Homemade tattoos: risks and consequences
Why you should not do them and what are their risks
20 February 2023
When we mention homemade tattoos, something sounds wrong.
When starting with the tattoo, some take not so recommended paths for different reasons: due to lack of knowledge or to save a little money, among others.
Part of the job of a good tattoo artist is to respect certain basic and essential points regarding the tattoo. We will talk about this practice and its consequences.
What are homemade tattoos?
Homemade tattoos are tattoos that are done by amateurs anywhere apart from a studio or regulated place. Many beginners tattoo in very risky ways and, often, without using machines.
The lack of resources is a big issue when it comes to talking about this type of tattoo. Some, because they cannot have the tattoo machines or the necessary equipment, end up working manually using the Handpoke method.
The Handpoke is an ancient tattoo technique. The first civilizations made tattoos with this technique and until now, many tattoo artists have it as their preference.
It consists of using a needle attached to a specialized stick for this work, by which punctures are made one by one in the skin to inject the ink. In this way, the tattoo is done more slowly and in a way, we could say, is “hand-made”.
But let's make an important distinction.
It is one thing to be a specialized professional tattoo artist, with experience, who uses this technique as a hallmark of his style, and another is to be a beginner with much less experience, where carelessness is within reach.
Risks of homemade tattoos
Homemade tattoos do not follow the necessary basic hygiene standards, and in some cases, the correct elements may not be used either.
There are some tattoos made with Chinese ink instead of tattoo ink… A very serious mistake!
The inks and elements specially designed for use in tattoos are approved and tested to avoid allergies, infections and adverse effects.
This is why not following hygiene standards implies a great health risk since the chances of infections grow exponentially.
When you tattoo, you make wounds on the skin, and this is not something minor. That is why you must have everything in good condition and use the specialized elements for this use.
Some people perform this type of tattoo with sewing needles, without gloves and the correct sterilization. Nothing further from our recommendations!
Tattooing always implies a great responsibility.
Are there legal consequences?
These types of tattoos can not only pose a health risk, but they can also be on the verge of illegality. Not everyone can tattoo, nor can they be done anywhere.
First, you should know the Hygiene and Safety rules for tattooing.
This is something basic that every tattoo artist should know. Even those who want to be professional tattooists must take a course on safety and hygiene.
The space used for tattooing must be approved by these standards and must be supervised by a health inspection.
In some countries, it is necessary to have a licence to tattoo that requires meeting certain requirements to carry out this practice.
Many, when starting, skip the requirements and set up an improvised studio anywhere. Well, it's time to become aware because in our profession we work with people's bodies and health. And this is serious stuff!
If you want to know more about this, visit our post Unregulated tattoos: You get what you pay.
Alternatives to homemade tattoos
Even though we don't accept them, some people will still make them. Given this, we would like to raise awareness and show you that an alternative is possible.
If it is a money issue, there are some-patched beginner tattoo kits perfect for taking these first steps.
You will need to learn how to use the machines, and we always encourage you to practice on synthetic skin before pricking yourself or others. In this article, we tell everything about it, Synthetic skins for tattooing.
But if you are truly interested in tattooing with the Handpoke technique, we recommend that you first take a course on it because making a tattoo is not that simple. There is a whole technique that you must include in your work.
If it is your first tattoo, no worries, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about it and anticipate some common mistakes in our article about Tips for making your first tattoo.
In short, avoid making tattoos willy-nilly. First do some research on the subject, search for information and contact a professional. A tattoo artist will know how to guide you better than anyone else, and of course, take care of your client's health!
If you need any clarification, you are going to make your first tattoo, or you want to start in this profession, drop us a comment!
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