than pain since the area will feel numb.

    Thank you! I intend to get another but maybe I'm going overboard on this. An aspiring Kindergarten teacher loaded with tattoos? HMM... I saw what you can do and you're amazing! I'm not at par with your talent so shush! :P

    Oh wow! Thanks for following me. I'm all gushy! lol. I'll return the favor. Your 3D work is amazing!

    You're welcome. :P

  19. being a dance instructor, I've wanted to get a tattoo on my foot for the longest time but I keep talking myself out of it. I want to make sure my tattoo is meaningful & I have no idea what design to get. your tattoos are so beautiful (: it makes me want one even more!

  20. @Jenroxursox84 PHEW! It took me a while to write your username. lol. I have a friend who's a dance instructor as well and her ankle tattoo looks amazing especially when she's on stage.

    Thank you so much! Tell me if you do decide to get one. I'd love to see it. :)

  21. Hi, Toni! I saw the link to this blog on your page on VJ. I know you're done with the whole K1 process. My fiancé and I have a pending petition; I'm the beneficiary. And just like you, I have tattoos. I have 6 (and yes, one is a tramp stamp ;p). At the SLMC-Extension Clinic, did they make you undergo any additional screening because of your ink, like extra blood work or a psych test? I wasn't worried before, until I saw a post from somebody who said that she had to undergo psych screening because of her tats. I forget if it was a VJ member, but I don't think so. Anyways, thanks in advance! :)

    Btw, I like the tattoo on your foot. Been thinking of getting inked there myself, but I'm not ready for that level of pain at present. The pain from my last inking session is still fresh in my memory.

  22. Thanks for the response! Quite a relief to know my tattoo addiction won't be an impediment to my "happily-ever-after" (and vice versa ;p).

    A tattoo running from the butt to the side of a boob would be one cool ink! :)

  23. Ohh girl im sooooooooooo addicted too. Im up to 4 tattoos. Defin. gotta agree with you. You really gotta think twice before getting anything. I thought about mine over and over again and i dont regret them at all.

    * miss k

  24. thanks for the comment, doll! loving your blog so far & came across this body art post, & i'm a sucker for ink! will hopefully have the nerves to publish actual posts soon. merry xmas & keep up the great work `=]



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