Tattoos have long been a sign of rebellion, expression, and art. In a recent Durango Herald article, it�s mentioned that body ink is even older than we realized � a mummified corpse from 5,200 years ago, known only as the �Iceman,� has tattoos on his back, right knee, and ankles.
And since then tattoos have only become more popular! A recent Harris poll indicates that the number of US adults with tattoos is now at 21 percent, a jump from 14 percent in 2008.
But if you think that getting inked up is lucrative, it�s far surpassed by the business of getting that ink removed. Local Durango tattoo artists say that they get flooded with calls from customers asking if they can remove tattoos, and the answer is no.
�I tell them no, sometimes we can cover them,� says artist James Wharton. �I�ve had some success doing that. But there�s been a demand (for removal) for quite a while � and few people in town do it.�
Patty Purcell of Four Corners Laser & Aesthetics says that 60 percent of people with tattoos regret their decision. Because of this, she recently invested in a laser to help with removal � costing her $80,000.
�I haven�t even really started marketing yet, but I already have a waiting list,� Purcell says.
Doctors and tattoo artists alike urge customers to think twice before getting their ink and to exercise sober judgment. Imagine yourself when you�re 50 � it may not seem important now, but trust us, that ink can stink.