Minimalist tattoos are all the rage, thanks to celebrities including Dua Lipa, Selena Gomez, and Hailey Bieber (via Glamour). These tiny, or baby, tattoos are more suitable for models and actresses because they’re not as difficult to cover up when it comes to participating in photo or film shoots, compared to bigger, more intricate work. They also hurt considerably less, are less expensive or time consuming, and generally require less of a drastic change to your personal style.
According to several tattoo artists who spoke to Insider, the minimalist trend shows no signs of fading, even if it seems antithetical to body art purists who believe bigger is better. As artist Gianna Caranfa opined, “People are getting a lot of cute, simple line work with the occasional line drags, which can give the tattoo a stippled line effect.” They may be small, but minimalist tattoos aren’t necessarily risk-free. If you’re considering getting one, keep the following in mind.
Minimalist tattoos are delicate by nature
First and foremost, as tattoo artist Brian Keith Thompson told Bustle, certain places will not do minimalist tattoos. This is either because the artists have no interest or because their strengths lie elsewhere. Always do your research, check out their portfolio, and make sure whichever artist you choose fully understands your vision and is onboard with it before moving forward. Keep in mind, too, that because the tattoo is so small, mistakes will be more obvious. As Thompson explains, “When they’re small and micro, sometimes the line’s not perfectly straight the way you want it.” He added, “it’s not Photoshop, it’s not a drawing, it’s your body — it’s skin.” The good news is smaller tatts heal faster so they can be easily corrected, or even added to, down the line.
Unfortunately, they fade faster, too, because there simply isn’t as much ink. No two tattoos are the same, so if you’re planning to get matching ink with your BFF, bear in mind the results won’t be identical because everybody is different. “Sometimes it’s your skin, or the way you took care of it, or the soaps you’re using, or your water … it can be numerous different things,” Thompson explained. Again, skin isn’t paper, so adjust your expectations. Overall, smaller tattoos are delicate and need to be treated accordingly, but don’t fuss or you could cause more problems. “You wanna wash it a few times a day, and then just leave it alone.”
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