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How Much Does a Tattoo Cost?

Updated on January 28, 2016
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Whitney is an expert on piercings and tattoos with experience in the body modification world.

Thinking About Getting a Tattoo

One of the more common tattoo questions I hear—besides "Is it going to hurt?" and "What should I get?"—is, "How much is it going to cost?" The short answer is: It depends!

The price of a tattoo depends on a number of elements, so it's impossible to just throw out a dollar amount.

Just remember that the cost will vary depending on your tattoo and where you're getting it done. It is best to ask your tattoo artist for a proper estimate, but here you can check out the different factors that will play a part in the cost of the tattoo.

Factors That Determine the Price

The following factors will determine how much your tattoo will cost.

  • Placement: Where you decide to place the tattoo on your body.
  • Design: The more elaborate the design, the more it will cost you.
  • Colors: The more colors the design entails, the more the tattoo will cost.
  • Size: Bigger tattoos are more expensive.
  • Flash or original: If you choose a tattoo right off of the flash, the artist just needs to copy and tweak, rather than come up with an original design. Some artists factor in the time spent drawing the tattoo into the final cost.
  • Time: Some tattoo shops charge an hourly fee, so depending on how long it takes, the final price may increase.
  • Location: The price will vary by your location and the individual shop and artist.

More expensive tattoo, because of its size, color, and detail.
More expensive tattoo, because of its size, color, and detail.
Less expensive tattoo, due to being a smaller design in black ink.
Less expensive tattoo, due to being a smaller design in black ink.

Ask Around

Tattoo shops commonly charge by the hour, with quality artists generally charging between $150 and $250 per hour. Most have a minimum charge of around $100, meaning a simple tattoo that takes less than an hour will cost that much.

If this is your first tattoo, you will want to make sure to find a good artist, not just the cheapest guy who will do the job.

  • Ask friends and family for personal experience.
  • Go to tattoo shops and ask to see portfolios of their more recent work.

You want to make sure that you get your money's worth because tattoos are permanent, unless you spend the extra money to get it removed. Make sure that you're happy and comfortable with the artist before making your final decision.

Because the price will vary between artists, seeing one's portfolio and style of work may help you decide.

Consider:

  • Guy A charges $100 for poor quality.
  • Guy B charges $200 for average quality.
  • Guy C charges $150 for decent (better than average) quality.
  • Guy D charges $250 for great quality.

The final decision about what price you're willing to pay for a certain level of quality is up to you.

Choosing a Tattoo, Aftercare, and Removal

Three stages to the average tattoo include:

Make the right decisions when choosing and caring for your tattoo. Cheaper isn't always better, but neither is the most expensive.

Comments

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    • profile image

      Courtney 2 weeks ago

      i want a small 3 bird tatt on my wrist, i don't know how much it will cost.

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      Kimberly 4 weeks ago

      I live in hammond la how much names on arm

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      shannon whitehead 3 months ago

      This is my first tattoo and want a name tattoo on the back of my neck How much? how long would it take? the name is 5 letters long

    • profile image

      Brittney 4 months ago

      how much would a tattoo saying Live in Braille on my wrist cost

    • Slytherin Designs profile image

      Slytherin Designs 9 months ago

      I want a 1x1 Deathly Hallows symbol on my chest, and a 2x4 "Always." -S.S. on my butt. How much would that cost?

    • profile image

      Sarah 11 months ago

      I want my sons name on my back Kayden-Riley does anyone know how much it will cost

    • profile image

      Michelle D 2 years ago

      How much will it cost me to have a rose tatoo on ma leg?

    • profile image

      Zach 2 years ago

      I hand drew a Sleeve that will be in all black and a back tattoo that only has three colors over the design and will be about 2 feet across my back or at least 1'6". What's your best estimate on something like that? Just the worst case scenario.

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      it don't matter 3 years ago

      haha im 14 just got a tattoo. what great parents i have

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      Tenaro 3 years ago

      You will get nowhere closer than a wide estimate asking for pricing online.

      The only way to know is together your ass into a tattoo shop with a picture of oft he exact tattoo you want and ask the artist how much it will cost.

      Also, makayla...OMG where did you learn your grammar??

    • profile image

      Alex Lungleng 3 years ago

      Any Tatoo you like,the cost of its per square inch Rs,500 if you're interested I'm a good well trained artist and I've got a good customers.

    • profile image

      Srushti Bhujbal 3 years ago

      i wan get tattoo on my wrist with 3 words and small colourful butterfly,how much this cost

    • profile image

      selvan 4 years ago

      i wantto get tattoo on my chest of plain name only what is cost inch please send me reply r call 9769480724 number thank u

    • Whitney05 profile image
      Author

      Whitney 4 years ago from Georgia

      It shouldn't cause any issues. I have never heard of issues with tattoo ink displacement due to hair growth

    • profile image

      Jakamar 4 years ago

      Well, I figured I would or they would do the deforestation. The issues is when it grows back. Does this create any issues other than it may appear a bit blurred. ;-)

    • Whitney05 profile image
      Author

      Whitney 4 years ago from Georgia

      they will shave the area before tattooing.

    • profile image

      Jakamar 4 years ago

      All the examples I've seen, the areas are virtually hair free. I'm now hirsute, but have a light covering on the back of my calf. Is this going to be an issue?

    • profile image

      Stupid 4 years ago

      How much does a tattoo cost?

      Just kidding!!

    • profile image

      spelbee 4 years ago

      i'd like to have my kids names down my thighs - would this cost more in italian ?

    • profile image

      Paige 5 years ago

      How much would a medium cross with wording going around the top and sides on my left shoulder cost???

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      5 years ago

      for everyone on here asking how much... we are not tattoo artist so we can not tell you. But a bit of advice, go to a tatto shop, tell them what you're thinking about getting and ask them what there hourly rate is... not how much is it gonna cost. any artist who just gives you a price or tries to give you a " special deal", will not give you the high quality tattoo you want. let them draw up a rough sketch and let them get a rough idea on the hours needed. an average better than decent shop will charge about $100 dollars an hour. might seem high, but you get what you pay for, if you dont have enough money just wait and save up, it'll be worth it in the end.

    • profile image

      Nancy 5 years ago

      I love how everyone is asking how much their tattoos are going to cost, when the article says basically that it depends.

      My advice? Go talk to a tattoo artist, or ten of them... No one else is really going to be able to answer these questions for you with any accuracy.

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      Eric 5 years ago

      How much dose a 7 word tattoo cost ?

    • profile image

      bigb 5 years ago

      i want a rose going up my side onto my back with a lot of colors

      price?

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      NewInk740 5 years ago

      I just got a cross that reaches in length of the middle from elbow to wrist and width, arms reach from mid top arm to mid bottom arm. The cross has roses growing up it and a quote i favor from the Bible. Its all black ink with shading. Tons of detail but i go mine from a xtra hygenic in home shop. I don not advise anyone to go to an in home shop due to hygein reasons but luckily for my, I have knon my artist for nearly 15 years and she clean, professional and an amazing artist. I paid 175 for mine but in a shop it wouldve costed me roughly 250 buks. The more detail, the higher the price.

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      bob 5 years ago

      It will cost between $50 and $1,000,000.

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      afb.smurf 5 years ago

      where is the best spot to have a tat?

      I want one on each forearm...

      Im thinking about japenese symbol for love, in black bout maybe 2in big...

      cost???

    • profile image

      Ashlie A D 5 years ago

      I have two tattoos and they didn't turn out the greatest. for my third I want to go to LA ink and get a drawing of mine. it has a lot of detail and it's kind of big, and I want it on my ankle. anyone have a guess at how much it would cost?

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      Murrsive 5 years ago

      If you cant come up with your own design that is very cheezy I say, even if you come up with the idea and have someone draw it is much better than getting something that's already out there

    • profile image

      Danna 5 years ago

      I want "Jeremiah 29:11" behind my ear and maybe in cursive. Hoe much would that be?

    • profile image

      desmond 5 years ago

      Hi how much does italina cross

    • profile image

      90123 5 years ago

      I want about a 6 word tattoo with a fairly big kinda small design on my upper right back. how much do you think it might cost?

    • profile image

      neha 5 years ago

      i want 12 letter tatto on my back how much does it cost?????????

    • profile image

      shvia raj 5 years ago

      i want 5 letter tatto on my hand, how much it cost

    • profile image

      .... 5 years ago

      I want to get 10 stars on my back big and small how much roughly do you think it would cost

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      Payasa 5 years ago

      I wana get my mans name on my lower bak in cursive an 5 inches long.. Wats the averge cost?????

    • profile image

      rachael 5 years ago

      if oi was to get a tattoo that says "no regrets" how much do you think that would cost?

    • profile image

      brahndon 5 years ago

      i want to get a 20 word tattoo.

      how much would it cost

    • profile image

      Abraham Navarro 5 years ago

      How much is the price for 2 tatoos with my first and last name on both of my arms

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      heather 5 years ago

      i want a tiny (not that small but proubly about 5 inch) pentagram tattoo on my lower back and posibly some wording ("hail satan) im very poor and my mom would proubly pay. soooo i hope its cheap?

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      Kati 5 years ago

      How much would it cost to get a Browning logo, and country girl tattooed on your foot?

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      Tamara 5 years ago

      I'm thinking of getting a tribal phoenix tattooed on the small of my back. I'm gonna be a court reporter, so I want to be able to hide it while working. How much could you estimate something like that costing?

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      Jermaiyne 5 years ago

      How much for some pubic hair tattooed on Ma ballz? I have none due to medical condition..

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      Dorian Hoppie 5 years ago

      I've been working on a design themed around a Trilobite. I'm an entomologist, so I want to have it on the back of my neck, maybe 3" by 2". Really simple at first, pretty much just an outline, black. Later on down the road, I might consider surrounding it with Ginkgo leaves. I want a biology theme in there somewhere, lost and found species. Something like that.

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      Erina 5 years ago

      I'd like to get a 1 inch Deathly Hallows symbol behind my ear, and a 2 inch YACHT Anchor on either my forearm or hip, and a .5 inch treble clef on my hand, between my thumb and index finger bones. Not all at once, but eventually.

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      amy 5 years ago

      how much will it cost to get MICHAEL in cursive on my collar bone. not small like 2in in height and 6inches in width [approximately] ??? i live in ariozna

    • profile image

      hinata8982 5 years ago

      i want to get is Russian symbols,Wife of Jeffrey Pittman, on my left wrist and on my right ankle the Japanese character for ninja

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      RANDOM 5 years ago

      @Blup: You really want a tatoo just to show your grandma? I'm sure there's other things you can do to impress her, right? That's a waste of money for something that you may end up regret getting when you're looking to get married and have proper kids. It is permanent, you know?

    • profile image

      BLUP 5 years ago

      I want IT the clown on my right cheek with a sun shining on my forehead and the rays going down around my eyes and up into my nostril. how much do you think it would cost because I really want to get one to show my grandma

    • profile image

      Kay 5 years ago

      I wanna get a tattoo for my birthday coming up. I want crossed arrows behind my ear. It's not too big. How much would something like that cost?

      Thanks.

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