Skip To Content

    16 Tattoo Horror Stories That Just Might Permanently Scar You

    Thanks, I hate it!

    Recently, we asked the BuzzFeed Community to share their tattoo horror stories. Here are some of the wildest ones!!!

    NBC

    1. The TikTok Live Debacle:

    "This was my own fault, but I bought a tattoo gun and was practicing on my TikTok Live. I was a little drunk and said if someone Venmoed me, I would freehand tattoo whatever they wanted on my leg. So...now I have a freehand tattoo of a Juul."

    katea47f60d135

    2. The Flea:

    "I live in a town where we have an amazing shop. Been in the same spot for over 20 years now. So guess where I went when I turned 18 and wanted a tattoo for my dad who'd died six months prior? The new shop that'd only been open six months. My artist was actually talented and I'm happy with the ink but there's a small line coming from the center of it that shouldn't be there. Why? Because a fucking FLEA jumped out of his hair and onto my leg while he was doing it."

    mssempiternal710

    3. The Touch-Up:

    "I went to one tattoo artist and then went back later on for a touch-up. When I went for the touch-up, she said, 'Whoever did your tattoo didn't do good line work.' I told her she was the one who did my tattoo. She just kept denying it!"

    gatlinkara

    4. The Fifth Element x Microsoft Collab:

    buzzfeed.com

    "Never let your kid choose your tattoo colors. My Fifth Element tat became the Microsoft symbol."

    k4ff0bbdff

    5. The Pin-cident™:

    "In my 8:30 a.m. bio class, the girl next to me asked me if she could see one of the pins off of my backpack. I said sure. She then proceeded to use a lighter to heat it up and sanitize it, put it into a thing of ballpoint pen ink, and touch up her stick and poke tattoo. IN THE MIDDLE OF CLASS! She even tried to give the pin back to me afterwards — it was covered in ink and blood."

    cecils44fda6313

    6. The Surprise:

    "I was casually dating a guy who I was thinking about breaking things off with, but on Valentine's Day, we had a plan to go get tattoos and pay for each other’s — each of us were going to get something we wanted. I went first. I decided on a cross on my back. When my tattoo was done, I went next door to a deli and got some orange juice, and made a phone call. When I walked back into the shop, I was horrified to see he had decided to get THE SAME TATTOO on his wrist. He excitedly told everyone for days how we got matching tattoos."

    kimm4de8f31fc

    7. The Russian Doll:

    "I asked the guy tattooing me for a Russian doll and it came out looking like a weird little butt plug. It got infected because the artist was appalling and I had to have the color refilled later, after the weird scabby mess had healed."

    —Hannah Stevenson, Facebook

    ESPN

    8. The Catfish:

    "I have a family member who was talking to a love interest over the internet for a while, and they hadn't met in person. One day, her friend got on her account and told him that she had passed from cancer. He then got a cancer awareness ribbon tattoo as a memorial to her. Long story short, she didn't have cancer — she just couldn't think of a good way to say she didn't want to talk to him anymore."

    kittytoes

    9. The "Gift":

    "My brother's girlfriend had the phrase 'pray for your victory' in kanji and kana tattooed on her upper arm as a surprise 'gift' for my brother. It was meant to encourage him to do his best in competitive swimming or something.

    When she showed her tattoo to my dad roughly a month later, he looked at it and looked at my brother. Me and other siblings behind Dad started snickering. My brother defensively went 'What?'

    My dad was like, 'Son, I know you aren't that interested in your Japanese heritage, but surely you must notice they're upside down?' Turned out, his girlfriend got my other brother to write down the phrase on a paper sheet and she took it to her tattooist. This guy somehow turned the phrase upside down during the process."

    —Cat Alle, Facebook

    10. The Sneeze:

    "My tattoo artist sneezed and his pen bumped into my arm. I now have this little squiggly line on my forearm that will be there forever."

    ajb467d68dfe

    CBS

    11. The Censored St*ck and P*ke:

    "I got a stick and poke when I was 13 of the initials of a club I was in. Now five years later, it’s still there. The letters were C.U.N.T. Yup, don't do stick and pokes."

    kennybarbiejenson

    12. The Orchids:

    "My friend decided her first tattoo was going to be orchids on her arm. When telling the tattoo artist her idea, he didn't even know what orchids looked like, even though he had one on his desk. Her arm now looks like there are several vaginas on it."

    sarahcnolan227

    13. The Rocket Ship:

    "I was 17 years old, at a New Year's Eve party, and significantly intoxicated. I got a rough drawing of a rocket ship after my favorite band Patent Pending. It looks like a 3-year-old drew it. When I was a day care teacher the kids used to ask to color it."

    lotsajackiecarson

    CBS

    14. The Birds:

    "I got a tattoo of birds on my hip. The ink in the middle one bled, and most of them don't even look like birds. I've also gotten comments about how they look like they're flying out from my vagina."

    jennadtrecartin

    15. The Tweety Bird

    "I never choose 'off the wall' for my tattoos, preferring to have them designed by a very talented tattooist in my hometown, but I was young and stupid when I got this one. It was Tweety Bird…on my calf. Ugh. By the time I got home it was infected. He lost fingers, eyes, and beak – leaving a mess of a bird that resembled a yellow blob."

    —Lee-Marie Brough, Facebook

    16. And lastly, The Soundtrack:

    "I got a tiny heart tattoo on my chest and during the process the artist decided to BLAST Nickelback and sing along to the song. Ugh."

    karlar49d7e4dce

    Roadrunner Records

    Be sure to follow the BuzzFeed Community on Facebook and Twitter for your chance to be featured!!!

    BuzzFeed Daily

    Keep up with the latest daily buzz with the BuzzFeed Daily newsletter!

    Newsletter signup form