Tattoo Pain Scale

tattoo pain chart

Tattoo Pain Scale

(Yellow would be a rating of 1 on the tattoo pain scale.)   These include the upper arm, forearm, calf, Bum, and Thigh. For a 1st tattoo these are great points to begin your inked journey.

(Orange would be a rating on the tattoo pain chart of 2.) These include the centre back, front / side of thighs and shoulders. This is also not too bad a start for your first tattoo. The shoulders and central back region can be area that require quite a lot of movement. The skin on these areas is much looser meaning it takes longer to tattoo and also longer to heal. On areas that have lots of movement such as these, require more care once a tattoo is completed. Due to the thigh area being quite a dense muscle mass and also quite tight skin, it may tend to bruise the day after.

(Red has a rating of 3 on the tattoo pain scale.) These include the knees, elbows, hands, head, neck, feet, chest and back of thighs. Beginners beware of starting at these areas. You would need to be determined to have tattoos here as the high sensitivity would require a lot of mental focus to get you through. The poor quality of skin on both the knees and elbows will result in a very slow tattoo process and nerves are very close to the surface in these areas. This could result in the tattooing being unbearable for any length of time for some people. As with the orange areas these tend to be high movement areas and will require a longer healing timescale.  You may find that to achieve a good solid colour, you may have to repeat the tattoo process on these areas. As a side note the chest area on men can be much more sensitive to pain than a woman, yet due to the tighter skin on a male, the tattoo can be completed quicker.

(Purple has the highest rating of 4 on the tattoo pain chart.) Areas include hips, ribcage, stomach, back of knees, armpit, inside of elbow, nipples, lips, inside of thighs and genitals. Are you really sure you want to get that tattoo? As these areas can elicit crying, half finished tattoos or even the customer passing out. This could just be more than you may be able to handle. All of these purple areas are considered by most to be the most painful areas to be tattooed. The stretchy or thin skin over bone are slow to tattoo, some of these may require multiple sessions to achieve solid colour and smooth shading. Healing can be just as painful as receiving the tattoo and may require a few days off from your regular activities.

tattoo pain chart

Tattoo Pain Chart

SOME USEFUL TIPS WHEN GETTING A TATTOO:

  • Women are your more sensitive the week prior to and during your cycle. Plan around those dates to have the best experience possible when getting your tattoo.
  • Use lotion everyday on the area to be tattooed at least 1 week prior for healthier skin and better results.
  • Do not go out in the sun at least one week prior to being tattooed (including tanning beds) This drys the skin and if peeling occurs could damage the tattoo.
  • Consider what you will wear for 2 weeks while healing if your tattoo is in an area like the foot, waist, shoulders or chest. Shoes, waistbands, belts, underwear, and bras can all damage tattoos if you do not plan ahead. Find comfortable clothing that will not touch or rub during this time.
  • Always eat a good meal before being tattooed and drink plenty of fluids.
  • Be sure to get a good nights rest before your appointment.
  • Ask what kind of aftercare products you will need when you set up to get your tattoo.
  • Mention any allergies you may have, pigments, dyes, perfumes.
  • Some medication may thin your blood, check with your doctor before being tattooed.
  • Anyone with an autoimmune disorder needs to check with their doctor and should bring a note to be tattooed.

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