Tattoos to remember. Tattoos to forget.

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People get tattoos for all sorts of reasons.  An event or person they want to “immortalize” in a tattoo.  It can be a happy event like Angelina Jolie doing a tattoo marking the birthplace of each of her adopted children.  Or a tattoo marking your wedding date.  But tattoos do not always mark a happy event. There are those who get a tattoo to remind them of a sad event that is important to them.  In these cases, a tatoo can help lead to a path of healing.

And sometimes….situations may change and you want to change your tattoo.  So let’s put aside our online shopping and Intertops Casino login fun, and get into the tattoo scene.

Tattoo Redo

The TV series Tattoo Redo is a TV series that takes existing Tattoos that the person does not like, and redoes them into something they like.

The tattoo artists on this show (Tommy Montoya, Miryam Lumpini, Rose Hardy, Matt Beckerich, and Twig Sparks) along with the host Jessimae Peluso worked with people to do their tattoo redos.  Their approach was interesting.  Instead of the person with the tattoo choosing the design, they brought with them a friend or relative to make the decision for them.

List of Tatoo Redo Episodes

  • S1.E1. Who’s ready to see some really bad tatoos?
  • S1.E2. Hot mess, Spicy Bets
  • S1.E3 ∙ Let Your Freak Flag Fly
  • S1.E4 ∙ Lions and Goats and Exes, Oh My!
  • S1.E5 ∙ Boos and Tattoos
  • S1.E6 ∙ Lost in Translation

There were only 6 episodes in this series.  Some people liked this series, and others did not like the series.  That is why when you read the comments about the series, you get mixed reviews.

I loved the final tattoos.  Most of them seemed visually nice, and the people who got the tattoo seemed to like them.  So why the mixed reviews?

Your Friends and Family choose your new tatoo

The concept of the show is this.  You want your “horrible” tattoo redone, and instead of you picking your new tattoo, your “friend and/or relative”, with the help of the tattoo artists, picks your new tattoo.  The assumption here is that you are bringing this person, because you know that person and you trust that person.

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The negative reviews where along the lines of, “This is a permanent change to your body, and you are going to trust somebody else with that decision.”

Well, not to sound heartless, if you want a tattoo redo, a person who got the tattoo already made some really bad decisions.  So, maybe they do need help in fixing that blunder.

I was also thinking about the area of domestic abuse.  Say a person got a tattoo with a previous partner, and then the relationship with sour.  I am not talking about “growing apart” type of a breakups.  I am talking about partners that cheated on you, physically abused you, sexually abused you, etc.  So it is not just a situation where the person who gave you the tattoo, you just not want to think about.  It is more that when you look at the tattoo, it brings back painful memories.

So having somebody else with you to do the do over, and letting that person, with the help of the professional artists, do the redo, it can help with the healing process.  You do not see anything.  You are not part of the decision making process.  Then, when it is done, you see the final tattoo, that is a complete redesign, that was created through and wonderful memories that you have with that person.

It is taking something that is associated with bad memories, and changing it into something that is associated with good memories.

But most of the people who were getting Tattoo Redos on this show, were getting them for “it is a really bad tattoo” category.  So let’s look at the different redos, and why they needed a redo.

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Who’s ready to see some really bad tatoos?

Person 1: “I brought my really great,wonderful friend I love like a sister, because, about 20 years ago, she got a tattoo from a…  An artist who tattooed Tupac. (the band, a rapper)”

She chose the original tattoo artist, because that person did a tattoo for Tupac (who she was obsessed with at the time).  The tatoo was so bad, that nobody, not even the person, knew what it was supposed to be.  She just let the artist “do what he wanted”, but he never told her what exactly he was trying to create.  The end result was a horrible tattoo that she really hates, and since she was young and naive, she did not even say something to the person who did the tattoo.

Lesson learned: Do not let the tattoo artist alone create something for you.  If you are not going to preapprove the tattoo yourself, than at least have somebody who knows you and loves (friend, relative) help make that decision.

Person 2: “I was at a friend’s house and he had a tattoo gun.  Drunk, hanging out, ‘Anyone want tattoos?’  Unfortunately, after five or six rounds, I decided to get a tattoo.”

The tattoo was a really bad drinking poem, that they guy and his friends would say when they were in college and single, but it was totally in appropriate in a serious relationship.

Lesson learned: Do not get a tattoo when you are drunk, and at a party where the tattoo artist may or may not also be drunk.  And get a second opinion from “if you are a guy who dates women, a woman whose opinion you trust.”

Person 3: It’s a tattoo of his ex-husband and his relationship.  My ex-husband and I got matching tattoos.  It is the day when we met and got married.

Lesson learned:  Even if you get married, and get a tattoo to commemorate it, there is no guarantee that the marriage will last forever.  Putting in dates, or names of people has a more direct connotation to that specific person, than imagery.

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With imagery, it can grow as you grow.  With a specific date or name, it will always be that date and that name.


The three people in this episode are just some examples of the reasons why people decide to get a tattoo redo.  But generally, they all tend to fall into a few general categories.  Maybe they’ve gotten older and their tastes have changed. Maybe they’re no longer happy with the quality of the tattoo. Maybe they were drunk when they got the tattoo.  Maybe they got the tattoo to commemorate an important event in their life, and as they got older (and changed) that specific event no longer has the importance that it once had.

Or maybe they’ve gotten a new job that has a strict policy against visible tattoos.  Yea, “Some employers are so square.”

But this time around, bring a friend to either help you make the decision, or possibly even make the decision for you.  And most of all do not do it when you (or anybody else in the room) is drunk, and take the design home with you for 24 hours to make sure that after 24 hours you still love the tatoo as much as you did originally.

I do not know if all tattoo places do it, but check if they can give you a temporary tattoo version of your tattoo to “try on for a week”.  If after a week, you love it just as much as you originally thought, make it permanent.

Just like with marriage, although technically you can do a “do over”, it is better to take the little bit of extra time to make sure that it is what you really want for the rest of your life.

About the author

James is a talented tattoo artist with a passion for creating unique and personalized designs. With a focus on attention to detail and a deep commitment to his craft, he strives to create tattoos that capture his clients' individuality and self-expression.