Choosing A Tattoo Artist

11 Questions to Ask Your New Tattoo Artist

In Advice, Medical, Tattoo Culture, Tattoo Health, Trends by Trip5 Comments

Choosing a Tattoo Artist

Choosing a Tattoo Artist

Getting a tattoo is a life-changing decision. Once you get inked there is no turning back. There are certain things that you need to ask before that first prick lands on your skin. This is important because it could be a matter of life and death if you take things for granted. That is why to guide people that want to get a tattoo, we have composed this article for you so that you will get all the benefits of a new tattoo without the regrets.

1. How long have you been a tattoo artist?

This is pretty obvious and experience is very important in a tattoo artist. Longevity in the craft means that the artist is experienced enough to provide quality renderings that will satisfy you as a client.

2. Do you have the necessary certifications?

Some localities allow tattoo parlors to operate as long they adhere to local statutes or ordinances. This means that tattoo parlor proprietors need to secure local licenses and permits before they can operate. Make sure that the tattoo parlor that you are engaging with prominently displays their permits and that they are up to date.

3. What are your qualifications?

Don’t be shy, ask your tattoo artist about their qualifications. If they are confident they will share them out without any hesitation. Qualified tattoo artists have the necessary permits and training from local health boards so that they are able to perform safe tattoo sessions.

4. Do you have a portfolio of past work?

This is great in looking at how masterful the tattoo artist is in bringing to life the designs that you want to be inked on your skin. A portfolio of work is proof that the artist has the necessary aptitude and skill to deliver quality work for you.

5. Do you guarantee your work?

Well, if the final product is not what you hoped it would be, it pays to have a back-job guarantee if you are not satisfied with the work. Ask if they have a refund policy if the job turns out to be crappy.

6. How much a tattoo would cost?

This is pretty straightforward because you need to know how much budget you will need to allot to get inked.

7. How many tattoos have you done?

This is related to the amount of experience the tattoo artist has. The more tattoos done by the artist will reflect how much skill they have developed in working with different customers, different skin types and designs.

8. Have you been on drugs or do you abuse them while at work?

Well, this is a very tough question to ask but it is only fair. You don’t want someone high on drugs doing the inking because they might make an error and misspell something or deliver a sub-standard tattoo while under the influence.

9. Do you practice proper blood disposal?

Ask if the shop is following the safety rules in the disposal of blood and other potentially bio hazardous waste. This is important because it will help curb the spread of blood-borne diseases from infecting other people unnecessarily.

10. What is the likelihood of infection?

You also need to ask what the likelihood of having an infection is. Every good tattoo artist can easily answer this question.

11. Do I need a medical certificate before getting a tattoo?

Since we are dealing with blood, every responsible tattoo artist should ask for medical certificates or medical history to ascertain that the subject does not have an infectious disease that can be transmitted through blood.  They should be asking you as many questions as you are asking them.

By taking your time to find an artist, you can be assured that you’re getting a tattoo that you can enjoy for years to come! Remember, there’s no such thing as a dumb question when finding a tattoo artist you can trust.

About The Author of 11 Questions to Ask Your New Tattoo Artist:
This guest post provided to us by Ashlee Harsh. She writes for the website How Much Will it Cost? — A large resource of over 2,300 cost helping guides.

Photo Credits:
“Choosing a Tattoo Artist”: minxlj via photopin cc

Have you ever changed your mind about a tattoo studio?


  1. Bob Lowe

    Thanks for the post. I think these are great questions to ask if your looking to get a tattoo. I would have never thought that a tattoo artist would need a medical certificate. I find that very important. Like you said, your dealing with blood, and it is important that they have that cert. Thanks again.

  2. April Cook

    I really like your tip to ask to see a portfolio of past work. This is a great way to see if they do work that you like and would want on your body. I also like your tip to ask how many tattoos they have done. What is a good amount to show that they have sufficient experience? Thanks for this information!

  3. Chaz

    Number five is a joke. The rest seem ok to ask. Honestly if you walk i to a place asking the wrong questions youre gunna come off like a dick. Its better to go somewhere reputable (do the research), look through artists portfolios, and decide accordingly. Artists are not responsible for your tattoo once you leave the shop. If it gets infected thats on you. You wont be getting a refund if you dont like your tattoo thats absurd.

    1. Author

      Yes, getting a guarantee on artwork that’s on your body is pretty tough. Also, most reputable artists will run numerous sketches by their clients well before any ink touches their bodies.

Leave a Comment