MATAWAN, NJ — Call Maliboo Smiley “the fixer.”
For years, he and his team at Chakra Tattoos in Matawan, New Jersey have been a prime destination for those looking to cover up what are — in most cases — bad decisions: tattoos that didn’t exactly age well.
“In order to get people’s trust, it takes a lot, you know,” Smiley explained. “And the fact that we could actually offer that to people is the best thing ever.”
The past year has had its fair share of ups and downs. The shop was forced to shut down for several months due to statewide restrictions, but when they got the green light to open back up, Smiley, who was inspired by the social justice movement happening across the country at the time, offered up his services for free to clients looking to cover up racist ink.
The selfless act introduced his shop to a wide range of new clients.
“It was like diversity at its finest because it wasn’t predominately white thing; there was [Latino], Black, even Asian people as well who are hitting me up,” he said.
When the iron was hot, Chakra struck again. this time becoming the first tattoo shop in the region to accept cryptocurrency, such as Dogecoin and Shiba Inu, as payment.
An early investment for Smiley has already seen a massive return. The trend is a hit with customers and he’s not looking back.
“I could see the transition already happening,” he said. “Basically we are trying to stay away from the centralized banking system that we were all used to which is not working out for everybody.”
“Why let them profit from our own earnings?”