Are Stick-And-Poke Tattoos Actually Safe?
Lifestyle - News
By GRETCHEN STERBA
Stick-and-poke tattoos trended all over social media at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, and giving yourself a DIY tatt may seem like a creative and fun activity for when you’re bored. However, no matter how clean your tools are and how carefully you ink your skin, amateur stick-and-pokes just aren't worth the health risk.
Cameron Rokhsar, an associate clinical professor of dermatology, warns that unsanitary needles used in stick-in-pokes can cause staph infections, which can lead to a bacterial infection called cellulitis. Cellulitis is a swollen, tender infection that can spread around the skin and into your lymph nodes and bloodstream.
Dermatologist Mona Gohara, MD, adds that keloids — a type of thick, raised, dark-colored scar — can result from stick-and-pokes. If you still covet the stick-and-poke style, do your research and go to a professional artist who has a sanitary workspace and sterile, precise equipment; it will be a safer, cleaner environment than anyone's basement could ever be.