Will Tattoos Ever Go Out Of Fashion?
Tattooing has been a practice known to humans since ancient times. While the reasons for using tattoos differed from culture to culture and people to people, their use has remained consistent throughout the centuries. One might think that such an old practice would fade with time, but there’s a future for tattoos still.
Tattoos won’t go out of style for several reasons. First, tattoos have had a long history, and thus, carry cultural value. They’re also a powerful form of self-expression in a world where societal changes push people toward body art.
What Are The Different Styles of Tattoos?
There are lots of different types or styles of tattoo::
- Western traditional
- Japanese (Irezumi)
As we’ll see, some of these styles have been with us for hundreds of years, whereas some are more modern. This indicates that tattoos haven’t gone out of style, but that they do evolve with us.
How Long Have We Used Tattoos?
For thousands of years, humans have used tattoos for many reasons. The oldest body holding tattoos was discovered to be at least 5,000 years old — Ötzi the Iceman. Tattoos were also found on human bodies and figurines from Ancient Egypt.
Tattoos, however, weren’t only restricted to Egypt, nor the Iceman and his people — the Scythians, Thracians Greeks and Romans also practiced tattooing.
In the West, tattoo practice was also found in Native Americans, Inuits, and other ancient cultures in South America. In the Far East, evidence for tattoos was also found inside tombs in China, Japan, and the Polynesian islands.
This rich-history of tattoos is evidence that it’ll take a lot for tattoos to go out of style. Devastating illnesses, world wars and natural disasters seem only to make the evolution of tattoos more prominent.
How Do People Feel About Tattoos Now?
Currently, a huge number of people get tattoos, constituting more than half of the US population.
People who get tattoos seem to be motivated by several things:
- Representing a significant experience or struggle in a person’s life.
- Extending one’s means of self-expression.
- Enjoying the aesthetic.
Those against tattooing are usually driven by:
- Disapproval from friends or family
- Cultural values
- Fear of needles, pain, or any medical consequences
- Not finding tattoos appealing
People who have positive views towards tattoos usually see their wearers as cool and trendy, creative and artistic, or free-spirited and liberal. On the other hand, opponents usually see their wearers as messy and trashy, stupid and reckless, or immoral and, sometimes, even ungodly.
The fact is, some will always steer away from tattoos. The number of this group needs to be so extreme to influence a downtrend in terms of tattooing. Either that or a significant illness needs to sway the worldview on them.
What Does the Future Look Like?
The future of tattoos, as it seems, has nothing to do with the ink itself. Rather, tattoos are being reinvented as an idea by people of various disciplines.
This is because, in the future, tattoos will actually be able to do things. A famous example of this is that of Anthony Antonellis, who implanted an electronic chip in his hand that can transmit 1 kilobyte of information via an antenna.
Another example is a new type of LED tattoos pioneered by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania is made up of silicon and silk. These tiny devices that can be implanted in the skin and are powered by the electronics inside. This, according to the researchers, can have numerous medical applications.
It doesn’t stop at these two examples. There are many other unique examples of futuristic tattoos, such as a tattoo used as a QR code, or another that can function as a microphone.
What Can We Conclude From This?
Despite the passing of centuries and change of cultures, the use of tattoos does not seem to have diminished, nor are they seen as obsolete. Furthermore, there appears to be a lot of innovative work and research involving entirely new ways of thinking of a tattoo and its purpose.
While religious and cultural beliefs seem to deter many people from adopting tattoos, giving function to tattoos through these future innovations might serve as a way of keeping tattoos and their use alive and prevalent.
In short, it seems more than reasonable to say that tattoos won’t go out of style. However, the purpose of using them in the future might radically change compared to the present.
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