Tattoo Facts: is tattoo ink safe? Risks and Precautions

Risks and precautions are important aspects that need to be covered before getting a beautiful tattoo. It comes to mind a very important question that a lot of people ask: is tattoo ink safe? If you intend to join the tattoo fashion or add one more to your precious canvas, you should perhaps take into account a factor that probably is for some people, unknown.

A recognized magazine, Scientific Report, also ask the same question: is tattoo ink safe? They confirmed that the elements that make up the ink in tattoos, travels inside the body, in the form of micro and nano particles, reaching the lymph nodes. It also was found that it carries both, the organic ink and tiny impurities and toxic components that can cause skin inflammation and other ailments.

is tattoo ink safe?
Henna Tattoo infected

When someone wants to get a tattoo, it is common to carefully choose the tattoo shop and, check on the equipment to be use. But, who has verified the chemical composition of the colors? Hiram Castle, one of the authors of the study, researcher at the European Synchrotron in Grenoble (ESRF) in France, explains that it should be considered.

The reality is that, little is known about the possible impurities in the mixture of color applied to the skin. The majority of tattoo inks contain organic pigments, but also include preservatives and metals (such as nickel, chromium, manganese or cobalt) that, at certain levels in your blood, could be toxic.

In addition to the carbon black, the second most common ingredient used in tattoo inks is titanium dioxide (TiO2), a white pigment applied generally to create certain shades when mixed with colorants. This compound (TiO2) is also commonly used in food additives, solar screens and paintings, so do the maths.

The delay in healing, the elevation of the skin and itching after a tattoo are often associated with white drawings, and by consequence, using this TiO2.

Risk and precautions: for whole lifetime

The risks and precautions resulting from tattoos have been investigated so far only by chemical analysis of the inks. It is clear that tattoo pigments travel to lymph nodes because of the visual evidence: lymph nodes are stained with the color of the tattoo.

This is as result of the body responding to clean the area where the tattoo was placed (we recommend to read, tattoo facts: what to consider when getting a tattoo)

Scientists from the ESFR, the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt and the Ludwig-Maximilians University found strong evidence of the migration and long term deposit of toxic elements and pigments of tattoos, as well as alterations of bio-molecules that sometimes are linked to skin inflammation and other adversities when inked.

In summary, there are a lot of aspects that need to be covered before getting a tattoo and don’t forget to ask again and research: is tattoo ink safe?



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