I-Kandy, and presumably every other shop on earth, often gets clients that, ever so quietly and with a hint of embarrassment, ask about covering up a regrettable piece. Little do they know, most of the people they are speaking with have been in the very spot they are standing – whether they tried tattooing themselves, trusted someone they shouldn’t have, or simply chose a piece they would come to regret, almost every tattoo artist or long-time body mod enthusiast has (or had) a piece they’re none too eager to show.
The good news is, we can help. With the very rare exception, tattoos can be reworked or covered up to your satisfaction. The bad news is, those exceptions are often the worst looking tattoos of all. Anything with a lot of thick black lines or really dark spots is going to present a challenge to your artist – the darker the colour, the harder to cover. This doesn’t mean it cannot be done, however, just that you may need to make some concessions. Reworking or completely covering a tattoo generally involves making the piece a lot larger, and a lot busier. Koi fish, large flowers, Hannya or Noh masks, or large, intricate scenes are popular, workable choices. If your tattoo has a lot of thick, black lines, those will need to be incorporated into the cover-up, as black is difficult, if not impossible, to completely cover. Don’t let this get you down, though! Some of the most beautiful pieces to ever leave our shop are covering some of the worst to ever walk in.
Cover-ups should not be approached the same way brand new tattoos are, however. While it’s great to have a piece in mind, a cover-up needs to be created by both you and your artist. They are better equipped to take the more difficult aspects of what you have now and work them into something you will love and appreciate. Keep an open mind, and let them work with you on a piece you will both feel comfortable with. On the other side of that, however, is you. Don’t settle for a piece you don’t love – the whole point in getting a cover-up is to be happy with something you once regretted. Come to your consultation with a few different ideas to bat around, and don’t schedule your appointment until you are in love with the new piece. The only thing worse than a bad tattoo is a bad cover-up, so it’s important that both you and your artist have shared suggestions and concerns before making a firm decision.
Our #1 goal is to see you leave our shop happy, and there are few happier people than those who walked in with a tattoo they hate, and walked out with a tattoo they love. If you cringe every time you see your tattoo, there is a big club here, just waiting for you to join.