Scars are something a lot of people deal with in their silence. Some scars can carry positive memories, but in the majority of cases, they are a reminder of a negative experience. And many people want to get rid of such reminders. However, getting rid of a scar is extremely difficult. So, concealing a scar with a tattoo seems like a good idea.
The first thing to understand is that depending on the size and severity of the scar, you will likely need a good amount of color, depth, and texture within the tattoo that you’re thinking about getting. This is so the tattoo can work with the scar, and not against it, to help make it blend in and ‘disappear’ into the ink the best way possible.
Tattooing Over Scars
Since each and every scar will differ from one another, there are going to be many factors for your tattoo artist to consider before they decide whether or not they can take on the job successfully.
Covering a Scar with Tattoo Hurts?
Pain tolerance varies from one person to the other. So, to say that a scar-covering tattoo will hurt everybody the same would be a lie. For example, if you’ve already had tattoos, sure, the pain would be tolerable since you already know what to expect. But, if a scar-covering tattoo is your first tattoo, then you can expect some serious pain.
But, overall, we can say that tattoos covering scar tissues do hurt. Some would say they hurt even more than the regular tattoos done on unscarred skin. Moreover, depending on where the scar is located, the tattoo can produce mild to mind-numbing pain
It is also believed that deeper and bigger scars hurt the most, especially if they are located in places where the nerve damage is pretty serious. Smaller and more superficial scars don’t hurt as much because the skin is flat and the nerve damage is little.
Is It Easy to Get A Scar-Covering with tattoo?
If the tattoo is going to be on an area of skin that’s likely to scar even more at a later date, you need to understand that there’s a risk of the tattoo getting damaged in the future. An example of this would be if you went to get a tattoo over some stretch mark scars in an area where there’s a high risk that more scars are going to appear in the same area at some point, which could end up distorting and damaging the tattoo.
Do Deep Scar Cover with Tattoo?
Superficial scars that only go a couple of layers of skin deep shouldn’t be too tough to tattoo over, but scars that go particularly deep could cause bigger problems. For example, the toughened scar tissue could prevent the ink from being placed exactly where it needs to go, and this can lead to blurring and distortion within parts of the tattoo.
What To Consider When Getting a Scar-Covering Tattoo
So, getting a tattoo is all about preparation and getting informed. The same goes for a scar-covering tattoo. So, before you get one, here are the things you should know and consider;
- Assessing the scar – because tattooing over certain scars can be tricky, it is important to get a consult and honest opinion from a professional tattoo artist. They will assess the type of the scar, the location, and whether it is possible to execute a tattoo. Bear in mind that scars without edges are the best for tattooing, while those with darker edges might not be suitable for tattoo covering.
- Assessing the healing stage – to get a scar-covering tattoo, the scar needs to be fully healed. Depending on the type of scar, the healing process can last between one and five years. So, ensure that your scar is fully healed before you go and get it tattooed.
- Finding a professional tattoo artist – now, this is very important; you need to find a highly professional tattoo artist who has already done similar scar-covering tattoos. You don’t want someone inexperienced handling your scar, because the risk of complications and scar irritation can be high.
- Coming up with a design – it can be difficult to find a design that will creatively cover or work around the scar. Also, you need to bear in mind that the scarred skin is not flat and smooth, so the final tattoo design will also be textured. Try to go for a design that fits the texture of the scar. Avoid linework and geometric shapes and go with more naturally flowing designs (like flowers, for example).
- Handling the pain – as we mentioned earlier, getting a scar-covering tattoo can be really painful. So, considering the type of the tattoo and the location of the scar, make sure to be mentally and physically prepare to go through the tattooing session. But, also bear in mind that freshly healed scars hurt more than the scars that have been fully healed for some time.
- Aftercare and follow-ups – to prevent any type of complication, irritation, or infection, it is ESSENTIAL to follow the aftercare routine and do regular follow-ups with your tattoo artist. The artist will know whether the tattoo is healing properly and warn you if something’s wrong.
After you get a scar-covering tattoo, it is perfectly normal for the scar to be aggravated, irritated, and raised. The scar tissue usually calms after a few hours. If the tissue remains aggravated and starts hurting, make sure to see your tattoo artist or a doctor as soon as possible. If the tattoo stays sore, oozing, painful, and overall red more than a few days or the scar reopens, you’re probably experiencing a tattoo infection, which requires immediate medical attention.
Also, bear in mind that the ink can seem a bit feathered on or around the scar. The tattoo may also appear less defined and a bit blurry in the scar region. That is completely normal, and if you find an issue with the way your tattoo looks, you can always do some touch-ups.
Who Should NOT Get A Scar-Covering Tattoo?
- People with fresh scars on body – unless you want the scar not to heal or to reopen, you should never get a tattoo on a fresh scar. This can cause many health complications and lead to scar reopening. The tattoo will take twice as much to heal and might even result in an infection.
- People with sunburnt skin – if you’ve been exposed to the sun too much and your skin (or the scar) is sunburnt, then you should not get a scar tattoo. Wait until your skin has healed from sunburn damage, and consult a tattoo artist about the possibility of a tattoo.
- People with a low immune system – when doing a scar tattoo, the scar tissue needs time and energy to heal. That can only be done properly if a person has a strong immune system, good health, and proper nutrition. If your immune system is low, your tattoo will have a hard time healing, and it might take longer to heal than usual. This can lead to a number of complications or even an infection.
We believe that scars are a form of tattoos that are life-long and permanent. Sure, they can carry negative connotations and be reminders of some awful event in one’s life. But, no matter what, your scars are part of you, who you are, and what you’ve been through. And, in a sense, they are beautiful in their own way.
So, if you want to cover your scar with a tattoo, go for it. But never do something just so other people don’t feel uncomfortable. If your scars bother people, then it’s their problem. Surround yourself with people who will find your scars breathtaking and amazing, rather than weird and ugly.
And, if you still want to cover the scar, we strongly advise you to get proper consultations and assessments with a highly professional tattoo artist. They will provide you with all the necessary information, pros and cons, and possible risks.