Q: What do I need to get a tattoo or piercing?

A: Legal adults need nothing more than a government issued ID. A parent or guardian must accompany anyone under the age of 18 to our shop and we will not perform service on anyone under the age of 16 (tattoo) or 14 (piercing). In addition, we will not perform any kind of genital piercings or tattoos on anyone under the age of 18. All adults must present us with a valid ID at the time of their appointment, regardless of their age. Adults accompanying minors must provide proof of guardianship. Minors must also have a form of government ID. A perfect scenario is a passport for each the adult and minor where last names match along with the minor’s birth certificate verifying the parent. Another acceptable combination is a school ID (with photo) and a birth certificate for the Minor along with any government ID for the adult. Adults must remain with the minors at all times.

Q: Do you perform touch ups, disguise tattoos and/or cover ups?

A: Yes, we have artists who specialize in them.

Q: Does getting tattooed or pierced hurt?

A: The short answer in most cases, yes. The truth is, the pain associated with tattoos and piercing varies person to person. While we work to make each of our customers comfortable throughout the process, the level of pain you experience will depend upon your personal pain threshold, the area of the body in question, whether you had a good meal before, if you had a good night rest, etc. The human body “rewards” you with endorphins to deal with pain. So typically the tattoo usually hurts only for the first 5-10 minutes and then you will either feel numb in that area or you may even feel very good all of a sudden.

Q: Do you take credit cards?

A: Yes but we do add a small percentage to the cost, because accepting Credit Cards costs us more. We accept Visa, Discover and Master Card.

Q: How do I take care of my tattoo or Piercing (after care, sun, water, etc. affect it)?

A: See after care instruction page.

Q: Is it true black ink will outlast color inks?

A: Black ink has a number of advantages. First of all it is the darkest color, and with today’s ink, the black is stronger than ever. Depending on what your artist uses for his/her black ink you can actually have two tattoos side by side where one will be much darker than the other. The fact remains that a lot of new tattoo artists can’t put color into the skin very well. It is literally much harder to do than black ink. Black ink is also going to have a much sharper contrast with anyone’s skin color, be it white, yellow or “black” skin. Most “black” skin is actually shade of brown so black ink will be darker.

Q: How do you sterilize your instruments?

A: We use what is now becoming the industry standard – the autoclave – Tubes, the part of the machine that acts as a pen handle or grip, are scrubbed free of loose ink, etc. then run through an ultrasonic and then autoclaved. You will find your dentist uses the same sterilization techniques. We always use new needle for EVERY person. We spore-test our autoclave monthly via ATS. We follow all local and state regulations. Actually, we exceed their requirements. The fact is that we are protecting you but we are also protecting ourselves.

Q: What part of the body hurts the least?

A: Behind the ear and upper arm. Really though I think people should get tattooed or pierced wherever they envision them looking good and want them regardless of the pain, because once it is over you live with it forever… which might be a really long time!

Q: What hurts the most?

A: In no particular order the top 3 typically are: ribs, neck and hands.

Q: So I can get high or drunk to deal with the pain?

A: Wow, what a bad mistake! That question always reminds me of people saying they drive better when they are drunk. Alcohol makes your surface blood vessels dilate, which means you will bleed more and that means it will be harder to have ink spread evenly in the skin. Bleeding more will also push some of the ink out. People who are drunk I find can never stay still while getting tattooed. This is incredibly annoying, trying to paint a straight line on a moving car for example, almost impossible. If you want even straight lines, you have to stay still. The main point however is that we want you to be 100% with us when you are getting tattooed or pierced so you are happy with all your decisions later. Besides, we WILL NOT tattoo or pierce anyone under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Q: How much does it cost to get a tattoo?

A: The shop minimum is $60. All of our artists can do custom work and charge a rate between $100-$150 an hour. We are defiantly not the most expensive shop but we are also not the cheapest. We charge a fair price. We don’t want to take advantage of our customers but we do need to be compensated for the job we do. Our work is guaranteed and your skin is our reputation.

Q: How should I choose a shop, tattoo artist or piercer?

A: 3 things I would base my decision on:

  • You have seen and like their work/portfolio.
  • You like the person doing the work. (You are going to be spending time with them, maybe hours. Make sure you are comfortable with them and can tolerate their personality.)
  • The shop is clean and professional!

Don’t confuse this with any regular day to day purchase like sneakers or potato chips. So do not choose your artist on price but rather on their work and reputation. Honestly what is an extra $20-$50 spread out over a lifetime? Pennies a day if that… compare saving that to looking at a bad tattoo on your body for the rest of your life.

Q: How do I become a tattoo artist or piercer?

A: You will have to come in for that answer. It is way too much to type.

Q: Do you tip a tattoo artist or piercer?

A: I am not saying you have to but… Yes. This is a service industry. As a tattoo artist or piercer we cater to your wants and needs. We (Expressive Ink) try to deliver the best possible tattoo and/or piercing to you. We try to make it as painless as possible and try to make the time go by for you (conversation, music, TV, etc.) If a tattoo artist or piercer has gone out of their way to make things good for you, or gave you and even more amazing tattoo than you anticipated, then by all means- tip a little more.

Q: What is a typical tip?

A: About 20% of the total cost (tattoo artists and piercers live off tips similar to that of a waiter and waitress.