Tattoo artists in Bagan make handsome profits

A tattoo artist paints a temporary tattoo on the hand of a customer in Bagan. Photo: Zayyatu (Magway)
A tattoo artist paints a temporary tattoo on the hand of a customer in Bagan. Photo: Zayyatu (Magway)

Temporary tattoo shops near famous pagodas in the Bagan-NyaungU region have reported good earning during the holiday and pilgrimage seasons. Temporary tattoo artists said they have earned around K100,000 per day in season.
Local pilgrims and tourists are interested in temporary tattoos which they find quite attractive, said tattoo artists. The artists said they are inking floral motifs from the Bagan period, depicted on the walls of pagodas, on people’s arms, palms, fingers, and necks, and earning a good income. Skin tattoos last at least two to four days unless washed, according to local artists.
“The price for a piece of tattoo art is in the range of K1,000-3,000, depending on the design. Local and foreign travellers visit Bagan during the holiday season. We earn K100,000 if we draw for 50 travellers. And, we earn around half or more than half during normal times,” said U Win Myint Aung, a local villager from Myinkapar village.
Most of the temporary tattoo artists are from Myinkapar village. There are around 100 temporary tattoo artists in the village. The artists are also engaged in lacquerware businesses.
“When the tourists come and buy lacquerware at the shops, they bring their children along. At that time, we make the art on their hands free of charge. They love it and ask us to tattoo their hands, too. Tattoo art has become popular through social media and we can now conduct this as a business. We have been making temporary tattoos professionally for three years,” said U Win Myint Aung.—Zayyatu (Magway) (Translated by Hay Mar)

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