Stick and Poke Tattoos: More Than Just A Passing Trend

As long as the artist have the right amount of skill and he/she knows how sterilization works and all that, we’re all for it. Pretty much the same way with tattooing with a machine.

In articles
silhouette inspired by frederic forest - handpoked by nocti Source

If you’ve been reading the blog for some time now, you probably have an idea what stick and poke tattoos are all about. For many years, people have speculated that hand poke or stick ‘n’ poke tattoos will be big in the years to come. With stars like Grimes flaunting their hand poked pieces, it’s bound to be massive. Tattoos are already a consistent trend for some time now and it’s going to take a little more push and media attention to get hand poke tattoos on the spotlight.

Fresh ankle snake. The moon adornment on the other ankle is fully healed. By Vasia. Source

Although hand poke tattoos can be so easily turned into a mass social media “epidemic” since the basic supplies needed to perform the procedure are too easily obtained, we don’t want that to hinder hand poke tattooing and the artists who use the method from actually breaking it into the spotlight of the tattoo scene—in a good way. Hand poke tattoos have had its share of bad reputation from all these stupid kids getting stoned and poking dirty sewing needles on each other. People aren’t seeing what it’s all about. And we’re not only referring to how tattooing started with this type of method.

Daddy, handpoked by the tatt bratt Source

These days, everything is so accessible anyway. It just so happens that tattoos are permanent. And as much as we don’t like to admit it, we also take part in tattoo trends. We’re part of the culture. And it’s a beautiful culture that needs to be gradually cultivated.

Wish you were here. By Strange Poke Source

One of the things I love the most about stick and poke tattoos is its procedure. Those who have had a proper hand poke tattoo will give you varied answers as to how it feels. Some find it more uncomfortable as opposed to getting them done by machine. Some would describe it as a tickling sensation—it relaxes them. I find the method really beautiful and refreshing. Don’t get me wrong, nothing can compare to the sweet buzz of the machine, but getting tattooed by hand poke is another thing.

Question mark, by Lilian Yeah Source

But like the machine tattoo, hand poke tattoos have a very colorful history in the recent years. From tribal tattoos to punk movement to prison tattoos to a statement a portion of millennials have adapted, you gotta love thy roots.

Most people only get to see shitty DIY tattoos, which is why they easily dismiss these tattoos—most especially when they hear the word “stick ‘n’ poke”—as awful and poorly-done. But I’m glad that some are catching up and I’m getting to know more and more skilled hand poke tattoo artist in the scene.

Eat me, by troppo male non può venire Source

And with tattoos like these, the future is just getting brighter for hand poke tattoos. I doubt you can even tell them apart from one done by machine at first glance. We’re not to say that they must replace tattoo machines, but we really want hand poke tattoos to be recognized for the beauty of the whole process. Some of you may ask why bother do something for 2 hours or so what you can do for 20 minutes tops with a machine? It’s far deeper than that. Some people simply find pleasure in the sweet, slow affair that is hand poke tattooing.

By 3sadtats Source
Big ass, no strees - by Anetta Light Source
'I got a war in my mind', by belpoke Source
Lil portrait by Tuesday Source