Why More People Are Getting Tattoos

It seems no matter where you look these days; you can’t help but see a tattoo.  It’s a huge business across the country, but that wasn’t the case a few years ago.

Dylan Glaze runs Dark Light Tattoo in Fort Smith.  He said it’s only been in the last few years that the business has really increased.

“Even 10 years ago, you started to see it becoming more acceptable,” Glaze said. “More professionals would come in and get tattooed, doctors, lawyers, nurses, all kinds of people.”

Lachan Morlan has been getting tattoos for the last four years.

“I think tattoos are just beautiful in general,” Morlan said.

She’s not alone. The latest Pew Research Center survey showed three out of four people between the ages of 18 and 40 have a tattoo. Out of that number, 59% are female.

Hannah Chamness runs a Facebook page called Inked Ladies of the Fort.

“Being tattooed I know that we can be discriminated against, so I really wanted to shed a positive light on the tattoo community,” Chamness said.

That Facebook page along with countless websites and TV shows has propelled this industry to a $1.6 billion business.  But even with it being more widely accepted, Chamness said there are still misconceptions.

“I think they think we’re hoodlums, but we’re not,” Chamness said. “We’re moms. We’re fathers. We’re families, doctors, lawyers, and I work full time. I’m a single mom, and my kid loves them.”

Glaze said another misconception is how safe it is to get a tattoo. He said tattoo shops come under some very stringent safety guidelines from the state health department.

But what about the real reason why people get tattoos?

“For me, I know my first one I got it for sentimental reasons,” Morlan said.

“I think a lot of kids and adults are doing it creatively, emotionally, and just because they like them in general,” Chamness said.

“I think it’s cool,” Glaze said. “It looks nice on me. To some people it’s to memorialize loved ones they lost or significant moments in their life.”

For whatever reason, Glaze said the business is here to stay.

“Tattooing has been around forever,” Glaze said. “It’s not going anywhere. I think it’s going to probably gain in popularity over the next 10 years.”

17 comments

  • Brittius

    If any inspiring dermatology student wants to practice removing tattoos with a laser, let me know. I liked mine, but at my age, there’s no room in my heart for them anymore.

  • Ishmail Dentor

    Before messing up your body, you might think about what your tattoo will look like in 20 or 30 years. I have been witness to some really disgusting skin art on some older people. I mean really, think of a “tramp stamp” on the lower back of a 65 year old woman. NOT pretty.

  • arnold fudpucker

    They are called “trash stamps” and “mental midget markers” for a reason. No way around it tattoos are lower class markers.

    • Kelly

      How very sad it must be to be so small-minded. I feel very sorry for you. Your ridiculous close-minded comment made me very happy to be me today.

      • arnold fudpucker

        And I as well as most people see tattoos as ridiculous. Enjoy your mutilations you won’t be so happy about them in a few years.

      • Kelly

        Haha. “Most people, ridiculous, mutilations…” You’re living in the dark ages, my friend. I’ll just keep enjoying my mutilations, you just keep enjoying judging people. Once again, thank you for making me very grateful that I’m me today and not you.

    • Lower class

      Funny how you say lower class but my husband is completely covered in them and makes over 300k in half a year. Idiot!

    • Benyamin Josef

      Also, I guess the following people WITH tattoos are also, in your opinion, mental midgets, yes?

      Teddy Roosevelt (U.S. President)
      James K. Polk (U.S. President)
      Andrew Jackson (U.S. President)
      Winston Churchill (Prime Minister to England during WWII)
      BArry Goldwater (Conserviative Senator)

  • Houston

    I for one love ink. I have two elegant pieces and plan to get many more! All thought through, I am not for “random” tattoos. But that is my opinion , I think it should have some value in your life.

  • MB

    “Gen Nexters, Americans in the 18-25 age bracket, are not afraid to express themselves through their appearance and tattoos are the most popular form of self-expression — more than one-in-three (36%) now has one.”

    How does that equate to 3 out of 4?

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