Tattoos have been around for six thousand years and possibly longer. At first, the only choice offered was black from the soot of the campfire. Eventually, it was an entire rainbow. Recently, the white ink tattoo has become a phenomenon. It has been used as a highlight in darker designs over the years as tattoo art has become very detailed and artistic, blending many shades into a more realistic design. By itself, white ink is becoming an expert in the subtle statement like no tattoo before it. They are becoming more and more popular as word gets around.
Unlike any other color white is by far a more subtle tattoo. Many people do not even notice the smaller ones right away even if they are in plain sight. Once they are noticed, it can give off two different effects. With the white color new on the skin, it can give a ghostly feel which works great for the more delicate designs. White ink can also look like scarring for an entirely different type of effect. White, more than any other color, can age into a parchment or yellow caste over the years.
White ink tattoos will not bring as much attention to themselves at the workplace. In fact, if it is small and delicate, it may not even be noticed unless you point it out. It is becoming a popular statement for people who want ink, but don’t want their ink to scream for attention.
I’m hearing from opposite sides with white ink and darker skin tones. One side says the darker skin has a harder time absorbing the white ink. The other side says the darker skin will contrast easier and it shows up great. So far, I have yet to see an example of a white tattoo on darker skin. My suggestion is to see examples. Ask those who have had it done already. As with any tattoo or tattoo artist, ask around and look for experience.
Also, it is being reported people are reacting to the white ink. This is coming from people who have had no allergic reaction to other pigments. The areas can be itchy or even swell. In extreme cases, your body may reject the pigment and you end up with no tattoo.
Another issue has been exposure to sunlight. The majority of voices suggest you not use white ink on your hands or other areas that will be exposed when you are outside. On the other side of the coin, I am also hearing from a minority of voices the white pigment reflects light making it less likely to fade over the years. If you are not sure, check with a reputable artist.
Find an artist who has experience in this craft. With white ink, the difference between a beautiful tattoo and an ugly one is smaller than the darker colors. I realize everyone has to start somewhere but if you have a choice between someone who has done this before and someone who hasn’t, go with experience.
Some chemicals around the house may damage your body art. Ask your tattooist about what to look out for. If he or she doesn’t know, find someone who does.
Lastly, it is thought by some that white ink tattoos will glow in the dark. White ink does not glow in the dark. If you see a glowing tattoo, it is UV ink.
Artists are also using it for shading to give the tattoo an even greater realistic effect. The shading gives depth, an almost three dimensional quality. The quality of the texture stands out. Over the years, the complexity and beauty of the tatto has increased tremendously. The epidermic canvas will still age as it loses its plasticity but the art has grown in leaps and bounds since the time of great-grandpa who got a tattoo of a beautiful young lady swinging on an anchor while on shore leave.