Friday, July 27, 2007

Not Quite So Permanent Anymore

I don't have any tattoos. And I don't want any, especially now when everybody and their brother has one. But I must admit that I'd considered getting one a time or two over the years, especially years ago, when they were not as ubiquitous as they are today. Back in the 70s, fewer people had tattoos, with them being confined mainly to military personnel and bikers. And, of course, there were the plain blue "jailhouse" tattoos. Tattoos on women were rarer yet and the ones they got were tiny and inconspicuous -- huge tramp stamps were unheard of.

One thing always stopped me from going through with it. I'd always ask myself the question, "Will I like this on my body when I'm sixty". I never could honestly answer yes, so I remain tattoo-free to the present day.

During my years on the police force, I arrested many people with tattoos of varying levels of taste. Most of the older people I saw with tattoos said they regretted having them and wished they could get rid of them, as they'd faded and stretched over the years or they were tattooed with the names of women they no longer loved.

There was one man we arrested that I'll never forget. He was nearly completely covered in tattoos and he had them everywhere. And I mean everywhere -- the man had ended up with a green and blue dick.

Tattoos can be removed, but it is a costly and painful procedure requiring several treatments. But there is something new on the horizon that will be quicker and less painful for people wanting to get rid of tattoos they now regret getting.

This fall, a new type of combustible dye will be available at tattoo parlors that will make it easier to remove unwanted tattoos. It will be permanent but removable ink. The dye pigments are in microscopic beads coated with a safe, biodegradable plastic.

If a person wants to get rid of the tattoo in the future, it will be completely removed with a single, less painful laser treatment. The tattoos will cost more than traditional tattoos, but it would seem worth it to me for the "escape hatch" feature.

Though this new procedure won't make me change my mind about getting a tattoo, it provides another choice for those who do end up getting them.


To learn more about the new dyes visit this website.

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