You’ve made the commitment to get a tattoo, and you have just the design you wan to show off. The design would suit your back or chest, but do chest tattoos hurt?
Tattoos are cool, giving an indelible picture of a particular time in your life. The options of what and where to get your tattoo are endless, too confusing for many. Making this choice is the biggest step. Bear in mind your choices of what design and where are not exclusive decisions, some designs look better on certain parts of the body so do your research. Check out our huge list of chest tattoo designs to get some ideas for your next tattoo.
The location of your tattoo shouldn’t be about pain, it should be the best place to suit your design. Obviously that is easier said than practically carried out. Tattoos are not a needle jab, it’s a multi-hour, often multi-day, procedure. You want to make sure you’re not going through hell, it needs to be somehow bearable. That makes the question more important, do chest tattoos hurt?
Broadly speaking tattoos are more painful the closer you get to bones. Foot and ankle tattoos can be very painful, being so close to small bones that are sensitive to the tattooing process. Behind the ear can be especially painful over the bony base of the skull and indeed close to sensitive areas of the ear.
That brings us to the chest and ribs, do chest tattoos hurt? Ribs are particularly painful as they are a smaller bone and have a rounded surface that makes the tattooing process difficult to perform without causing significant pain as it runs over the rib’s curved surface. Again, it follows that the bonier the surface the more chance the tattooing process will be more painful.
When it comes to whether chest tattoos hurt, there are a few variables that can make a big difference. Let’s start with the difference between men and women. For women, generally speaking the more voluptuous breasts the better because the fatty tissue will ensure there is less pain, except if the tattoo design comes particularly close to the nipple area.Around the nipple area very sensitive nerve endings are present. This area could well be super painful, similar to the pain of genital area tattooing. While this might be one of the most attractive places to get a tattoo, it might be the most painful.
Women also need to be mindful of areas around the breast tissue where skin is pulled tighter and thus the rib cage is closer to the surface. Women with smaller breasts may find that chest tattoos hurt more accurately.
Chest tattoos hurt for men more than women, all else being equal. Men who have a lot of pectoral muscle across the chest area will find this works as a buffer to the rib cage and thus reduces pain. However, generally men with muscular chests will also have low fat percentage across the rib cage, meaning this area will be more painful. Chest tattoos hurt because of the presence of bones close to the surface, and for women,close to nerve endings around the nipple area.
The two biggest factors affecting pain and determining whether chest tattoos hurt for you will be the body fat percentage around the chest area and you overall threshold to pain. The more body fat percentage you have the more likely your chest area will carry a pain-reducing buffer to your rib cage thus reducing the pain of the tattooing process. The leaner you are the more likely the bones are closer to the surface where it can be quite painful as the tattoo artist uses his tools across the curved surface of your ribs.
Your pain threshold is the other key factor as to whether chest tattoos hurt. Everyone has a different pain threshold and indeed some people adapt to pain better than others. Many people describe tattooing as painful at first then describe a numbing’ feeling as they become accustomed to as a tolerable ongoing level of pain. Whether this is the body actually responding to the pain itself or just the noise of the tattoo tools creating a numb in your brain’ is somewhat irrelevant. The body is designed to adapt to its environment. People adapt at different speeds.
If chest tattoos hurt then why wouldn’t anyone just take a pain killer, like ibuprofen? There is a very good answer to this very good question. Ibuprofen also thins the blood that can exacerbate bleeding during and after the tattooing process. This can actually affect the final look of the tattoo, as wells as being particularly messy and problematic, and painful. Aspirin is even more likely to increase bleeding via the same thinning response. An alternative pain-killer is Acetaminophen which does not affect the composition or viscosity of your blood.
Other recommendations for pain management focus on hypnosis, this provides a completely natural way to numb the pain. Depending on your vulnerability to hypnosis this may or may not be suitable for you.
The chest is one of the least painful areas of the body assuming you are able to keep the design on the breast-plate area. This is generally a fatty or muscular tissue area so the risk of pain is reduced compared to other areas that have bones close to the skin surface. Your overall body fat percentage and indeed your pain threshold will be the key variables in the determining whether chest tattoos hurt for you, and thus the right tattoo location for your next tattoo. From there, you just need to pick which tattoo you want to get. If you are worried about the pain, we do not suggest that you get some of the larger tattoos on our site, like some of the ones in the secount about Buddha tattoos.
If you are really worried about whether a chest tattoo hurts, it’s advisable to choose a less painful location, like the upper arm, outer shoulder or upper back. In the lower part of the body the thighs and calves are a great low pain option too.
Remember, if your design is small and will fit onto the breast-plate (like these attractive tattoos) you will find that chest tattoos hurt the least compared to many other more boney body locations. However, if your design is bigger you may find the tattoo artists is working across a combination of areas which can have quite acute pain, close to the ribcage or nipple area, and reduced pain across the more tissue heavy areas covering the breast-plate.