Best Spot to Get a First Tattoo

Best Spot to Get a First Tattoo

 Getting a tattoo for the first time is a big deal! When you finally pick out the perfect design, you’ll probably ask yourself, “Where should I get my first tattoo?” One of the most exciting things about getting a tattoo for the first time ever is the fact that the possibilities are endless. It’s open season on your skin and you can get your first tattoo anywhere your heart desires!

That being said, there are a few areas that are better to start with than others. There are a few factors at play here:

  • Size
  • Pain tolerance
  • Visibility


You’ll want to keep these three things in mind when considering the best place to get your first tattoo.


The Size of Your First Tattoo

Deciding where to get your first tattoo will have a lot to do with the design of it. Likewise, you will have to take your inexperience into consideration when coming up with the design for your first tattoo. Large tattoos are often expensive, they take a long time to apply, and you might have to return for a second or third session. The healing process for larger tattoos is typically more uncomfortable than that of smaller tattoos.


A great benefit of starting out with smaller tattoos is that they can be worked into larger designs later on when you’re ready. For example, if you dream of having an entire sleeve of tattoos one day, you can start out with a simple element on your shoulder and work your way down as you get more comfortable with the application and healing processes.


As a good rule of thumb, it’s always better to underestimate what you can handle rather than assuming you can take on a large piece and get worn out before the session is over.


Your Pain Tolerance

Some areas of the body are much more painful to get tattooed than others.


Sensitive areas to get tattooed include:

  • Knees
  • Elbows
  • Shins
  • Stomach/ribs
  • Chest
  • Neck
  • Lower buttocks
  • Back of the legs
  • Head
  • Spine


These are the areas that you’ll most likely want to stay away from when you’re getting your first tattoo. It’s best to ease into it and get tattooed in more sensitive areas when you’re more comfortable getting tattoos in general.


The best (least painful) areas for first tattoos include:

  • Top of the thighs
  • Lower arms
  • Back of upper arms
  • Back (excluding spinal area)
  • Sides of calves


Tattoo Visibility

Whether a tattoo can be seen or not is a huge factor for many people. There are certain professions that do not find visible tattoos acceptable, while some people would just prefer to not have their tattoos visible every day. If you’re going for an “invisible tattoo” look, you might want to stick to the upper thighs, upper arms, or back – any area that cannot be seen unless you are wearing shorts and a tank top.


That being said, you might be thinking the complete opposite. Perhaps there is an area of your body that you would like to draw attention to, a blemish that you’d like to replace with artwork, or maybe you just have a design that you really want to show off. In these cases, you can get your first tattoo wherever you want! Just make sure you keep in mind your pain tolerance and what kind of policy your job has on body modifications.


Still Unsure?

If you are set on getting a tattoo for the first time, but you’re really having trouble deciding where to get it, ask a professional! Find the artist that you want to apply your tattoo, tell them the design you have in mind, and ask for their advice. They’ve likely administered thousands of tattoos – many of which have been on first timers – and they can give you a well-informed opinion.


Tattoo artists will be able to tell you which area will likely hurt the least, if your design is realistic in certain areas over others, how to tweak your tattoo for optimal application, and more. It can be nerve wracking to ask a stranger for advice but just remember that this is your body and tattoos are permanent. Ask as many questions as you need to before you feel 100% comfortable getting your first tattoo.


Tips for Getting Your First Tattoo

Here are a few things that we wish people told us before we got our first tattoos!

  • Try to wear clothing that doesn’t cover the area you’re about to get tattooed. If that’s not possible, make sure you wear loose-fitting clothing. Not only will the tattooed area swell, but it will be much less painful when you have to get undressed to shower.
  • Make sure you eat a healthy meal that includes sugar (to keep your blood sugar at a healthy level) and drink plenty of water. You don’t want to faint during your first tattoo.
  • Bring a friend with you (if the shop allows it). A friend can help you feel more comfortable during the tattoo process and will be there for you in the event of an emergency.
  • Don’t be afraid to take breaks. You won’t be inconveniencing the artist! They want to complete your tattoo, but they also want you to be comfortable. Don’t feel like you have to push your limits if you feel like you’re going to break.


Final Thoughts

Getting your first tattoo is a big decision! Make sure you’ve thought long and hard about where you’re going to get your first tattoo and ask a few people who have been there, done that for their advice.


Check out our blog for regular updates on the tattoo industry and more great advice!

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