When I'm ninety years old I'm going to go into my bedroom, remove all my clothes and stand, if I can still do that, in front of a mirror. Among the wrinkles, sag and cellulite, there will be tattoos. Since I'm thirty-two now the image is not so bad. There are only eight tattoos on my body now. In it's ever changing appearance, they are the only things that haven't changed over the past eight years since I got my first one.
I recently went to my bathroom and looked at my first tattoo, a simple fish goat, the symbol of the Capricorn. With little thought to what it would look like in the future I threw it over my right shoulder. That actually was a great place to put it. The process itself was relatively painless. It looks pretty much the same as it did when it was fresh. My other ones have not fared so well.
I could blame the artist. I could blurt out silly myths like, "He did't go deep enough," or I could say, "he used cheap ink." I could also, be very very wrong. The truth is there are a billion factors for why my other tattoos aren't as fabulous. The main perpetrator is me.
I have a habit of changing body types every few years. In other words my weight fluctuates. Weight fluctuation is one of the top reasons why tattoos don't stay looking clean. Your skin looses elasticity naturally with age. If you add rapid changes in weight your ink will change, along with your body. Ladies this fact is also true with breast sag, you've been warned. If you want to keep your ink looking fresh as a daisy you'll take care of your body.
Another big reason my body art might need touching up is sun damage. I'm from New England. I now live in southern California where the sun almost always make an appearance. It's warm and I like being outdoors. Just like dye in your hair, the ink on your skin will fade. Fine lines and fading detail will suffer the most with constant sun exposure. The bolder colors and thicker lines are just as susceptible but it might not be as noticeable. Wear some sun screen if you have to. Here's a little hint, everyone has to wear sunscreen.
Moisturize: If there isn't enough commercials reminding you to keep your skin moist, I'm going to say so as well. I'm not going to sell you a particular brand, because, that is not my job. Not only does moisturizing keep your skin looking younger, it also, just looks cool. Nothing is worse than looking at someone else's tattoo, and the skin looks like sand paper. Remember that elasticity thing I spoke of earlier? This is another thing what will help your art stay bold. Moist, tight skin always equals sharp ink.
I'm going to say this and you, reader, might not want to hear it. Take care of yourself. Eat right, maintain a healthy weight and protect yourself from sun damage. So when you're naked at ninety and standing in front of a mirror, you'll at least have something pretty to look at.