Celebrities like Angelina Jolie, Mariah Carey, and Paris Hilton have "partner marking" -- the wearing of tattoos to represent commitment to a spouse or significant other -- popular. As go the celebrities, so go the public. Consequently, there seems to be a growing interest in having the wedding rings tattooed as the ultimate commitment.
True, when you say your vows, the words "till death do us part" have real meaning. This union is intended to be forever, and the wedding rings are one way to demonstrate your commitment. From that standpoint, it makes sense to wear rings that will never get lost, go down the kitchen drain, or even leave the fingers.
Who wears a tattooed wedding ring?
It isn't only the well known and well publicized opting for permanent circlets on their ring fingers. Doctors, construction workers, mechanics, athletes, and others who can't wear metal wedding bands are taking a serious look at this option. Those who are put off by the price of gold, silver, or gemstones are finding that tattooed wedding rings are less expensive.
Why not wear a tattooed wedding ring?
Having a tattoo applied is not painless, and the finger doesn't heal as quickly or as well as other places on your body. The obvious disadvantage is that tattoos are also permanent. If you change your mind about the design or the marriage, the ring stays ... unless you want to go through the uncomfortable and costly procedure of having it removed. On the other hand, tattoos tend to rub off on the underside of the finger from handling objects. One caution: don't go to an amateur. Be sure the person who applies your tattooed wedding ring has experience in this area.
What is involved with removing a tattoo?
I know you intend to be with your fiancé until the end of time, but it's a fact that many couples break up or divorce every day for unforeseen reasons. If this happens to you, realize that your tattoo ring will be a constant reminder of the past. Your choices will be to live with it or have the ring painfully and expensively removed.
There are several options for removing a tattoo. The following is a brief description of each. You would need to consult a plastic surgeon, dermatologist, or other doctor to determine the best choice for you:
- Cut it off. Some smaller tattoos can be cut out of the skin. The remaining skin is then stitched together or a piece grafted from another part of your body.
- Sand it off. You have probably heard of dermabrasion for your face. This is a similar concept, but much more severe. A rotary sander is used to dig out the skin until the tattoo is gone. Expect bleeding.
- Laser it off. Laser light can also remove a tattoo. The light breaks up the tattoo ink and your body carries away the pigment. This procedure takes more than one treatment. While less invasive and not as painful as other alternatives, multiple treatments can become pricey.
In any case, do not expect your finger to be restored to "pre-tattoo" beauty. Discoloration or scarring may remain after the removal.
Things to consider before getting your wedding ring tattoo.
- You will have to have your tattooed wedding ring touched up in five to ten years.
- A tattoo design can be altered, but if you have your significant other's initials engraved on your finger that may present a few challenges.
- An alternative to a tattooed wedding ring is to have matching tattoos elsewhere on your bodies; select designs that are meaningful to you but don't look like an obvious tribute to your loved one, just in case.
- Another way to add meaning to your engagement or wedding ring is to have a custom ring made to your specifications.
Whatever your decision, understand that the choice of having a tattoo ring engraved upon your skin is as critical as the choice to marry. Both have implications that last a lifetime.
Bobette Kyle-Wagner is publisher at www.MyOnlineWeddingHelp.com -- a Website helping engaged couples get the most use from Internet wedding resources. The site includes online wedding tips, original articles, tutorials, and shopping sections. Read more about wedding and engagement rings at www.myonlineweddinghelp.com/rings
Submitted by Bobette Kyle-Wagner, www.myonlineweddinghelp.com