Wednesday, 12 June 2013

Nostalgic For Nineties Tattoos

I've been considering getting a tattoo, I'm not sure what, I just like the idea of having one. Which is probably a sure sign that I shouldn't get one.
I've been flicking around the internet and tattoo books for inspiration and I've got distracted in my quest by the array of tattoos out there; the good the bad and the ugly. I'm particularly struck by the trends, there's always some motif or pattern that people have branded on them to show their individuality en masse.

I've been feeling nostalgic towards nineties tattoos, there are some naff one's around at the moment but they can't compete with the cheesy goodness from twenty years ago.

Designs were fairly limited for girls; if you were a woman getting a tattoo in the nineties there were pretty much only three options to go for...


Image via Free Tattoo Designs
That's a girl of real class right there.
I shouldn't judge really, I can sort of see the dolphin allure; they symbolise freedom and friendship, plus they're like nice sharks, what's not to like?

Image via

I think this picture answers that question. This is a classic dolphin tattoo; it's on the foot accompanied by the trusty ankle bracelet, it's twee, over-coloured and, frankly, not very well done, it looks like it's emerging from a lettuce leaf.
The dolphin is the symbol of girls trying to show how they are such free spirits...and failing.

Image via Rate My Ink

I don't even know what to say about this one, so I'm going to leave it there.

Chinese Symbols

Image via Tattoo Idea Pictures
In case you hadn't guessed, the ankle is a classic nineties tattoo position, that's so it can go next to your awesome anklet.

Clearly, getting a word tattooed onto yourself in a different language is much more meaningful than getting it in one you can actually read. Plus you look, like, totally spiritual.

Ultimate nineties icon Sporty Spice had a Chinese tattoo, so clearly they were ultra cool. Also, catch another tattoo trend in this picture; the upper arm ring. It usually features barbed wire but Mel C has gone for a more feminine approach.

There's always the trouble though that the Chinese symbol that you think means love or peace or strength, actually means something completely different. As demonstrated by Laurie from Cougar Town.

And don't think that just because Laurie got one, you can get one. You're not as cool as her.

And finally...

Tramp Stamp

Image via Soda Head
The ultimate in nineties tattoos, and this style is still going strong.
Maybe the first girl to get a tattoo on her lower back was very original, free spirited and generally an all-round cool person. But that's not what lower back tattoos mean any more, the clue's in the name.

Image via Pinterest

It's a shame that a girl can't get a tattoo on her back without being labelled a whore, but lower back tattoos don't tend to be classy or stylish. Instead they normally include one or all of the following; a heart, a butterfly; someone's name.

Another problem with lower back tattoos is that they generally only suit people with bodies like this.

Image via Studded Hearts

But they can more often be found on people with bodies like this.

Image via Pinterest

Unfortunately, the latter is trying to dress like the former.

I'm going to leave you with that image. I tried to find a photo of all three; a tramp stamp with a dolphin and Chinese characters but, alas, I failed. If you find the Holy Grail of nineties tattoos then please post it below.

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