About 20% of adults in the UK now have at least one tattoo, and that proportion is likely to grow.

TATTOOING 07 September 2023

About 20% of adults in the UK now have at least one tattoo, and that proportion is likely to grow. Cynics might argue that the increased uptake is a superficial fad, based purely on the aesthetic appeal of tattoos. In this view, they might be the result of a momentary impulse to follow a passing trend followed by years of regret, rather than something that holds deep meaning.

Prof Viren Swami, a psychologist at Anglia Ruskin University who studies body image, thinks that these superficial explanations are highly unlikely. “Given their permanence, and the pain that’s involved, and the planning that often goes into getting a tattoo, it’s very difficult to conceptualise tattooing as a fashion accessory,” he says.

In his opinion, it is far more interesting to examine the ways that people use body art for self-realisation, as artistic endeavours that are expressions of identity, body ownership, and personal growth. Many are now finding that tattoos are a particularly apt way of marking a bereavement – a means of holding the loved one close after death.

  • How Tattoos Can Heal the Mind as Well as Adorn the Body
  • How Tattoos Can Heal the Mind as Well as Adorn the Body
  • How Tattoos Can Heal the Mind as Well as Adorn the Body
  • How Tattoos Can Heal the Mind as Well as Adorn the Body
  • How Tattoos Can Heal the Mind as Well as Adorn the Body
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