Vegan Tattoos, Safety Standards, and Regulations

Vegan tattoos. Yes, there are vegan inks. Today, more and more people are turning to a vegan lifestyle. I have friends today that are full and semi vegan who truly enjoy that lifestyle. I’m not vegan, but we have a mutual respect for each other’s choices, so we don’t engage in the debate about who’s right and who’s wrong.

Today I want to share about two topics that I think go hand in hand; vegan inks and safety regulations.  Many people have asked me if there are vegan tattoos, and what are the restrictions on regular inks. So grab a beverage of your choice while I have some coffee, and let’s sit and chat about vegan tattoos and safety standards and regulations.

thrasher- girl

Vegan Tattoo Inks

With the huge movement in tattoos, and more and more people wanting them, where does that leave the vegan who wants one for themselves? Many who do their homework will find that some inks contain glycerin from animal fat, bone chars, gelatin from hooves, and beetle shellac.

  • Glycerin made from animal fat is used as an ink stabilizer to make it easier to work with.
  • Bone char made from burnt animal bones is used to get the darkest shade of black.
  • Gelatin from animal hooves and beetle shellac are used as binding agents.

Not to Worry Because there are Vegan Inks

Ink manufactures have gotten on board with this lifestyle, and have come out with vegan friendly inks. Here is a list of some of the manufactures of vegan inks:

  • Intenze Inks
  • Skin Candy(Bloodline)
  • Crazyhorse
  • Southeast Tattoo Supplies
  • Eternal Ink
  • Kuro Sumi
  • Electric Ink Usa
  • Fusion Inks
  • World Famous Tattoo
  • Starbrite

Research needs to be done on your part if you want to have a total vegan tattoo experience. There are many tattoo studios popping up all over the world that do complete vegan tattoos, but you, as the client, need to do your homework when talking with artists who are not completely vegan. The majority of artists will be happy and willing to work with you.

I’ve had friends who have brought some of their own supplies to their session in order to keep it vegan. For example, the razors used to shave the hair where you are having your ink done may contain a gel strip made of animal fat.

You’ll also want to know if the stencil paper is animal free, or if they can contain animal char. If unsure, you can ask instead to have your tattoo free-handed.

Many artists are more than willing to work with you in every way possible to make sure all your needs are met to ensure a safe and enjoyable vegan session. One last thing you must remember is that you will need vegan ointments and soaps for the needed aftercare of your tattoo.

Remember to do your footwork and don’t forget to ask all the questions you can think of. Artists will be honest and up front with you. So as you can see; yes, there are vegan inks on the market today.

 

Lets Talk Ink Safety Standards and Regulations

Things can go unnoticed and fly under the radar for a long time without any thought. Tattoos are no exception and for many years have really gone without many safety standards or regulations.

With today’s explosion in the ink world, many are beginning to ask questions. Today, many people are working to build healthier lifestyles and are cautious of what goes into there bodies.girl- exercise

Many people go organic to ensure they’re getting healthy foods and also going green to help the world to be a better place to live. One might ask, “OK, David, but what has this got to do with the ink world?” Well, funny you should ask. As more people today are getting inked, there are a lot who ask if tattoo inks are safe and if there risks involved.

For many years, the tattoo world has flown very low under the radar with very little questions asked. People are beginning to take notice and looking to see just what risks may be involved.

I won’t go far into what inks are made of, but if you would like to read more about that and the history of tattoo inks, you can read my article Tattoo Inks; Expand your Knowledge.

When inks were started back in B.C., there were no standards, and what they put into their inks have worked for centuries. The pigments and chemicals that are used have raised concerns for researchers who have claimed that the pigments can break up and travel through the blood stream.

man-skateboardThey believe they can migrate to lymph nodes and can possibly show up as tumors. It is also stated that inks are a possible cancer risks, and can cause birth defects and reproductive harm.

Another concern is that more people are having tattoos removed by lasers. It’s been stated by researchers that due to the make up of some inks, it makes them harder to remove, causing scaring and skin damage.

I wouldn’t be too concerned about this, as there is no concrete evidence that this will happen from getting inked, nor have I ever know someone to develop any such problems in all my years of being around tattoos.

The FDA is considering looking more into this because inks fall under the cosmetics category. Right now there are no strict standards on the tattoo industry.

In Europe, the EU has stepped in due to the rise of tattoos and is set to vote on stricter regulations on inks. In California, Proposition 65 states that all Tattoo parlors must disclose of any harmful chemicals used. Clients must be warned that tattoo inks contain heavy metals may cause cancers, birth defects, and reproductive harm.

Many tattoo ink manufactures are working towards safer inks, and creating vegan inks is a start to this process. Mario Barth, the founder of Intenze Inks was upset that there were not stricter regulations in the industry.woman-tropical

He actually took his inks and tested them on himself. One of the tests was not taking proper aftercare of his tattoo so he could see the results and develop better inks. There are a lot of artists, as well as people in the tattoo industry who would welcome stricter regulations.

In a final note, one thing you must be aware of is the other possible side effects, such as allergic reactions. You should consult with your doctor and the artist if you may have sensitive skin. I’ve had tattoos for many years, and have met lots of people that have them who have never had problems.

It’s your body, and you have the right to know what you’re putting into it. The advice I give to people if you’re leary of possible problems, then keep a peaceful mind, and just don’t do it. I hope you enjoyed our chat and hope this has helped.

Please do not hesitate to leave a comment or question.

Keep Rocking your Journey,

Davidwoman- singer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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36 Replies to “Vegan Tattoos, Safety Standards, and Regulations”

  1. Hey David, Add me to the list of not knowing about vegan inks. I just talked to my brother-in-law because he has so many tattoos and he was aware of it.
    I guess when you’re really into something, you would know,right? I’m not too familiar with tattoos. Does this make them more expensive?
    ~Rob

    1. Hello Rob. Thank you for taking the time to read my article. The prices are not much different cause there vegan. I’m happy my article helped you to learn about vegan inks. Thank you for visiting my website and hope you will return for future articles.
      Best Wishes,
      David

  2. My wife has been looking into getting another tattoo and I had no idea that vegan ink was a thing. That is very interesting, I will definitely share this post with her. I didn’t realize the level of detail that goes into the vegan movement, when you talk about razors with a gel strip containing animal fat. I had no idea about that. Very informative post, keep up the great work here.

    1. Hello Steve. Thank you for taking the time to read my article. Yes a lot of people don’t realize there are vegan inks. My friends who are vegan take it seriously and believe in it 100% and I have nothing but respect for it. I’m really happy you enjoyed my article and found it informative and do hope you will return for future articles.
      Best Wishes,
      David

  3. Hi David’
    Another fantastic article and again I didn’t know about the vegan side of tattoing- How cool is this. I might have to invest in some inking
    Thank you for sharing this info
    You rock!!

    1. Hello Vicki. Thank you for taking the time to read my article. Yes there is vegan inks. It is pretty neat that the ink world is always working to make getting inked easy for everyone that wants one. I would love to see you get one you would definitely rock it. Thank you for visiting again and do hope you keep returning for future articles.
      Best Wishes,
      David

  4. Interesting article and its good that there are vegan tattoos being developed. I appreciate the art of tattoos. I didn’t know that animal origin ingredients were in standard tattoos.

    1. Hello Eden. Thank you for taking the time to read my article. When inks were made back in BC people used what means they had to make things and animal parts were used for a lot of things. Yes tattoos are a true art and just keep getting better. Thank you for visiting my website and hope you will return for future articles.
      Best Wishes,
      David

  5. Wow I had no idea that tattoos even used animal products, even more surprised they have vegan options as well! While I’m not vegan with my diet, I do believe in trying to not use as many animal products or products that test on animals, so this is definitely something I’ll keep in mind next time I ink up! Thanks for sharing.

    1. Hello Will. Thank you for taking the time to read my article. Ink manufactures everyday are working hard everyday to make better inks. A lot of manufactures are introducing more organic inks today. It takes a lot to come up with an ink that will bind and keep it’s bright colors for years. Thank you again for visiting my website and do hope you will return for future articles.
      Best Wishes,
      David

  6. David thank you for a great article on Vegan Tattoos.

    I really enjoyed reading it and learnt so much about tattoos and inks.

    I must admit I had never heard of Vegan tattoos before I read your very interesting article.

    I have passed on your site link to a friend who is a vegan as she has been thinking about getting a tattoo… keep up the good work!

    1. Hello Moni. Thank you for taking the time to read my article. I’m really happy you enjoyed my article and have passed it on to your friend. There are a lot of people still learning that tattoos can be vegan friendly. Thank you again for visiting my website and hope you will return for future articles.
      Best Wishes,
      David

  7. Thank you so much for this. I would like to get a tattoo but was recently warned that it’s really bad for our health due to the metals in the ink. How much risk do you think there is in that ? I’m so glad vegan inks are being developed!

    1. Hello Jerilyn. Thank you for taking the time to read my article. As far as bad for your health As I had shared in my article through all my research and Many people I have met with ink has ever had any serious health issues. The most common thing I see that happens is an allergic reaction to the ink but you can be allergic to foods and other things I just always recommend do your homework before getting inked. Again thank you for visiting my website and hope you will return for future articles.
      Best Wishes,
      David

  8. I have several tattoos and get new things added all the time and like you have never had a problem, but my friend just had one done and had an allergic reaction to a product in the ink she knew she was allergic to but did not think it would effect her….so asking questions and talking to your artist is an absolute must. Another great read…while having my coffee:) Keep rockin sir!

    1. Hello Tina. Thank you for taking the time to read my article. Ya if you know your allergic to the inks make up you really shouldn’t chance it and yes you need to talk and ask questions. You know your article must be ok when it’s a read with coffee thank you so much. I look forward to bringing you more articles.
      Best Wishes,
      David

  9. Hi David…and thanks for some great information on a topic about which I am completely ignorant!
    I have appreciated other people’s tattoos and was intrigued by the “Inked” shows on television but never put in much more depth of thought than that. Your article really opened my eyes and helped educate me more about the growing popularity of tattoos.
    Well done, keep rocking’ it!

    1. Hello Kyle. Thank you for taking the time to read my article. I’m really happy I was able to provide you more information about the world of ink, and hope you will read more of my articles. Thank you again for visiting my website.
      Best Wishes,
      David

    1. Hello Eric. Thank you for taking the time to read my articles. I’m really happy you enjoyed it and are sharing it,and I hope you will return for future articles.
      Best Wishes,
      David

  10. Hi David, as always I have learnt something new as I always do with your posts.

    I had no idea that tattoo inks weren’t vegan, and being vegan myself this would definitely be something to consider if even I got a tattoo.

    And all those other things that you wouldn’t even think twice about could also be cause for concern, such as what exactly is in the inn. Could be anything couldn’t it? And we think nothing of having it injected into our bodies.

    You’ve made me realise that you do need to do your homework before getting inked, especially when abroad in places that have lower health and safety standards.

    1. Hello Stefanie. Thank you for taking the time to read my article. When Inks were first made back in BC they used the resources they had to create things and with little resources animals were used for many things. Sometimes the saying goes don’t fix what’s not broken and tattoo inks are no different. The Safety standards are not strictly regulated but what’s awesome in the ink world is they take it upon themselves to make sure their industry is as safe as possible. Thank you so much for visiting my website and hope you will return for future articles.
      Best Wishes,
      David

  11. Great article, David.

    And a very relevant subject for me, as a fairly tatted up guy (full right sleeve, part of my back, part of my left leg) I have always been concerned about the quality of the ink that was used. I got my first ink about twenty years ago, and have never had any issues with allergic reactions etc. But I do know people who have had unfortunate experiences.
    I am not a vegan, but there are definitely other concerns to keep in mind with the quality of the ink, and not a whole lot of resources out there to get the information, so thank you very much for this site. Will definitely be coming back for more… 🙂

    Best wishes,
    Michael

    1. Hello Michael. Thank you for taking the time to read my article. Yes some can have a reaction to the ink and it’s always a good idea to talk to the artist before getting inked. Artists will answer any and all concerns before you get your work done. Today ink manufacture are working daily to come up with safer inks and vegan inks are a huge step in that direction. I’m so glad you enjoyed my article and that you will be returning for future articles.
      Best Wishes,
      David

  12. Hello David!

    Once again you teach me something new I didn’t know about tattoos. I did not realize that there are animal byproducts in most ink. I am not a vegan myself but, like you, I know a ton of vegans and most of them have tattoos as well. I will pass on this information because many of them might not be aware of this. So thank you for sharing!

    As far as health regulations, I knew that it isn’t a good idea to get a tattoo while pregnant but I also heard it isn’t a good idea while breastfeeding either. I really want to get another tattoo when I have some splurge money but I wasn’t planning on being able to get one until I was done breastfeeding. Is this information wrong?

    Thanks for another great post! Looking forward to the next one!
    Tina

    1. Hello Tina. Thank you for taking the time to read my article. I’m happy you enjoyed my article and to answer your question yes you can get a tattoo while breastfeeding the ink will not harm your milk or the baby but I do also tell people if you don’t feel comfortable while breastfeeding then I would by all means wait your tat will be waiting for you when your ready. I look forward to you reading future articles.
      Best Wishes,
      David

  13. Hello! Love your layout and content! So very informative. I do have a tattoo…got it in England in 1984. It is my only one. I do illustrations and some have been used by tattoo artists as well as some drawings my son has created for various people. We are both artists. I had no idea the tattoo industry was so detailed and health oriented. Good to know! Keep the information coming and again…really enjoyed your site. Great job!

    1. Hello Paulette. Thank you for taking the time to read my article. Thank you for your very kind words. That Is really awesome some of your drawings have been used for tattoos. The tattoo industry works hard everyday to make the ink world very safe and health friendly. Thank you again and do hope you will return for future articles.
      Best Wishes,
      David

    1. Hello Virginia. Thank you for taking the time to read my article. The tattoo world is and it’s work are amazing. I’m Happy you found this informative and hope you will return for future articles.
      Best Wishes,
      David

  14. Wow. Quite possibly one of the most informative posts I have read for a long time. I am not vegan myself, but my best friend is. She has been looking at tattoo ideas for a long time now and this will be music to her ears, knowing vegan ink is available. We are from the UK. Are you able to get vegan tattoos over here as well

    1. Hello David. Thank you for taking the time to read my article. To answer your question yes they have vegan inks in the UK as they have stronger restrictions on inks there. Again thank you for visiting my website and hope you will return for future articles.
      Best Wishes,
      David

  15. Wow! I must say that I am amazed how many animal origin ingredients are in tattoo ink and equipment. I was aware that there are a lot of chemicals that are harmful to our organism, but not aware that some of them come from animals. Luckily, the vegan community recognizes these facts and they are always among first to act. I agree with you, it should be more regulated, and all tattoo parlors should note their customers before applying the ink on the skin. Great article. Thanks for the information.

    Ivan

    1. Hello Ivan. Thank you for taking the time to read my article. The tattoo industry are always working towards making safer and better inks and a huge step was making vegan friendly inks. I’m sure in time regulations will come but also that being said a lot of tattoo parlors due have it in their papers when you sign them about the possible risks. Thank you for visiting my website and hope you will return for future articles.
      Best Wishes,
      David

  16. Great post David! So much interesting info 🙂

    I never knew there were vegan-friendly tattoos. My whole family is vegan and so I find this very appealing:)

    Looking forward to reading your other posts!

    1. Hello Thomas. Thank you for taking the time to read my article. I’m happy you enjoyed it. Yes the tattoo industry works to make getting inked easy for everyone. Thank you again for visiting my website and look forward to you returning for future articles.
      Best Wishes,
      David

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