Las Vegas Tattoos - How Old Do I Have To Be?
Yes, we get this question a few times a month at least.
How old to I have to be to get a tattoo? The minimum age requirement to get tattooed in Nevada is 14 with parental consent. However, we DO NOT tattoo anyone under the age of 18 at Inner Visions Tattoo and there are some really good reasons behind this.
Reason #1. Of all the people I've tattooed in my 20+ year tattoo career, most of the cover up tattoos I have done are on people who got tattooed at a young age. It's very common to hear the phrase "I got this tattoo when I was 15 and now I hate it. Can you cover it up?" A phrase I've never heard anyone say is "I got this tattoo when I was 15 and I love it!"
Lets face it, when we're teenagers we don't have the foresight to know what we will like when we are in our 20's, 30's, 40's and beyond. We think our favorite band or favorite video games ( or other popular culture) will define us for the rest of our lives. I speak from experience on this one, the psychedelic mushroom and skull tattoo I got as a teenager (go ahead and laugh) caused a lot of embarrassment as I got older. It's now covered up and I feel a lot better about taking my shirt off in public.
The first thing that comes to mind when you think of cover up tattoos would be someone's name, but almost all the cover ups I do are teenage regrets.
Reason #2. As a teenager, your body is not done growing. I have seen tattoos that started out in the center of the arm as a teenager, and as an adult, the tattoo has shifted off center and looks crooked. The worst case I've ever seen was a client who got his last name tattooed across his back when he was 16. He continued growing and his shoulders got a little more broader as an adult. The tattoo was severely warped and stretched out. As an adult it was so crooked that it was no longer legible. And as you can imagine, that tattoo turned into a huge cover up!
Reason #3. The 3rd and final reason is to protect our asses! Although we do our best to check IDs and verify everyone's age and identity, you never know if it's a cool uncle that's bringing the minor in without the parents knowledge. There is also a rise in parents and children with different last names and that's another difficulty to confirm. There has also been cases of lawsuits against tattoo artists from the non consenting parent. We just don't need to deal with the headaches.
Often times when we explain that we don't tattoo minors, we are asked for a referral to a tattoo shop that tattoos minors in Las Vegas. I'm always at a loss for referrals. All of the reputable shops that I am aware of have a similar policy of NOT tattooing minors. I'm not saying there are no reputable that shops that tattoo minors, but there are none that I know of.
Most reputable tattoo shops, for reasons stated above will not tattoo minors. I can say that here at Inner Visions Tattoo, we stay busy enough with our tattoo appointments and walk ins as well. We are not hard up to where we would have to lower our standards and compromise our integrity.
Getting a tattoo is a lifelong commitment, and we strive to provide the best service possible and to make sure our clients receive the best tattoo.
We take many factors into consideration when we tattoo our clients. Not only do we consider the proper placement and design of the tattoo, but we do it in a way as to make sure the tattoo will age well and still look good 15-20 years down the road.
Our integrity and world class service blended with a culture that revolves around art is what has earned us the honor of being the top rated custom shop in Las Vegas. It is also one of the major factors of us being voted the best tattoo shop in Las Vegas year after year.
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