Ask anyone with at least one tattoo how many they want and the answer is likely "another one". Ask someone with a few tattoos if they have ever had a tattoo ruined because of infection, they just might have a horror story to share.

According to stats from 2023 Pew Research Center surveys, a third of Americans have at least one tattoo, and a fifth of them have had some sort of skin infection related to the tattoo.

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It's strange though, that so many people that get tattoos would get an infection after centuries of the practice being applied, right? You'd think by now, especially with evolving technology in the profession, that this would be a thing of the past. After all, serious tattoo artists don't have ill intentions with your body. They want to do a good job and for you to tell your friends and any stranger who asks about your ink where you got it done with positive reviews.

Besides the reputation aspect, artists have to maintain their shops' licenses with the state of Michigan to operate. There are plenty of rules and regulations they have to be aware of to keep you safe, the state happy and their door open to new customers.

Still, there's a tattoo injury lawyer here in Michigan, which speaks to how often this happens without hard statistics for the state. Why then, is this so prevalent, even here in Michigan?

The answer is rather shocking because it's due to tattoo inks not being regulated as you may expect since they are classified as cosmetics.

According to Newsweek, researchers at Binghamton University studied 54 inks from nine popular American manufacturers and found that 45 of them had major differences in the ingredients listed on the bottle from what was actually in it. Many of these inks contained polyethylene glycol, which can cause organ damage, while others had propylene glycol, a potential allergen. It's no wonder this happens more often than it should.

It's not clear based on the research if the differences are unintentional, negligent or deceptive, but hopefully, it brings along some change in the manufacturing to keep people safe and protect the reputations of great artists.

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