How Much Does a Tattoo Cost?

One of the most frequently asked questions about tattoos, other than “does it hurt” is, “how much does a tattoo cost?” Pricing will vary depending on several factors, but this guide will give you a good idea on how much you will be looking at to get tattooed.

First of all there are several factors to consider when figuring out the cost of a tattoo. These are design size, detail and intricacy of the design, number of colors, placement, the amount of time it will take and the work involved in doing the tattoo. Of course larger designs will cost more than smaller ones and a tattoo that has a lot of detail and many colors will also be more expensive. The placement is also figured into the price because it is easier to apply tattoos on some parts of the body such as the arm or leg. If the design is on the lower back or the ribcage for example, the cost will be a bit higher.

Other price factors include the location and area that you live in. Tattoo parlors in large urban areas usually charge more than shops that are located in small towns. The experience and reputation of the artist also plays a big part in the price. A well known tattoo artist will charge a lot more than someone that is less experienced or is just starting out as an apprentice.

Custom designed tattoos will also be more pricey than stock designs on the wall or in a book. If your artist has to create and draw a design for you, then you will also be charged for his or time and the work that goes into creating your tattoo. It sometimes differs from one tattoo shop to another how they figure the prices of the tattoos. They may charge by the piece or by the hour. Simple stock designs that take less than an hour to do will usually be charged just by the piece. This will probably cost you at least $ 50.00. If it is done by the hour, you should consider that it will cost between $ 75.00 – $ 150.00 an hour with a minimum of $ 50.00. Large designs like sleeves and full backs will most likely be charged by the hour. Many times with a large tattoo like this, you will also be required to pay a deposit of at least $ 50.00.

While all tattoo shops will differ somewhat in their pricing and by figuring in factors such as the area that you live in, for a simple small tattoo, you can plan on paying around $ 50.00. If the tattoo that you want is large, a custom design or something very detailed and intricate, your best bet would be to go to a tattoo parlor and ask them to give you an estimate. That way there will be no surprises. One last thing, it is good practice to tip your tattoo artist when he or she is finished doing your tattoo and you are satisfied with it. The normal tip is around 10 – 20 percent.

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