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8 Things to Consider Before Getting a Tattoo

Choosing a tattoo and preparing for this process is not a small decision. This lifetime-lasting thing must be planned and executed to perfection, if possible. Take a moment and see our general advice.

Getting a tattoo! Where to start?

We understand the excitement when you are planning a tattoo, regardless of whether it’s first, or just a new one – the thrill is through the roof, and many ideas, plans, and schemes go through your mind.

From the fun part like choosing ideas to the tedious part of aftercare to the worries of unexpected risks or unpleasant moments, everything is on the table.

However, it doesn’t have to be hectic at all if you know the several factors that sum up the whole tattooing process, before, during, after, and all related. Read below and understand the things to consider before getting a tattoo, in a nutshell, this will be tattoo talk “101”.

Things to Consider Before Getting a Tattoo

Before Getting a Tattoo

These are the factors to consider before getting a tattoo.

1. Permanence

tattoo is permanent

The tattoo is a permanent design under your skin. The only thing to remove it is a laser unless you decide on a cover-up with a completely new tattoo. 

2. Cost

The tattoo is usually an expensive investment. All good experts with a flawless work history will have high prices, compared to less experienced artists.

3. Pain

There will be pain when you are getting a tattoo. The process includes needles that insert ink under the skin, and the pain is inevitable, however, certain body parts will hurt less, and some more.

4. Placement and visibility

Placement and visibility

Consider the placement and the size. Will it affect your dress code in the workplace? Will it be an obstacle for certain environments? Can it be hidden with clothes? This is perhaps one of the more important things to keep in mind. 

5. Timing and season

If you have important events that would somehow affect a freshly done tattoo, perhaps you need to postpone the appointment in the salon.

If you are involved in sports, perhaps you need to pause that schedule or postpone the appointment. If it’s summer, the tattoo should not be exposed to harsh sunlight or sand and water. 

6. Researching a salon and artist

Researching a salon and artist

Part of the client’s job is to research for the best possible expert and salon. The salon has to follow all health and safety regulations. The artist has to guarantee this, as well as the quality of his work because permanent tattoos are a major responsibility. 

7. Researching the design you prefer

Another job for the customer, besides choosing a salon and artist, is to choose what kind of tattoo to get. The artist can always recommend general ideas and suggestions, however, the final result is a decision of the customer.

8. Aftercare


Tattoos are not complete without following through with the aftercare. It is crucial to let the tattoo heal properly and retain a good color without any damages.

How to know you’re ready for such a permanent art and how to avoid regretting it

ready for tattoo

There is no guarantee for this. This is why people research long and hard to avoid any regrettable designs in the future. Even with good research, your opinion about the tattoo and how you perceive it after some time can change, but at least you can live with it if you chose it carefully.

For example, people tend to regret tattoos done for a spouse or some other person they have met – we never know what the future holds. But, people never regret tattoos dedicated to family or their children or pets.

You can apply many such thoughts to your design, and try to go far to the future – would this be prone to change for me?

Just do your best to choose an image that will not come back to ‘haunt’ you in the future.

Are tattoos expensive?

If they are done by a good artist with a great resume, then yes, tattoos are a costly thing.

But, if they are cheap and you think you made a good deal or bargain, something is wrong.

Permanent art under the skin is a lifelong investment literally, and if it’s cheap, what does that say about the quality?

What does that say about the artist and how much he values his work and skills? If you compare two different artists, with different salons, and work history as well, and their prices differ majorly – it is obvious that you need to choose the more expensive one.

But, if this is not a good enough parameter for you, just look at the tattoos they have made for others. Check out their social media and the tattoos they post. This will give you the right answer.

What is more expensive, color or black tattoos?

The colors do not play a role in determining the price.

However, the design itself plays a huge role. If you choose an image with too many details. Intricate lines, difficult and complex shadings, and so on, yes, this will be expensive.

But, if you chose another image of that same size, but very simplistic or minimalistic, it will not be as expensive. If you compare a doodle stick figure, with classical art such as antique sculptures, the same size both – what do you think would be pricier?

Read also: Best Black Tattoo Ink & The Best Tattoo Inks

Will I be expected to pay for a touchup or cover-up? 

In most cases yes. It depends though. If the mistake in the tattoo is the fault of the artist, he should do the correction free of charge. But then again, why would you correct the faulty tattoo in the same place that gave you a faulty tattoo?

Just choose a new, better artist, and be ready to pay a sum for it. 

The same goes for a cover-up because this means covering the whole tattoo with a new tattoo. Nobody is interested whether a previous artist messed it up – work hours are legitimate with the new artist, and he just provides his services no matter what. 

How much does getting a tattoo hurt?

How much does getting a tattoo hurt

Tattoos hurt, and this is a known fact. But the good thing is that this is a pain that you endure once, and you have an image for a lifetime, permanently, so it is ok.

Still, some places hurt way more than others, such as the ribs, face, neck, chest, stomach, back center of the spine, palms, top of the foot, knees, and back of the knees, and groin too.

If you want less pain, go for the basics – arms and shoulders, shoulder blades or the sides of the upper back, and lower part of legs (above the ankles).

How can I hide the tattoos for work?

You can try to hide tattoos with clothes unless you need to expose tattooed arms and legs at work, which could be an issue. If anything like this fails, you can always try makeup with good concealing features. Many concealers and foundations would cover it up nicely, and if you can turn this into a sustainable habit, you are good to go.

Is it worse to get a tattoo in summer or winter?

It is worse to get a tattoo in the summertime. The sun is pretty much harsh and very strong between June and September, so you risk sunburns or infections and irritations from sweat and heat. 

How to prepare before the appointment?

Just make sure to shower right before heading to the salon, and if you can, shave the area where the tattoo will be.

Do not wax it, to avoid ingrown hairs while the tattoo heals later on. Also, do not ever go to the salon intoxicated on any substance or alcohol – the artist will cancel your appointment right on the spot.

Alcohol thins the blood, and any substance in the organism will make you unpredictable, not calm in the chair, and more sensitive to pain.

Can I do sports while my tattoo heals?

Try not to. It is tempting for sports enthusiasts to skip a few days of intense sweating and working out, but you must do this if you want a healthy and pretty tattoo.

Sweat and body heat can make the skin heal slower and worse. Especially if the tattoo is in a place that has natural curvatures and bends a lot, it will be even unbearable to do those extra movements anyway.

How to find the best salon and artist?

You have to sit down and do the work yourself. As we mentioned above, it will pay off to do some extensive browsing online, and try not to limit yourself to salons that are nearby your home. Go the extra mile, literally. If there is a top artist far from you, and not-so-good ones right in your neighborhood, what would you choose?

Would you trade and equalize longer time to ‘commute’ to the salon, at the expense of a bad permanent tattoo, on the other hand? No, you wouldn’t, at least we hope!

Compare portfolios and pictures of all artists you find. Narrow down the choice to the absolute best ones. Then, visit those in person, and get the prices for the design you want. From there it is a clear and easy decision. 

Read aslo: How Much to Tip a Tattoo Artist

How to easily choose from many good design ideas?

This is a tough decision, and all tattoo addicts know this! This is the same reason why most people do not stop getting tattoos. There are always more and more new ideas that you fall in love with, and you simply have to get them all.

Start with a few ideas you like, then eliminate the ones you kind of would-be good without, and you’re left with a few best ideas. From there, give meaning to each, and the one most gorgeous to you at that moment is your tattoo.

How to do the whole aftercare process?

You must follow the instructions the artist gives you. He can say those to you, if you are not new to this, or send them to you online, or perhaps give you a leaflet to constantly have with you. Usually, all aftercare procedures of different artists involve cleansing with antibacterial soap or similar products and applying healing cream/ointment afterward.

Pause all exercises, spas, saunas, vacations, and similar while the tattoo heals. Wear comfy clothes with loose linens. In no time you have a gorgeously healed tattoo.

Can I sometimes skip the aftercare to avoid staining my clothes?

No, do not even think about this! Wear comfy clothes at all times, even if you are at work, you simply have to endure for several days and risk a few stains on the clothes. What is one ointment stain compared to a one-time healing chance?

Clothes can get clean after laundry time, but can you reverse back time and get a chance to heal the tattoo better? No. 


It is not very hard to know the main factors before getting a tattoo. Think of it as a slightly painful process that will result in a permanent image of your choice.

Be ready for the cost, and know – the pricier, usually the better. Do your research for the salon and artist, and avoid regrets later on this way! Be sober and showered for the appointment, and ‘obedient’ for the aftercare.

Consider the body part good, because the dress code might get in the way in your professional future. Enjoy the summer fully, and do tattoos in the colder seasons if you can.

That is all, and best of luck!

Read also: Best Lotion for Tattoo Aftercare