No More Tears (or Tattoos) for Ozzy 


The Prince of Darkness is going soft on tattoos — or maybe he’s just getting more sensitive with age. At 71, Ozzy Osbourne — whose tattoos include “OZZY” on his knuckles, a Chinese dragon and vampiric skull on his chest, “Sharon” on his right arm — still hasn’t inked his face and never plans on doing so.
“Anything above the collar should be stopped.  To be honest it makes you look dirty,” the Black Sabath frontman said on his Sirius XM Radio show Ozzy’s Boneyard. 

“They reckon that as you get older it hurts more,” he continued. “When I started getting this fucking sleeve I was like, ‘I am too old, stop’. I was 50 something and I was like, ‘What the fuck are you doing?’ When he got my elbows I was like, ‘What are you doing? What are you paying this fucking asshole to do?'” 


Covid Creating New Mindset About Tattoos 


While some tattoo studios may still be closed due to pandemic restrictions, there’s actually a silver lining to the dark cloud. According to an MSN Lifestyle story, people are ready to show the world that they are virus survivors. Searches for “tattoos” are up 48% according to Google Trends, and in some cities where tattooing is allowed, bookings have doubled and even quadrupled.  

Shawn Brown, owner of Whistlestop Tattoo in Hyattsville, Maryland said in an interview with WIJA that he attributes the boost in business to a pandemic mindset, people wanting to take advantage of something they’ve always wanted to do but never did, and are capitalizing on the moment, not knowing what tomorrow might bring. 

This nagging itch to get inked isn’t something that surprises Dr. Vinita Mehta, a DC-based psychologist who specializes in treating depression, anxiety, and life transitions. “I think we would expect some kind of spike in tattooing just because so many people are going through something stressful right now,” she told MSN. 


What Did We Just Say? 


After spending months in isolation during the pandemic, when 103-year-old Dorothy Pollack was allowed to leave her nursing home she had a few things on her to-do list.She got her first tattoo, a frog, to celebrate her birthday. After being in isolation for so long, she said out of nowhere she decided she wanted a tattoo. 

Why a frog? Pollack says it’s the one thing she loves more than beer and burgers. 


Opening a Studio Near Campus is a Smart Move  


Looking to open a new tattoo studio? You might think about going back to school. According to a study published in the U.S. National Library of Medicine, 69% of college students polled obtain a tattoo and/or body piercing between the ages of 18 and 22. Opening a tattoo studio in close proximity to campus will expose the business to college students and ensure a steady stream of walk-in traffic. Locating the studio near bus or tram lines is also important to make sure students without vehicles have convenient access to the location. 


Should Athletes Sweat Tattoos? 


Tattoos are almost part of the uniform for athletes, and to some represent an expression of strength and power. To a physiologist, however, that tattoo might represent an impediment to the sweat glands working properly. 

Researchers at Alma College in Michigan applied reactive patches to tattooed and untattooed skin and found that the tattooed area sweats half as much as the untattooed side. The composition of the sweat was also different, with perspiration from the tattooed skin containing nearly twice as much sodium as sweat from the un-inked side. 

In med-speak, researchers said, “Lingering inflammatory cells [from the initial tattoo itself change the chemical environment within that area of the skin, in ways that slow the response of the glands and affect how much sodium is incorporated from nearby cells into the sweat.” 

The study concluded it is “unlikely” that small tattoos would impede perspiration enough to contribute to overheating. But the case may be different for heavily tattooed athletes, and may be a reason that various studies have shown that players suffer a 3-5% loss in performance after getting tattooed. 




Piercing Children’s Ears

Ask Angel

Elayne Angel

Dear Ms. Angel,

I just started working in a new city where we are allowed to pierce kids’ ears. But I never got trained to work with kids because it wasn’t legal where I moved from. Obviously I know how to pierce ears, but I still feel like I could use your help. I don’t really have much experience being around kids and would love to have some tips. Also, what is the youngest age you pierce? Thanks for any help you can give me, O.

Dear O.,

I’m sure even the best and most experienced piercers could benefit from hearing how other professionals deal with the challenges of working with children.

I’ve been specializing in erotic piercings for years now, so it has been quite some time since I pierced any children. But when I did offer services to minors, I found that maturity and readiness vary, and not every youngster is ready by a certain age. I would pierce the earlobes of a child who was old enough to request the piercings (consent) and to understand what would transpire during the procedure and healing (comprehend). They’d need to agree to sit still and promise to comply with the aftercare instructions.

Obviously, this means I’d decline to work on babies or toddlers too young to grasp the situation, even though there were no local regulations to prohibit piercing them. I believe it is reasonable to set boundaries based on your own comfort level—regardless of the leniency of laws or studio policy. That said, it is appropriate to set a minimum age, and important to have an established policy on piercing minors with specific ID requirements. It should be printed to share with prospective clients in the studio and should also appear on the website.

Some piercers require an in-person consultation with the child at least 24 hours in advance of accepting an appointment, which I think is wise, especially if they’re under 10 years of age. This is an opportunity for the young client to meet the piercer, and vice versa. It helps to assure that the parent and child are suitably educated about the subject before proceeding. Having a waiting period after the consult also prevents impulsive decisions.

You’ll be able to assess whether the client seems motivated and prepared to deal with the experience. You will also be able to evaluate the parent(s), to see if they appear responsible and ready, too. During this meeting, it is advisable to go over the piercing process and the aftercare instructions, so they will know what to expect. You’ll have the chance to ask and answer any questions that come up, and go over jewelry options, too.

If asked, I think it is best to be honest and inform the child that piercings can pinch, sting, or even hurt, but not for long. You don’t want to scare them off, but rather, prepare them in a gentle but straightforward way.

When two piercers are available, doing the piercings simultaneously (“tandem”) is an excellent way to assure that both sides get done—especially if the piercee is extra nervous and/or very young. (This works great with nipple piercings on anxious adults, too.) Attempt to synchronize your movements for an optimal experience. Dealing with children and their families can take significantly more time, energy, and patience than it does to pierce most adults, so schedule accordingly and be prepared.

I asked a number of my esteemed colleagues for their input. Many thanks to Rich Hartwick, Jef Saunders, Becky Dill, and Lysa Taylor for their contributions. Below are their top tips and advice:

· Five years is my minimum age and I require a consultation at least a day prior. (Consults aren’t mandatory for age nine and up but are encouraged.) It sometimes weeds out the allows the child to experience the sights and A consult aren’t quite ready. whokids me, and go through a dry run of the procedure without doing sounds of the shop, meet appointment there’s more actualin for the they comeany piercing. This way, when jewelry instead of being overwhelmed by everything selectingexcitement about happening at once.

· y say they are done, we’re the ifthat the kid is in control, and I explain to the parent(s)g verythin. Just keep et there will be no restraining and no pressurethadone! I clarify explain what it’s going feel like.-over positive and upbeat and don’t

· Stock jewelry appropriate for your young clientele. Choosing jewelry together can start a positive dialogue.

· Consider being the sole service provider from start to finish, even if other staff normally handle jewelry sales, register checkout, or other client interactions.

· Ask the child if they feel ready to get pierced today. Sometimes the parent is ready, but their kid isn’t.

· Decide who is permitted into the piercing room and state this in your policy. It isn’t always a good idea to schedule kids back-to-back, especially from the same family. If the first one doesn’t take it well, the second one might cancel.

· Ask the parent how their child reacts to getting shots to gauge the reaction you might see.

· Talk about what’s going to happen and demonstrate on a toy or have a rehearsal.

· Give lollipops or other candy afterward (with parental permission). Let them know before the piercing that the treat will follow.

· Have some stuffed animals available for kids to hold when they’re in the piercing chair.

· “Controlling the room” is critical when dealing with families. Be in charge and be a firm guide. Do your best to be patient, understanding, and explanatory.

· See if the minor can voluntarily walk in, climb up, and sit down without any pressure or persuasion. Maintain conversation and find something you have in common.

· Watch their body language during cleaning and marking. You need to speak up if:

o The child isn’t listening or making eye contact

o They’re being rude to their parent(s)

o A parent is being too demanding of you or their child, or

o The parent is making the situation worse.

· Ditch the “baby talk.”

· Make physical contact before needle contact.

· Practice breathing with them and explain that they will act like they’re blowing out candles on a birthday cake when they get pierced.

· Know how to pierce both directions through a lobe, using a clamp and piercing freehand.

· Scared children may change their minds once things get “too real.” Don’t take it personally.

· Talk about healing times, swimming, sports, and aftercare, and provide care sheets specifically designed for children.

· Kids often sleep with wet hair, which can complicate healing. Warn parents that they should avoid this.

· Be mentally and emotionally prepared for tears, and for the minor to decide they don’t want to do the second piercing.

· It’s okay to say, “No.” If you feel that the client is not ready or if doing the piercing will surpass your own boundaries, don’t hesitate to decline, postpone, or call it off.

Be aware that you will be faced with some challenges when dealing with young clientele. Still, if you can muster the patience and apply some of the techniques and suggestions listed above, you should be successful. You’ll likely find that it is incredibly rewarding to provide a positive experience for a child’s first piercings—and to be involved in creating memories that can last a lifetime.

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