20 Fun facts about tattoos that will shock you

Fun fact about tattoos and other tattoo facts

You might think you know a lot about tattoos. Perhaps you heard some fun facts from your friends, family or social media. But let’s test your knowledge and see how many of these tattoo facts you really know and how many you don’t. Hopefully throughout this list, you will learn some new and interesting fun facts about tattoos.

So without further ado, let’s start exploring the many different and interesting tattoo facts…


Fun fact about tattoos and other tattoo facts

1. Women get more tattoos than men.

According to a new poll, made in the United States that asked 1000 People about “their perception of body-art”, 59%  of women have body tattoos, compared to men with only 41% of them being tattooed. Pretty sure you didn’t expect that.  

2. The earliest discovery of tattoos goes back to the year 3200 B.C

The mummified body of a man named Ötzi the Iceman was found in the year 1991. His body stayed intact in the ice for a long time, and the ice made him become a “natural mummy”. His body was dated back to the year 3370 and 3100 BC., making him the oldest “wet” mummy. Not only was he the oldest wet mummy, but he was actually the oldest mummy with tattoos. He had about 61~tattoos all over his body. Some researches believe that his tattoos were ancient treatments for pain or religious rites, which makes his story even more interesting. 

Fun facts about tattoos and other tattoo facts
Fun facts about tattoos and other tattoo facts

3. The first tattoo machine was inspired by Thomas Edison.

The inspiration for the first electric tattoo machine came from Thomas Edison’s invention “the electric pen”. Just taking a small glance at his invention, you will be able to identify a lot of similarities between the tattoo-machine and the electric pen.

4. The old Tattoo ink recipe contained insect eggs.

Apparently, this tattoo ink was a mixture of vinegar, pine bark, corroded bronze, charcoal, ash, insect eggs and vitriol. Not the healthiest ink to inject into your skin, right? But nowadays tattoo ink is made of metallic salts for example oxides, selenides, sulphides, vegetable based pigments and plastic based pigments. What do you think about the modern ingredients?

Fun facts about tattoos and other tattoo facts
Fun facts about tattoos and other tattoo facts

5. Russian and English royals had tattoos.

Really! Yes, tattoos were seen as a symbol of status ,  which is why they had tattoos. You wonder when it changed?  It all changed the moment when tattoos became accessible to the “normal people”, because it started to be seen as vulgar and even the church started pressuring when it came to tattoos. It was prohibited to get tattooed.

6. People with tattoos are extroverts.

People with tattoos are more likely to be considered as extroverts or risk-takers, according to recent studies. If you want to learn more about what tattoos might say about your personality then take a look at this recent psychology study.

Fun facts about tattoos and other tattoo facts

7. Women are more likely to get a tattoo removal than men.

Causes for the removal are often: 

    • Embarrassment
    • Low body self-esteem
    • Job/career
    • Problems with clothes 
    • And more 

8. The most tattooed man

Having 99.99% of your body tattooed seems crazy and scary?- Not for Gregory Paul McLaren, also called Lucky Diamond Rich. Another fun fact is that he also holds the Guinness World record for having the most tattoos.

Fun facts about tattoos and other tattoo facts
Fun facts about tattoos and other tattoo facts

9. The most used Tattoo-designs: Hearts and angels

This is maybe not a fun fact, but rather a fact. Heart tattoos are often related to passion, love and happiness, as you might have thought. Angels Tattoos on the other side often have the following meanings: virtue, innocence, hope and guidance.

10. Misspelled Tattoos of celebrities

Yes, misspelled tattoos are not that rare. Even celebrities have misspelled tattoos, for example

  • Ariana Grande (didn’t realise that her Japanese tattoo meant “small barbecue grill”)
  • Rihanna ( tattooed “rebelle fleur”, sadly it is grammatically incorrect in french)
  • Orlando Bloom (tattooed his son’s name in morse code, but it was wrong)
  • Kevin Durant (tattooed a bible verse containing a misspelled word)
  • and many more.

So please make sure to double and triple check your tattoo ideas and make sure they are grammatically correct or make sense, especially if written in foreign languages. You might end up on another fun fact list and embarrass yourself, if you don’t.  

Fun facts about tattoos and other tattoo facts
Fun facts about tattoos and other tattoo facts

11. Countries where tattooing is illegal.

Impossible? Not for the following countries. They are strictly forbidden in Afghanistan (due to Sharia Laws), United Arab Emirates, Iran and Saudi Arabia

Counties where tattoos are partially forbidden: Malaysia, Yemen, North Korea and more.

12. Iranian Tattoo Artist sentenced for tattooing

In Iran, it is illegal to practice the art of tattooing, but that was no excuse for the now well known artist Mohsen Karimi. He was sentenced to six months in prison, but continued following his risky passion right after his release.

Fun facts about tattoos and other tattoo facts
Fun facts about tattoos and other tattoo facts

13. Tattoos are therapeutic

Tattoos are proven to be able to have a therapeutic effect on people since they can help you to feel more confident, help with anxiety, depression and can be a good coping technique. 

14. Getting rich as a tattoo artist? – The richest artist

The job of a tattoo artist is often seen as inconsistent or unreliable when it comes to income, because it depends on so many factors and the prices tend to variate depending on the size, design and chosen body part of the tattoo. But finances are no worries for the tattoo-artist Don Ed Hardy. 

His net worth is estimated 250 million USD. This Tattoo Artist is now 77 year old and retired from tattooing some time ago.

Fun facts about tattoos and other tattoo facts
Fun facts about tattoos and other tattoo facts

15. The quickest tattoo to heal: lip tattoo

Most people think the lip tattoo is one of the worst tattoos you could get and yes, it is a really delicate area and the tattoo will hurt like hell. On the other hand, while normal tattoos need about a month or more to heal completely, lip tattoos only take about 2-3 weeks to completely heal.

16. The most expensive tattoo – $924.000.

The most expensive tattoo in history was a $924.000 back tattoo made out of 612 half carat diamonds. The entire project took about 8 hours and was done in 2013.

Fun facts about tattoos and other tattoo facts
Fun facts about tattoos and other tattoo facts

17. The most tattooed folk is Maori.

The Maoris are really devoted people, that would do everything to protect their homes, families and their ground. The tribal Maori-tattoos are so beautiful yet so painful, since most of Maori men and women still get tattooed in the traditional way. 

The tattoos are made by dipping a toothed comb into dark pigments and then craving it into the skin with a mallet. But these people don’t let the pain scare them away and most of them stay still and calm during the entire process to show their devotion, willingness, status rank and also virility.

18. Collecting tattoo skins?

Yes, and we don’t mean character skins, like in video games, but real, tattooed skin of people that have died.  A Japanese doctor named Fukushi Masaichi, had a fascination of Irezumi culture and started to collect tattoo-skins. He mostly collected Yakuza skins. 

Fun facts about tattoos and other tattoo facts
Fun facts about tattoos and other tattoo facts

19. Donating tattooed skin after you die?

It is possible! As a follow-up to the previous fun fact: If you think your tattoo is special, and you want it to be preserved in time, then you could think about donating your skin and having it framed as the art piece it is. Click here to learn more.

20. In Costa Rica, you can get tattooed as a 12 year old!

Seems pretty crazy, right? Apparently not.

kids can get tattoos at the extremely young age of only 12. If you don’t believe us, go look yourself.

Fun facts about tattoos and other tattoo facts

How many fun facts did you know?


Well, we discovered many fun facts about tattoos, tattoos in different cultures, the psychologic aspects, how tattoo are seen in different countries and also pain level of traditional ways of tattooing while writing this article. Don’t forget that you don’t necessarily have to suffer from the pain of getting tattooed in order to get a nice, meaningful tattoo, You could for example use numbing creams. 

Feels good to live in the 21st century, where numbing cream is a thing, right?

So make use of this gift and go get one!

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