Believe again if you think you are too old to get a tattoo. According to studies, roughly 30% of people getting tattoos are adults between 40 and 50. Individuals over the age of 50 make up a smaller group, accounting for 16% of those who chose to get a tattoo. However, various issues need to be answered on this topic. Why is it that grownups or older individuals are only now getting tattoos? Moreover, why is this such a controversial topic?
The following sections will examine the relationship between age and tattoos in depth. We will also explore the cultural component of getting a tattoo at an older age and what it signifies for the individual getting inked. So, without further ado, let us get started!
Is It Ever Too Late to Get a Tattoo? – Debate
1. Let’s Look At The Reasons People Get Tattoos At An Older Age
Younger individuals, or millennials, are not aware of or interested in the way things were before the Internet. Nowadays, it is acceptable to do anything you want to your body, and no one will condemn you. However, 40–50 years ago, the scenario was different. Getting tattooed was thought immoral or typically connected with anything labelled as a low-life, criminal, etc.
Overall, tattoos were closely connected to negative conduct, taking drugs, and committing a crime, even if that was not the case. As a result, those growing up in such a cultural setting did not have the option of getting a tattoo and expressing themselves for the sake of social and cultural acceptance.
Now, those young folks have grown up to be 50 or 60, and times have changed. Getting a tattoo is a symbol of self-expression, and it is not often connected with negative behaviour or criminality, at least here in the West. So, individuals are doing what they have always wanted to do; they finally get a tattoo.
However, it seems that there are still some who find this activity a bit out of place or not per “one’s age.” Such criticism frequently comes from older individuals who have not adjusted their views and thinking since their youth.
However, people obtaining tattoos normally do not become upset by other people’s arbitrary and senseless criticism. They finally got to accomplish what they had desired for decades, or they have just decided that getting a tattoo is a fantastic way to celebrate their own lives, the lives of their loved ones, or whatever else the cause could be.
So, if we had to sum up why older people (adults) acquire tattoos, we would say:
- Self-expressions they could not accomplish when they were younger.
- To feel sexier despite their older age (with cosmetic tattooing) (including cosmetic tattooing);
- To feel more appealing with advanced age.
- The sensation of rebelliousness, one’s capacity to do what one wants despite other people’s judgment, is tremendously empowering.
- Wanting to be spontaneous
2. However, Do Age-Related Skin Changes Affect Tattoos?
Now, if there is one reason some individuals should not have tattoos in their old age, then it would be age-related skin alteration. It is no secret that, as we get older, our skin ages with us. It loses youthful suppleness and becomes thinner, softer, and more delicate. The older we become, the harder it is for our skin to withstand any “trauma” or damage, especially when it comes to tattoos.
Getting a tattoo is sometimes referred to as a medical treatment where the skin is treated, injured, and needs to recover, much like a wound. However, with age, the skin finds it tougher to heal correctly and fast enough, so having a tattoo at, let us say, 50 could be challenging.
Let us take a very intricate tattoo as an example, and let us say 50 years old wants to have it. This implies that the tattoo artist will have to use specialized tattoo guns and needles to pierce the skin and inject ink repeatedly. Detailed tattoos are often exceedingly detailed and demanding on the skin. However, the skin of a 50-year-old adult is often weaker and less elastic. So, the needle penetration will be considerably more severe to accomplish, impairing the tattoo, especially the details.
Some tattoo artists will be fairly persistent and work on softer, older skin. However, in most circumstances, this results in a phenomenon known as “the blowout”. This signifies that the needle could not penetrate the skin sufficiently and inject ink below the surface. So, as a consequence, the tattoo looks smeared and not very nice at all.
So, let us point one thing out: you are not too old to have a tattoo, regardless of age. However, the age of your skin and its health may harm the tattoo. So, keep in mind that the tattoo may not seem as clean and precise as it does on the skin of a 20-year old adult.
(Michele Lamy is 77; she is a French cultural and fashion legend recognized for her magnificent hand and finger tattoos, as well as the line tattoo on her forehead.)
3. Does Getting A Tattoo At an Old Age Hurt You?
If you had had low pain tolerance at the age of 20, you would have had the same low pain tolerance at 50. The pain of tattooing is the same throughout life; it is only a question of the body placement of the tattoo and the fact that some regions hurt more than others. It is not considered that tattooing starts hurting more with ageing.
However, if you have never had a tattoo before, you should realize that, as we indicated, certain spots can hurt a lot while others produce slight discomfort. So, the locations that will ache like hell, regardless of age, are the ribs, chest/breast, underarm region, shins, feet, wrists, ankles, etc. So, any bony location with thin skin or many nerve endings would undoubtedly hurt like hell when getting tattooed.
If you want to have a tattoo but have poor pain tolerance, we suggest you go for places with thick skin or body fat, including the upper thigh/buttock area, calf, bicep area, belly area, upper back, etc. Overall, tattoo discomfort frequently mimics a bee sting, defined as mild to moderate pain.
4. The Benefits and Drawbacks of Getting a Tattoo (As You Get Older)(When you are older)
- You do not have to worry about tattoo fading – when you get a tattoo at an older age, you do not have to worry about how it will look in 10 or 20 years. Your skin is already ageing, so the tattoo will not appear worse with time. Because your skin is softer, you do not have to worry about tattoos ageing and fading, which relaxes the person receiving a tattoo.
- You may be impulsive and rebellious – many people aspire to be that cool parent or grandparent when they grow up. Moreover, some people strive to attain that by undertaking impulsive and rebellious activities like getting tattoos.
Getting tattooed at an older age is a terrific way to rebel against time, ageing, and all the things deemed forbidden for older individuals. You may battle time and honour your older, more mature self by doing whatever you want and being unbothered by other people’s ideas and judgements. Be the outstanding parent or grandparent you have always wanted to be.
- You can renew your look. If you feel like your appearance is becoming duller with age, you can sharpen your edge a bit by having a tattoo. It will make you feel hotter, more appealing, and, lastly, pleased with the way you appear. Getting older sucks, but it does not have to. You may resist age by obtaining a spartan tattoo to honour yourself and your capacity to mature yet remain peaceful and open-minded.
- Older skin is more prone to injury and bleeding. Throughout the tattooing procedure, your skin will endure more damage and trauma. That is why having tattoos at an older age implies your skin will be more damaged and prone to bleeding than younger skin. This lies in the aged skin being softer, less elastic, and more fragile.
- The tattoo may not turn out fantastic – not to mention that the tattoo artist may have a tougher time tattooing aged skin; the tattoo also could not turn out well. Because it is harder for the tattoo needle to penetrate softer, flaky skin, the result of the tattooing procedure is a smudged tattoo owing to the “blowout” phenomenon.
5. How Old Is Too Old To Get A Tattoo?
You are too old to get a tattoo if and when you decide you are too old for a tattoo. Getting a tattoo is not confined exclusively to young people; anyone may get a tattoo at whatever age they wish. It is not peculiar to young adults, so you should not be disturbed by it.
Do not bother your age if you need to express yourself or be impulsive or rebellious. Think about what the tattoo represents and how it will make you feel. Tattoos are a type of art, and regardless of your age or who you are, having a tattoo can only be another fantastic thing you get to experience in your life. Tattoos are just as legitimate at the age of 25 as they are at the age of 65, and you should never forget that!
6. Seniors Getting Tattoos: What You Should Know
- Look for a specialized tattoo artist – It is vital to get inked by someone who has specialized in working on older and softer skin. A tattoo artist will know how to manage the needle and get the ink beneath the skin surface without inflicting too much harm and bleeding.
- Find the proper tattoo design – you must go for a design that will complement your skin. Because your skin is frail and brittle, you should choose tattoos that are not overly intricate or rough on the skin. It might help if you also decided on a smaller, simpler design completed in a single session. They will recover easily and will not cause too much skin harm.
- Focus on the aftercare: once you have received the tattoo, you must take care of the inked region. Aftercare decides if the tattoo will come out excellent after healing. Ensure to cleanse the region, moisturize it, and keep it away from touching, picking, and peeling. Also, apply sunscreen if the tattoo is exposed, and wear loose garments until the tattoo has completely healed.
So, are you too old to get a tattoo? Probably not! If you desire a tattoo, forget about your age and go for it. Sure, there can be some hazards to having a tattoo at an advanced age, such as skin damage and bleeding, but this does not imply you should not have one. Sure, you will have to take care of your skin and tattoo more than normal, but your skin will recover after many weeks, and the damage will heal.
However, we urge you to contact a dermatologist or doctor before getting a tattoo. Make sure to discuss your skin condition and whether it is suited for a tattoo. Some people could also develop ink allergies, so consult specialists before making critical decisions.