Tattooing is a beautiful and ancient art form rich with history — and, of course, it's also an incredibly easy way to embarrass yourself. There's a reason people aren't allowed to get inked until they are 18, and celebrities are some of the worst offenders when it comes to bad tattoos. For as many great, famous inked up folks there are out there, there are also those who have made some mistakes. Mostly, I try to reserve judgment, as the decision to have something permanently embedded into your skin is intensely personal, but come on, people, at least get a second opinion when it comes to something that's gonna last forever ever. And get a third opinion if you're gonna take the plunge and get something written on you in a language you can't read.
Repeat offenders include the likes of Justin Bieber, who has, like, 400 tatts now, but there are also some celebs who you wouldn't expect to have such bad ink. I know I sound like an old curmudgeon here, but kids these days really gotta do some thinking!
Here are nine celebrity tattoos that have me wagging my finger and saying, "You're gonna regret that when you're older!" But don't worry, y'all — tattoo removal technology is getting more and more legit every day!
1. Jennifer Lawrence
J. Law just wanted a little water. She's not embarrassed about her "H20" tattoo, though, even though she knows that the symbol on her hand is technically inaccurate — the number two should be lower than the letters, not higher.
2. Justin Bieber
This sleeve Justin Bieber has on his left arm is downright spooky. He first got the "Believe" text, and it would look pretty good, if it were a temporary tattoo. Then in 2013, Biebs commissioned this likeness of his mother's eyeball over the "believe," and it is beyond creepy. "Mom's always watching," Bieber said on Instagram. Yikes.
3. Chris Brown
OH, CHRIS BROWN. Who let you loose? Among his many offenses, getting this neck tattoo is low on the list as far as harmful goes, but still... it's pretty terrible. When he first got the art, on his neck (even the greatest neck tattoo is still a neck tattoo), people were suspicious, because it seems to resembe an abused woman. And specifically, his ex-girlfriend Rihanna. His publicist, though, explained that it's this image from Mac Cosmetics of a sugar skull design. So, Chris Brown is a big fan of Mac Cosmetics, I guess.
4. Britney Spears
Brit Brit is my number one and I almost always defend her, but there's no excusing her tattoo mistake. All it takes is a little Googling, y'all. She has a Chinese character tattooed on her hip that was supposed to say "mysterious," but actually says "strange."
5. Ryan Cabrera
Honestly, I have to thank Ryan Cabrera for getting this totally gratutious, creepy, and amazing tattoo of Ryan Gosling's face, which Cabrera calls "the Bentley of tattoos." It brings me so much joy. And the reason for it is even more absurd and delicious. He told the Las Vegas Review-Journal, "We like to play a game called tattoo roulette. We blindfold each other: 'You get to pick a tattoo for me, and I get to pick a tattoo for you.' And you don't get to see it till they're both done." AMAZING.
6. Dean McDermott
I'm just going to let this tattoo that Dean McDermott has of his wife Tori Spelling's face speak for itself. Because clearly, IT'S ALIVE.
7. Ryan Gosling
I have to include Ryan Gosling on this list, because I truly believe it's what he would want. He told W Magazine in 2010: "I like when they look bad, but no one will do bad tattoos. So I did one myself. That’s why it’s bad. I’m waiting to get old — I think old guys with tattoos look good." Gosling, you silly goose!
8. Hayden Panettierre
The story of Hayden Panettiere's tattoo is the most ironic story of all time. She had a tattoo that said "Live without regrets" in Italian going vertically down her ribcage — until she removed it, because it was misspelled. I guess she couldn't take her own advice.
Let this be a warning to you, famous folks! Your ink will haunt you forever. Just go with the temp tatts if you're feeling bold.