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Celebrity tattoos and the danger of regret
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By Andrea Peyser
April 13, 2015

Celebrity tattoos and the danger of regret

What are these illustrated exhibitionists thinking?

Lena Dunham’s body is a human canvas, scrawled with seven big and small tattoos, making her resemble a zaftig prison inmate.

With an estimated 17 tats inscribed on her porcelain skin, Angelina Jolie has turned herself into an orgy of ink.

But Dunham is 28 years old and so content with her generous curves, she can’t keep her clothes on while appearing on TV.

Still, I wonder if the creator, writer, director, co-executive producer and star of the disturbing HBO show “Girls’’ will regret her tramp stamps years down the road when her boobs lose their valiant struggle with gravity and the skin on her lower back sags like week-old lettuce.

At age 39, Jolie is a gorgeous movie star, filmmaker, the United Nations’ special envoy for refugee issues, a crusader against cancer, and mother of six who’s married to Hollywood hottie Brad Pitt, 51.

She’s also made some major goofs.

Jolie was so into her second husband, fellow Hollywood denizen Billy Bob Thornton, now 59, that she and her man hung vials of each other’s blood around their necks. But after their inevitable divorce in 2003, Angie had a tattoo of his name lasered off a spot below her bikini line, and had the inscription “Billy Bob’’ erased from her upper left arm.

Her tats now include one displaying the geographical coordinates of her children’s birthplaces. When Jolie gives in to wrinkles, age spots and cellulite, will she dare leave the house without wearing a burqa?

Forget for a moment the tats multiplying all over pop runt Justin Bieber, 21, and focus instead on the skin decorations enveloping the high-end epidermises of female singers like Rihanna, 27, and Miley Cyrus, 22.

Bahamian-born RiRi (estimated tattoo count: 23) has admitted that her thirst for tats is like an addiction.

Cyrus (estimated tattoo count: 38, including the word “LOVE” inside her right ear) had her first one, the words “Just Breathe,’’ inscribed below her left breast when she was just 17 years old, beating the 18-year-old age minimum in most states legally by obtaining her inked parents’ permission.

Tattoos. Once they were sought mainly by men, many of them bikers, in the military or drunk. In a column that ran last month, I excoriated male celebs and ordinary mortals bearing XY chromosomes for lately rocking their inner Amish dudes by growing facial hair. Yuck.

Tattooed dames have succumbed to a mania that’s grown alarmingly common among rich, narcissistic famous types, ladies who don’t give a rat’s rump if the sight of their flesh is capable of scaring small children and senior citizens.

And the insanity is contaminating ordinary women like measles.

So what drives gals to reinvent themselves as carnival freaks?

“I think it goes with the fantasy world [famous folks] live in,’’ New York City-based celebrity stylist Oksana Pidhoreckyj, who’s never considered getting a tattoo, told me. “I’m not against them. It’s a personal choice. But while I find Angelina Jolie’s tattoos are elegant, Lena Dunham’s are the complete opposite. Let’s leave it at that.’’

Laura Osenni of Brooklyn, who has the image of a rose and a dolphin tattooed on her right shoulder, makes sure that her ink is visible to strangers only when she’s wearing a bathing suit or a tank top.

“I don’t want my body to be a conversation piece,’’ said the showroom manager of a Manhattan commercial flooring company. “They can’t cover up imperfections — maybe just divert people’s eyes.’’

I have a confession to make. During a night of heavy drinking during my freshman year of college, I wandered into a tattoo parlor and had a picture of a blue bird etched into my flesh. But unless you know me extremely well, you’ll never find out where the bird exists on my body.

So if my teenage daughter came home tattooed, her dad and I would take deep breaths, express admiration for her independence — then lock her up until age 40. Kidding.

She’s too smart to make my mistake.

©2007-2024 Andrea Peyser and; No Reuse without permission.
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