For many years tattoos were associated with sailors and soldiers,then in the 60s and 70s with bikers and heavy metal rock stars.But today more people from all social classes are having tattoos done and there has been a significant increase in the number of women who have them.Many famous people have had tattoos done too.Footballer,David Beckham,and his wife,Victoria,both have tattoos of their son's name,Brooklyn.David has one on his back and Victoria has one on her arm. Other famous people with tattos include singers Robbie Williams.Tattoos have existed for more than 5,000 years.The word tattoo comes from the Polynesian word tatau,meaning symbol.In Polynesia tattoos were a sign of social status and the transition from childhood to adult life.They became known in the West when sailors on voyages of discovery to the Polynesian islands had tattoos done because they wanted to be accepted by the natives or because they wanted a souvenir of their voyage.The traditional method is to make a drawing on the skin and then trace the lines of the final tattoo by injecting ink under the skin using a machine with a needle.Sounds painful? It is.But not as painful as having a tattoo removed!Modern laser surgery has improved the situation,but even with this method there is no guarantee that a tattoo con be completely removed.So a lot of people have henna tattoos,which are not permanent.Yhese are fine if pure henna dye is used, but sometimes artists use inferior dyes containing the chemical PPD,which can cause permanent skin problems.There are other semi-permanent tattoos which can last for up to five years.Tattoos are most popular with people aged between 16 and 24.5% of people in this group say they like tattoos,compared with only 6% of people over the age of 55.Apparently 25% of people who have a tattoo hide it at work. Are they worried about their colleagues prejudice?And in a survey of children aged between 6 and 16 the majority of them associated tattoos with drug addicts and criminals.So you should think twice before you have a tattoo done-you will probably have to live with it for the rest of your life.
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