‘It’s weirder seeing people without them than actually with them now.’ Personal and social experiences of individuals with visible tattoos: An Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis.
This study was designed to explore how individuals with visible tattoos (on hands, face or neck), understand their personal and social experiences. Six participants were interviewed using semi-structured interviews. The data was analysed by using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA). The analysis revealed that the experiences of the participants can be grouped into three main themes: decisions about visible tattoos; marks of identity; visible tattoos and society. The participants discussed having different reasons for getting their tattoos and that their decisions were of different importance for each of them. They all understood that their tattoos are a strong part of themselves and help them to better express themselves. Some participants experienced some positive social reactions to their tattoos, whereas others some negative reactions. They all also recognise positive social changes in perceiving tattoos. These findings contribute to better understanding the tattoo phenomena and can be useful for further investigations of tattoos obtained in different places of the body.