Students Talk Tattoos


Seniors Andrew Reasor, Austin Domenic, Nick Hildebrant, Tatiana Santiago, Sarah Brodine and Bryson Borgia show off their tattoos with Math teacher Ilona Di Cosmo. (Photo by Aidan McHenry)

Tattoos are a hot commodity for teenagers to express themselves in this day and age, and students at our school have gotten some of their own.

Students opened up on their tattoos, experiences getting them and the aftercare involved.

Many of these students said their tattoo holds meaning for them or are dedicated to someone important in their lives.

“I wanted to pay tribute to my dad who passed away,” senior Patrick Caffiero said.

Ink can be a way for young people to connect with and honor their families.

Senior Bryson Borgia said, “I got this tattoo in honor of my cousin who took her own life.”

Senior Nick Hildebrant said his tattoo was inspired by his father and his grandfather.

Despite the idea that tattoos are something rebellious teens get to spite their parents, many students had support from family members.

“They love it and can’t wait for me to get more,” said Hildebrant.

“They [my parents] approve of it since it is my mom’s handwriting,” senior Caroline Larsen said, on her personal ink.

Familial connection again overpowers traditional opinions on tattoos as being divergent.

“It’s dedicated to my mom, so I think she approves,” senior Kharissa Muhammad said.

Senior Tatiana Santiago even got a tattoo with her mom for “infinity love.”

First Place Tattoos in Hackettstown and Immortal Ink in Flemington are many Hills students’ trusted spots to get their ink.

The students stressed the importance of post-tattoo care, in order to keep body art long lasting and clean.

“Mine was simple—washing with antibacterial soap, pat dry and put aquaphor on it,” Muhammad said.

The elements, time itself, and lack of care pose threats to tattoos.

“Sunburn will fade the tattoo,” Hildebrant said. “Before it heals you have to keep bacteria away from it and let it heal.”

Borgia accentuated ointment and a month-long application of lotion as essential to tattoo care and skin health.

The students also responded to controversy and disapproval over tattoos.

Muhammad said, “Some can look intense or intimidating, but I think preconceived notions should be dropped.”

Many students believe that the controversy is less prevalent now, however.

“Tattoos are becoming more common today than ever,” senior Andrew Reasor said. “I believe as long as there’s meaning, you should get as many tattoos as you want.”

Senior Austin Domenic went as far to say, “What controversy?” when asked about the tattoo taboo.

Most of the students expressed that their first tattoo has only excited them about getting a second.

“I love my tattoo and I can’t wait to get more,” Muhammad said.

Overall, students agreed tattoos are just a meaningful aesthetic for their everyday lives.

Senior Carly Randazzo captured the sentiment of Hills tattoo afficionados.

“It’s their body,” she said, “and they’re adding more love to their body.”