I Paid Kendall Jenner's Tattoo Artist £350 for a Tiny Tattoo—Was It Worth It?

Amanda Montell
PHOTO:

Kevin Mazur/Getty

I told myself I'd never get another tattoo.

I told myself the trio of small black and grey designs that currently live on my wrist, behind my ear, and on the back of my neck were already more than enough. I told myself I wasn't actually cool enough for tattoos, that I'd been kidding myself all along, that I'd feel silly if I ever got another. I told myself that even though I loved tattoos, at the end of the day, they just didn't suit me.

Then I found @JonBoyTattoo on Instagram.

They say tattoos are addictive—that once you have one, you've already caught the bug. This felt true for me in the beginning, certainly. But by September of 2015, I had pretty much resigned to being a three-tattoo kind of girl. Enough to have a nice little collection while still remaining low-committal about it. Like dipping my toe in the pool of tattoos, but not going all the way in.

I don't remember exactly when or how I came across Jonathan "JonBoy" Valena's Instagram account. Maybe I was in the midst of some deep social media binge; maybe I found myself cruising an old Byrdie story on tiny tattoos.

However it happened, I remember, it was love at first scroll. I recall instantly connecting to the New York City tattooer's impossibly delicate, fine-lined designs. JonBoy is the artist some of Hollywood's highest-profile celebrities are turning to for minimalist ink—he's responsible for the microscopic white dot that decorates Kendall Jenner's middle finger, as well as a spattering of pieces on Hailey Baldwin, Justin Bieber, Zayn Malik, and Chloë Grace Moretz.

But JonBoy isn't just a celebrity tattooist. As the months went by, I saw during my daily Instagram perusals that his blooms of foliage and lettering appeared on non-famous ink lovers, too.

So after longingly following JonBoy for no less than six months, I finally decided, screw it. I'd never felt more drawn to a tattoo artist's aesthetic. I didn't even know what sort of design I wanted, but it almost didn't matter. I took a breath, sent an email to the address in his Instagram profile, and crossed my fingers.

Two months later, I was on a plane from L.A. to New York—on my way to the West 4th tattoo shop for an appointment with Kendall Jenner's tattoo artist.

If you were to get a tattoo, what would it be? Let us know in the comments below!

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