Tattoo Blog

Art that adorns the flesh…

Tattoo For One?

July 27th, 2010 by

The topic of scratchers brings out a lot of different opinions from a lot of different people.  It’s fair to say that it’s a highly contentious subject with some feeling that scratching is a valid method by which to become a tattoo artist and others (myself included) who are of the opinion that scratching is just plain unacceptable.

However, probably the biggest challenge facing those of us who want to eliminate scratchers from the tattoo scene is the easy availability of tattoo machines on the internet.  If you’ve got access to the internet and few spare bucks, you can have a tattoo machine delivered to your front door in a mere matter of weeks.  From that point onward anyone can tattoo all they want.

Despite this easy access to tattoo machines and the alive and well scratching scene, I’m not really so interested in talking about that this time.  What I am interested in talking about is whether or not it should be legal to tattoo yourself with equipment bought on the internet, with no professional training whatsoever.  At the moment in England, that very notion is causing a bit of a controversy.  Tattooing one’s self is becoming a bit of a trend, according to an article at BBC News.

“The law says you can tattoo yourself, but tattooing others must be supervised by a licensed premises. Both tattooist and client must also be over the age of 18. The regulations aim to ensure health and safety procedures are followed, with the correct kit and equipment used.”

With the rising popularity of DIY tattoos, many people are calling for a change in the law that will make tattooing one’s self – DIY style – illegal.

“Many have been done with kits bought over the internet for as little £60, they say. Environmental health professionals fear that amateur tattoos have a high risk of infection, and are calling for them to be banned.

“If it is cheap and cheerful, it is going to be nasty,” says Andrew Griffiths from the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health.

“I don’t think they should be available at all because I think they present a great risk. If it is possible to ban them then I think that is what we would like to see.”

Now, there are of course, at least two sides to this argument.  On one hand it could be said that banning people from tattooing themselves prevents health problems, and the spread of blood born diseases.  On the other hand, it could be argued that no one has the right to tell people what they can or can’t do to their own bodies.  Tattooing others without proper equipment or training is certainly out of the question, but I do think the question needs to be asked, is it okay to tattoo yourself regardless of your ability or experience?  What do you think?

Leave a Comment

Please note: Comment moderation is enabled and may delay your comment. There is no need to resubmit your comment.