St. Patrick's Day has a deep-rooted history in the Irish culture. While it's an occasion meant to celebrate a patron saint who dedicated his life to missionary work, today, most people associate the holiday with leprechauns, shamrocks, soda bread – and maybe a trip to the tattoo parlor. For a multitude of reasons, the percentage of people going under the needle tends to spike on March 17. Whether it's the Irish pride or the flowing green beer, it's common for people to impulsively get their first inking – or add to a growing collection on this day.

Either way, for many, this decision can lead to inevitable tattoo regret. Once the holiday is over, some may find themselves wondering if their body art is significant or meaningful enough to keep. Or worse – they may realize later that the symbol they got etched in their skin means something entirely different than what they originally thought. Fortunately, the first and only picosecond aesthetic workstation on the market is able to zap this emerald hue with ease – unlike old methods of tattoo removal. 

So what are some of the most popular designs on this holiday?

Four-leaf clover
It's highly rare to come across one of these clovers in nature, which is the main reason they have come to represent luck. So it goes without saying that this image is especially common for people who want to attract fortune to their lives. Not all four leaves symbolize luck, however. The other three are associated with hope, faith and love. Very often, people will opt to combine a four-leaf clover tatt with another well-known luck symbol, such as a horseshoe. As one of the most obvious choices for St. Patrick's Day, it's also one that has a youthful vibe, which individuals may realize later on doesn't fit in with their professional lifestyle. That's why some may consider laser tattoo removal if they're too quick to go under the needle for this etching.

According to the legend, St. Patrick used the shamrock to explain the presence of the holy trinity – the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit – as one entity. Though he may have used the image to spread the principles of Christianity to Ireland, the shamrock was considered a sacred plant long before that. In fact, the ancient Druids harvested shamrocks because they believed they had magical powers to repel evil or warn people of an impending storm. A major reason for regretting a St. Patrick's Day shamrock inking is having no actual Irish heritage. One of the major problems with getting a tatt of this image used to be that green ink was one of the most stubborn inks to treat, meaning it was difficult to get rid of completely. Now, however, with the the first and only picosecond aesthetic workstation on the market, eliminating this pigment isn't much of an issue – in fact, it's one of the easiest to remove.

Celtic Cross
Like the shamrock, the significance of the Celtic Cross can be traced back to St. Patrick, who drew a basic Latin cross with a circle overlapping where the lines meet to form an intricate design. Ancient Celtic crosses were actually carved into stone slabs on the ground, and later, these images were often brought to life through foliage, knotwork and metal key patterns. The concept for this cross reportedly came from the Druids, who St. Patrick was informed worshipped a circular stone etched with similar shaped symbols. While there's no denying that it's a beautiful design, someone who doesn't really have religious ties that make a Celtic Cross tatt appropriate may decide it was a mistake.

Claddagh heart
The Irish Claddagh, which can be traced back to an early 16th century story, is represented by two hands holding a crowned heart, which symbolizes love and royalty. Unsurprisingly, the tattoo may indicate a strong bond or connection, whether a friendship or romance. For this reason, the Claddagh is a common tatt for marriage. While that may make this design a more meaningful one, a person is likely to regret the tatt if they decide to get divorced – especially if they end up re-marrying.

Do you want to erase your tattoo? You are not alone; 20% of inked-individuals regret their tattoo*. Now permanent ink can be a thing of the past. PicoSure® is the latest breakthrough technology in laser tattoo removal providing faster results in fewer treatments. Visit to learn more and find a PicoSure Practitioner near you.

* Source: Harris Interactive, 2013