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28 Secrets Tattoo Artists Will Never Tell You

It's not exactly the rock 'n' roll lifestyle everyone thinks it is.

1. Ink gets everywhere.

2. It's literally on all our clothes.

3. And it can go through clothes.

I had dropped some ink on my jeans last week. Now I have a nipple on my knee all day! #tattooartistproblems

4. Buying cheap gloves is never worth it.

5. No one comes into the shop one day and walks out with a full sleeve the next.

6. Clients who don't listen to aftercare instructions are usually the same clients who complain about their tattoos.

7. Carpal tunnel syndrome and swollen knuckles can be part of the job.

8. As can backache if you're working at a tricky angle.

9. We can't decide what tattoo you should get.

10. And even when people think they know what they want, it can be pretty hard to understand them.

11. There's no way we're doing a drawing without a deposit.

12. We're happy to make changes before we put ink to skin, but that doesn't mean it's not slightly annoying.

13. And writing the same word out in 10 different styles can get tedious.

14. We really aren't magicians.

15. Asking for a discount or complaining about our prices is annoying and insulting.

16. All tattoos hurt.

17. It's pretty hard to tattoo someone who's freaking out about the pain or even fainting.

18. It's really annoying when you bring all your friends and family into the studio.

19. Nothing is worse than a no-show.

20. It's definitely not a 9–5 job, and you'll pretty much have to give up Saturdays forever.

21. We don't earn as much as you pay us.

Got a new case of shiny new inks and needles coming, shame my purse is £300 lighter! #tattooistproblems

We usually have to pay the shop some of it, and a lot goes toward supplies.

22. Everything we work with needs to be super sterilised, so it's really frustrating when you drop a whole load of sterilised cling film on the floor.

23. Part of the job can be shaving a man's bum.

24. Seriously, we get really intimate with some clients.

Today I learned I can hold a conversation while tattooing an entire asscrack+hole. #tattooartistproblems

25. Doing big blocks of black can be a little bit dull.

26. Sometimes when we're proud of a tattoo, we wish we could print it off and frame it.

27. It's amazing actually being paid to do art every day.

28. But meeting people and learning a little about their lives is definitely the best part of the job.

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