People with visible tattoos tend to have these personality traits, according to economists

Having tattoos isn’t necessarily a bad thing (though it can cause some health issues.) Past studies have shown that employer bias doesn’t really exist, meaning having tattoos won’t inhibit you from getting a job. Sometimes, they can look really cool and give you an appeal compared to someone without them.

But new research finds that having visible tattoos that creep from under your shirt sleeve or collar means you’re more likely to act on impulse and be more reckless compared to other ink-less people.

Economists published their findings in the Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization where they conducted a survey comparing more than 1,000 people in an effort to see why tattoos have become popular in today’s world.

What’s up your sleeve?

While most — 78% of participants — didn’t have tattoos, nearly 75% of participants’ friends had tattoos. 225 people in the survey had tattoos, including 68 people who reported their tattoos being visible while fully clothed.

How researchers determined that people with public tattoos were impulsive and more reckless was through a game to access planning ability. In this instance, participants were asked about payment options whether they wanted to receive a dollar sooner or receive a larger sum in the next weeks with delayed payments. The study found that people without tattoos opted for delayed payment options much earlier than people with visible tattoos.

People with visible tattoos were found to be more present-oriented than those without tattoos.

“Those who have at least one tattoo that can’t be readily hidden with clothing were more short-sighted and impulsive across these different measures than those who don’t have a tattoo,” said Bradley Ruffle, an economics professor at Laurier University.

The study was conducted by Bradley Ruffle, an economics professor at Laurier University and Anne Wilson, a psychology professor at Laurier University.