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What To Look For In A Tattoo Shop Or Artist

Bay Ink Tattoo

February 1, 2024

What To Look For In A Tattoo Shop Or Artist

Considering the permanent nature of tattoos, it may be surprising that nearly half of people get their first one on impulse. If anyone admires your whimsical spirit, it’s us. But before you rush to the nearest tattoo shop, we encourage you to weigh your options, vet the artist, and evaluate each studio. As you do so, consider the following criteria:

Safety First

When it comes to tattoos, hygiene and safety are non-negotiables. Because tattoo artists use tools and materials that come into contact with bodily fluids, studios must maintain Local Health Department compliance standards.

As you vet your studio, ask the following questions:

  • Is the studio divided into a work and lobby area?
  • Are the artists using personal protective equipment (PPE) like gloves?
  • Does the space have proper ventilation to minimize exposure to airborne contaminants?
  • Does it have sterilization equipment?
  • Are the artists trained in bloodborne pathogens and infection control?
  • Are the needles sealed in containers?

Proper Training & Licensure

Although it may not always be prominently displayed in the studio, tattoo studios must have a license. If you don’t see a license or permit displayed, inquire about it.

Just as important, ask for information about your prospective artist’s training. Experienced tattoo artists typically undergo rigorous apprenticeships, pursue ongoing education, and earn certifications from industry-approved organizations.

Friendly & Professional Environment

First and foremost, tattoo studios should be spotless. They should also be friendly and welcoming, while having a “vibe” that resonates with you.

Interact with the staff and artists to see if they are approachable and willing to answer your questions.

And don’t forget: a professional studio typically offers a consultation where they discuss your tattoo and design placement and answer any questions you may have.

The Right Style

Each artist has their style, so finding one who shares your aesthetic sensibilities is essential. Review your artist’s portfolio, paying close attention to the style, range of work, and skill level. As you do this, consider your vision. Are you drawn to traditional, realistic, minimalist, or abstract styles? And does your artist specialize in your preferred style? The answer to this question will help you narrow your search.

As you evaluate, look for consistency and cohesion. An artist may have a wide range of styles but the quality between pieces should be consistent.

Positive Reviews

You’re making a permanent decision, so even if your studio has passed the test thus far, we encourage you to dig deeper.

Browse your studio’s customer reviews on Yelp, Google, and others. Online reviews offer valuable insights into others’ experiences, giving you a glimpse into the professionalism of the artist and studio, how they communicate, and the overall quality of their work.

Your Vision, Our Ink

Ready to discover tattoo options that defy trends and stand the test of time? Look no further. With convenient locations in Bay Park, Hillcrest, and La Jolla, our experienced tattoo artists are here to turn your vision into an enduring work of art. Contact us now to schedule your consultation!

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