A tattoo was a permanent insertion of ink or pigments below the skin using a sharp needle. A number of beings had tattoos, normally for cosmetic reasons or as part of their culture or an organization. Tattooing was also used as a common identification or branding of slaves. two such examples was the slave trade planet Farle IV. The Togorian Mezgraf, a former slave of this planet, had his slaver's mark on his right shoulder, still visible through his white fur, and would often wear a long-sleeved jacket to cover it and the Combine's branding a Transrace or a Slave (for the Transrace it was usually the capital letters of the Empire in their native language then a series of numbers after it, for example, ECR 14475293, and for the common, non-trans slaves they often have the surname of the family that owned them and a number after it, for example, Xiuuikkijizi 19. But the reason for them are clear though, the Combine's (at least it's Government) wises to dehumanized (or dekilominitized in their case) their soldiers and slaves by calling them numbers instead of giving them names or calling them names that was given to them). A tattooist, or tattoo artist, was a person who drew tattoos on people's skin as a job. Notable examples were the female Samantha Byrne, who made a living as a tattooist on Starstation 12, and the male Lafrarian Nuyu, a tattoo artist and body decorator who ran a small shop on Imperia Nolus. The Blue Sector of Dol Earth's capital Coronet hosted a high proportion of tattoo parlors.