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Tattoo Price & How Much Should A Tattoo Artist Charge: Your Guide To Getting A Tattoo

By Jason Hamilton / July 20, 2019
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“How much do tattoos cost?” It’s a question that we get almost every week. Tattoo price may vary depending on such factors as size, colors, part of the body, geography (New York City tattoo artist vs. a Thailand tattoo artist), the expertise of the tattoo artist, the difficulty of the tattoo, etc.

We have broken everything down into 6 Factors for a tattoo price. We will show you, step by step, how to understand how much your tattoo will cost. This will allow you to make more information decisions when planning, or evening negotiating price, for a tattoo.

This article has been written for tattoo beginners. However, we recommend that even the most seasoned tattooer re-read these 6 Factors every year. Keep yourself sharp! tattoo price ranges can get complex, but if you keep these six factors in mind, you will always know EXACTLY what you are talking about.

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Before Asking For The Price, Are You Sure About This?

Tattoos last forever, or at least as long as your body lasts, which is pretty much forever in human terms. For a lot of people (your boss and your grandpa), this is the main reason not to get them. For other people (you), this is what makes them so great. Your pets and your parents will die, your house will get bulldozed to build a superhighway, your friends will move to New York City. But your tattoos? Barring a full-body burning accident, they will be with you through the whole scary, sublime thing, until you are sitting in your easy chair, unable to pee without the help of an in-home care assistant. Until finally, you lose consciousness and stop existing. How comforting to know that a) your memories will be written on your body no matter how badly your brain disintegrates and b) your in-home care assistant will have something pretty to look at while he’s pulling down your pants for you.

Now, if you are really sure about this, let’s now go to the next step!

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Do You Have A Tattoo Design In Mind?

Picking the right tattoo design, especially if it is for your first one, is a tough choice that requires a good deal of thought and effort. You have to remember that whatever you choose is going to be with you for the rest of your life, so you should probably put more thought into it than you put into deciding what to get from the Taco Bell drive thru.

Here are some tips we gathered that might help you decide for a tattoo design:

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Do some research

We know, using the word “research” makes it sound like we’re trying to force you to do work. Don’t worry, doing this kind of research isn’t going to involve sifting through card catalogs in musty library basements. In fact, you won’t even have to leave this website. Browse through and take in all of the amazing art that people are making. Nothing gets the creative mind percolating quite like looking at art.

Find a design/idea that you connect with.

For the first timer this might be the most important tip. You probably don’t want to choose something only because it is aesthetically pleasing. Of course, this aspect is very important, but it’s not the only aspect to consider. If you have a deeper connection to the design it will be much dearer to your heart, especially years down the road.

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The perfect design is one that will mesh with who you are.

Think about the design you are pondering and how it will fit with your personality. Are you a cheerful person who teaches kindergarten? Then you probably are going to want to reconsider getting a terrifying skull on your hand.

Do you now have a tattoo design in mind? Perfect! Just in case you are still quite unsure about this, here are some of the best tattoo designs we have here in Tats N’ Rings.

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The Tattoo Designs We Suggest If You Are Still Unsure

Still not sure? do not worry. We know how hard it is to pick a tattoo design from a multitude of designs available for everyone! Regardless of this, we will help you decide what to pick!

Here are some of the designs we suggest you go with your tattoo:

Infinity Tattoo

A number of symbols have been used with specific meanings. Some are definite while others have some hidden meanings. One of the top symbols that have a definite meaning is the infinity symbol. This symbol has been used in many areas, including tattoos. The infinity tattoo designs are commonly applied by many people and they have different meanings all together.

In as much as the tattoo symbol has a common meaning, it is used in different ways. They will be applied in different design and style. The design and/or style of the tattoo applied will depend on what it will mean. One thing about these tattoos is that they are very attractive in nature.

Here are the various designs you can do with an infinity tattoo:

A very detailed infinity snake ouroboros tattoo inked on the leg.

An infinity ouroboros snake with three heads and tails tattooed on the sleeves.

 

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A beautifully crafted and intricately made watercolor infinity ouroboros tattoo on the forearm.

A small two-headed infinity Ouroboros tattoo on the back.

Infinity Ouroboros Tattoo 7

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A medium sized dragon ouroboros tattoo forming an infinity.

RELATED: 50+ Incredible Dragon Tattoo Ideas

A very detailed neotraditional snake tattoo forming an infinity with geometric detailing on the background.

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A witty infinity ouroboros tattoo with one loop forming a wristband or bracelet around the wrist.

A very detailed sleeve tattoo of a dragon ouroboros forming the infinity.

Infinity Ouroboros Tattoo 3

A dragon ouroboros tattoo inked on the hand forming an infinity symbol.

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A very detailed infinity ouroboros tattoo on the forearm.

A tattoo of the word family forming the infinity symbol.

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RELATED: 50+ Amazing Family Tattoo Designs For Your Heart

A tattoo of the word family as a part of the infinity symbol.

A watercolor tattoo of an infinity sign with a semicolon.

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A three-dimensional feather tattoo on the center of an infinity sign

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A 3D feather tattoo with infinity sign that means eternal love

A classic infinity feather tattoo but in 3D placed just below the nape

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A feather tattoo with a birthdate in roman numerals resembling an infinity symbol

An infinity sign with a feather and years to commemorate a special event

An elegant infinity family tattoo

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A feather and infinity tattoo combinedsimple infinity tattoo 1

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3D Tattoo

Whenever you hear the word “three dimensions”, what is the first thing that comes to mind? If you thought about movies, you are absolutely right! In this day and age, 3D is almost synonymous with animation and movies but did you know that three dimensions can also be applied to tattoos? Yes, there is such a thing as 3D tattoo design and we are here to introduce you these wonderful pieces of body art.

Contrary to what tattoo artists often say, any design can be turned into a 3d tattoo if the tattoo artist you have has the guts and creativity to make one. Since the 3D tattoo is now slowly dominating the “traditional tattoo” design market, more and more tattoo artists are somehow forced to adapt their once flat traditional tattoo designs into 3D tattoo designs because of the demand. Now, a plethora of tattoo artists can do 3D tattoo designs because of the pressure made by the tattoo enthusiasts.

Here are some of the most famous or common 3D tattoo designs for lads and gals.

A full hand 3D tattoo of a skull with high detail.

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A highly detailed and embellished three dimensional skull tattoo inked on the rib cage.

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A three dimensional tattoo of a skull with a blue hibiscus flower.

An intricately designed 3D tattoo of a skull with roses.

A non-colored neotraditional skull tattoo with additional thee dimensional tattoo elements such as shadows to give that overall 3D tattoo vibe.

An intricately designed old compass three dimensional tattoo with a map as a background and ropes as additional detail to finish.

A very old style compass tattooed in three dimensional style with a clock behind it.

A very complex and intricately made three dimensional compass tattoo on the upper sleeve or rather, the upper arm portion of the body.

An old compass 3D tattoo masterfully designed to have a pseudo reflective quality inked on the forearm.

A fancifully made three dimensional compass tattoo inked on the arm with a map as a background.

Yin And Yang Tattoo

Everyone desires for peace, the tranquility of the soul, and of course, balance in their lives. The Yin and Yang symbol or more commonly known in East Asian countries as the Taijitu symbol represents the balance humanity must achieve to reach spiritual peace and enlightenment. Yin yang tattoo designs also aim to represent what the wearer of the tattoo strives for in life. Join us as we explore how this symbol of spiritual balance became one of the most famous East Asian tattoo designs today.

The Yin and Yang symbol has been deeply rooted in ancient Chinese society, beliefs, and customs. One may even dare say that this symbol molded Chinese society into what it is today.

In Chinese philosophy, yin and yang describe how seemingly opposite or contrary forces may actually be complementary, interconnected, and interdependent in the natural world, and how they may give rise to each other as they interrelate to one another.

Since the yin and yang symbol has been around for quite some time now and its roots came from the most populous country in the world, various designs have propped up across the globe in the many Chinese communities that dotted cities, towns, and countries across the globe. Though one may see various designs where the Yin and Yang is almost not foreseeable, the concept of the Yin and Yang is still visible.

Here are the various Yin Yang tattoo designs you might want to see for yourself:

A small but elegant couple yin yang tattoo.

couple yin yang tattoo 1

A highly detailed couple yin yang tattoo on the thighs.

A simple couple yin yang tattoo on the wrist.

couple yin yang tattoo 10

A couple yin yang tattoo on the feet with night sky and sun detailing.

A couple yin yang tattoo disguised as the spirits Tui and La.

An intricately designed and highly detailed couple yin yang tattoo.

A simple couple yin yang tattoo on the forearms.

couple yin yang tattoo 5

A couple yin yang tattoo with dream catcher detailing.

An intricate couple yin yang tattoo disguised as feather tattoos.

An intricate and highly detailed artsy couple yin yang tattoo.

A highly detailed brushstroke yin yang tattoo.

A purple and black watercolor brush stroke yin yang tattoo.

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A colorful watercolor brush stroke yin yang tattoo.

 brush yin yang tattoo 10

An intricate brush stroke yin and yang tattoo.

A highly detailed and intricately designed brush stroke yin yang tattoo on the chest.

A highly detailed brushstroke yin yang tattoo on the chest.

A simple but elegant brushstroke yin yang tattoo.

A brush stroke yin yang tattoo on the shoulder mimicking a wave.

A highly detailed brush stroke yin yang tattoo design.

A large brush stroke yin yang tattoo on the back.

Butterfly Tattoo

Butterfly tattoo designs have been a staple of artistic tattoo designs for over decades now. With the numerous symbolism they possess and their sheer beauty, it is no wonder why this tattoo design has slowly gained traction in the body art industry and tattoo loving community. This tattoo design was once considered as a feminine tattoo design but now has transcended also as a masculine design? How? Why? Join us as we discover why men and women are being drawn into butterfly tattoo designs.

Since the dawn of feminine tattoos in the modern age, butterfly tattoo designs has been one of the mainstay designs for women and for a time, the only design available for them. Butterflies are often associated with femininity and beauty which is why they were first used on women as a tattoo design. As time goes by, however, more and more designs became available for women and some distanced themselves with the stereotype tattooed women with a butterfly tattoo. This, in turn, allowed more men to use the design without being judged. With men and their own interpretations of a butterfly, more and more men used the design and thus the butterfly tattoo became a unisexual design.

Since the butterfly tattoo had already captured the attention of the world over, more and more designs are sprucing up from every corner of the world to further expand the butterfly tattoo market. From the traditional butterfly tattoo design to the more complex watercolor butterfly tattoo, there can be a butterfly tattoo design for everyone’s taste.

Here are just a few butterfly tattoo designs we collected just for you:

A nice 3D butterfly design blends perfectly with the freckles on a back.

 A forearm with a beautiful violet tribal-inspired tattoo.

 A cutesy and small tattoo that is too cute to see!

This little butterfly may save some space but it emphasizes the legs!

An artistically made closed wing butterfly tattoo on the side.

An intricately designed tribal closed wing butterfly tattoo on the leg.

A small closed wing butterfly tattoo on the ankle.

A wonderfully made watercolor tattoo of a closed wing butterfly with a semi colon as its body.

A large traditional butterfly tattoo with two halves of a skull as detail.

A painful but wonderful head tattoo of a neotraditional butterfly.

An artistically made shoulder and chest tattoo of two butterflies around a twig of flowers and leaves.

A beautifully designed butterfly tattoo on the arms.

Butterfly Tattoo Arm

A wonderfully crafted hand tattoo of a butterfly.

Butterfly Tattoo Hand

A large neotraditional butterfly tattoo on the upper sleeves area of the arm.

Butterfly Tattoo Sleeve

Now That You Have A Design, Find An Artist And Your Tattoo Price Range

Knowing how much your tattoo will cost will help with planning for your dream tattoo.

Many factors determine the tattoo price charged by the tattoo artist: Skill, reputation, artistic ability, location on the body, size of the tattoo, and complexity.

Typically, a quality tattoo performed in a registered professional tattoo studio or parlor would be more expensive than some scratcher working out of his back room. Considering that you could potentially take home a disease along with a crappy permanent tattoo, paying a little more can certainly be worth the cost in the long run.

In general, the old adage applies that you get what you pay for. Though there’s no guarantee that the quality of the tattoo increases with its cost, at least you can ensure that you’re somewhere on the playing field.

The Cost Of Having A Tattoo

The tattoo price will depend on the following the factors, but can range anywhere from $50 to $2000+.

The Skill and Experience of the Artist:

This is the leading factor in determining the price a tattoo artist charges. A professional tattooist will charge more for his/her service. They usually charge by the hour but will charge for the price of the tattoo if it is a small one that can be done in one sitting. If they have tattooed for years but have no skill, or alternatively, they have skill but no experience, they won’t be able to charge a premium price. An artist must possess both of these attributes to ask for the big bucks.

Complexity:

A complex design with lots of intricate details will take multiple sessions and long hours. Watercolor tattoos, for example, cost a lot more than getting simple writing in black ink because they require a lot of colors and skilled technique to create. Therefore, the amount of time it takes to get a tattoo will be a strong determining factor.

Color:

The more colors there are, the longer it will take because multiple colors mean that the design is somewhat more complicated. Watercolor tattoos can cost as much a $400 for a four-inch wide area.

Body Placement:

Tattoo placement is also a big determining factor. Some artists charge 10% to 25% more for a tattoo on a challenging body area. Difficult locations include the neck, elbow, feet, and face. Hand or finger tattoos are relatively easier.

Custom Design:

A simple flash design that the artist or tattoo parlor already has a stencil of will cost around $50 to $100. If the artist has to create an original design based on what you want, the time he/she takes to conceptualize and draw the piece will factor into the tattoo price.

Geographical Location:

The price of a tattoo will be greater in bigger cities than in smaller towns. In the U.S., a large tattoo might cost thousands of dollars in a metropolitan location, but only hundreds in a small-traffic city. The cost of a tattoo in the U.K. is usually around £40 to £100.

Size:

The smaller the tattoo, the cheaper it will be. A small tattoo on your wrist might bring you down 50 bucks, but a full back tattoo will cost an average of $2000 to $5000 and upwards.

The popularity of the Artist or the Studio:

Artists and tattoo shops that are popular or famous can also charge higher rates. When appointments are limited, the expense will most likely always go up, too.

Tattooing Tools:

The tools and supplies used to create your tattoo are another expense incurred by the artist and passed onto you, the consumer. Such items include ink, needles, sterilization units, inkwells, lotions, wipes, and sprays.


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About the author

Jason Hamilton

Jason has been an avid fan of tattoos for over 13 years now. He is currently 35 years old, and he got his first tattoo at the age of 22. Since then, he has added over 20 tattoos to his collection. He is also into writing, which is why he decided to celebrate both of his passion and hobby through tats ‘n’ rings. Jason dreams of having his very own tattoo parlor soon. Jason would be very happy to answer any questions about tattoos that you may have! Leave a comment below and he’ll answer it for you right away!

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