I Got My First Tattoo!
As you know, it’s been a topic of discussion in my blog posts for quite some time (remember my inspiration post?). It’s actually been almost a year, and I finally did it! I got my first tattoo! So this blog post will be dedicated to the process, who I went to, with photos of having it done, and talking about it, as well as ideas for future tattoos! I’ve been excited to write this blog post for months actually, and more excited about having it done, and now the time is finally here for me to share it with you all! I wont lie, with my high anxiety levels, I was extremely nervous and scared leading up to it, and close to having a panic attack an hour or so before, but I pushed through it and I felt extremely comfortable as soon as I was in the chair. So, lets get to it! Check my Instagram highlight by clicking here to watch videos of me having it done!
Who was the tattoo artist?
I did a lot of research online for tattoo artists that were experienced with my Ehlers Danlos Sysndrome type skin, but more importantly, I wanted someone who was extremely talented at space/galaxy style tattoos. After a lot of research last year, I came across Joe Phillips (Space Bangers) on Instagram (check his Instagram portfolio here) and immediately fell in love with his work. When I messaged him for the first time in the summer, he had already had a client with EDS too, so knew about it and had experience in the stretchy skin department, which was amazing. Joe is based in Barry in Wales, so I took the trip down by train to see him on Friday 3rd May 2019. When I was in Wales last time, I was there for a consultation so I booked in my date and waited patiently. It’s not hard to get to from Bath at all actually, it’s a 1 hour train ride from Bath Spa to Cardiff Central, then you get a 20 minute train to Cadoxton and Joe’s shop is literally about a 3 minute walk from the station, so it worked out perfectly.
Choosing what I wanted!
Now if you’re a regular reader, you will know that I’ve been toying with so many ideas for my tattoo and I still do have a lot of ideas actually for future ones, but for the first one, I wanted something small, fairly simple, and elegant, but that represented me perfectly. Since I love space and galaxy, I wanted to use Joe’s amazing skills at galaxy scenes and nebula to create the little gem that I have. I wanted an elongated diamond on the side of my arm that would show from the back and from the front if I raise my arm. It’s only small, but it packs a punch as it’s filled with purple, blue, aqua nebula and little white stars, so it’s like a little window into my mind! I thought this was the best idea to ease myself into it as if it was too painful or I wasn’t getting on with it, a small tattoo which can be hidden sounded the safest.
Did the tattoo hurt?
Nope! I have a fairly high pain tolerance due to always having suffered problems since birth, or maybe it’s genetic, but I take pain extremely well and can go into a meditative type of mind to block it out, so I was prepared for the worst. As I was lying there on my front with my arm back towards Joe, I was worried about how sharp it would be, so I braced myself and he started. I turned to Adam and said ‘oh, that’s not even bad’ and started laughing. It’s like a little surface cat scratch, sometimes gets a bit hot, can be a bit uncomfortable when the ink is wiped, but other than that, it wasn’t bad at all. Through some of the shading I could have napped, I would only rate it as a 3-4 out of 10. However, where I had it done wasn’t very sensitive and it was only 20 minutes. I could imagine if you’re there for hours and having it done in a sensitive place like your chest, backs of the legs, feet etc. then it will hurt a lot more, but for me, it was next to nothing and that’s why I’d easily have more tattoos done in the near future.
Getting the tattoo done!
Joe had said due to where it was placed, I would need to lie on my front, so my arm was still. He did a free hand drawing first so I could check the placement and size, and then we discussed the colours to use for the inside shading, and the outline. He started out by doing the outline in a dark sapphire colour blue, and then started by doing the outer areas with the shading in purple and blue, then worked his way to the middle with the aqua and sea foam shades, then finally finished it off with little white stars. The white stars were probably a little sharper than any of it as the needle is quite fine, but it wasn’t really painful. Like I said, it was over within about 20 minutes, and I kept checking it throughout, and Joe was extremely reassuring and talked a lot too, which was great. I definitely recommend him if you want a tattoo artist who’s light handed and really skilled in the galaxy department, but even his fine line black work is stunning!
So after having it done, Joe obviously wrapped it in the clear plastic like every tattooist does, and it’s my duty to keep it clean for the coming weeks. He recommended coconut oil to keep it moisturised to stop it from scabbing too much, and that works a treat. I’m using Tattoo Goo soap to keep it clean with antibacterial as it’s fragrance and alcohol free, which is important. I will say it feels like a mild sunburn for the next few days after getting it done, and then it gets itchy and starts to peel, which is where I’m at on day 6. It’s only just starting to flake, and go a bit faded, but with me and the EDS, it’s going to take a lot longer to heal than a regular person so I’m making sure I’m vigilant with my upkeep to eliminate any infections. I wash it 3-4 times a day, and moisturise it about 6 times a day. But if you have any questions about my process, please let me know!
My next tattoo ideas!
Yep, there’s about 5 in total that I have ideas for, these include cherry blossom, but I’m not sure if I want that in the same location as this one, but on the other arm, or on my collar bone, that’s a tough choice. A black shaded wolf on my wrist, with some sort of abstract art incorporated into it, or galaxy, I haven’t narrowed that down. A music note and stars as well, and I of course want a moon phase type tattoo on my collarbone too, so there’s a lot of ideas floating around in my head, which are going to need figuring out! I did also want a sapphire gemstone in the shape of a raindrop, for my blog name, but I need to decide if that’s too personal or if it would be something I still liked in years to come. Once I have narrowed these ideas down, I will be booking in with Joe again as I love his work! You only have to see his Instagram to see how amazing it is!
Anyway, I will leave you with my photos below so you can see what it was like getting it done! As this is my very first tattoo, I’m very inexperienced and would love to hear your stories about healing, how long it took, what your tattoos look like etc.! But as always, let me know what you think of it! Don’t forget to watch my Instagram highlights with videos in to watch me having it done too! Lorna xx.
And this is how it looks in selfies, which is absolutely perfect and just what I wanted! I’m in love with it and can’t stop looking at it! I hope you all like it too!