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  • Writer's pictureScott Glazier

Stick and Poke


Good Morning Speakeasy Readers!


We have some nice warm weather going into the 4th of July weekend. I hope everyone has some fun plans!


Today’s topic is stick and poke tattoos. Stick and Poke is a traditional method of tattooing that doesn't use any electric machinery.



Stick and poke tattoos are the oldest known form of tattoos, The origins of stick and poke tattooing can be traced back thousands of years to ancient civilizations such as the Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans. The oldest discovered tattoo dates back to 3,250 BCE. These early tattoos were often created using simple tools like sharpened bones or sticks, which were used to puncture the skin and apply ink. The ink used in these tattoos was typically made from natural substances like crushed berries, tree bark, and soot.


These tattoos were often used to affirm a community’s connection or as a religious practice, it’s found that almost every culture coincides with the spiritual or aesthetic practice of hand poke tattoos.


Today, stick and poke tattooing has gained popularity among a new generation of tattoo enthusiasts. Even though most tattoo artists use machines, there are still some who prefer going back to basics with the hand-poke technique. This type of tattooing involves using a needle that is applied in the skin by hand instead of a tattoo machine. The designs are often created through a series of dots accumulated to make a design, the skin is pricked repeatedly using the needle dipped in ink. Details and shadows are created by using different sized dots and positioning them at varying distances from one another. One reason why stick and poke tattooing has gained popularity is that some feel it has a more personal touch. Because the tattoo artist is using their own hand to create the design, each stick and poke tattoo is unique and carries a special meaning for the wearer.




As far as downsides to getting a stick and poke tattoo, the risk of infection is slightly higher so it is really important that you get it done by a professional and that it is done in a sterilized area. The good news though is that there are plenty of tattoo artists who practice this method of tattooing so they know the best way to keep your tattoo clean and safe.


From its ancient origins to its modern-day revival, this form of tattooing has stood the test of time and continues to be a popular choice for those looking to get a tattoo. Many love the personal touch or the fact that this method has a rich and long history behind it. Just like any other tattoo, you just have to make sure you find the artist who is an expert in this style of tattooing to ensure a safe and beautiful tattoo.


Until next time my fellow apes,

Peter Hernandez

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