Seven-hour tattoo now in place

Tom Varndell tattoo.

Three years of planning finally came to fruition this week.

I already have a tattoo on my shoulder and have been wanting to get another one for ages.

It has taken plenty of planning to find an idea and design that I am happy with.

Once I was satisfied with what I wanted to get done, it was then a case of finding the right person to do it.

There’s obviously a lot of trust involved when someone is putting an indelible mark on your body.

I have played with images and symbols and different religions to get to the point where I was all set to go.

I had my previous tattoo done in Leicester when I played there but I have found a good parlour in Ealing where they know their stuff.

It was an intricate design that has taken up pretty much the whole of my arm and it took seven hours to get finished.

People have asked me what it is like to have one done and it stings a bit when you start but you get used to it as the process goes on. Afterwards, it scabs up over time. You have to stay out of the sun and keep putting cream on it to look after it.

Eventually the scabs drop off and it’s ‘job done’.

Tattoos are not for everyone but there are a growing number of boys in the rugby world that like a bit of body paint.

Wasps' Lee Thomas is a walking tattoo and has them on his back, his arms and his torso.

At Wasps, a couple of the lads like Lewis Thiede and Chris Mayor have been going on for about 15 years that they are going to get one – but there is still no sign of it yet.

I am a fan because I think they show a bit of who you are and what you stand for. It’s a great way of showing people who you are as a person and what you believe in, whether that be a religion or a lifestyle or whatever.

It’s a way of expressing yourself and you don’t have to be young to do that.

My mum didn’t have her first tattoo until she was 40!

Tom Varndell tattoo underarm.

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