1. Think about it
It's impossible to know how your taste will change over a lifetime, but the answer is probably ‘a lot’. So, for minimal regret in later life, choose a design that is relatively timeless. A good rule of thumb is to pick a design, and then, if you still want it 12 months later, chances are you may not mind it being permanently etched onto you. Maybe.
2. Is it the kiss of death in the workplace?
Although tattoos have become increasingly commonplace, they're still not everyone's bag. Anything too large, too visible or too ‘out there’ might mean that people notice you in the office (or a job interview) for all the wrong reasons. So think about getting one that can be covered up easily if needs be.
3. Avoid names
Girlfriends and boyfriends come and go, but a tattoo lasts a lifetime. So, while it may seem like the best way to show your affection now, having someone's name branded across your chest probably isn't the way to go, especially if things turn sour later down the line.
4. Word of mouth is king
Check out online forums for recommendations and ask your mates if they know of any reputable tattooists. If someone you know has a tattoo that displays real craftsmanship, go and speak to the person who did it and discuss your ideas with them. At this stage, it's worth accepting that a good tattoo rarely comes cheap.
5. Have fun
It's ok to get excited about your first tattoo, especially if it's been well thought out, is meaningful and you're getting it from a tattooist whose work you like and trust.