Getting your first tattoo is an exciting process, whether for your 18th birthday to try something new later in life. Whatever your motivation, the ins and outs can be a little unnerving. The last thing you want to do is slap some generic permanent artwork onto your body. Picking an artist should be a careful decision. And there are a few things you should do to choose the right person for you.
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Take it slow
When inspiration strikes, it’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of having a piece done. However, it’s no secret that this ink is permanent. So it’s all the more reason to give yourself time to explore all your options of different tattoo artists and studios. This is probably what you should spend the most time on before sitting in their chair.
Have a design in mind
Before you begin searching “tattoo parlors near me,” have some sort of design in mind. Artists are great at bringing design ideas to life, but without direction, they may design something far from your concept. Do the prep work before scheduling your consult. You’ll be able to make the most of your first meeting.
It’s also a good idea to think about the placement of future tattoos. For a design with lots of details and small intricacies, you’ll want to go for a bigger surface area so that the ink doesn’t end up blending over time.
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Research, research, research
Got a design idea? Great! Now it’s time to get down to business. Choosing a studio can seem simple, but there’s a lot more that goes into it than it may seem. Not all tattoo artists are created equally—many of them specialize in specific styles of artwork, so you’ll ultimately want to select an artist that matches up with what you have in mind.
Apart from that, check out the quality of their work. Have you browsed through the artist’s portfolio? Do you like what you see? What types of reviews are past clients leaving? All of these things are important to remember while you’re researching local tattoo artists and studios.
Are you planning on getting laser hair removal? Using lasers on tattooed skin can damage your artwork. In other words, get your laser hair removal first, before you ink up.
Plan a visit (or several)
Once you’ve found an artist whose work you love, or maybe even a few different artists, you’ll want to schedule a visit with them for a consultation. Usually, consultations are free. This is a chance for you to get to know the artist you’ll be working with better and give them a clearer idea of what kind of tattoo you’re going for.
Speaking with your tattoo artist during your consultation is a great time to ask any questions you may have or discuss anything you might be concerned with. This is also a good opportunity to take a tour of the tattoo studio and scope out the space. Here, you’ll want to pay attention to things such as workstation cleanliness and safety standards.
Go for it
If everything has gone smoothly and you’ve successfully selected a tattoo studio that’s right for you, the only thing left to do is to get your tattoo! At this stage, you may be required to put a deposit down while your artist works on your design and you’ll likely be able to go ahead and set a date for your tattoo appointment.
Getting your first tattoo might not always seem so straightforward, but by following our helpful guidelines, you’ll be able to confidently pick a tattoo studio that checks off all your boxes. If you need help with locating some of the best places to get a first tattoo, check out tattoo parlors in your local area on Booksy.
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