Greetings and welcome to March of the year, 2020. The blessed warmth of spring is returning and the Equinox is upon us. Hail, Ishtar. Everyone satisfied with the seasonal pleasantries? Good. Let’s move on.

There’s something on our minds that we’d like to address. It began with this month’s feature, wherein we discussed embroidery tattoos, a relatively new style that saw a huge spike in popularity just under a year ago. For the article itself, we spoke to Rogelio Vasquez of McKinney, Texas, an artist typically specializing in photorealism who became an overnight viral celebrity after posting an embroidery piece he had created upon a client’s request on Instagram. As we did our research, however, we noticed that practically every article published on the topic appeared on the web within the same four-week stretch (basically, April 2019). Naturally, the question of relevance arose. Are embroidery tattoos a legitimate new style, or are they yet another passing fad?

But this question begs a bigger one, and it’s the one that’s been on our minds. What place do momentary trends have in a trade synonymous with permanence? Shouldn’t we, as an industry, find some way to divorce ourselves from the fleeting whims of Insta-culture? The question being posed isn’t whether new concepts like embroidery, watercolor, red and blue 3D shades, soundwaves, or whatever should be dismissed or embraced, but rather, whether the concept of a “fad” should be applied to tattoos in the first place. Just something to consider. Talk amongst yourselves.

As always, we hope you enjoy the issue as much as we enjoyed creating it for you. See you in April!


PAIN Magazine is the undisputed standard-bearer of all things body modification; the advocate, advisor, confidant and documentarian of a once marginalized trade, now on the cusp of cultural ubiquity. As a publication, we stand alone — peerless within our market sector for nearly 20 years. As fellow operators within the space, we stand shoulder-to-shoulder with those whom we serve, wholly invested in the continued success of our industry. We are the guide to help you walk the tightrope between the intangibles of the trade—art, integrity and community—and the cold hard facts of your bottom line. With a monthly circulation of 12,000 copies that go out across the U.S. and Canada and a reader base of over 36,000 industry professionals, it’s easy to understand why our professional, informative and artistic format offers the best buy per advertising dollar.

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