Why Hand Poke Tattoos Should Be More Than Just A Passing Trend

Xavier in Guides

I'm back with my flaming support for hand poke tattoos!

by Pat O'Rourke
by Pat O'Rourke

If you've been reading the blog for some time now, you probably have an idea what hand poke tattoos are all about. As long as the artist have the right amount of skill and he/she knows how sterilisation works and all that, we're all for it. Pretty much the same way with tattooing with a machine.

by M. Groundwater
by M. Groundwater

Late last year, it was speculated that hand poke or stick ‘n’ poke tattoos will be big in the years to come. A little over three months to 2016, I couldn't agree more. With stars like Rihanna flaunting their hand poked pieces, it's bound to be massive. Tattoos are already a consistent trend for some time now and it's going to take a little more push and media attention to get hand poke tattoos on the spotlight.

Hand poke sternum tattoo by Grace Neutral
Hand poke sternum tattoo by Grace Neutral

Although hand poke tattoos can be so easily turned into a mass social media “epidemic” since the basic materials needed to perform the procedure is too easily obtained, we don't want that to hinder hand poke tattooing and the artists who use the method from actually breaking it into the spotlight of the tattoo scene—in a good way. Hand poke tattoos have had its share of bad rep from all these kids getting stoned and poking dirty needles on each other. People aren't seeing what it's all about. And we're not only referring to how tattooing started with this type of method.

Recent from Guides

by Jenna Boumer
by Jenna Boumer

Although these days, everything is so accessible anyway. It just so happens that tattoos are permanent. And as much as we don't like to admit it, we also take part in tattoo trends. We're part of the culture. And it's a beautiful culture that needs to be gradually cultivated.

by Jenna Boumer
by Jenna Boumer

One of the things I love the most about hand poke tattoos is its procedure. Those who have had a proper hand poke tattoo will give you varied answers as to how it feels. Some find it more uncomfortable as opposed to getting them done by machine. Some would describe it as a tickling sensation—it relaxes them. I find the method really beautiful and refreshing. Don't get me wrong, nothing can compare to the sweet buzz of the machine but getting tattooed by hand poke is another thing. It's like pepperoni or meat supreme pizza. You don't get to choose one.

by Jenna Boumer
by Jenna Boumer

But like the standard tattoo, hand poke tattoos have a very colorful history in the recent years. From tribal tattoos to prison tattoos to a statement a portion of millennials have adapted, you gotta love thy roots. Can't blame the

via iffoundreturntomars / Tumblr
via iffoundreturntomars / Tumblr
Hand poke underboob tattoo by Yaroslav Putiata
Hand poke underboob tattoo by Yaroslav Putiata

Most people only get to see shitty DIY tattoos, which is why they easily dismiss these tattoos—most especially when they hear the word “stick ‘n’ poke”—as awful and poorly-done. But I'm glad that some are catching up and I'm getting to know more and more skilled hand poke tattoo artist in the scene. Remember Boo, the hand poke tattoo artist? She tattoos at Kevin Paul's studio and knowing the man, he's serious about the business and to have a talent like Boo—a hand poke tattooist at that—is not something to be taken lightly.

by Lady Hans
by Lady Hans
by Alex Snelgrov
by Alex Snelgrov
by Lady Hans
by Lady Hans

And with tattoos like these, the future is just getting brighter for hand poke tattoos. I doubt you can even tell them apart from one done by machine at first glance. We're not to say that they must replace tattoo machines—oh, what are we without rotaries—but we really want hand poke tattoos to be recognised for the beauty of the whole process. Some of you may ask why bother do something for 6 hours or so what you can do for 3 hours tops with a machine? It's far deeper than that. Some people simply find pleasure in the sweet, slow affair that is hand poke tattooing.

Looks like a tattoo of a paper airplane
Looks like a tattoo of a paper airplane

Are you ready to take the plunge and get a hand poke tattoo?

Xavier

@Xavier

When she's not writing for Tattoodo, Xavier likes experimenting with art and organizing local music shows. We're kidding, she's probably asleep. Follow her on Instagram @claudia_strife

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