It’s the age old question, a question that still to this day is not completely answered. It’s deeply personal and every person you meet will have a different answer.
In short, in my opinion, yes.
But there’s so much more to it. Yes they are painful. You have to remember you have a needle, or in the case of shading, several needles repeatedly penetrating your skin through to the dermis. That process hardly screams pain-free.
But it’s not as bad as it sounds. Yes needles are going into your skin, but so do the ones in acupuncture and you don’t feel those at all.
The first 10 minutes are pretty tough as your body adjusts to the pain and your adrenaline kicks in. But once you settle and a relax (tensing up makes the entire thing worse) it is easier to take the pain.
Of course I am talking about tattoos that a going to take longer than an hour. The most I’ve sat in one session is five and a half hours of actual tattooing time. It wasn’t easy. It is physically draining. And different parts of the body are different in terms of pain.
Those fun infographics on Pinterest of the pain for different parts of the body aren’t completely wrong – although every one will have a different opinion. I think foot tattoos are hard work and incredibly painful and uncomfortable, where as a girl I lived next door to in halls at university was the complete opposite and had no problems with her foot.
It is also the cleaning process that causes some pain. Wiping that fresh wound repeated is intensely sore and irritating – though it is required.
General consensus is that it is more annoying and uncomfortable than actual pain. It’s a scratchy feeling that gets annoying, plus coupled with an unusual sitting/laying position (you’re usually contorted in some way for a long sitting) and hours of being in a similar position, the whole process drains you.
Don’t worry – they aren’t as bad as this Youtube Video!
How do you feel about the pain of tattoos?
And how do you deal with the pain?
*image from Pinterest