Love them or hate them, tattoos are really popular nowadays in the UK. What do you think of tattoos?

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In Britain, tattoos used to be seen mainly on sailors, prisoners and bikers and were considered as a sign of being a rebel. However, now they are popular with all kinds of people and it’s pretty normal to have a tattoo these days.

Which design?

Japanese and Chinese characters, and loved ones' names are among the most popular designs today. Mario, who runs his own tattoo parlour, says ‘I have more women than men customers. Women often prefer smaller designs like stars, flowers, cherubs and men are into much bigger images.’ Many well known Brits have tattoos. Here are some of them:
• David Beckham has a crucifixion scene and his kids’ names on his back. He has a tattoo in Hindi of his wife’s name.
• Victoria Beckham has stars on her back to symbolise the members of her family.
• Robbie Williams has a lion on his right arm, Maori designs on his left arm, a French phrase on his collar bone, the musical notes to ‘all you need is love’ on lower his back, ‘I love you mother’ on his arms, 2 birds on stomach and many more!
• Kate Moss has a small crown on her shoulder.
• Samantha Cameron, wife of the British Prime Minister, has a dolphin tattooed on her ankle.

Tattoo events

There are annual tattoo events that attract thousands of visitors such as the International London Tattoo Convention and the Brighton Tattoo Convention. At these events you can get a tattoo done or see human bodies completely covered in  tattoos.
Chris, 18, from Stratford attended the Brighton Tattoo Convention last year. What’s his advice for someone thinking of having a tattoo done? ‘Fashions change but tattoos are forever. Make sure that you choose a design that you like.’

Age

Tattoos are not just for the young. Many people are now going for their first tattoo in their 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s.


My dad got a tattoo done for his 50th birthday. I thought it was going to look rubbish but it’s actually pretty cool.
Lewis, from Middlesborough

History

A professor of sociology has studied the history of tattooing in the West.  According to the professor, it was fashionable for rich people to have small tattoos in 19th-century Europe. These tattoos were designs which represented their families. The professor explains that tattoos have gone in and out of fashion over the years.  Very rich people had tattoos before they became a symbol of working class masculinity. Now they are being reinvented as a middle-class symbol.
 

Total votes: 153
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Discussion

Do you like tattoos? Would you ever consider having a tattoo? Why or why not?

Comments

Jerry's picture
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Jerry 11 February, 2013 - 16:33

On a nice body like Victoria Backham's even the worst tattoo looks good. But she would look good without it. :-) I don't mind people of whatever age and gender have tattoos made on their body parts, but I personally can do without it.

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jenniferkim's picture
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jenniferkim 5 January, 2013 - 04:36

I like the little tattoos but not all over the body. But I don't really want to have one.
Because I think it will be painful. I think it needs courage to have a tattoo.

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Jelena S's picture
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Jelena S 22 December, 2012 - 10:51

I like small tattoos but i don`t thing i will have one,i think they look ok on other people but i can`t imagine myself with it.

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toninha's picture
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toninha 24 November, 2012 - 11:32

I think tattoos look pretty cool in some people, it's a way of expressing what you feel, or something you want to remind for ever.
I pobably will never do a tattoo because i'm always changing up my mind and i would be sick of having that foverever :D
But if you're thinking of doing one think a lot before doing it ;)

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I LOVE TAIWAN's picture
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I LOVE TAIWAN 5 September, 2012 - 14:43

In my country's(Taiwan)culture.If someone has tattoos means that person is a "bad person".A lot of"bad people"loves tatoos with a BIG dragon.So when "good people"saw the"dragon"on someone's body,they will warn the children:DON'T TALK WITH THOSE PEOPLE!
That's why my parents not aloud me to have a tatoo on my body...(Excuse my poor English...m(-_-)m)

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albania95's picture
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albania95 28 August, 2012 - 16:42

Hi !
I`m new here and I like this website so much . I like tattoes and maybe one day I`ll make one but now I can`t cause my family don`t let me . :( They think is wrong thing and it makes you bad girl . But i don`t complain we live in this kind of contry soo ... Congratulaton you are great . I love English more than ever .

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bookworm's picture
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bookworm 15 August, 2012 - 10:43

Tattoos are not acceptable in my culture, but it may look good on some people. I think that tattoos on men look more beautiful than on women. Chinese characters look nice as tattoos, but i cant imagine one on myself.

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Andia's picture
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Andia 28 July, 2012 - 18:38

Hi everyone!This was a really interesting article.I learned some facts that i didn't know before.If you would ask me about tattoos,i don't really like them,but the number of people who want to have a tattoo on their body is increasing in my country year by year (especially the number of women who want to have one).Years ago this would have been something very unusual in my country,but nowadays having a tattoo is quite normal.
I hope i haven't done any mistake writing.I would be grateful if anybody would let me know about any mistake,though.

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Chi Chi's picture
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Chi Chi 26 July, 2012 - 03:42

in my oppinion, tattoos are not bad.i think it depends on each country.if it's accepted in one country which mean it's so normal.on the contrary, it looks so bad. if i have a chance to have one tattoo i think i'll. when i have a tattoo which make me more fashion and style ^^!

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Katrina's picture
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Katrina 24 July, 2012 - 10:38

Well,I think tattoos are very cool.But I will not consider to have one because in China if a girl has a tattoo,she may be thought a little bit cynical and that is not good for a girl.

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Lady in Pink's picture
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Lady in Pink 12 July, 2012 - 10:48

I like tattoos very much and I wish have one.A tattoo with butterflies or one with some birds it's all I want. :)

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lady96's picture
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lady96 11 July, 2012 - 13:58

I don't like tattoos at all!! Just imagine yourself with a tattoo when you are eighty years old...

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niky_02nqn's picture
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niky_02nqn 4 July, 2012 - 22:13

Ooh,tattoos!! I love them so much!!! but I don't have one :( (not yet, hahahah!!!)
They're very attractive for me, but only if they're nice. I love butterflies tattoos!
Personally, I'd never get one 'cause I think that they hurt!!!
Anyway, I think that tattoos are really cool! I wish have one, but not at the moment!!!!

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Dandelion's picture
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Dandelion 29 June, 2012 - 12:34

Tatooes can be considered as a kind of art. People have been wearing in for years, to show others that they belong to different groupes or to present their life motto which they follow.
As far as I am concerned, I am not a big fan of tatooes. Some of them look nice, others may look terrible.
If I had to have a part of my body tatooed I would choose something contemporary as tatooes are usually for life. Something like an irreversible action. Even though nowaday technology provides us with different methos of tatooeing which may later fade away or be taken away somehow. (What about consequences? Usually noone cares, till it doesn´t concern them.)
I think to get tatooed you have to be accompanied with a great deal of courage. People are even afraid of needles so it just adds to its scariness. ( I am also one of those people)

Personally, I would never want to get a tatooe. I know some say.. never say never, but I just can not imagine myself having tatooes on my body and being like 70 year old grandmother. It just sounds riddiculous to me :)

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Blue Willow's picture
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Blue Willow 25 June, 2012 - 21:30

I think tattoos are really cool and they are quite popular in my country. I would like to have a small one on the upper part of my back, but I'm not sure which kind of design I would choose. I hope I'll manage to think of a nice design with some kind of meaning for me until I'm 18, so I could have it tattooed. :D

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Jonathan - Coordinator's picture
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Jonathan - Coor... 26 June, 2012 - 15:19

Hi Blue Willow! Thanks for your comment. Me too, I'm not sure what design I would have. If you do finally decide on a meaningful design, let us know!

Jonathan (LearnEnglish Teens Team)

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Blue Willow's picture
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Blue Willow 27 June, 2012 - 11:58

Hello Jonathan! I was thinking of a Ying-Yang design. It's is quite cool and meaningful, but I surely need more time to consider it. :D I'll let you know if I decide for it. :D

Greetings.

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Jo - Coordinator's picture
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Jo - Coordinator 22 June, 2012 - 08:20

Hi te-ufo. I think you're definitely right to think carefully before you get one yourself.  Fashions change so much.  I'm sooo glad now that I didn't get the tattoo I wanted when I was 16!

Jo (LearnEnglishTeens Team)

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Stela.M's picture
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Stela.M 11 July, 2013 - 10:21

hi jo coordinator...........i'm already 14 years old and i think tattoos are cooollllll...sometimes i think i should get a tattoo ,but my parents don't allow me to do it...........my mum says it is dangerous and my dad thinks i'm not that kind of girl :P.....this all happens cuz my favourite singer is lil wayne and just as u know his body is full of tattoos.......i think i he looks great .........before i take a decision i always take my friends opinion .......teens in this site are my friends already but i also wanted an opinion from you.........can u tell me what u think i should do....??? might i look AWFUL with a tattoo............greetings :)

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Jo - Coordinator's picture
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Jo - Coordinator 11 July, 2013 - 14:57

Hi Stela.M, 
I certainly can't tell you what to do but I can give you my person opinion. I really like tattoos as well and I have seen some amazing art tattooed on other people's bodies. But (and it's a big "but"!), since I first wanted a tattoo, I have seen a lot of different tattoo trends come and go, and I know that what we think looks really cool at the moment, often doesn't look so great in 5 or 10 or 20 years' time. I bet you wouldn't think the tattoo I wanted when I was your age was cool now! And this is apart from complications such as what your parents think and maybe having to hide your tattoo for work etc. So, I'm still thinking about what tattoo I would like, and maybe one day I'll feel brave enough and sure enough to choose the tattoo I want to look at for the rest of my life, but for the moment, I'm still enjoying other peoples' tattoos more than committing to one myself!

Jo (LearnEnglish Teens team)

 

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Stela.M's picture
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Stela.M 15 July, 2013 - 13:21

hi again jo....thanks for the advice ......now i decided to quit from this crazy idea .........i liked the reason and your opinon .....thanks again......greetings :)

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Jo - Coordinator's picture
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Jo - Coordinator 15 July, 2013 - 20:09

No worries Stela.M! I'm glad I helped you decide :)

Joanna (LearnEnglish Teens team)

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