Top Tips for Tattoo Etiquette 

Top Tips for Tattoo Etiquette 

You may be nervous about getting your first/next tattoo. Nerves can make people act in all kinds of funny ways. Sometimes, we feel that we need to share an uncomfortable experience with people we know or even get a little help numbing ourselves through an intoxicating substance like alcohol. However, if you want your tattoo experience to be smooth, friendly, and overall positive, you need to remember that you are walking into someone’s workplace. 

realism portrait
By Jo from Vivid Ink Sutton

The studio is the place where the artists come to make their living and create spectacular pieces that people will carry with them through the rest of their lives. It is not the place for drunken banter with your entire entourage. Let’s take a look at some of the other things it is advisable to steer clear of if you want to stay on your tattoo artist’s good side. 

Come prepared – but listen

First of all, do your research. Be clear about what you want, in what style you want it, and where you want it placed. (However, do be open to input from the artist, especially when it comes to placement and size, they know their stuff, it’s what they do.) Bring reference photos to clearly communicate what you want.

And when it comes to styles, do remember that artists specialise in different kinds of techniques. You do not want to ask an Old School artist for a Black and Grey portrait, nor do you want to request a Sacred Geometry piece from someone who mostly does bright and bold Colour Portraits. You will both win by you choosing an artist that is already well-versed in the style you are looking for. 

Don’t backseat-drive the process

space theme tattoo
By Andy from Vivid Ink Stafford

Once you have chosen your artist and the stencil is in the right place, remember that you picked them for a reason and trust them to do what they do best. That is, without too many interruptions and nitpicking comments or requests. Do speak up if there is something major that doesn’t feel right, your artist is keener than anyone for you to enjoy the results, but fretting over every little detail will stress out both you and them. 

Don’t try to bargain

It goes without saying that you do not haggle, trying to get the price down. You are not just paying for the artist’s time at that moment, but for all the practice and hard work that they have put in through their apprenticeship years, for courses that they take to stay at the forefront of their industry, and for the space and the materials. Good tattoos are not cheap, but they are an investment worth making. 

Please smell agreeably

Other noteworthy things that should be obvious but seem to be less than clear to many a tattoo studio patron are; good hygiene (you are going to be really close up and personal with someone – also please skip the garlic mayo the day before), patience (it takes time to set up a station), and do not eat while your artist is working (unnecessary movements and unhygienic).

As we already stated in the introduction, do not bring a horde of friends/family/emotional support animals. And for heaven’s sake – don’t show up drunk or hangover. More than being rude, it will also thin the blood, making you bleed a lot more than necessary. 


© 2024 All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy