State pulls proposed ban on tattoos over scars, advocates relieved

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On Tuesday, Draven Gayheart, manager of Lost Gypsy Tattoo turned scars into art.

Kaylee Bloomfield struggled with self harm for years.

"Eventually the scars pile up, and now I just want them gone because it reminds me of a bad time in my life," said Bloomfield.

She always knew she wanted to turn the scars into a tattoo.

"Even like during I knew like once I got over everything like once I got over it and built my self confidence back up, I just wanted to get them all taken care of, cause I always wanted it to be over. This takes care of that," said Bloomfield.

She cannot imagine being told she could not do it.

"Why are the people telling me what I can put on my body?" said Bloomfield. "Like it's my business, like they don't know what I've been through. It's not their say."

Bloomfield says it will make her life much easier.

"I can finally live my life without twenty people a day asking me what happened and what I did," said Bloomfield.

She sees it as a symbol of never giving up.

"It means I'm in a better place. It means I've overcome everything in my life that was bad, so that's just amazing and I'm so proud of myself," said Bloomfield. "So, to finally just show that I'm there and that I made it means a lot."

Original Story
After more than 600 public comments, state officials pulled a proposed ban on tattoos over scars.

In the process of a preliminary regulation, the Cabinet for Health and Family Services received opinions of those who did not understand why the ban was proposed. Among those confused was Hazard tattoo manager, Draven Gayheart, of Lost Gypsy Tattoo.

"We were a little confused by it more than anything. We understand that these new regulations are in the clients best interest, for everyone's safety involved. So the confusion as to why," said Gayheart.

Officials say it was the language that caused so much confusion. Dr. Jeff Howard, Commissioner of Kentucky's Department of Public Health, said because of the comments "we elected to remove the language relating to scar tissue."

"I think it's a good regulation, myself personally. Any reputable tattooer won't tattoo over a fresh scar as's not something we're doing anyway," said Gayheart.

But when the scar is healed Gayheart says doing that tattoo is an unexplainable feeling.

"Any tattoo you do is great when you see the client's reaction when they love it. But when you take something that they are living with and it's either a bad memory or a painful time and you can camouflage that or disguise it the reaction is priceless."

The proposal also updated the disinfectant and equipment sterilization process as well as parental consent for a minor wanting a tattoo without a parent present. Read more about the proposed regulations here.

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