Volunteer firefighter learns to deal with pain through his tattoo obsession

Basel, Switzerland - He's a pastry chef, volunteer firefighter, first responder – and tattoo addict! But Andreas Stauffiger's reasons for his ink infatuation are more than just skin deep.

Andreas Stauffiger (43) describes himself as a tattoo addict.
Andreas Stauffiger (43) describes himself as a tattoo addict.  © Screenshot/Instagram/sweet_and_fire

A total of 60 works of art cover the 43-year-old's body, but that's not nearly enough for him. Andreas got his first tattoo when he was 18 and was completely fascinated by the feeling, which quickly developed into a full-fledged obsession.

"I began my ink career, a few days after my 18th birthday and never stopped. I regret none of them. Today, it’s more of an addiction, I need to do more and I don’t really have an inspiration," he told the Daily Star.

The multitalented man has spent the equivalent of over $32,000 on body modifications, which include 16 piercings as well as all the tattoos.

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As a pastry chef, Andreas is a naturally creative person, and he brings that attitude to the designs etched on his skin.

But it's not just about aesthetics – through his tattoos, he has learned to deal with physical and psychological pain.

Learning to handle the pain

"Pain is trainable, some people think my pain tolerance is very high, but that's not truth. I learned to handle pain. This ability helps me, in my daily routine, job and as a firefighter," Andreas explained.

"As soon as I feel pain, whether it’s physical or mental, I'm able to handle it better than others. I begin to breathe slow and deep and be always aware of the pain so I can suppress it."

And how do others react to the rich and colorful tapestry that covers his body from head to toe? "Most of the feedback is positive, I've never had any haters, but I have experienced discrimination," he admitted.

But as a self-described "positive person," Andreas doesn't want to dwell on other people's reactions to his choices.

Cover photo: Screenshot/Instagram/sweet_and_fire

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