Research like crazy
Now, is not the time to be looking for deals. Stalk feeds on Instagram to see whose style you like best. "I always tell people to check out the tagged pics you'll see how their work heals and how many clients are happy with their tats says Ghinko, a tattoo artist in New York City.

Make sure the studio is legit
You should be asked to sign a release form, the artists should have disposable gloves and single-use needles, and surfaces around the area where you're getting tattooed should be covered with plastic for sanitary purposes, says Joanna Roman, a tattoo artist in Toronto. If you don't see this stuff run.

Be obsessive about the design
If you're not totally into what the artist draws up, speak now or forever hold your peace, get ready to spend thousands of dollars on tattoo-removal treatments. Don't be nervous to say something artists are used to picky clientele because, you know, permanence.

See your dermatologist first
Allergic reactions to tattoos are actually pretty common. Before you book a session, make an appointment with your dermatologist to test whether you have an allergy to any type of ink.

Prep your skin
Exfoliate and moisturize regularly starting a month before your appointment. The ink will penetrate better, resulting in sharper, cleaner lines.


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