Tattoo Parlors Are Bragging About Their 'Healthy' Vegan Tattoos

Veganism has steadily grown from a dietary practice reserved for neo-hippies to an all-out mainstream lifestyle. People scrutinize not only what foods they’re putting in their bodies, but also which clothes they’re wearing, what makeup and shampoo they’re using, and even the type of ink that’s being tattooed into their skin.

A word to the uninitiated: The entire tattoo process can involve animal products. Everything, including the stencil paper, which is made with lanolin, a fatty substance found on sheep’s wool, to the moisture strip on the razor, which contains gelatin, and even the tattoo ink itself can have animal products in it. Non-vegan tattoo ink may contain bone char (which is used to boost black ink color), glycerin from animal fat, gelatin from hooves, and shellac from beetles, according to PETA.

So, with almost half the population of 18- to 35-year-olds having tattoos and 6 percent of Americans now identifying as vegans (most of whom are Millennials) it’s no surprise vegan tattoo shops are beginning to crop up. Michelle Livingston, owner of Arcane Body Arts, a tattoo shop in Vancouver that offers completely vegan tattoos, says that she’s noticed a lot of interest in cruelty-free tattoos…

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Misha Gajewski