Tattoos are a symbol of cool, a mark of being tough, a blatant and bold message to the world. Or are they? Here are some tattoos we’re fairly certain are now viewed with the utmost regret.

They can be embraced as art, a declaration, a lifelong pledge to a lover or just something lighthearted and fun. But however you view tattoos, one thing they aren’t is temporary.

However, they can be removed, and thankfully that process is becoming simpler and less stressful as technology advances.

“Scarring is always a possibility,” says cosmetic physician Dr Eddie Roos of Toowoomba’s Cosmetic Elegance Clinic, “but with the best equipment like Picosure and properly trained staff you can minimise this. And these days it is possible to remove most inks.”

Dr Roos sees a lot of patients with tattoo regrets, and they usually have something in common. “It would have to be that the tattoo itself is not relevant anymore,” he says, “or they did it when they were young and stupid.”

Dr Roos’ advice for getting a tattoo

  • Get a tattoo that is not visible when you wear normal clothes.
  • Do NOT have partner’s name inked on your skin.
  • Choose a non-offensive message.
  • Remember — Barbie is cute when you’re young but silly when you’re 35 or older.

Click through the gallery above to see some of the most regrettable tattoos going around!