For some, tattoos are symbols that mark a crucial moment or event in their lives. For others, tattoos are signs of rebellion. And then again, there are people who consider tattoos mere accessories. It seems that tattoos have never been this popular. As inking goes mainstream, particularly young adolescents follow the trend. Since tattoos however are anything but cheap, a method called “stick and poke” has spread among young tattoo addicts.

‘Stick and poke” is essentially a method in which the desired design is hand-inked into your skin with a needle dipped in ink. It takes you back to the years when you used to doodle on your arms and legs with pens, only that this is permanent.

First, a disinfected and clean needle is attached to an object that acts as the handle thus making it easier to hold. Typically a pencil is used. Then a thread is bound tightly around the needle. Later, when the needle is dipped in ink, this is what will hold the liquid in place. When the needle penetrates the skin by about one-eighth of an inch, the ink has to drip down into the skin. You stick and you poke. Then you repeat. This is essentially everything there is to it. It is certainly nothing for the squeamish but it is something that anybody can do provided that person knows not to re-use needles and how to disinfect every part of the equipment along the way.

If you tattoo yourself, you always risk infections. At some places it is even illegal. Make sure you know what you’re getting yourself into before making any drastic movements.

The appeal lies clearly in the “Do-It-Yourself”-Look stick and poke methods come with. It is different; it stands out and that is precisely why it’s gotten so much recognition.

Image: © flickr itwaswhatitwas