How Tattoos Age

How Tattoos Age
08/11/2017 SarahB
In Tattoos, Uncategorised

Every time i get a new tattoo i’m met with the same response from my parents.

A long sigh followed by ‘whats that going to look like when you’re older?’ this usually riles up my inner teenager and i end up responding with an over exaggerated eye roll and ‘still awesome’. But they have a point, everything ages, so what will my tattoos look like in 5/10/15 years? What factors affect how tattoos age? Is there anything you can do to keep it looking fresh?

Everyday your body is getting busy.

Creating new skin cells and shedding old ones and since ink is in your skin, this is going to affect your tattoos appearance.

Some areas experience more wear and tear that others, for example hands and feet you used more than say your back so tattoos here tend to not last as long. I got my first tattoo almost 10 years ago now. a small swallow on my hip, just an outline from a picture i found on google. Now its almost completely unrecognisable; he (i think he’s a he) has no face, the lines in his feathers are gone, its just a blurry blue/black mess tbh but being rubbed by my underwear every day must take its toll.

Need to know how to look after your tattoo? Read our post on tattoo aftercare here.

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So what affects how long your tattoo will last?

  1. Placement.

    Where you have your tattoo will impact how long it lasts. “high traffic” areas such as hands, feet, fingers, lips, anywhere your clothes are tight and rub so around the waistband of your jeans.

  2. The type of ink used.

    Make sure your artist is using high quality Inks as these tend to hold better and last longer.


3. The colour of the ink used.

Light colours tend to fade quicker, as do colours without an outline like you see in watercolour tattoos, something to consider when you’re planning your next one.


There are of course things you can do to keep your tattoo looking fresh for as long as possible.

Follow the healing guidelines to a tee. See our blog post about it here.

Keep Hydrated.

Exfoliate and moisturise on the reg.

Wear high factor suncream.

Accept that some areas will need a few go’s to stick ie fingers, inner lip etc

Go for top ups!

Some artists will top up for free in the first few months following your tattoo. For minor line work i tend to ask artists to top them up whenever i’m getting something new done since the ink and needles are already set up.

If i’ve put you off getting a tattoo check out our clothing.

A 10yr old tattoo is never going to look as good as a fresh one, its just something we have to accept and do our best to keep them looking as good as possible. On the bright side you can always get a re-work or cover up, or for something that stays fresh for life you can buy one of our products ;p

Cheers Guys,

Sarah x

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