It seems like there is a do it yourself kit for just about everything these days, and now tattoo kits are no exception. Tattoo kits are cropping up on the Internet for less than $200 and this is posing a risk to the general population as, can you really trust yourself to do something as permanent as a tattoo? And even more so, do you want to?
Today, tattoo artists need to be registered and licensed, but anybody with a few bucks can purchase tattoo guns, needles, and ink online. Public health officials are saying this is a great danger to society, as this may lead to increased risk of the spread of diseases like HIV and hepatitis.

But in today’s economy, anyone will do anything for a buck. And kits are being found on the Internet and on eBay for less than $100, with sellers offering to even mark the package as a gift so as to avoid sales tax. Not many sellers are saying you need to be a registered artist to purchase the equipment, although one seller graciously offers advice that “tattooing is complicated and in-depth knowledge is needed”.

Dr Marion Lyons, head of the National Public Health Service for Wales’ blood-borne virus programme, said:

“There is a good reason why the government regulates tattoos and body piercing. If equipment is not used properly and hygienically, there is a serious and significant risk that people can be exposed to germs. Blood-born viruses such as HIV and hepatitis are easily spread by improper tattooing and body piercing practices and even skin infections can be life-threatening if not managed well.”

This warning was issued after a few teens were forced to seek medical treatment after having been tattooed at a house party. Infection was the leading cause for concern, and the situation was investigated by police.
Stringent regulations are in place for tattoo parlours, including licensing for both the operator and the premises. But people buying the kits online and using them at home do not have to be licensed.

But when people can get their hands on an easy and more affordable means of the ink, the cost savings takes precedence over their own health. What do you think? Would you get a tattoo done by a do it yourselfer?