Demi Lovato Shares the Stories Behind Her Tattoos

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demilovato-tattoos-070314Demi Lovato has her fair share of tattoos and in a new feature on iHeartRadio.com, she’s sharing the meaning behind them.

Demi got her first tattoo when she was 16 and now she has a number including “Stay Strong” on her wrists, birds, and Africa. Did all those tattoos hurt? “I have a very, very high pain tolerance. So even with my first tattoo, it’s on my ribs which is supposed to be like a really sensitive area, I was like trying not to squirm because I was ticklish,” Demi said. “I have finger tattoos. It says ‘Rock and roll’ and ‘Peace,’ and that one hurt.”

On her first tattoo:

“First tattoo I ever got was song lyrics and they’re on my ribs. It says, ‘You make me beautiful.’ And it’s a Christian song, so some people are like, “Who’s that for?” And I’m like, “No, it’s for God.” (Laughs). I was 16. And I got it in some tattoo artist’s apartment. Like it was so sketch, it was in L.A. But I wanted to get tattooed so bad. I do things out of rebellion. So that was like one of the main reasons why I got it so young.”

On the Africa tattoo on her arm:

“The last tattoo that I got was two at the same time – which is kind of how I like to do it. I got Africa tattooed. I went there for my 21st birthday. I went to Kenya and it was just a very, very inspirational journey that I feel like really had a huge impact on my life. And, I would’ve gotten Kenya but then people would have been like, “What’s that?” (Laughs) So Africa’s a little more distinct.” .

On the Roman numerals on her wrist:

“I have the number three in Roman numerals on my wrist and that was a number that was very significant to my birth father because he loved Dale Earnhardt. So when he passed away I got the number three tattooed on me to remind me of him, and also because I love Dale Earnhardt. (Laughs). That’s like the most redneck tattoo I have, by the way!”

On the “Stay Strong” on her wrists:

“I think the, the most meaningful one to me is ‘Stay Strong.’ It was one of my first few tattoos as well. When I got out of rehab that’s the first thing that I did is I went and got tattooed ‘Stay Strong’ because a lot of fans were telling me that and it helped me get through a rough period. so anytime that I would feel triggered to either self-harm or act out in an unhealthy behavior, I could look down at that and stay strong.”

On her birds tat by Kat Von D:

“I wanted more tattoos and I’d never done anything big, and it was very impulsive of me, like the night that I got it. Literally, I had a friend who had a friend that worked with Kat Von D. And so, literally at like 4:00 p.m. my friend hits up her friend, and that guy was out of town but Kat was in town. And so I was like, ‘Let’s get a tattoo,’ which by the way, people like book Kat way in advance! But it was so impulsive, so it was meant to be. I love the freedom that birds represent and I didn’t specifically have a huge reason why I got 12 of them. But one day, one of my friends that I was at Sober Living, I was living in her Sober Living house, and they asked, ‘So why’d you get … How many did you get?’ And I was like, “I don’t know. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten, eleven, twelve, and I was like, ‘Whoa, I didn’t mean to do that.’ But it’s like, it was kind of like a God thing, like I worked the 12 steps, so as I got that while I was in Sober Living, apparently it was really meant to be.”

Photos & Story via iheartradio.com