Tattooing is growing in popularity among women; readers weigh in (video)
IT’S A SUBJECT that’s been getting lots of ink these days — women who sport tattoos.
You’ve probably noticed for yourself.
They’re on the faces, necks, thighs, ankles and wrists of women everywhere.
They come in the darker, heavier tribal designs or the more traditional, delicate symbols like hearts or flowers.
Some reveal the names of spouses or children, while others share a favorite quote or line of poetry or lyric.
Regardless of the art form, women are sporting them boldly and confidently at formal and informal settings.
And those who wear them aren’t just your tough-as-nails chicks, said Pat Sinatra, the owner of Pat’s Tats on Route 28 in Kingston.
“Throw away that image. It’s at least 25 years old,” Sinatra said.
“I have tattooed women who are judges, doctors, lawyers, school teachers, nurses and models,” she said. Continued...
As it turns out, neither do they appeal to just the younger crowd, she said.
“We’ve tattooed women in their 80s,” Sinatra said. “Their husbands have died, and they decide to go out and get tattoos.”
So what about this trend of late? It got a Freeman reporter wondering and asking questions.
Is a tattoo on a woman hot and sexy or trashy and unladylike?
That was the Facebook query put out in recent days, and the reaction was indeed a mixed one.
Dozens of people weighed in, with some calling them “sailor-like” and others labeling them “elegant” or “beautiful.”
People like Joe Bozlinski of Saugerties are all for them.
He said he goes “nuts” for a woman with a tattoo, but he believes that each woman should find what is most fitting for her style.
“I think of it like clothing in the sense that while a certain tattoo would look great on one woman, that same tattoo may not be as flattering on another. One has to find what works well for them,” he said in response to the Facebook question.
Others like Dan Gorham of Kingston find them horrifically unattractive on women. Continued...
“I believe that women with tattoos are a turnoff, especially (the) large, visible ones,” he said.
Brooke Nekos of Marbletown takes exception to that.
The 33-year-old Marbletown woman said she got her first tattoo at the age of 22 and now sports 14.
“All mine are things about myself that I am proud of and like to share with others,” Nekos said.
“I like tattoos on men and women, but it depends on what you get. Some women look great (with them), and some go overboard, and it takes away from their natural beauty,” she wrote in response to the Facebook question.
Another woman who wears her tattoos proudly is Janai McDonough, a Kingston mother of three children.
“I have five tats, and I love them,” she wrote on Facebook. “No one has ever said they make me look trashy or unladylike. Each of my tats has personal meaning—one for each of my children and one for my husband before he went to Iraq,” she said.
Still, there were others like Joe Hunter, a morning announcer at Sound of Life Radio Network in Lake Katrine, who had another take on the subject.
In a Facebook message, he said for many under the age of 35, tattoos are culturally acceptable and almost a fashion fad.
“To some it’s like a collection of decorative spoons,” he said. Continued...
Sinatra, who’s been in the field for 36 years, has her own views about why women choose to be tattooed.
“Women’s attraction to tattoos is really because it’s a reclaiming of one’s self, of one’s body, and it’s about women taking a stand,” she said.
It’s also about individual choices and what women perceive as an expression of style, she said.
“Some of us put tattoos on because they make us feel feminine. It’s whatever that woman perceives as being feminine,” she said.
Michael Locasio, who operates InkInc at 327 Wall St. in Kingston, likewise caters to a large female clientele.
A 28-year veteran in the field, Locasio estimates that close to 50 percent of his customers are female, and he said he noticed the spike about six years ago.
“I think it’s a personal preference,” he said of the female trend.
“I think if they’re done right by somebody who knows what they’re doing, and they’re designed according to body parts where they move right, they can be beautiful and elegant. It’s evolved to the point where it’s pretty incredible, if you go to the right person,” Locasio said.
Sinatra, who is also considered a local veteran in the field, said the popular spots where women are placing their tattoos include the breast, hip and abdomen.
“And now, women are tattooing their arms and ankles, and the latest craze is your rib cage, which is usually a terrible place because it’s painful and the image distorts. I don’t recommend it as the first place to get a tattoo,” she said.
One of the biggest concerns raised by some outside the field is that tattoos are difficult, painful and expensive to remove, and once a woman changes careers, moves up the professional ladder or “matures,” she may realize that she made a mistake.
“Everyone who considers a tattoo should think it through, not just women. It’s definitely a commitment,” Locasio said.
Miranda Lorberer, a tattoo artist at Pop’s Tattoo Emporium on Morton Boulevard in the town of Ulster, agreed.
“There is laser removal, but there’s not always a guarantee that they can be removed. There are certain colors that are harder to remove,” she said.
Lorberer, 33, has several tattoos that run the gamut in every style.
Her boyfriend has none, but she said he thinks they’re great.
Still, Lorberer doesn’t think they’re for everybody, although no particular profession or individual came to her mind.
She did, however, have a closing thought for those who frown on women sporting body art.
“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder,” she said. “What someone thinks is trashy, someone else thinks is great. You can say that about someone’s haircut, their clothes or their jewelry. It’s their style, and you’re free to like it or dislike it,” she said.
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