A culture most of the Western world is familiar with, tattoos have not so much become a symbol of beauty but more of a form of expression. Since tattoos come in all shapes, sizes, colors, and have no distinct stamping ground on the body, they have become popular among society because it implies uniqueness from the rest of the world. Despite the fact that probably a little less than half of middle age people have a tattoo, it is still considered unique and special to have this permanent stamp on your body. But it just goes to show, how much people are concerned with the appearance that they show the world. This is only the most recent motivation for the tattoo though. In older days, the tattoo was not the most glamorous thing to sport by the average person, it was mostly worn by sailors, gangsters, bikers as a sign of being part of a certain group of people. With time, it probably eventually evolved into an appealing mark of macho-ness for men, and simply became trendy for women and teenagers.
In some countries however, tattoos are a cultural mark where people will tattoo sometimes their entire face or body part as a sign of cultural pride and integrity. Practiced in the Maori tribes of New Zealand (the place of origin of tattoos according to archaeological evidence) men will get traditional tattoos representing the wearer’s ancestral importance. It is usually tattoed on the head, considered the most sacred part of the body and (obviously) bears an undeniable declaration of who you are.
New Zealand Maori tattoo traditions further explained: http://www.newzealand .com/travel/media/features/maori-culture/maori_ta-moko-significance_feature.cf m