A CARDENDEN woman is running a competition to find Fife’s worst tattoo – and there are already some strong contenders! – so she can remove it for free.

Karla Rae, who runs Smooth Clinic in the town, wants anyone with ink they regret to post the offending pic to the clinic’s Facebook page and whoever gets the most reactions, likes, loves, laughs or otherwise, will win.

She said: “The competition has had a great reaction and there are some really funny entries.

“The Jack Nicholson one made me smile but the one that’s winning so far is anonymous, I think their tattoo says ‘greasy banger’!

“It does make you wonder! Another one has ‘Hello Chicken Nugget’.

“One of my favourites is the Bart Simpson, because of the story, but there are lots on the Facebook page.”

Mum-of-one Karla started Smooth Clinic last year. It’s a laser hair removal service that also offers skin rejuvenation, wrinkle reduction, acne clearance, skin pigmentation removal, teeth whitening, birthmark removal and tattoo removal.

With the business understandably quiet during lockdown, she came up with the competition idea to keep her entertained.

She explained: “I was watching ‘Just Tattoo Of Us’, a show on MTV where two friends, family members or a couple go on and pick each other’s tattoos and they don’t see them until the big reveal.

“They tend to give each other very bad ones and it got me thinking, there must be some really awful tattoos out there, from a holiday or when they were younger, that they really wished they didn’t have.

“So I came up with the idea of a competition to find Fife’s worst tattoo and I’ll remove it for free. I’ll keep it going through lockdown so there’s plenty of time to enter.”

She added: “I’m 34 and I’ve got tattoos I don’t want.

“Hopefully I can help someone and also raise awareness that there is something you can do about bad tattoos, you don’t have to go to the big scary looking guy in the tattoo parlour and it’s a service that’s available in Fife!

“The older it is and the darker it is, the easier the tattoo is to remove. The closer it is to the trunk of your body, the easier too. It’s to do with circulation so hands and feet are a bit trickier.

“Everyone that enters the competition, I’ll get in touch with them after and give them a quote with a discount to remove their tattoo as a thank-you for taking part.”

Karla started her new career path after failing to find a job that fitted in with looking after her daughter, Linton, who’s five.

She recalled: “I had wanted laser hair removal on my legs – I think most women do! – and the nearest place was Edinburgh, and it was expensive.

“I wondered how you learn to do it, ended up talking to suppliers and finding out what qualifications I needed. I got there in the end. I was just going to do laser hair removal but it’s a medical grade machine and can do a variety of treatments.

“It’s non-invasive, there are no needles or syringes. Tattoo removal is painful but nothing else is. It’s more of a sensation.

“It’s a big investment but I’m hoping I’ve found a niche in the market. The use of lasers is really big around the world but we don’t seem to have quite cottoned onto it here yet.”

You can take part here.

And here are some of the designs, and the stories behind them, in the running.

Lisa Marshall Duncan said: “Here’s my fungus toe. Meant to look like a lovely toe ring. All I hear in the summer is ‘Oh what did you do to your toe?’ and I’m ‘Erm, it’s a tattoo’. Help!”

Kelly Duffy said: “Got this done after the birth of my first daughter 21 years ago. Cost me a fiver. Meant to say Erin in Chinese but I think it’s probably more like number 42 on the menu though!”

Shirley Stewart Greenwood submitted her tattoo, which looks like it might be a butterfly. She said: “Always wanted a tattoo so when I retired I got one done. Biggest mistake ever. I try to cover it with makeup if going out. Everybody asks what it’s meant to be.”

Jack Cameron said: “Got this at my brother Ryan’s stag do. Whilst one of the other guys thought he would get a nice romantic tattoo for his wife, I went for the world’s worst picture of a camel...on my toe!”

Sarah McNeil said of her sun image: “Walked into a tattoo shop on the day of my 18th birthday and said ‘I’ll have that one’ and my pal paid for it. Looks like Gordon from Thomas the Tank Engine.”

Chloé Sismey said: “I have this lovely portrait right on my inner arm, very visible and the first tattoo everybody noticed unfortunately. Was supposed to be Jack Nicholson. Desperate to get this off of me!”

Sara Morris got a Bart Simpson tattoo and explained: “Gran Canaria, 1994, I was 15 and on holiday with my parents and grandparents. Got this bad boy and had to hide him for the remainder of the holiday and the next few years. Thought I was the absolute cat’s pyjamas though. Absolute f***y.”

Aileen Amanda Connelly had ‘Hello Chicken Nugget’ inked on her body and said: “Silly drunken tattoo in Magaluf, decided to get this tattooed on the top of my leg.”

Duncan Graham said: “Originally a hula dancer but her feet were like Olive Oyl from Popeye so my mate covered it with an eagle (allegedly). Dying to get rid of it.”