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China Doll | 10:52 Tue 05th Sep 2006 | Body & Soul
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Morning All,

My cousin would like to get a tattoo of a shooting start, very small, about 3cm. The tattoo is to serve as a reminder of a family member.

At the moment she is considering getting it on her foot as she does not want the tattoo to be visible all the time.

Her list of questions include...

How much would this hurt?
How much would this cost?
Does it cost more to get the tattoo designed?
Where else on the body could she have this tattoo so that it wouldn't be seen? (She's just after different opinions)
With or without colour?
If she has colour does this hurt or cost more?
Can tattoo parlours put on a temporary tattoo so that she can walk around with it for a while and see if she likes having one?

Between us, we know little to nothing about tattoos and would really appreaciate the advice.

China xx


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Hey China,
I can only answer a few of your questions!!

All tattoos hurt so she would just have to brave it. The most painful part is the outline, the rest just feels like you're being scratched (well it did on me anyway!!). I think the foot would be quite painful to have it done as it is very bony but tell her to clench her fists and she'll be fine. It's worth the pain!!
I have a small tattoo on my back and it cost me �20 5 years ago.
When a tattoo means a lot to the person it is well worth having. I adore mine and would definately have another one if it could be well hidden away - I do like the idea of the foot. Hope this helps a bit but I can't answer any of the others!!
Why a tattoo to remember someone. The person stays with you in your memories. A nice framed picture would be a better choice.
Question Author
Just a personal thing pea pod my dear. It has a different significance as well.

Thanks Loobie.
Right, in order.

Yes, it will hurt. I deal with mine by breathing in when they are loading the ink, and then trying to make my exhale last as long as they tattoo for (they kind of do it in spurts, lasting about 20 seconds or so). It stops you tensing up and moving, and gives you something else to think about.

You'd have to ask the artist how mush it would cost. Prices vary.

It shouldn't cost more to have them draw something for you.

I've got one in my armpit which nobody sees, but some places won't tattoo there as it's an awkward place. I've also got one on my wrist that goes under my watch, but that was quite painful. Anywhere that is normally covered by clothes will be pretty secret.

With or without colour is really a personal preference.

Colour will cost more than black and grey, but it shouldn't hurt more. If they use any white, it will hurt more, but I don't know if that's because they use it last, so they are going over more sensitive skin, or if the ink has to go deeper or what.

No, they can't put a temporary one on. A tattoo is ink in your skin and it is there for life. Don't believe the 5 year tattoo idea - I had 2 done about 8 years ago, and they aren't going anywhere. Your best bet could be to get a transfer, and just have it for a few weeks, and then see how you feel. But remember that it does take a while to get used to a tattoo. All mine looked wierd when I first had them, because you have to get used to the fact that your skin looks different.

Let us know how you get on!!
Hey China
Some parlours can give some kind of temporary image. But noone should get ink unless they're 100% sure.
As for costs etc it should be quite cheap for such a small tat. Shouldn't be any more if they design it.
Loobie is right, the outline hurts the most. And close to the bone is also more sensitive. I have a tat that goes from my knee to my ankle and, although painful, I could hold a conversation throughout. Happy place lol.
Colour on a tat that size also shouldn't cost any more. It also does hurt slighlty less I've found.
Shop around. Some less desirable places will take advantage of the unknowing.
And as I said earlier, do not get one unless 100% sure. They are for life. Try imagining yourself as elderly with the tat. Would you still like it?
Sorry about the novel I've just written. Hope all goes well for your cousin.
tatoos hurt... some people tolerate them better than others... its all to do with your pain threshhold, and the longer the tatoosist in working on you the more you get used to the pain, however it is a pain that hurts... i would describe it like, the outlining part being done with a hot compass thats being dragged over your skin.

i would think a small one would cost in the region of �25, i have on eon my lower back, a celtic band about 2" wide x 7" long in black and that cost me �70!!

the place i went, no, they didnt charge extra for designing it, as long as it was somthing no too complex.

how about place across from her belly button.

colour is people preference, i like it all black, but obviously different designs dont always allow that....

colour or black is put on in the same way.

they will not put a temp one on, but they do use a transfer to trace it onto your body and you d get an idea befre hand what it will look like before the work actually starts.


i have a tattoo in my lower back and yes it did hurt but its not a painful hurt in a kind of way, its a bit like sunburn !? you can have your tattoo designed by a good tattooist but this will cost more! the foot is a good place to have a tattoo or maybe the bottom of her back as she could always cover it up with a t shirt, and not forgeting 3cm is not really that big it could be easily covered anyway. sorry couldnt be more help Sammi x
Just from my experience...

Yes it's painful but not unbearable by any stretch.

I found that tattooing over bony areas is much more painful, so I'd avoid the foot if I was to get another.

I've heard of 'semi permanent' tattoos but never seen or tried them so I don't know how well they work.

I can't stress enough how important it is that you find yourself a reputable tattooist.

There's some helpfull info at the following web site spx

I don't want to put your friend off, I have three tattoos, two large ones on my back and an armband, and I've never regretted them. Just make sure its what they want and find a good parlour!

Best wishes and let us know how it goes.
i had a small tattoo on the top of my foot, at the base of the three toes that are furthest away from the big toe. In 2 colour this cost me �25. It hurt, but not as much as I thought it was gonna, and obviously not as much as others think it will as I get a kinda incredulous raised eyebrow look when I say it didnt really hurt. In fact halfway through, i said to the tattooist 'is that as bad as it gets', and the answer was yes. i think because its a small tattoo, it didnt take long enough to really become a problem. however my friend had a larger tatoo done offcentre, lower back, and she was nearly sick!! hers did take about 4 or 5 times longer though.
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Cousin says to say thank you to everybody. Thank you from me too xxxx

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