I’ve always daydreamed of not only what my creative life would look like, but how I’d look as the creative unicorn I’ve always wanted to be as well.
And it’d always included visible tattoos.
But I’ve always been a bit apprehensive about getting visible tattoos when I wasn’t sure what type of creative endeavor I would be pursuing.
Also as someone who’s a HUGE stickler about personal body modification aesthetics… I didn’t even know where I’d start.
Enter: Inkbox tattoos!
A way to test drive realistic-looking tattoos for 2 weeks and some change.
How’d it go? Did I love it? Hate it? Keep reading to see!
Disclaimer: I️ was given these items in exchange for a review, but all thoughts are my own! Spittin’ my wholehearted truth about my experience. Promise!
*One affiliate link was included in this post, and as always, it’s for an item I love and back its value (you’ll see soon enough! ;))
The bridge between living my life freely and creatively has been stifled throughout the years by what’s “expected” of me.
I stumbled onto Inkbox from an Instagram ad and was all for it! They had both freehand ink, and press on “tattoos” that could last around 2 weeks.
Why Get Hyped About Henna?
You may be thinking, “… so it’s black henna…?”
But it’s not henna at all!
Inkbox ink is primarily made from a fruit that grows in the jungles of the Darién Gap, Panama.
And they donate a percentage of their sales to the Darién Initiative.
I absolutely love that they make claims to give back to the community they harvest from.
Now, on to the experience and thorough application review!
Press on “Tattoo” (Formula 2)
I also took a minute to choose a location (as if this was a permanent tattoo? Haha).
But I digress…
1. Clean (and shave, if hair will be in the way) the area you’d like your tattoo to go on. I LOVE using the Korean scrubby towel to exfoliate (!!!), and some Lush shower gel always leaves me feeling squeaky clean (aka no film or residue from a super moisturizing component).
Whenever I use this towel, it removes all the dirt and past lotions like a dream! And when you’ve rinsed your skin off? It’s left feeling baby-smooth. Seriously. They come in a pack of multiples, are robust enough to last what seems like forever, and are super cheap. Love, love, love them!
2. Read ALL the instructions before you begin. There is a simplistic instruction card that comes with this kit, so it’ll take no time at all if you want the best results for your “tattoo.”
3. Peel the white backing off your tattoo design you’ll soon be sticking to your skin. There’s only an indication on the black part to “peel here”, but the white bit where the stippled picture of your design is where you’ll be peeling.
4. Carefully place the tattoo, adhesive side down, onto your skin. The adhesive is VERY sticky, so you only get one chance to place it how you’d like. Careful!
5. Put that glove on! Place the glove on the hand that will be tattooing ya, preferably. Don’t wanna get ink on it! (I felt like such a bada** putting it on. Like I was a tattoo artist in training! Such an art form to ACTUALLY tattoo ink onto skin. Love it.)
(BONUS OPTIONAL STEP: get a form of entertainment ready for a good 15-20 minute sitting session…because everything from the next step on requires timeliness, stillness, and muscle. Get ready!)
6. Tear a corner of the “CLOTH” bag open. Don’t actually take the cloth out. You’ll be microwaving it in the black plastic tube it came in for 15-20 seconds! Put aside.
7. Open the “WIPE” packet and dab it onto the navy blue square of your “tattoo.” Be very careful not to go outside of the navy blue square! You don’t want the ink bleeding outside the design onto your skin. Remember, for the most part, it’ll be on your skin for 2 weeks! 😱
The alcohol in the wipe activates the ink. So cool!
8. Take the “CLOTH” out of its tube and fold it twice to make a 4×4 square.
9. Hold the warm cloth on top of the Inkbox “tattoo” and press down as hard as possible. Press down as hard as possible with the palm of your hand for 30 seconds, covering the whole design. You can ease up (but still have a firm hand!) for the next 15 minutes.
You should change positions every few minutes to apply even pressure. Just don’t move, adjust, or remove the cloth. It may lead to leakage around the edges!
Take short breaks if you get tired.
10. After the 15 minutes, peel the inbox off low and slow in the direction your hair grows.
If some of the adhesive is still stuck on your skin, peel it off during the washing bit in the next step.
11. Wait 5 minutes to let the area dry, and very gently rinse your skin with soap and water.
This will get any residue off your skin as well.
Your tattoo will more-than-likely be as faint as mine in the picture above, but it will develop in the next 24-36 hours!
See?! This picture was taken a little over 24 hours after initial application.
This is what it looked like 10 days later.
But I realized I didn’t moisturize the area hardly at all while it was on my skin… and you’re supposed to daily for longevity!
The area it’s in is also one that wears off faster than others.
You can learn TONS more from their application tips page!
Overall Thoughts on Inkbox’s Press On Tattoo
Overall, I think it’s a neat concept! I’m glad they’re finishing up on their beta of customized designs, because I liked several designs, but wished some were bigger or were tweakable to suit me a bit more.
So it honestly can look neat and realistic for a prank, or for your pleasure.
Oooor it could just be a placeholder to see exactly how a tattoo of a certain size looks on a certain area of your body.
It’s nothing against the company, but if you’re wanting to try a half sleeve or something, you’d have to try several… which could get costly.
A fun thing to try at least once! Especially if you’re looking into tattoo concepts.
Freehand Ink (Formula 1)
I️ wouldn’t be surprised if Inkbox’s freehand ink was one of their most popular sellers!That’s because the possibilities are endless!
The Inkbox crew was kind enough to gift me 3, 10ml bottles of freehand ink!But I️ think I️ was given 2 extra bottles because it was being replaced with a new and improved bottle for smoother dispensing!
Despite this bottle’s outdated design, this review will still be a relevant read because the steps for application are the same.
And I️ also have some tips to share for freehand application that can help anyone!
It’s so so simple!
1. Wash and dry the area you plan to draw on.
2. Put on your black tattoo love.
BONUS STEP: Take a napkin and practice dispensing the ink from the bottle before doing so on your skin.
3. Draw the ink on thick, like icing on a cake. (The ink comes out like a loose gel.)
4. Let it sit for 1 hour. Don’t touch!
5. Wash the ink off with soap and water. Your design will fully develop in 12-24 hours!
I️ did this simple design on my finger and you can see that it’s quite wet initially.
It takes some time, but it does eventually dry down enough for you to not worry about smearing it. It’ll look matte! Don’t worry, you’ll be able to tell.
Now before I️ show you the final results, let me give you a few tips on drawing!
Freehand Ink Resources for Tips
You can click here to read more on shading and tracing, but this video is both visual (duh) and a better DIY option for tracing if you’re in a bind! I️ can almost guarantee you’ll have these tools at home to make your piece as epic as possible. 😉
Drawing on myself with this ink was very therapeutic for me! It’s really similar to when I️ wrote on cakes during my first job at Dairy Queen:
You have to lift the ink above your skin and let it fall into place. Then you can detail it as you see fit.
Again, this video may show you better than I️ can explain it, haha.
And while we’re talking about details… This video shows you how to create a shading effect 3 different ways!
Now, back to my “tattoo” after rinsing it off once the hour’s up:
And here’s how it looked after 24 hours!
Believe it or not, it got like… BLACK black as the hours continued on. And I️ was SO MESMERIZED BY HOW DARK IT GOT!
It stayed put too! Almost 2 weeks, but naturally since it’s an area that gets washed often, it didn’t last as long.
But it still wouldn’t budge during the time it was on me! Just faded away.
Whaddya think of Inkbox after this review and tutorial? If you’re really digging this concept, be sure to Pin the image below (or click it to see more Pinning options) for later viewing!
Overall Thoughts on Freehand Ink
I️ love it! I’m so grateful they gave me 3 bottles so I️ can play with ideas for future ideas more.
The places I️ want tattoos are always rubbing up against things, so I’m just working on doodles to trace onto myself so I️ can get an idea about what I️ want.
But the world is pretty much your oyster with these bad boys/bottles!
Don’t forget to Pin and share the love!