Do You Know What Chemicals Are In Your Tattoo?
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According to the European Commission's Joint Research Center (JRC), 12% of Europeans and as many as 24% of Americans have tattoos. Which makes this next fact all the more alarming: a lack of research and spotty regulation of tattoo inks means those tattoos could contain a whole host of harmful compounds. For example, many pigments in tattoo inks are sourced from the textile, plastic, or automotive industry.
An Industrial Robot Arm Is Ready To Give Tattoos
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It's not easy to sit under a pulsating needle that repeatedly punctures your skin. But the experience of getting a tattoo may have just gotten a little scarier. French engineers Pierre Emm and Johan da Silveira are responsible for the world's first tattoo given by an industrial robot arm. They created this device to be steadier than the human hand, but once the human element is removed from the process, different risks enter the picture. For instance, if the person getting the tattoo doesn't remain perfectly still during the procedure, the arm wouldn't know to stop or recalibrate based on the person's new position.There are a few steps the robot must take before hitting skin, however. First, a 3D model of the tattoo surface is made. Then, a mockup of the tattoo design is created using computer software. Lastly, and perhaps more importantly, the tattoo recipient must remain absolutely motionless. Though Emm and da Silveira did not originally plan for their creation to be a commercial endeavor, they've noted that demand is so high from tattoo artists that tattoo shops may indeed be the future for their tattooing robot. Watch the video below to see the robot in action.
Ephemeral Is A Tattoo That Won't Last Forever
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There are expensive removal services and coin-machine temporaries, but for the most part, a tattoo is forever. A Harlem-based startup is trying to change that by developing a tattoo ink that lasts roughly a year. The ink works by reverse-engineering the system that makes most tattoos permanent: when you puncture the skin with a tattoo needle, white blood cells rush in and try to absorb any invading particles. Because particles of ink are too big for the cells to absorb, they stay put. Ephemeral has created smaller ink molecules encapsulated inside bigger spherical structures, so they stay in your skin the same way regular tattoo ink does. But once you use the separate removal solution that's designed to break down that structure, the body's defenses flush away the ink and the tattoo disappears.
Would You Get A Tattoo With Cremated Ashes?!
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Have you ever considered getting a tattoo dedicated to the remembrance of a deceased loved one? This process takes that concept to the extreme. It's called commemorative tattooing, and is basically getting inked with a mixture that includes tattoo ink and the cremated ashes of deceased loved ones. The practice is not new, but it has been gaining popularity in recent years. It is mainly done more "underground," as there are unseen health risks cited by many professional tattoo parlours.
Tattoos Really Are Permanent
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The National Association of the Preservation of Skin Art has made it possible for people to keep the tattooed skin of deceased loved ones. After the loved one becomes a member of NAPSA, they can request their tattoo to be save after they pass. Once they pass, a removal kit will be sent to their beneficiary, the removal process will usually be carried out in a funeral home, and NAPSA will prepare the tattoo as a framed memento.