07 Mar 2014
March 7, 2014

Change Is Not Regret

Regret < Change

It’s commonly believed that tattoos are forever, obviously this isn’t true since we do laser tattoo removal on a daily basis, to completely remove tattoos or fade them enough to facilitate a cover-up.  Yet, headlines seem to come every few weeks with new statistics about regret, and some go as far to shame those with tattoos or their choice of placement.  In so many other aspects of our daily lives, it’s socially acceptable to change, in fact we’re basically encouraged to do so.

As a society, we change:

  • Our hair cut, style & color
  • Clothing
  • House or apartment
  • Car or truck
  • Jewelry (traditional and body modifications)
  • Eye color (via contacts)
  • Tan (naturally and fake bake)
  • Teeth (braces, whiten or veneers)
  • Physical appearance (plastic surgery, fitness, diet, etc.)
  • …and so on

Why then is it so socially unacceptable to change a tattoo, regardless of reason? And why does it have to be for regret?  This shaming needs to stop.

Virtually every credible news agency has put out a story about tattoo regret over the last few years.  Take a look at what CNN, Huffington Post, and The Daily Mail have to.  Then there are the link bait satire sites, such as The Chive, Cracked, and Buzzfeed, which seem to take pleasure in shaming someone for their choices.

A 2012 Harris poll on tattoo statistics shows 21% of the US population has at least one tattoo.  The article goes on to say, among those with a tattoo, most have never regretted getting a tattoo (86%), but this is where things get foggy.  Do they regret the tattoo or is that just how the question was worded for the poll?  To what extent and what part do these 14% of the tattooed population regret? Do they regret the actual tattoo, the placement, the artist who didn’t accomplish the desired artwork, the size?  There are so many variables this question almost seems loaded.

We never ask who did your tattoo or why you want to fade, cover or remove it.  We focus on GOing forward and making the best out of what the future will bring.  That being said, some of our clients have shared why they are making the choice to come for laser tattoo removal, and the reasons may surprise you.

  • I want to get a bigger, more cohesive tattoo, this small one is in the way of making that happen
  • I want to enter the military but due to visible tattoos I can’t
  • I changed my mind about the tattoo that was started and in order to finish it I need to fade it
  • This tattoo no longer represents who I am or what I’m about

Regret almost never comes into the conversation, change does and that’s OK.  We all change, develop and evolve. The negative stigma with tattoos and shaming needs to stop.

One of the more prominent Hollywood stars undergoing laser tattoo removal is Megan Fox.  She’s been going through treatments to remove a portrait on her arm of Marilyn Monroe, saying in a Us Weekly interview, “She was a negative person, she was disturbed, bipolar. I do not want to attract this kind of negative energy in my life.”  It’s really important to focus on her lack of the word regret.  An iconic figure who once inspired her so much she got a portrait tattooed on her, no longer does.  Her opinion of Marilyn changed as time went on, that’s OK.