Tattoo inks/pigments and the negative portrayal of them in the media.

Australian Tattoo Guild

Australian Tattooist Guild

The Australian Tattooists Guild (ATG) has hit back at recent media articles which claim that tattoo inks are dangerous, stating the articles and claims are misleading and need clarification.

Josh Roelink, President of the ATG has said:

“The real danger with tattoo ink is the sale and import of untested and unregulated inks being bought via online platforms such as eBay, which are then being used by unqualified members of the public. Professional tattooists in Australia buy their ink from legitimate Australian tattoo suppliers, the majority of whom make available MSDS and EU CTL (Chemical Technology Lab) Certification to the tattooists upon request. EU CTL Certification is the highest standard of toxin, amine and carcinogen screening for tattoo inks available, and almost all of the inks used in Australia by professional tattooists have this certification.”

“The general public needs to understand the real dangers of getting tattooed by amateurs in home settings – it’s not just cross contamination issues that are the danger, but also the ink ingredients of pigment bought on online marketplaces, especially those with legitimate brand names sold on eBay which are almost always fake imports from China. There is no telling what is in those inks, it’s a major concern for us. The government has a duty of care to the public to make sure these pigments aren’t so readily available to amateurs, it’s not uncommon for young people to have gotten tattooed by amateurs as young as 14 with these fake inks bought off eBay and Gumtree.”

The ATG has supported these comments stating that State Governments need to consult closely with the industry to ensure that any new legislation being directed towards the restriction of inks or tattoo supplies does not further damage the industry yet still protects the general public.

Basically, if it’s on eBay then it is most likely fake and should not be purchased under any circumstances. Professional tattooists only buy from legitimate tattoo suppliers. Your safest move in regards to tattoo inks and potential dangers is to make sure you go to a professional tattoo artist in a licensed tattoo studio to get all of your tattoo work done.