Will Tattoos Become More Accepted In The Future?

  • Written By Dan Hunter on December 8, 2019
    Last Updated: November 27, 2020

Until the late 20th century, there was much stigma surrounding tattooing for many reasons, whether they be social, cultural or religious. Things seem to have changed in the early 21st century, with tattoos becoming more prevalent in modern culture.

This shift in acceptance is due to technology and the sharing of information and ideology being so easy since the inception of the internet. So, then, what we may think about tattoos might change along with them.

With so many changes happening to society in the advent of this new century, and how many cultural and social values are evolving, one cannot help but wonder where do tattoos fit in all this and whether or not they would still exist in the future.

Yes, we feel tattoos will be more accepted in the future. Tattoos are finding more acceptance despite an already existing stigma, both socially and academically. Moreover, with future innovations, tattoos are being reborn as something entirely new, yet familiar.

Is There Still Stigma Toward Tattoos?

Even though tattoos are becoming more and more common, particularly in the US, stigma towards them still exists, especially towards highly visible tattoos. Children, as early as 6 years of age, can associate people who have tattoos with negative attributes, much more often than positive ones. This is not just restricted to children, either.

Young people and adults share similar worldviews, albeit with some differences. While they may see tattooed people as stronger or more independent than non-tattooed people, they still view them with some negativity. This manifests to a point where it can even influence legal judgment and punishment in courtrooms.

Why Are Tattoos Becoming More Prevalent?

Several reasons contributed to tattoos becoming more common. The first of them is the emergence of modern tattooing equipment, which began with Thomas Edison’s electric pen. Since then, it has become much easier for more to adopt the artistry of tattooing.

In academia, the view on tattoos is also changing, from what was considered as a pathological manifestation to a meaningful one with cultural value. A study even took this one step further to show tattoos as a form of reclaiming the self. The angle of this was through marking the body with tattoos that represent significant and meaningful events in their times.

This is seen as a result of the individual becoming a part of many social groups, where each group can pressure the person into altering their persona — a hallmark of the current post-modern society.

In society, there appears to be more acceptance of tattoos as the perspective shifts, seeing tattooed people as less likely to be recreational risk-takers and finding tattoos to be more acceptable.

How Is Technology Changing Tattoos?

Technology is radically changing our idea of tattoos. It does so by giving tattoos an attribute they never had before: function. Now, a tattoo doesn’t have to be there to depict something, but it can also be able to do something.

Things that you might consider to be from the world of science fiction are actually becoming a reality. Here are some examples that might just blow your mind:

  1. Developing dissolvable tattoo sensors, whose performance is comparable to electronic sensors and can be used in various ways to monitor the body’s health
  2. Tattoos that can be used as a microphone powered by your sweat.
  3. Developing a tattoo that can be used to transmit information or encode information.

Is Acceptance Guaranteed?

To imagine a future where societies look upon tattoos differently — compared to the past — is neither far-fetched nor unreasonable. Tattoos and humans have been intertwined for a long part of our history. We’re seeing more and more people start to get tattoos, despite the existing stigma that has persisted for quite some time. Tattoos don’t look to be going out of style any time soon.

It’s now clear that tattoos are breaking through their older stereotypes and are presenting themselves to society in a new light — self-determination rather than self-mutilation. With technology on board and tattoos becoming functional as well as just aesthetic or symbolic, their popularity will most likely continue to soar.