Woman Claims Harlem Tattoo Parlor Behind VH1’s Reality Show ‘Black Ink Crew’ Left Her Disfigured

A woman alleges the tattoo parlor in New York, best known for the VH1 reality show, Black Ink Crew, left her “disfigured” after going in to replace a unicorn and horseshoe tattoo which she regrettably got in her teens.

Asabi Barner wanted to cover up a chest piece tattoo she had done when she was 18, so she visited Black Ink, a tattoo parlor in Harlem that has its own reality show and a mass following of fans. Barner’s decision to go to Black Ink, though, was based on the parlor’s claim of being the best at tattooing African American skin.

Barner told PIX11 that she had initially liked the new massive chest piece tattoo and thought it was “phenomenal,” but she soon made the grim discovery of pus starting to ooze from her left breast.

Barner, who is from South Carolina, then consulted with a tattoo artist in the area and was informed the Black Ink tattoo artist overworked the skin while trying to bring out the white color in the tattoo’s design.

This overworking resulted in keloids that burn and itch – and one year later, Barner is still feeling the painful effects.

“In the intimate moments it creates a problem because you don’t have that confidence. I wasn’t overly confident before, but I felt good about myself. Felt good about my body, but it just changes you,” Barner said.

She even consulted with plastic surgeons who informed her that the keloid scars would be made worse with surgery.

Keloids – which can occur at the site of skin damage like cuts, burns, chicken pox, piercings, and tattoos – are found to have a genetic factor and are hard to prevent if one is already predisposed. However, in Barner’s case, she’s had tattoos before and had not suffered from the scarring prior to her Black Ink visit.

Now, Barner is suing the tattoo parlor, claiming Black Ink was reckless, careless and negligent.

Black Ink Crew, which began airing on VH1 on January 2013, chronicles the tattoo parlor’s daily operations – and captures the staff’s dysfunctional relationships and incessant drama, including relationship issues, legal troubles, and, of course, fights. This January marked the reality show’s third season.

According to PIX11, attempts to reach Black Ink have been futile as the shop’s voicemail was said to be full, and the gates to the parlor were closed when the news crew paid them a visit.

[Image via PIX11]