Thursday, April 9, 2015

Image of Tattoo

            The tattoo business has grown tremendously. Tattoo shops can be found everywhere, from high SES neighborhood to low SES neighborhood. In certain places, they can be overwhelming (for example, the strip area of Las Vegas). The rise of tattoo business can mostly be contributed by the amount of people that are interested in getting tattooed nowadays. From gang members to white collars, many people are engaging in this form of body modification. In recent years, the amount of women getting inked is about the same as the men, however, people’s perception of tattooed women is much worse than tattooed men. Males who are tattooed are mostly perceived as more masculine, edgier, and sometimes even ‘cooler’. Females who have tattoo, on the other hand, are seen as promiscuous, rude, and sometimes even unappealing. Why the difference? Why do people have a more negative view of tattooed females compared to tattooed males?

            Both genders attempt to conceal their tattoo in professional setting. During my junior year of high school, we had a new History teacher. Everyone knew that he have many tattoos but he still made an effort to cover them. He would wear quarter sleeves to hide the one on his arms, put on a watch to conceal the one on his wrist, and always wore an undershirt to cover the one on his chest. Even though he was aware that we all knew about his tattoos, he still concealed them. The same went for the female teacher who everyone knew have tattoos but her experience was different. She would dress appropriately to cover her tattoos too, such as long sleeves to cover her underarm tattoo and long pants to hide her ankle tattoo. No one could see any one of her tattoos, however, everyday our principal came into the classroom to check on her to make sure that she was not displaying her tattoos. The principal did not do that to the male teacher. It’s like an unspoken rule that persons from both genders should not show off their tattoos in professional settings, but this rule appears to apply more strongly to females than males.
            It’s hard to comprehend why individuals hold a negative stigma toward females. Females with tattoo on their lower back or on their hipbone are thought to be promiscuous and slutty. Many believe that women who have tattoos in those areas are prostitutes, going so far as to label those tattoos as ‘tramp stamp’. I don’t believe that having a tattoo in a certain area should contribute to how people perceive them. It’s just a preference that people have that could depend on the pain level (some areas are less painful than others), whether they want it to be on display or hidden, and many other reasons. If I were to get a tattoo, it would be either on my hipbone or on my right ankle. I don’t have an explanation on why I would like it in either of those areas; I just prefer it there.

            Personal choice plays a huge role in tattooing. No one should be judge because of their choice.

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