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At the risk of feeding trolls...I did find this:

Can Skin Reject Tattoo Ink?

Mar 31, 2011 By Ryn Gargulinski

The beauty of tattoos outweighs the risks for many, as evidenced by the wide range of people with permanent body art. A smart move is to investigate your potential tattoo artist and studio to ensure precautions are in place to protect you from infection, blood-borne pathogens and disease. There is one risk from tattoos, however, over which you may not have much control. In rare cases, skin can reject the tattoo ink.

Rejection

The body rejects things by creating an allergic reaction to a substance it registers as harmful, even if the substance is not, says Mayo Clinic. Such is the case when skin rejects tattoo ink, usually with an itchy, red rash in the tattooed area. An allergic reaction to tattoo ink is rare, but it can hit even years after you get a tattoo. Sometimes, medications work for treatment, but in other cases, the best bet is to get the tattoo removed. Skin can also react soon after a tattoo by breaking out in itchy, raised bumps known as granulomas or form keloids, which are large, raised areas of scar tissue.

Allergic reactions to tattoos come about because of some of the substances used in ink pigments, Mayo Clinic and Dermatology Insights say. Some inks contain cadmium, mercury or other substances and compounds that some people's bodies deem as harmful. Red ink is one of the top culprits for allergic reactions, although neither Mayo Clinic nor Dermatology Insights note any specific components in red ink that differ from other colors and cause the higher rate of rejection.

Tattoo inks come in a huge palette of colors, ranging from Bahama blue to banana cream yellow, ruby red to titanium silver. More than 50 different pigments and shades are on the market, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration says, with new ones added regularly. The FDA has approved exactly zero for injection into the skin. This does not mean, however, all unapproved pigments will cause an adverse reaction. It means the FDA has been falling down on the job, which it readily admits on its website.

The FDA does approve color additives used in cosmetics, according to its website, and tattoo inks and pigments fall under its regulation under the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act. Even though some tattoo ink pigments are industrial-grade colors of the type found in car paint and printer ink, the FDA says it has instead been focusing on other, more pressing health concerns and, in the past, has not had evidence of any safety concerns with tattoo ink.

The FDA plans to investigate tattoo inks in the wake of more than 150 reports of negative reactions to several different colors used for permanent makeup, says an FDA webpage last updated in December 2009. It mentions only permanent makeup complaints and not those from other types of tattoos. As it gathers more information during its investigation, the FDA will decide if it needs to take any action to protect consumers better, although it did not note what that action might be.

References

American Academy of Dermatology: Dermatology Insights: A Closer Look at Teens and Skin

Mayo Clinic: Tattoos and Piercings

U.S. Food and Drug Administration: FDA Authority over Cosmetics

Mayo Clinic: Allergies

Tattoo Superstore: Ink Colors

SOURCE:

Can Skin Reject Tattoo Ink? | LIVESTRONG.COM

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the original post isn't referring to rejection or a reaction as that would be post tattoo/healing process. it was a question regarding ink not going in the skin during the tattoo process which is a matter of technique.

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@Dan S: Good find and it'll serve someone very well on the forums but as @JAllen pointed out the op is having trouble getting people to "take" the ink in the first place -- which is generally the end result of the inability of the person doing the tattoo to understand the variables of tattooing, control the ones he can and navigate through the ones he can't.

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In regards to what Dan S typed, that is more of a concern with powder pigments, right? Because the powder might have something in it that would cause some sort of red pimply thing to show up?

I heard white from powdered pigment could be like that as well.

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@Dan S: Good find and it'll serve someone very well on the forums but as @JAllen pointed out the op is having trouble getting people to "take" the ink in the first place -- which is generally the end result of the inability of the person doing the tattoo to understand the variables of tattooing, control the ones he can and navigate through the ones he can't.

Understood. I thought it interesting that there were still issues, albeit few and far between, with inks. I had trouble keeping red under my skin until the inkmakers changed from the iron-oxide formulas, and thought it all fixed after they did.

Note that the article states the complaints they have investigated are all about cosmetic tattooing.

And I think the OP just needs to tturn the machine around so the needles point at the client, not himself.

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Ok, I'm late to the party again, but I'm gonna drag up the Guns vs Machines thing again...

It doesn't fucking matter. I used to think it marked a difference between 'them' and 'us' but then I learned it's regional too. So I dropped it.

Many older English (or maybe even from elsewhere in the British Isles) tattooers used to call their machines 'guns'. Many still do. It doesn't mean they can't tattoo. That's guys we'd consider 'Old School' or 'Traditional'. Yeah, maybe their equipment didn't shoot anything, maybe they were using equipment with electromagnetic motors rather than a doorbell circuit with just regular coils, but that's what they got called by working professionals. 'Guns'.

Get over it.

Stop getting high and mighty because you heard some 'insider' terminology at the Tat Spot or the Tattoo Parlour or the upscale Dermagraphic Adornment Boutique, or maybe you read it on the internet. I guess you can be the authority on tattoo terminology now. Good for you.

I'm gonna keep slingin' ink on my bitchin' clients with my tatty-zap guns and also I'll be tattooing my regular customers as per usual. They way I say it shouldn't be of much concern.

Recently I've heard so many time-wasting, lazy-ass, no-talent-goons tell me how much they 'Respect the Craft', 'Honour Tradition' & put their 'Heart and Soul' into their half-assed doodles while asking for an apprenticeship/job/critique/applause/handout/validation, that the terminology has become meaningless.

The end result of the effort should be by what measure they, we and I'm, held accountable.

Sorry to be so Off Topic.

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then you have no business tattooing anyone. problem solved.

cupcakes seem to be the big rage now (tattoo popularity is on the outs) so why don't you teach yourself how to bake? check out youtube and other websites and you can learn it easy.

I am not a tattooer...I am a tattoo collector, and I am interested in the forums. However, I have noticed that many of you are quick to ridicule or jump on anyone who asks a question about tattooing.

Please allow me to remind you:

The goal of LST is to create a positive and respectful place where both tattooers and collectors alike can access a wealth of information about Tattooing, share their own experiences and perspectives, and cultivate valuable relationships within the tattoo community.

I think the original poster was respectful, asked a legitimate question, was trying to access your wealth of information about tattooing, and was sharing his own experience. He was not rude or asking for industry secrets.

For you all to reply in the manner you did is outrageously rude. He has apprenticed, which you all indicate is the only way to have an opinion; he works in a shop currently, which most of you indicate is the only way he is a "real" tattooer. I will tell you this: as a tattoo collector, I would never go to an artist with the bedside manner I see in many of you. Rudeness will not earn or keep my business. I wonder if many of your clients leave your chair thinking the same.

There are four of you that I would NEVER allow to tattoo me. Your snobbery is appalling.

For the record: I'm an English professor. I have two Masters Degrees and am working on my doctorate. I have been in "my trade" for more than 20 years. My peers are not nearly as secretive about our field as you people are about yours. And when we have a question about a piece of literature, we ask each other, we discuss it, sometimes online, and in a pinch, we Google it.

What a bunch of unprofessional hacks we must be.

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What a bunch of unprofessional hacks we must be.

Thankfully, shoddy work in the literary field doesn't result in a horrible looking mark on someone's body, cause potential for infection due to poor practice, or show disrespect for those who came before you. In tattooing, it's difficult to get any information without earning it first. As someone who has supposedly nearly earned a doctorate (again, you are just a screenname, so we don't know if you're being honest or not), you should understand how much hard work it takes to earn your way into a group that shares that freely. would you loan a first printing of a rare book that you happen to acquire to a Freshman 101 student for study as readily as you would someone who has the same level of experience as you? Or would you be worried that they didn't respect and honor what they would have in their hands, and treat it with the delicacy it would deserve?

For all we know, the story of someone's apprenticeship and/or job status at a shop is a lie, so that people will take them seriously. They should be asking their mentor or co-workers, or even someone they respect and get tattooed by, not strangers on a forum.

EDIT: Also, for someone who is going to quote rules at other members of the forum, you should probably read all of them. In fact, @Jake made it rather easy, with the very first response in the thread.

Do not start threads asking about specific tattooing equipment or techniques, LST is not here to teach anyone how to tattoo. Ask your own tattooer, the next time you are getting tattooed. Maybe they'll answer you, maybe they won't.

Do not start threads regarding closely guarded trade secrets - this will keep LST a much more welcoming place for everyone, tattooers and enthusiasts alike.

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I am not a tattooer...I am a tattoo collector, and I am interested in the forums. However, I have noticed that many of you are quick to ridicule or jump on anyone who asks a question about tattooing.

Please allow me to remind you:

The goal of LST is to create a positive and respectful place where both tattooers and collectors alike can access a wealth of information about Tattooing, share their own experiences and perspectives, and cultivate valuable relationships within the tattoo community.

I think the original poster was respectful, asked a legitimate question, was trying to access your wealth of information about tattooing, and was sharing his own experience. He was not rude or asking for industry secrets.

For you all to reply in the manner you did is outrageously rude. He has apprenticed, which you all indicate is the only way to have an opinion; he works in a shop currently, which most of you indicate is the only way he is a "real" tattooer. I will tell you this: as a tattoo collector, I would never go to an artist with the bedside manner I see in many of you. Rudeness will not earn or keep my business. I wonder if many of your clients leave your chair thinking the same.

There are four of you that I would NEVER allow to tattoo me. Your snobbery is appalling.

For the record: I'm an English professor. I have two Masters Degrees and am working on my doctorate. I have been in "my trade" for more than 20 years. My peers are not nearly as secretive about our field as you people are about yours. And when we have a question about a piece of literature, we ask each other, we discuss it, sometimes online, and in a pinch, we Google it.

What a bunch of unprofessional hacks we must be.

Let me remind you that you did not start an intro thread, you didn't say hello to the community, you didn't interact with anyone, and you haven't contributed anything but the above comment. Please pay attention to everything you should have read about beginner guidelines and such. Make an intro thread and start making positive contributions or you will be on the but end of a whole lot of "snobbery"

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For the record: I'm an English professor. I have two Masters Degrees and am working on my doctorate. I have been in "my trade" for more than 20 years. My peers are not nearly as secretive about our field as you people are about yours. And when we have a question about a piece of literature, we ask each other, we discuss it, sometimes online, and in a pinch, we Google it.

What a bunch of unprofessional hacks we must be.

Everyone is 10 feet tall and bullet proof on the Internet.

Although, the way you drone on, think you are an expert on something you actually know nothing about, and are judgmental about people who actually know more than you does lend credence to your claim to academia.

I'm not almost a doctorate, but I do know enough to read the rules before posting. Try it almost-doctor, it will save you much embarrassment.

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Yes, @Blizzard (or is it Prof. Troll?) the business of education and the business of tattooing are quite different. You calling people snobs isn't going to change that. It's a good idea to learn before you type about something you know nothing about--you would think with all your degrees you might try that? I have a master's too (alas only 1) and so I know that it doesn't mean I'm smarter than anyone else...it just means I decided to go into debt again and do some extra work so I could get paid slightly more at my teaching job. This thread died a long time ago and you revived it...why?

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Everyone is 10 feet tall and bullet proof on the Internet.

Although, the way you drone on, think you are an expert on something you actually know nothing about, and are judgmental about people who actually know more than you does lend credence to your claim to academia.

I'm not almost a doctorate, but I do know enough to read the rules before posting. Try it almost-doctor, it will save you much embarrassment.

I am not professing to be tall or bulletproof; I am simply commenting on a thread. I didn't drone on...I NEVER professed to be an expert at anything other than my field. But you're right about one thing: I am judging those of you who behave badly.

I've followed the threads here for some time as a lurker; I have several tattoos, admire those who excel in the field and do quality work, and I am interested in reading intelligent discussions about the art. I rarely feel the need to jump in, and am usually happy being a spectator. However, the original poster DID NOT violate any of the LST rules. He must have, however, violated your "unofficial" rules...as did I.

I am not a tattoo artist, nor am I an aspiring artist, nor am I interested in an Intro thread or in any industry secrets. I just know that many of you are rude, snobbish individuals about your "trade"...and I wouldn't let you tattoo me simply based on your exclusivity and "holier than thou" attitudes.

Blast me all you want...for not creating an Intro thread, or for my opinion. It matters naught to me. Perhaps your defensiveness is simply due to the fact that you know I'm right.

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Now I remember why I left shool-too many "academics" that all they know is how to flap their gips.

I finished school, but I will take someone with no degree and experience over someone with a degree any day. While this is a generalization, a vast majority of college grads I've interviewed over the last few years are poorly prepared and overly entitled. 90% of my recent interviewees have a BA no experience and don't understand why 100k starting salary is unrealistic.

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I am not a tattoo artist, nor am I an aspiring artist, nor am I interested in an Intro thread or in any industry secrets. I just know that many of you are rude, snobbish individuals about your "trade"...and I wouldn't let you tattoo me simply based on your exclusivity and "holier than thou" attitudes.

Blast me all you want...for not creating an Intro thread, or for my opinion. It matters naught to me. Perhaps your defensiveness is simply due to the fact that you know I'm right.

Lol because we are calling you out on not following how we do things here, you're gonna get your panties in a wad and then say we're upset because we know that you, in your 3 post wisdom, know more than us collectively about site rules and how we like to operate. We're not snobbish, you just defy any reason. BTW, INTRO THREADS ARE IMPORTANT. Then we could have saved the time of this argument and learned you were this way from the intro.

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I am not professing to be tall or bulletproof; I am simply commenting on a thread. I didn't drone on...BLAH BLAH BLAH FREAKING BLAH It matters naught to me. Perhaps your defensiveness is simply due to the fact that you know I'm right.

Back under the bridge with you, troll.

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@Blizzard, I find it amusing how you seem to willfully ignore anyone who points out that the original poster did indeed break the board's written rules, not any unwritten rules of tact. It clearly states in the rules of the board that any questions about the mechanics or specifics about the act of tattooing are prohibited. However, as you are so set in your ignorant conclusions, I feel pointing this out is like trying to kick water uphill... it's just not going to work.

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Blast me all you want...for not creating an Intro thread, or for my opinion. It matters naught to me. Perhaps your defensiveness is simply due to the fact that you know I'm right.

Methinks you speaketh like a dandy young sir! It matters naught what sayeth you regarding yon opinion of mine.

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