How Tattoo Culture in the US is Changing

March 30, 2019

In the past, someone with tattoos would sometimes be viewed as a “bad” person or someone who was not as civilized as people without tattoos. Today this seems to be changing as more and more people are seen on a daily basis with tattoos, and in some cases there are more people with tattoos than without. The stereotypes surrounding tattoos seem to be changing with today’s society, especially in the U.S


Photo: Lucas Lenzi on Unsplash 


Tattoos have been around for a very long time and can be seen throughout thousands of years of human existence, and some of the things people see today were actually inspired by tattoos. For example, the Macy’s trademark star that is seen in all of its stores was originally a tattoo that its founder had. Tattoo culture has had a massive influence on society for a very long time and continues to do so in the present day.


Nearly 40 percent of people aged 18-25 in the U.S. have one tattoo or another according to a report done by the Pew Research Center. This could mean that as younger generations get older and older, more and more people are getting tattoos. At one point this was not very common, and most people with tattoos would be sailors, inmates, and people who were seen as “rougher” than the mainstream. Unlike previous years, tattooing has burst into the mainstream with a large portion of society having tattoos.


In some instances tattoos have prevented people from being hired for a job that they have applied for, but recently this has begun to change as employers seem to disregard tattoos more and more. In the US Air Force there was once a rule that anyone who had tattoos on more than 25 percent of their body could not be enlisted, but in recent years they removed this rule. Almost on all fronts of employment there seem to be fewer rules around tattoos, making much easier for those with ink on their skin to get hired.


Today you can see tattoos almost everywhere you look, whether that be a stranger you see on the street or a show that you see on TV. In fact, there are even TV shows that are dedicated to tattoo shops anywhere from Miami to Sydney. This type of attention has brought a massive spotlight onto tattoo culture that has helped move it away from the negative stereotypes that once surrounded it.


Ryan Molloy is a 20 year old student at Emmanuel College as a Major in Communications and Media Studies and pursuing a Minor in Writing. He is also a Staff Writer for Emmanuel’s newspaper, The Hub. He spends most of his time in the library and you’ll never see him without headphones in listening to music on full blast. Ryan hopes to pursue journalism upon graduation and hopefully be able to cover international events. Robert Kukla is a college senior pursuing a career in publishing and/or journalism. He takes pride in his nerdiness, some of his favorite things being Disney, Harry Potter and Star Wars. Ever since a young age Robert has always developed a passion for books and the written language. And it wasn’t until he enrolled back in school in 2017 that he realized his true potential and an even deeper passion for wanting to be a writer.


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