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The art of tattooing has been around for centuries with every major culture doing the process. In today's world tattooing is most of the time left to experts, resulting in very beautiful works. But what if you want to do your own? this instructable will cover the art of "Stick 'n' poke" tattoos that will enable you to safely add your own dermal embellishments.

WARNING: These tattoos, although light, are PERMANENT! Think about what you want on your body before you go through with it. ALSO it does hurt, and depending on your pain level it may hurt too much. Test without ink first to see if you want to spend 30 minutes poking your skin to get some cool stuff.

Lets get on with it.

Step 1: Suppiles

You don't need much for this instructable but here is the suppy list:
1 Pencil
1 sewing needle of medium size
1 jar lid
A bottle of black ink, this instructable uses higgins waterproof ink
string
A stove or other fire producing device.
Rubbing alcohol
Anti bacterial soap
unscented lotion


Can i get one if i'm 16? I am awaere that I'm still going through puberty but i've been wanting one for ages and having found out i can do one to myself is like a dream come true!!
<p>Honestly at 16 your probably done growing, it should be fine :) if your really concerned you can wait till you're 18 but I think you should be good. </p>
Only thing I'd say that should stop you is the fact that you're still going through puberty, as you said, so if you do get a tattoo, even professionally done, the tattoo may stretch when you hit another growth spurt. They are permanent too, and hard/expensive to get a cover up if this happens. Also, I'd say make sure your parents are ok with it, unless you're 100% confident that they won't catch you in the process or with the tattoo. I'd also say to make sure it's going to be something that you're 100% sure you're gunna wanna keep too ?
<p>There's no reason your age should affect your ability to do a tattoo; I have a friend with a stick-and-poke anklet tattoo that he's had since he was 13(now 24). Just realize that whatever you do is going to be PERMANENT. Stick-and-pokes fade, to an extent, but not completely; they just get a little duller. Make sure that whatever you tattoo is something you're willing to commit to. I'd recommend something very small and not noticeable.</p>
<p>Don't forget! You can get all the supplies you need to make a safe DIY tatt at: stickandpoketattookit.com Yer welcome!</p>
I made myself another one. Lol.
What ink did you use? <br>
<p>So the ink I buy just says &quot;water resistant when dry&quot;. Is that work?</p>
I wanna do a small smiley face just wondering if it will really work
Yes it really works I gave myself five and also gave one to a friend. Just make sure you poke down far enough to break then skin but not too far! Also you have to do a lot of pokes to make it look dark and like a real tattoo. :)
It works, I have some cousins who get most of their tattoos from pokes. Theirs turned out fine. You just have to know how to take care of it. The amount it will hurt all depends though. Some people say pokes hurt more than a professional tattoo (tattoo machine and all), others say that a professional tattoo hurts more than poking. I have a professional tattoo tattoo on my ribs. Didn't hurt at all, just tickled a bit. Other than that, I barely noticed it. I plan on doing my first poke tattoo in a couple of days when I get my ink though. I've also done a scratch tat (basically the exact same thing, but using a razor *NOT RECOMMENDED FOR ANYONE UNDER 18 OR ANYONE FOR THAT MATTER UNLESS YOU 100% KNOW HOW!!! PLEASE DO NOT DO IT THIS WAY! I WILL NOT BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE, IF YOU DO IT ITS YOUR PROBLEM AND HURTS LIKE HELL!!*. I've also experimented with branding which doesn't hurt so much, but the tattoo and branding I've done when I was younger stretched and faded as I hit my growth spurts so I'd wait until after you hit a major growth spurt first, that way it doesn't stretch as much or as bad
&amp; how much do you guys think it will hurt from a scale 1-20 #someoneplsrespond!!
It all depends on how you take pain. I hate getting needles but I can sit for hours working on my stick n pokes haha, also the place I'm poking once I start I get used to it. I'd say 5
1-10* oops
<p>can you use pen ink? </p>
I made myself another one. Lol.
Not bad for it to be my first
<p>This was fun doing, I just have on question... How do I make it to where there isnt a gap between each on?</p>
You have to fill it in more! go over your infinity sign more times making sure you get the gaps Inbetween
I did the same one but higher and all I did was go over it like 6 times until I got it how I wanted
<p>You need professional help.<br>P.s. Fill in between the gaps.</p>
<p>You have to keep going over it with more ink. Like poke in the spots between your first spots and just fill in everywhere needed.</p>
<p>poke more holes closer to eachother when it has healed</p>
Um... Can i do this if i am a kid??? (I am a preteen so...)
<p>I really recommend going to church and finding Jesus. If you are ten DO NOT tattoo yourself because jesus said no.</p>
And your name is hello kitty luvver? Girl you need Jesus lol
<p>LOL.....the kid might do it anyways...</p>
Anyone who has the proper supplies can do it. I did my first once when I was 13 lol
Did it! I had to go over it about 6-7 times but it look good I love it :)
Higgins india ink is pretty serious stuff to be ingesting or introducing into your body in anyway.&nbsp; I'd recommend saving up for a bottle of real tattoo ink if you intend on doing the work on your own.&nbsp; The cost of the ink is offset by minimalising the risks to your self and your skin with using art ink. <br />
Do you have a little bit more research and proof of this? I'v had lots of friends to tattoos this way with no ill effect. <br />
All I can say is even with FDA approved dyes...&nbsp; People can have bad reactions with dyes that are made for tattooing.&nbsp; Pen ink has toxins in it and is not meant to be placed in your bloodstream(my bff in high school gave herself an ink tattoo and got blood poisoning from it).&nbsp; Tattoo ink is not that expensive really.&nbsp; Just make sure you never, ever put unused paint back into the container.&nbsp; You risk blood borne illness doing that.&nbsp; Also if you do decide to buy a tattooing kit...&nbsp; Be careful where you buy the kits from...&nbsp; Buy it straight from the dealer... &nbsp;There are contaminated kits being sold on ebay and other outlets for cheap.&nbsp; That's my two cents..&nbsp; :)<br />
I would avoid ballpoint ink, but there shouldn't be anything wrong with India ink. India ink is just a black pigment made from soot, mixed with water and gelatin.
Our inks are vegan. Check out my kit. stickandpoketattookit.com
<p>Wow.</p>
<p>frenzy - I am not sure why you need evidence when you're attempting to use the exception to prove the rule. It seems to go against common sense: here are using home-made tools that are sterilized using techniques that are out of date as of the early 1900s and inks of unknown composition that are not designed specifically for this purpose. While it is true that many people have had no ill effect, that does not justify skepticism and likely says more about the human immune system than it does about the safety of this procedure in general.</p>
<p>look at the fingernails of the person tattooing in this instructable...do you think &quot;Sterile Technique&quot;? Understand that Thread, Pencil Eraser, Graphite, Pencil Paint and Skin itself CANNOT be satisfactorily 'sterilized'. At best they can only be temporarily made less full of bacteria...and then, since you are not in a sterile draped area under truly sterile conditions using sterile instruments you begin almost immediately reintroducing bacteria and virus. Nothing in the described technique should be described as sterile. Even the 'sewing needle' idea..which conceivably be sterilized..is a bad idea as the method of 'sterilization' described will leave foreign particulate that in itself is not sterile. Adding to that is the fact that sewing needles are plated and not designed to withstand high heat exchange which will cause surface plating to flake off and embed in the skin and cause nasty issues later.</p><p>This was simply an ill-advised instructable that should not have been allowed much less featured.</p>
well in fact tattoo ink is india ink it just has less alcohol in it thats all and yes i know this for a fact i work at a tattoo shop
True but many drawing inks have extra ingredients not safe for the body and even talens has been reported to have changed it's ingredients to make it disagreeable to tattooing but I'm not sure about that.... Yes I am a licensed Tattooer as well
<p>Ddoyle3 is right. I work for the manufacturer of Higgins Ink and it is NOT approved for use as a tattoo ink by us or by the FDA, there are additives in it that you don't want to be putting into your body. Also, our bottles and droppers are not sterilized (because they are drawing inks, not for ingestion). The MSDS says it's not toxic, that just means it won't kill you, it doesn't mean it's safe for tattooing. </p>
<p>The problem becomes more when you're dealing with dye-based inks and colored pigments, in particular chrome-based, arsenic-based and cyanide-based pigments sometimes used in art supplies, though less frequently available anymore. Dyes will likely fade, may be toxic and shouldn't ever be used.</p>
<p>that may just be the tattoo shop u work at. -.-</p>
<p>I am not sure why you are thinking this. Higgins is a pigment based, water soluble ink. It contains no alcohol. The MSDS warns to contact a physician only if more than 8oz is consumed orally. Regular, black Higgins india ink is likely a carbon-black pigment. It conforms to labeling regulations and standards, and yet does not indicate any toxic substance on it's label. <br><br>It should be noted that the ink itself is not sterile.</p>
For the record, most studios use India ink for their blacks. Pelican ink used to be preferred for outlining, but not so much any more. Talen's India and drawing inks are available at all of the best suppliers. Colored inks are another ball of wax. Ordering colors from a tattoo supply house is advisable.
not the best, but a good first attempt in my opinion
<p>actually, that is a bad first attempt.</p>
<p>can you use writing ink?</p>
just thought I'd throw this out to everyone who thinks pen ink is posionous. oh and btw (you can only get ink poisoning of you ingest it)