Albany man has over 400 tattoos - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Albany man has over 400 tattoos

ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

Have you noticed more people getting tattoos? If so you're not alone, the FDA estimates 45 million people have at least one tattoo.

But why are so many people getting tattoos?  Pop culture is one reason why people are getting inked. People are also using tattoos to mark special events in their lives.

The sound of a tattoo needle buzzing across your skin. Despite a little pain, getting ink has become the new black.

"These days everybody doing it now," said Tattoo Artist Idus Wade III.

When he says everybody, he means it. Tattoo's are no longer just for bad boys or ex-cons.

"I've seen a lot more doctors, lawyers and nurses coming in getting tattoos that represents part of their life," said Tattoo Artist Matt Angell.

You can call Idus Wade III a walking piece of art. "I actually have 422 tattoos, I just couldn't stop," said Wade.

Millions of others are saying they just couldn't stop. For some people, it's become an addiction. What's fueling this ink epidemic?

"They're getting stuff to represent them, their family, or people that have touched them in some way. Instead of just getting a dragon," said Angell.

Reports say stars, athletes, and TV shows like Miami Ink are adding to the ink craze. Researchers say people both young and old all have their reasons.

"You have some people who like to do group parties and get friendship tattoos together," said Wade.

Like these BFF's who got matching butterflies. "I just thought if we get a tat a like that it's real. Tattoos are permanent and our friendship is permanent," said college student Zenobia Thomas.

Some forget these marks are permanent. Although more people are getting inked, many more are regretting it. In the end, they're shelling out more money to have the tats removed.

Even though it's a new trend, it could still keep you from landing a job. Some businesses will not hire you if your tattoo is not covered up.

Experts predict tattoo removal is the next billion dollar industry.

Copyright 2012 WALB.  All rights reserved.

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