Tattoos Giving Some Stars the Blues
The number of Americans with a tattoo increased from 16 percent in 2003 to 24 percent in 2006. Fueled by famous actors and athletes, the trend is becoming so popular that people are having tattoo parties, where friends get together at someone’s house and everyone gets a tattoo.
Tattoos were once considered a social taboo usually donned by sailors, tribe or gang members, and social rebels. In fact, tattoos are still forbidden in many religions, including Islam and Judaism. Christians who opt not to tattoo typically invoke Leviticus 19:28.
Today, tattoos are more fashionable than meaningful and, like with every new trend, something newer comes along to take its place. The same is true for tattoos. In 2008, a new Harris Poll showed a 2 percent decline in the number of people with tattoos. Similarly, about 17 percent of respondents in both the Harris Poll and the Northwestern University study say they regretted getting a tattoo or were considering getting it removed.
Even celebrities have backtracked on their decision to get tattooed. In most cases, the problem was just one tattoo, not all of them. Remember these famous brands:
- Tom Arnold put a picture of Roseanne on his chest near his heart.
- Jermaine Dupri put a saintly picture of Janet Jackson on his waist.
- Eva Longoria put “nine” on the back of her neck in reference to her then-husband Tony Parker’s basketball jersey number.
- Tommy Lee, former Motley Crue drummer and husband of Pamela Anderson, once had a swastika.
Shortly after the cancellation of his hit sitcom Two and a Half Men, Charlie Sheen unveiled his new tattoo during the debut of his hour-long radio show, Sheen’s Korner. The tattoo reads “winning,” possibly meaning that he is more famous than ever now that he has left the show.
Other celebrities started getting tattoos as teenagers. Chris Brown, for instance, has had tattoos since he was 13 years old. His collection of tattoos now includes a picture of Jesus with music notes, a hand holding a C, a skull with a halo, a demon, an angel and ninjas. Mike Tyson and Lil Wayne went a step further with tattoos on their faces, as well as all over their bodies.
For those who are unsure or think they may later regret their decision, Beyoncé is marketing temporary tattoo kits for her House of Deréon line. Those who regret their tattoos usually cite everything from being too young when they got it to the wrong design choice. The main way to overcome buyer’s remorse is to wait until you’re sober, single or at least 60 to decide to get a tattoo. –annette johnson
Annette Johnson is the owner of Allwrite Advertising and Publishing (www.e-allwrite.com) and the author of “What’s Your Motivation?: Identifying and Understanding What Drives You.” She also is the host of Allwrite Radio at www.blogtalkradio.com/allwrite.