Sleeve tattoos are one of the most popular tattoo designs in the world over, as they look both beautiful and prominent. Like the sleeve of a garment, they cover the area from the shoulder to the wrist, though some designs may be half sleeved or quarter sleeved. These designs combine a large number of smaller designs, which make creating them a difficult and time-consuming task, but the effort is truly worth the while.
“The big misconception with tattoo removal is that it’s an eraser,” Sherrif F. Ibrahim, M.D.,, an associate professor in the department of dermatology at the University of Rochester, tells SELF. But it’s not that simple. “It’s a process,” he says. Sometimes, complete removal of a tattoo can take one or two years, with treatments occurring every 6, 8, or 12 weeks. Plus, it’s not like getting your eyebrows waxed—it’s an invasive procedure that costs hundreds of dollars a session. Lasers remove tattoos by blowing up pigment molecules into tiny pieces, which are then cleared away by an immune system response. Healing from laser treatment isn’t always a walk in the park, either. “The laser breaks the skin’s surface, so you have bleeding, you have swelling, and you have pain after the treatment,” says Dr. Ibrahim.

Tattoos, especially sleeves, are quite a commitment. When creating your sleeve look, decide if you want them to all tell one story or if you want them to each be separate. Take into consideration if you want there to be space in between the images or words or if you’d prefer there to be no empty space. Creating your look is fun but it can be time-consuming so don’t be discouraged if it takes more than a couple of days to decide on your pieces. Take some time to evaluate how much this sleeve will cost and take into consideration that it will take time to heal your pieces before you can draw over something. This could be months long or even years-long process. Patience will breed a beautiful result.
The amount of time to get a full sleeve tattoo on your arm is completely subjective. The entire process, similar to the outcome itself, is highly subjective to plenty of variables. Factors that you must think about include the speed of the artist, the design, as well as your personal healing time. The main factor involved in how long will you be sitting on that tattoo chair is the complexity of the concept. Full sleeves that feature your traditional sailor-style tattoo artwork might take as little as 10 to 15 hours. Meanwhile, a photorealistic tattoo can take at least eighty hours to complete – Possibly even more.
First, if this is a spur of the moment thing, or you just want to look around and see if anything on the shop wall inspires you? Stop.  This isn't that type of tattoo place. The shop is by appointment only, and it's more of an artist's studio/loft.  There's no flash on the wall or anything like that.  After making a consultation appointment, you'll meet with Viet and he'll get all the information he needs to create a custom sketch.  At this point you can bring in/or email examples of what you like, don't like, themes, colors, anything he can use to create your sketch.  

You’ll often see sleeve tattoos that extend all over the body. They can start on the arm and extend across the chest or start on the chest/back and extend down the arm. As you can see below, her piece extends from her arm, all the way across and down her back. The black colour dramatizes the art and creates an eery look that is intensified by the pops of red.


Tattoos, especially sleeves, are quite a commitment. When creating your sleeve look, decide if you want them to all tell one story or if you want them to each be separate. Take into consideration if you want there to be space in between the images or words or if you’d prefer there to be no empty space. Creating your look is fun but it can be time-consuming so don’t be discouraged if it takes more than a couple of days to decide on your pieces. Take some time to evaluate how much this sleeve will cost and take into consideration that it will take time to heal your pieces before you can draw over something. This could be months long or even years-long process. Patience will breed a beautiful result.

The Kirby-Desai Scale assigns numerical values to six parameters: skin type, location, color, amount of ink, scarring or tissue change, and layering. Parameter scores are then added to yield a combined score that will show the estimated number of treatments needed for successful tattoo removal. Experts recommend that the Kirby-Desai scale be used by all laser practitioners prior to starting tattoo removal treatment to help determine the number of treatments required for tattoo removal and as a predictor of the success of the laser tattoo removal treatments.[43] Prior to 2009, clinicians had no scientific basis by which to estimate the number of treatments needed to remove a tattoo and the use of this scale is now standard practice in laser tattoo removal.
Viet is one of the coolest dudes you'll ever meet. After my very first visit with him, I walked out feeling like I had known him for years. He relates to you and makes you feel welcomed from your first sit down to your final session. He take his work very seriously, but is so down to earth and willing to do whatever you need to make it the best tattoo experience you can ever have. It took about 5 sessions to do my quarter sleeve, and after every session I felt like Viet was less of just a tattoo artist that inked me and more of a friend who I'd really come to know. I can say without a doubt that I'll never go to another tattoo shop again. If Viet moved to Alaska, I'd happily fly over there if I wanted more work done. No exaggeration.
Geometric tattoos are probably one of the most trending designs from the last couple of years. They look great, are timeless and not too expensive. Above is an example of a silver and black one on the forearm, which is a very popular spot for people to get tattoos now that they’re more socially acceptable and not necessarily restricted to areas that you need to cover up anymore.
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