How to Decide Tattoo Placement

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Whether you're deciding on your first or your fifth tattoo you may still be pondering its placement. There are many things to consider before getting a tattoo, and understanding where your design will look best will make that decision all the easier. Certain places on the body are also more painful to tattoo, which may be a consideration for you. Take a look at the following suggestions and you'll be certain to make a positive permanent mark.

Why Placement Matters

Tattoo placement is important because the right spot will make your tattoo look its absolute best while also enhancing your physique in the most attractive way. For example, a tattoo with curvature and movement such as a large Koi fish might look most suitable on a large prominent area of your body such as the legs, arm, or side of the thighs, whereas a smaller tattoo will be lost on such a vast space. The scale of your design should be the first consideration when placing your tattoo.


Next, consider the visibility of your tattoo. Since it's permanent you really need to place thought into this aspect. If you want a design that can be hidden, perhaps the back of the neck (if you have longer hair) the hips, lower back, or upper thighs would be a good option? If visibility is of no concern and you really want to show your body art off, you can choose the arms, wrists, upper chest and even your hands or face.

Although bear in mind with these areas you'll need to be mindful of employment as visible tattoos in the workplace can still be frowned upon. Next, you'll want to consider how visible you want your tattoo to be to yourself. A beautiful design placed on your back will not be appreciated and rarely seen unless you turn around and glance in the mirror.

If you want to see your tattoo and enjoy it daily, place it where you can do just that.

Upside Down?

Upside down or right side up? Many tattooists strongly believe a tattoo should be facing for the world to see rather than the wearer. If you want to place a design so that you can see it, you may find yourself in a heated debate with your artist who may stand firm on what they consider correct tattoo placement. Do you take their advice and consider how an upside-down tattoo is represented to the world, or do you do what's best for you on your own body? The decision is yours alone. If you are certain you want the tattoo placed visibly in your favor, you may need to find a tattoo artist who respects your request regardless of the societal norm. You'll also have to deal with people turning their heads sideways whenever they want to catch a glimpse of your design. Nonetheless, it's your body. Remember that.


Does size really matter? When it comes to the fine details, yes it does. If you are opting for an elaborate piece your tattoo will need to be large enough to accommodate the fine lines and details that it calls for. Lettering tattoos are a good example of where size comes into play.

A script or verse tattoo, however small in idea, will need to be adjusted so that it is legible once it is tattooed. The fewer details the better for a small design. Your artist will help you determine the best size of your tattoo without sacrificing your overall vision for the piece.

Part of the fun in getting tattoos is the process of selecting a tattoo and determining all other aspects of your piece. Work with your artist from start to finish and not only will you ensure you are happy, you'll have a well-thought-out tattoo that you can be wear with pride, which is much, much better than living with any regrets.