A father who has covered his body in tattoos – even having his private parts inked – said he now regrets every single one of his designs.
Paul, 26, from Scunthorpe, Lincolnshire went on a ‘tattoo binge’ when he turned 18 and spent the next few years getting his chest, arms, back and neck covered in body art.
His designs include a Harry Potter style lightning bolt on the side of his face, the words ‘loyalty’ over his eyebrow and angel wings across his back.
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Paul 26, from Scunthorpe, Lincolnshire admits he was once addicted to getting tattoos but now he hates them all and says he has outgrown them
The welder wants to start laser removal on the angel wings on his back which he now thinks resemble a bunch of bananas and mean nothing to him
During his tattoo binge Paul even got a tattoo on the inside of his lip that reads ‘lovely’
He even had words tattooed inside his lips and designs – including an anchor and a pair of lips – on his penis.
But now the welder says he hates all his tattoos and he is prepared to endure multiple sessions of laser surgery over the next ten years to have them removed.
‘I have completely outgrown my body suit, I need to get rid of it and forget about it,’ he told Katie Piper on the latest episode of Channel 4’s Bodyshockers.
‘If I could get a giant laser or juice to dip me in and pull me out without the tattoos that would be fantastic.’
Paul revealed how he initially loved his tattooed look as it fitted with the wild lifestyle of his youth.
He would share pictures of his body art online and the attention he received only spurred him on to get more.
Now a husband and father, pictured with his wife and son, Paul said his tattoos are a reminder of his wild past
He said: ‘I was living life like it was your last day every day, drink, drugs, tattoos.
‘I wanted to be centre of attention, my friends were getting tattoos and social media is a massive thing where people can see what they want.
‘I am an all or nothing guy. What I loved about my tattoos is the attention, wherever you go – the pub, the gym, walking down the street – people stare and that is a buzz.’
Paul admits tattooing his body became an addiction and he often had more done on impulse.
‘In three months I covered 30 per cent of my body, I went wild, some were ten hour sittings, I was addicted’ he recalls.
But now he is married with a baby son, he said he regrets every one of his tattoos and wants to be rid of them as they are a constant reminder of his rock n’ roll past.
Katie Piper interviewer Paul for Channel 4’s Bodyshockers and said she has never met anyone who regretted their body art as much as he did
He said: ‘With them gone, it would be just a relief, you wouldn’t have to be reminded 24/7 of who you used to be.’
He said his priorities are different now he is a father and his tattoos now mean nothing to him, other than regret.
Paul said he will have to undergo hours of laser therapy to have them removed and will start with the large wing design on his back which he hates as ‘they just look like dangly bananas to me now’.
He said: ‘From my neck down I want them completely taken off. If I can get my back clear that is a big stepping stone.
‘The wings symbolised my guardian angel protecting me from what I was doing to myself but now I am the angel to my family.
Paul said having laser removal surgery was like being ‘hit by a truck’ but he will have to endure multiple sessions over a number of years to be rid of his tattoos
After the first session of laser removal the wings on Paul’s back have become fainter
‘My life has changed dramatically for the better and it (the tattoo) is obsolete, it means nothing.’
After meeting Paul, Katie – who has spoken to a number of people who regret their body art for her show – said he was ‘the biggest tattoo regret I have ever come across’.
She said: ‘He regrets all of it. His tattoos are a real map of his life and I can see why now he is stable he doesn’t want that reminder. He is living with a lot of colourful regrets.’
Paul said he expects it will take ten years before he is rid of his tattoos and will involve spending thousands of pounds on laser therapy.
After the first session, he admitted the pain was much worse than having the tattoos done.
Paul told Katie he will be happy when his tattoos are gone but the process could take ten years
He said of the treatment: ‘After a while the pain was too much, it drains you and you feel like you have been hit by a truck. No mental preparation can get you ready for that much pain.’
However, he said he will continue to endure it and go under the laser again so eventually he will be tattoo free.
‘Realistically it will be ten years, if I can get rid of all these reminders of my past I will be happy,’ he said.
Bodyshockers is on Channel 4 Wednesdays at 10pm