Preparing for your First Tattoo

Ok, so granted neither of us are covered in tattoos...but I can remember having my first tattoo done like it was yesterday! I know how scary the anticipation is, and quite frankly, I wished there was a blog post I could have read beforehand to prepare myself (these were the days BEFORE Blogger and Facebook!) So! Without further adieu, here are my suggestions for you as you prepare for your first tattoo:

1. If you're reconsidering getting it already, stop reading. Seriously! Don't get one until you have your heart set on it. For a while.

2. Once you feel you really want a tattoo, wait. The wait time really depends on the person. KNOW what you want. Be 100% sure what you want. I can't stress this enough. When I was 16 and knew I wanted script from The Canterbury Tales on my foot, I actually waited 2 years (yeah, half of the reason was because I was underage but the other half of it is I wanted to figure out EXACTLY what I wanted, and more importantly WHY I wanted it).

3. Draw on yourself with Sharpie. I know this sounds stupid, but trust me! It gives you an idea of how great it will look...or, it will make you second guess your idea. Not confident in your own drawing abilities? Borrow a friend who can draw! I had sharpie on my foot for a good, few months when I was in high school before I actually got it done for real!

4. Ask yourself: if your grandmother can see it in plain sight, will she be offended by it? Because chances are, if it can offend your grandmother it will most likely offend someone else.

5. To piggy back off of #4...think about job interviews. Yes, granted nowadays people are a bit more accepting of body art. But really, if you think you can walk into an interview in the career field you are in/want to be in and won't offend anyone, go for it! Even better, if they ask you about your tattoo, can you tell them if it has significant meaning to you? If your internal dialogue is: "well, I was young and in college and a little tipsy"...maybe you should reconsider! More importantly: do you believe so strongly in this tattoo that you would sacrifice a corporate job for it? You've gotta think about your future!

6. *Dum dum dadum!* Do you hear wedding bells in your future? Are you OK with showing off this ink on your wedding day, in your gown, and in your wedding photos that will last forever? Yeah? Ok, great! Also know, if it's not huge you can always cover it up with make up if you really wanted to. But why would you? ;)

7. Your now or otherwise unborn children: guess what? If YOU can get a tattoo, so can they! If you don't want kids with tattoos, don't get one yourself! Don't be THAT parent!

8. 40 years down the road, can you picture yourself with this tattoo? When you're old and wrinkly, can you imagine yourself looking at this body art and smiling? Or do you see yourself ashamed and embarrassed?

9. So you've considered #1-8 and you think you can still get one and be super pleased? AWESOME! Now you need to save your money. Oh, and find a tattoo artist you LOVE. Don't settle!

10. When it comes down to the day of your tattoo, be sure to take extra money out of the bank. Getting a tattoo done is just like getting your hair or nails done...except more permanent! Make sure you plan to tip your artist. If they're in a tattoo studio, they most likely won't even see half of what you're going to pay for your ink. Be sure to tip them 20% minimum. Also, take a shower, have something to eat, and do not drink alcohol beforehand.
Well, that's about it for my words of wisdom! I hope you've found this helpful! If you feel so inclined, I LOVE looking at other people's body art, so please feel free to link up your ink in the comments below!

Love the feature photo at the top of the post?! 
I took this of my friend, Skye, for Cathy Lee Photography!


  1. first of all, yay tattoos. second, i totally agree with the draw it on you part. i actually used a sticker, since i have a bat telling of my insane love of halloween/fall, and in august they had all the fall stuff out. mine is also on my left foot, right below the ankle bone. yay. love. it's the only one i have, do you have many more?

    1. Hey there, friend! :)

      YAY tattoos! I'm soo glad I'm not the only one who drew all over herself (or rather putting stickers hehe) prior to getting it done permanently! Haha! That sounds awesome! I would love to see a picture of it!

      Yay for left foot, ankle bone tats! How sweet is that?!

      This is currently my only tattoo, however, I've been getting the tattoo itch as of late. Believe it or not, my mom and I are planning on getting matching lady bug tattoos when she comes to visit us in Phoenix!

      Following your blog now!

  2. i have 3 tattos and i do regret one of them. but i have one on my foot that i love, i could not get it in the place that yours is because of liability purposes. What does yours mean? We just got done reading the Canterbury Tales in my english college class is why i ask

    1. You regret one?? :(. How come? My tattoo means "love conquers all" in Latin. In TCT, it is the Nun's Priestess who wears this saying around her neck. I loved the way she was described. It really spoke to me in high school. It resonates with me on many levels.


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