How Long Do Finger Tattoos Last?

Finger tattoos are the latest trend in the tattoo community that has been around actually for years. With celebrities like Rihanna, Beyonce, and Ariana Grande getting finger tattoos, this trend just keeps on giving more and more inspiration for people to actually go and get a finger tattoo. But, before you just decide to get tattooed, there are some issues these celebrities won’t mention about their finger tattoos, like; how long do they last, and when do they start fading?

But, that is a thing with trends; no one actually talks about the potential side effects and unwanted results or occurrences with specific tattoos.

Therefore, if you’re thinking of hopping on the finger tattoo trend, you’re at the right place. In the following paragraphs, we’ll discuss the expected duration of a finger tattoo and how you can prevent it from fading quickly. So, without further ado, let’s get started!

Finger Tattoos – Duration and Fading

Finger Tattoos – Duration and Fading
Credit: Instagram

How Long Do Finger Tattoos Last On Average?

Now, finger tattoos are notorious for their short life span. If you thought that a finger tattoo will last you a lifetime, you couldn’t be more wrong. Finger tattoos last, on average, between six and eight months. In some cases, they can last a month or two longer, if you’re really careful about what you’re doing with your hands. Generally speaking, finger tattoos won’t start fading for at least six months, but will definitely lose color and initial vividness after a year.

Considering how long other tattoos last, and how they only start fading after years, finger tattoos might not be a good idea for someone looking to get a long-lasting tattoo. Tattoos that are placed on hands or feet generally don’t last long due to exposure to friction, water, sun, other textures, sweat, etc. But, more on that in the following paragraphs.

poem finger tattoo
Credit: Instagram

Why Do Finger Tattoos Fade So Quickly?

Think about how much you use your hands and fingers for everyday activities. There isn’t a thing you do without using your hands. This means your fingers are exposed to all sorts of textures, temperatures, movement, and so much more.

For example, during winter, your hands are drier, colder, and more coarse. This affects the tattoo and contributes to its fading. The same goes for summer when the tattoo is exposed to UV rays. It can be hard to keep the sunscreen on the finger tattoo since you’re using your hands all the time.

Now, considering how continuous our use of hands and fingers is, we also have to take into consideration that the exposed skin also sheds and regenerates more frequently than the skin on the rest of the body. This also contributes to quicker fading and color-loss in finger tattoos.

When it comes to frequent movement of the fingers, as well as rubbing of the skin surface, we can also conclude that the general wear and tear of the skin contributes to tattoo fading as well. All of this will increase the loss of color and vividness of the tattoo much quicker than it would do were the tattoo placed somewhere else less exposed.

What Can I Do To Make a Finger Tattoo Last Longer?

One of the most essential aspects of a long-lasting tattoo is aftercare. Proper aftercare means the tattoo heals properly, which in turn makes it last longer and fade less. Overall, quick and healthy healing of any tattoo is essential for an extended life span. However, this isn’t the only thing that affects the longevity of a tattoo. Here are some other factors that might help your finger tattoo last longer;

  • The tattoo design – when getting a finger tattoo, make sure to choose a design that will ensure a good condition, even when the tattoo starts fading. Therefore, try to avoid complex and detailed tattoos.

The skin on fingers is difficult to work on as is, but by choosing a complex design, you’re simply setting your tattoo up for failure. Simple designs remain vivid and fresh for a longer time, while complex designs become blurry and fuzzy with time. In such a case, you might even require frequent touch-ups, which will also fade quickly; with finger tattoos, this is a vicious circle.

long lasting finger tattoo
Credit: Instagram
  • Skin hydration – starting as an important aspect of tattoo aftercare, skin hydration, and moisturizing is essential for your overall skin and tattoo care. By keeping your hands properly and frequently moisturized, you’ll avoid tattoo drying and skin shedding. This is especially important after hand washing, swimming, and overall exposure to water or another drying situation.

During the aftercare, proper moisturizing prevents the formation of scabs and promotes faster tattoo healing. After the healing is done, proper skin hydration keeps the tattoo healthy, vivid, and healthy. It prevents drying of the skin, itching, irritation, and premature tattoo fading. However, excessive moisturizing can prevent proper tattoo healing and lead to bacteria growth and a tattoo infection.

  • Tattoo touch-up – this isn’t necessarily a tip on how to make the tattoo last longer, but it sure helps keep it looking fresh and vivid when it starts fading. Tattoo touch-ups are necessary with finger tattoos. They’re simply high-maintenance tattoos, so if you want your tattoo to look good, you’ll certainly visit your tattoo artist frequently for a touch-up.

Bear in mind that simpler finger tattoo designs require fewer touch-ups. The more complex the design, the blurrier the lines, the faster the fading, and the more touch-ups the tattoo requires. This is simply another reason why you should avoid highly detailed designs for a finger tattoo.

Why Do People Get Finger Tattoos?

People get finger tattoos for numerous reasons. Generally, people get these tattoos because of recent trends. Others simply consider them super cool and interesting, which is a perfectly fine reason to get a tattoo. There are cases where people get such tattoo to express their criminal affiliation (like gang signs), or to show off their prison time, etc. The reason for such a tattoo simply depends on one’s circumstances and preferences.

Generally speaking, finger tattoos are considered to be pretty fashionable and stylish, elevating one’s personal style, or even jewelry, like rings and bracelets. A finger tattoo can be a statement or an elegant, delicate piece of ink. Finger tattoos, just like any other tattoo, can symbolize whatever you want them to symbolize.

What Do I Need To Know Before Getting a Finger Tattoo?

If you want to get a finger tattoo, here are some things you should know about the process, tattoo maintenance, and overall outcome expectations;

  • Finger tattoos hurt, a lot – because of the nerve endings, thin skin, and almost zero muscles around the bones, finger tattoos can hurt like hell. Fingers have thousands of nerve endings, and the overall surface is pretty thin and delicate, which means the tattoo needle touches the bone directly. Fingers are generally considered to be one of the most painful tattoo placements.
  • Finger tattoos fade faster than other tattoos – as we mentioned before, a finger tattoo will start to fade 6 to 8 months after healing, and lose color after a year.
  • They require frequent touch-ups – if you want your tattoo to look fresh and crisp, you will need to visit your tattooist frequently for a touch-up. Simple finger tattoo designs require fewer touch-ups.
  • Finger tattoos get blurry – apart from fading, these tattoos tend to get blurry more than other tattoos. That is because the skin on the fingers is generally looser, which contributes to the ink moving around a bit more.
  • They can get pretty expensive – because of the frequent touch-ups, your finger tattoo may cost you more than you initially expected. Your tattoo artist will count the rework time, difficulty of the touch-up, the ink colors, and other essential factors which contribute to the price going up. So, bear in mind that finger tattoos can become very expensive.

Final Thoughts

Even though finger tattoos seem like a great idea in theory, in reality, they can be pretty difficult to handle. First of all, finger tattoos hurt, and it can be difficult to let them heal fully since you need to use your hands all the time. And, even after the tattoos heal, they’re still high-maintenance with all the constant hydration and touch-ups.

So, before you really decide to get a finger tattoo, make sure you’re ready to commit to high maintenance. Otherwise, your finger tattoos will start looking bad pretty quickly, and without touch-ups, they will turn from bad to ugly. For more information about tattoo placement and aftercare, make sure to check out our other tattoo-related articles as well.

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