what tattoo ink colors are best on dark skin

Have you been thinking of getting a tattoo? Whether out of whim or from influence by design and artistic research, you’ll need first to determine the type and color of tattoo you want. In most cases, you’ll need to research to know the best tattoo that can match your personality as well as your skin tone.

Regardless of the intensity of your research, you’ll find most people who have been tattooed have a light skin tone. Hence if you have a dark skin tone, it’ll be tough for you to get the point of reference to know the best ink color and get a tattoo that will work. This article will discuss the difference between tattooing a dark skin tone compared to a lighter tone, what to look for in a tattoo artist, the best ink colors for dark skin tone, and much more. Keep reading!

Is there a difference in tattooing a dark skin tone compared to a lighter one?

There are many myths surrounding tattooing of a dark skin tone and most of them aren’t objective and are based on people’s opinions. Generally, in both the dark and light skin’s epidermis, pigmented cells are referred to as melanocytes. Both dark-skinned and light-skinned people have an equal number of melanocyte cells swimming in their bodies.

Melanocytes produce melanosomes which determine the skin color. When more melanosomes are produced, they give the skin a darker shade.

The myth stating that dark skin is tougher is stereotypical and untrue. The only difference in tattooing these two skin tones is the level of experience, skills, and knowledge.

The science behind tattooing a dark skin

People with dark skin have more melanin, which controls the skin color and acts as a filter. For this reason, some pale or light tattoo colors may not be seen on dark skin.

What are tattoo ink colors best on dark skin?

Based on the science behind tattooing dark skin above, dark colors are the best for dark skin and especially black. Black will be visible in a dark color and the same case applies to deep colors.

White is also a good option, but it has to be done by a skilled artist. It can also be creatively incorporated into a tattoo. On dark skin, it becomes a dull brown shade.

If you love a colored tattoo, you can choose red or green or any other deep color. The shade of the color chosen should be darker than your skin color during summer when the melanin levels are at their highest.

Always Test Tattoo Ink for Darker skin.

Tattooing darker skin is always a challenge due to the effect of melanin absorbing color. Ensure the artist runs a patch test on your skin before getting tattooed first to see how the color will appear on your skin.

Basic tattoo power supply

The voltage needed for tattooing varies depending on several variables, but it should range between 4-12 volts. When working on a line, the artist should run the tattoo machine at 7.5-8.5 volts and when shading, it should run at 8-10 volts.

What to look for in a tattoo artist?

The tattoo artist greatly determines the quality of your tattoo and its healing duration. You’ve to do due diligence by researching online and a personal reference from friends who have been tattooed. Consider the following when settling for a tattoo artist:

• Evaluate their portfolio or website

Check on their portfolio or website for pictures of their work, especially on dark-skinned people. You can also get more pictures from their business social media accounts such as Instagram. Look for the following qualities from dark skin tone tattooed healed pictures:

• Whether there’re solid lines that are smooth as though they have been made using a single stroke.

• Look for color and shading-it should be well blended. If the artist doesn’t produce well-blended smooth and consistent colors, they’re inexperienced and you should avoid them.

• Look for reviews from the previous customers to determine the percentage of customer satisfaction and hence determine if you’re willing to get inked by them.

• Hygiene


Tattooing involves using a needle and hence hygiene should be among your top consideration when looking for a tattoo artist. It’s not worth compromising your health by getting tattooed in places that have a low level of hygiene. Poor hygiene can lead to infections and blood poisoning.

-The artist should always wear gloves when handling customers

-The studio should be clean and tables and chairs wiped frequently

-The artist’s bench should be clean and well organized with new ink pots, ink and paper towels

-A new needle should be used for every client and removed from sealed and sterile packages.


• Awards

Awards are given from time to time to the best and most voted tattoo artists. Look for an artist with several awards, as this will guarantee they’ll deliver a high-quality tattoo while maintaining a high level of hygiene.

• Location

You need to settle for a studio that’s easily accessible to you. Select one near to where you stay, especially if you want a bigger tattoo that may require several sessions.

How to care for your tattoo

Dress the tattoo after the procedure is over if you’re planning to spend the rest of your day out and about.

Wash your hands before touching the tattoo since it’s an open wound and dirt and bacteria may slow the healing process.

Clean the tattoo with the artist’s recommended cleanser and avoid any alcohol or scented cleanser as it may irritate.

Dry the cleaned area by patting and avoid rubbing as it may cause the ink to come out.

In case you experience irritation or itching, apply your artist’s recommended ointment.

Always follow the aftercare instructions given by your artist to ensure that the tattoo heals.

You should not get alarmed if the tattoo starts peeling out as this normal when it’s healing, especially during the first week.

Wrapping Up

From the above discussion, we can say that tattooing a dark skin tone narrows down to the artist’s experience and skills. Getting a tattoo is very exciting, but you shouldn’t rush and end up getting disappointed. After all, you’ll be having it for quite a long time unless you decide to remove it.

You should visit several studios to see how they do it and the skills they portray since it’s easy to be swayed by pretty pictures. Ask all questions you have concerning the procedure and when satisfied, then settle for that specific artist.





Leave a Comment