"Once you start, you can't stop. So kids, don't start!"
That was singer-actress Emmanuelle Vera's warning to those who are planning to get a tattoo.
Currently, the 22-year-old Cornerstone talent has seven: one on the lower back, another on her right rib, one the means "savior" in French, the Bible verse John 3:30, a Lion, and the words "Serve" and "Love."
All of them serve as a reminder of the things she had learned through the years.
She told PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) during her blog conference at Kozui Tea cafe, Quezon City, on February 7, "Every thing's pretty much a reminder, because I'm very makulit.
"I forget, you know, the purpose of life and stuff."
The cover girl of FHM Philippines February 2017 resumed, "It's supposed to be hidden tattoos, but now, none of my tattoos are hidden anymore. Thank you FHM."
When asked about her parents' reactions when they found out about her tattoos, Emmanuelle recalled, "My mom cried, my dad had a fit. He said, 'Have it removed!'
"I said it's more painful than getting it done.
"And then on the third and the fourth, they're like, 'Whatever.'"
She added, "But then I gave a goody-two-shoes religious answer so they're like, 'Okay, okay!'"
Her first tattoo was inked on the lower area of her back.
Emmanuelle recounted, "I escaped the lunch break of taping to get my first tattoo. And then I came back, and Rafael Rosell was my closest friend at that moment and he was like, 'What did you do?!'
"Super kuya vibes like, 'Why did you do that? Do your parents know?'"
She got the next one during a "three-hour" lunch break before her class in Ateneo de Manila University.
"During lunch break, I escaped...and then I got a tattoo."
Her second biggest tattoo was a calligraphy of her favorite Bible verse, John 3:30, which read: "He must become greater, I must become less."
Emmanuelle said the line has been constantly reminding her that there is a greater Being in this world.
"You start to get full of yourself and, you know, you're falling apart because you think the world is about you.
"You need to be reminded that there's something greater."
On her "Savior" and "Eternity" tats, she said, "It's kind of a reminder that not every thing you see is eternal or every thing you see is temporary."
On her right rib, her tattoo read, "Be still and know that I am God."
Her favorite was the lion head tattoo on her left rib.
"It's a sign of bravery and courage. And in Narnia, my favorite book, Aslan is the main character and he represents God.
"So it's kinda like God is always on my side."
Emmanuelle said it was also the most painful among all her seven tattoos.
"I had to go in for a second session because after the first one, I was rushing off to a show. I'm very makulit like that.
"Ayun, so I rushed off to the next show then I got it retouched the next day.
"You're supposed to let it wait, but I couldn't wait.
"I was very impatient so I had to get it retouched the very next day.
"And mabigat yung kamay ng tattoo artist, and it was a fresh wound, so it actually made me cry."
Meanwhile, she had "Serve" and "Love" written on both of her wrists using white ink.
Emmanuelle explained, "I wanted it to be my personal reminder na parang your hands aren't here to serve yourself, but they're there to serve and love other people."