Don't follow the trend

Photo illustration by Shane Bradshaw

Growing up in the society we do today, tattoos and piercings have become increasingly prominent and accepted. We believe it is OK to choose to have tattoos and piercings, so long as they are wanted for a reason and not merely to follow a trend.

Tattoos and piercings have become much more popular among those in our generation. Whether it be a nose piercing, a cartilage piercing or an eyebrow piercing, the trend of piercings is growing. And the acceptance of tattoos is only growing as well.

Even though we are not yet in the parts of our lives where we have to worry about the consequences of having all these piercings or tattoos, we should consider the consequences that they can have on our professional lives later when it does matter.

Luckily, the concern of having tattoos or piercings to get a job has declined a lot over the years, but that doesn’t mean that we can cover ourselves in them and still expect a job to be OK with that. There are still company policies that prohibit excessive piercings and for tattoos to be visible.

According to a Harris Poll, tattoos are prevalent among younger Americans, with close to half of the Millennials saying they have at least one. The annual amount of money spent on tattoos in the U.S is $1.6 billion, according to statisticbrain.

What should be a concern to us though, is the reasons why. Why do we want a tattoo or tattoos? Why do we want all these piercings? At the age of 18, there is no one to stop us or tell us that we can’t get tatted or pierced.

But, we shouldn’t be OK with ourselves if we are getting them to follow the trend and because it is “cool.” This goes more towards tattoos because piercings can heal or close up. Tattoos are permanent and should have a significant meaning behind them. They shouldn’t be an impulsive decision, or done because of peer pressure from friends with tattoos or excessive piercings. They should be carefully considered beforehand, and teens should be 100 percent certain that they want this design or piece of artwork to be on their body for the rest of your life.

At the age of 18, there is no one to stop us from going out to get “inked” or pierced. But, we shouldn’t get them if it is just to follow the trend or get it because it is “cool.”

Though tattoos can now be removed, the removal process is not always guaranteed. Some tattoos will only partially fade after several laser treatments and can leave permanent raised scarring, according to realself. A 2006 survey in the American Academy of Dermatology stated that 24 percent of 18-50 year-olds have tattoos and 17 percent have considered tattoo removal, according to CNN.

So, instead of getting a tattoo in high school or at a younger age, maybe think about it for a few years and if it is what you really want still, a few years later in or after college, then get it.


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