Skin Deep: Truth about Tattoos in America

Tattooing is the art of inserting ink into an inner layer of skin, creating patterns and pictures. Despite tattooing’s modern association with counter-culture, the art itself goes back thousands of years. In fact, more people may have a tattoo than you might realize. This infographic details revealing statistics about tattoos in America.

The first sign of tattooing in the world was found on the Iceman, the remains of a man frozen thousands of years ago. The word tattooing itself, however, has a more modern origin in Western understanding, as it was first recorded in the journals of the traveler Captain Cook, as he journeyed to Tahiti. The process, though, has stayed the same over the years. For example, originally, items like knives, chisels and picks were used to break the skin and insert the ink. Today, a modern tattoo machine is capable of using a needle that can puncture the skin more than 50 to 300 times in a minute.

Some of the statistics may surprise you. While the process of tattooing itself is much safer than most people assume, the inks are another story. Since they aren’t regulated by the FDA, they may contain a number of chemicals that might make a feel people shy about getting a tattoo. The most common heavy metal people are likely to be familiar with is lead. While it isn’t ideal, lead still produces some of the best gray wash. Before getting a tattoo, make sure to ask your artist what kind of inks they use, and research what chemicals they contain.

The infographic details other information about tattoos such as the health risks involved, and how much money is spent on tattoos in America. Do you think men or women are more likely to get a tattoo? What political party represents the most tattooed people? Read the infographic to learn more!