How to Convince Your Parents to Get a Tattoo

Written by: Pete

Most reputable tattoo shops won’t allow you to get tattooed until you’re the age of majority, but a few will allow you to get a tattoo if you’re over 16 and have your parents’ permission. But how do you convince your parents to let you get a tattoo? We’ve got some tips to help you persuade them.


What Reasons Are There for You to Get a Tattoo?

First and foremost, you should really consider why you want to get a tattoo in the first place. If you are pulled towards wanting a tattoo, it’s time to think like an adult about your motives. Ask yourself these questions:

  • Is it just a desire to rebel or be different?
  • Is it from peer pressure?
  • Is it to appear or feel older?
  • Is it to express yourself in a new way?

Be honest about why you want to get a tattoo and be prepared to articulate this reason to your parents. If you are unable to do that, you won’t be able to convince them using any of the other reasons on our list!

Organize your ideas into an articulate “pitch” or vision that this tattoo represents for you. Be sure to emphasize why this tattoo feels necessary at this point in your life, and stress that the decision is solely your own. If you can’t think of any other reason other than, “It will make me look cool,” maybe it’s time to reconsider getting a tattoo right now.

How to Convince Your Parents to Get a Tattoo

Believe it or not, when it comes to underage tattoos, you don’t want to be in a situation where you are telling your parents after the fact. Not only does this permanent decision need proper adult input, but any tattoo shop willing to tattoo an underage person without parental permission is not reputable and their practice could cause you severe health concerns. 

Here is some of the best advice on how to convince your parents to let you get a tattoo.

Understand What They Think About Tattoos

The only way to truly have a dialogue with your parents that will be constructive and potentially lead to permission to get a tattoo is to see the situation from their point of view. Try to truly understand what they feel about tattoos and why, and then come up with points that are not telling them they’re wrong, but that allows them to see it from your point of view instead.

Parents, in general, just worry and want what is best for their kids. If you are able to clearly articulate that you’ve thought about this tattoo for a while, it’s not impulsive, and you won’t let it lead to anything else down the line, they might understand. 

Select Something Meaningful and Be Ready to Justify It

If you are going to be committing to something on your skin for the rest of your life, your parents want to know that you’ve given it thorough and careful thought. Many adults will tell you about moments where they were so grateful they didn’t act on impulse as a kid and get a “stupid tattoo”, or many spend years drawing and deciding what they want to get done.

When selecting a tattoo, there are a few things you should consider that will make it easier to persuade your parents.

  • Select something that has a deep or personal meaning to you and share that with your parents. Remember that you’re not a car so you don’t need a bumper sticker with a band logo, no matter how much you love them.
  • Make sure your first tattoo is small and will be in a discrete location, so you can tell your parents how it will be easy to hide for professional reasons.
  • Choose something that is parent-friendly. You will have this on you for all your adult life, so make it appropriate.
  • Show your parents a potential design and invite them to particulate in contributing ideas to the design.

Show Your Responsibility

If you come to your parents having done your research, they will be more likely to view your position as more adult and responsible. Talk to your parents about the process of tattooing and understand that this is a permanent decision. Emphasize that you will not allow a tattoo to get in the way of finding employment. 

Another way to show them you’ve taken responsibility in this situation is to bring a list of potential tattoo shops that you were looking at, and share the work of artists in those shops with your parents. Call these shops and ask about their sanitation and licensing and share this information with your parents. You can also demonstrate how you’ve been saving for the purchase as a way to stress your adult-like commitment to the project. 

Remember throughout the process to stay calm, cool, and collected. If you want to be treated like an adult, you need to act like one - that includes not being argumentative or creating ultimatums for your parents. 

Bring Them to the Tattoo Shop

Speak to your parents about going to the tattoo shop with you and allowing them to talk with the owner or artist in person, themselves. Let them sit in during the consultation and participate in planning your design. Invite them to come during your tattoo session so they feel involved in the process. 

Anticipate Them Saying No

The most important tip is to enter into this conversation with zero expectations. If you are underage, at the end of the day, the decision is up to your parents. If you get a “no” despite all your hard work preparing for the conversation, demonstrate that you are an adult and tell them that you accept their answer even though you may disagree with it. Remember that you only need to wait a few more years before legally being allowed to get a tattoo on your own - and time flies. Just be patient!

Our Final Thoughts

Having the “tattoo talk” with parents can be an uncomfortable situation. If you show your commitment to the tattoo planning process and that you’ve put care and consideration into researching all the things that would concern them, such as safety, size, financial planning, and design, they are more likely to take your request seriously. Remember to avoid confrontation, arguments, and ultimatums, as these will just work against you. And you don’t want to be tattooed in a shop that doesn’t require parental permission for underage clients - you are putting yourself at severe risk!

Copyright © 2023 Tattify. All rights reserved. Privacy Policy & Cookie Disclaimer.

The information contained on Tattify is intended for informational and educational purposes only. None of the statements made on this website are intended to diagnose, cure, treat or prevent any disease, infection or illness. Please consult a healthcare practitioner before using tattoo/skincare products that may interfere with medications or known conditions. This article is provided with the understanding that it does not constitute medical or professional advice or services. If you are looking for help with your condition, please seek out a qualified medical practitioner.

As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.