Essential Equipment for a New Tattoo Artist

Tattoos have long been an excellent method for self-expression—a method that would be impossible to enjoy without the help of talented tattoo artists. If you’re thinking about breaking into this fascinating field, there are a few pieces of essential equipment that new tattoo artists need. Read on to learn more!

Tattoo Machine

This is probably obvious, but we have to mention it: you can’t tattoo a thing without your trusty tattoo machine. You don’t need to understand the difference between every machine on the market—all you need to know is that quality machines produce quality results. Your main options are rotary machines and coil machines.

A rotary machine is easy to use for beginners and has a gentler touch for your customers, but it’s tougher to get good-looking shading. Coil machines give you better shading and smoother lines, but they require a skilled hand.


You might think that you can use any old chair for tattooing—this couldn’t be further from the truth. When you have a client sitting for several hours, you’d better make sure they’re comfortable! Otherwise, they probably won’t come back. In addition to keeping your patrons happy, a great chair will allow you to customize the setup to get the best angle no matter where your customer wants a tattoo.

Ink and Ink Storage

Finally, there’s no tattoo without ink. In truth, most “inks” are pigments in a carrier solution. The carrier’s job is to keep the pigment distributed evenly throughout the liquid so that there aren’t spots with more or less color saturation. Avoid cheap inks—some can contain harmful chemicals that can cause infections.

Where there are inks, there’s ink storage, and there are a few things to remember about ink storage. Aside from keeping your inks at room temperature, you must also store them in tight-closing containers to reduce the risk of spills and stains.

Now that you know the essential equipment for a new tattoo artist, invest in your shop and start to grow your business!

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