5 Things to Look For In Choosing Tattoo Shops in St. Louis

Tattoo Sketch

Renz’s Sketch of a woman.

There is no doubt that getting tattooed is one of the most exciting changes that can be made to your physical appearance. Getting your first tattoo is one of the most powerful things that you can experience in your life. Whether you want to tell a story through your tattoo, dedicate it to a loved one that has passed on, or even commemorate a life event, having permanent art through a tattoo will give you that opportunity.

We want your tattoo experience to be life-changing. For this reason, we put together this helpful article of 5 things to look for in the perfect tattoo shops in St. Louis.

  • Be Sure to Research
  • Ask Your Artist About His/Her Set Up
  • Visit The Tattoo Shop
  • Make Two Appointments
  • Select a Tattoo Shop In St. Louis That Treats You Right
  • Check Out Steel and Ink Tattoo Studio

Be Sure to Research

Research like this is fun – don’t let it stress you out. If you have friends who have experienced successful and positive tattoos, ask them if they have any recommendations.

Questions you could ask them are:

● Where did they go?

● Who was the artist that they saw?

● What style of tattoo did they get?

The last question is very important. For example, if you want to get an American Traditional piece, consult friends who have American Traditional work, rather than hyperrealism, for example. Consider consulting a friend who has multiple tattoos in styles you like. They’re essentially walking, talking advertisements for tattoo shops – friends with tattoos can introduce you to new art, new people, and new experiences.

As has been the case for years, the internet is your friend. Search Google for local tattoo shops in St. Louis. Find out what other people are saying about those shops on Yelp and Facebook. Tattoo shops in St. Louis are often rated and recommended by former clients. It is important to not that Instagram has become one of the most extended and vibrant portfolios for tattoo artists. Visit a tattoo studio’s website, find an artists handle, and check out their Instagram page! We also recommend that you check out our awesome professionals at Steel & Ink.

Ask Your Artist About His/Her Set-Up To

Bear Tattoo

Shaun filling in a bear tattoo.

To ensure sanitary, legal, and hygienic standards, tattoo artists undergo extensive training. Not only does this improve their work, but also ensures they meet sanitary, legal, and hygienic standards. It is imperative that these standards are met in order to have a positive tattoo experience.

When getting a tattoo, don’t be afraid to ask your artist about their setup procedures and what to expect. Tattoo shops in St. Louis should include the following critical steps:

  • Keeping their hands clean
  • Cleaning and sterilizing furniture and counters
  • Seating that is padded and comfortable
  • The clip cords of their machines should be bagged and covered
  • Using latex or nitrile gloves and removing them when touching anything other than the equipment or you
  • Use a disposable razor to shave your body hair, if necessary
  • Preparing the skin with an antibacterial soap
  • A lubricant or ointment should be applied throughout the tattooing process, such as INK-EEZE Glide (Link This)
  • Making sure you are comfortable and asking how you are doing throughout the procedure
  • Applying bandages to your tattoo
  • Using biohazard bags and sharps containers (Link) to dispose of needles (Link) and infectious waste
  • Instructions for aftercare should be provided in detail

Ask your tattoo artist to show you how their station is set up for a procedure. Ensure that all tattoo needles and cartridges are unused. Sterilized and not expired medications should come in individual, unopened packaging. Inks for tattoos should be non-toxic, pre-dispersed, and free of dangerous carcinogens and chemicals.

Visit The Tattoo Shop

It is always encouraged that you visit the shop or studio before your appointment. A shop can only be inspected if it looks safe and sanitary. There is only so much a photo can show, and at times can be manipulated to show only what the photographer wants. Your body should not be permanently marked by a studio you do not trust. It’s fairly simple: look around the store while you’re there. Ask yourself these questions.

  • Are the floors clean?
  • Are there any professional tattoo beds or chairs in the shop?
  • Is the studio equipment organized and the countertops clean?
  • Does the shop have shelves stocked with antiseptics and gloves made of latex or nitrile?

To all of the above, the answer should be yes. The tattoo studio should be free of clutter, dirty floors, and dirty counters. You should keep in mind that tattooing is an invasive procedure. In some ways, entering a tattoo shop should be like entering a doctor’s examination room.

Having said that, this should also be a fun experience. Keeping the environment clean is a top priority, but cleanliness is not the only factor that counts. There are other factors to consider.

  • Are you attracted to the wall art?
  • Do you find the merch appealing?

Your tattooing experience can be enhanced by a fun and positive environment based on your interests!

It may be necessary for you to schedule an appointment with some studios before you visit. Appointments-only shops often show that they want all their work to be carefully planned, executed, and executed beautifully for each client.



Brandie Medina Tattooing someone’s arm.

Occasionally, people walk into their favorite tattoo shop or studio, choose a flash design, and have it tattooed that day. When it comes to impulsive flash tattoos, we certainly don’t discourage them, so as long as you trust the tattoo shop or studio in St. Louis, you’ll be fine.

If you are hesitant about your first tattoo, we recommend scheduling two sessions. Once you’ve selected your studio and artist, you can schedule an appointment for (1) a consultation and (2) a tattoo. During the consultation, you’ll have a chance to go over your custom piece in depth with your artist. Thanks to scheduling a consultation, you will know exactly what to expect the day of your tattoo, which prevents any misconceptions, uncertainty, or misinterpretations.

It is important to note that artists will make recommendations based on your best interests. They only want to ensure you get the tattoo you want, whether they suggest increasing the tattoo size, relocate the placement, remove a detail, or recommend another artist. Look for an artist that shows professionalism and friendliness during the consultation. This can give you confidence in their expert opinion and allow you to have more of an open mind during the consultation.

Select A Tattoo Shop In St. Louis That Treats You Right

This coincides with your pre-appointment visit. When you are close to deciding which tattoo shop in St.Louis to go with, think about the following. Is the front desk staff friendly and willing to answer all of your questions? How communicative, open-minded, and happy was your artist during the consultation? Each job focuses on maintaining relationships with clients, whether it is being a tattoo artist, a shop manager, or a receptionist. In the past few decades, tattooing has evolved from being a fringe culture and an underground practice.

Since tattooing has become a more common trade in general, professional standards have taken precedence as with any other profession. Think about it, you would not want to work with a rude, temperamental, impatient car salesman when picking out a new vehicle to purchase. The same is true when it comes to finding a tattoo artist to work with. Depending on the tattoo, you may be spending a long time sitting in the chair being tattooed. You do not want to spend that time with an unpleasant person.

Check out Steel and Ink Tattoo Studio

Are you thinking about getting a tattoo? We encourage you to bring your ideas with you to Steel and Ink Tattoo Studio! We are a tattoo shop in St. Louis with a reputation of creating breathtaking art since 2009.

Our services include custom tattoos in various tattooing styles by experienced, licensed tattoo artists. We are also a full-service body piercing studio with professionally trained and licensed piercers.

Contact us today to get started. We want to be your preferred tattoo shop in St. Louis and would be honored to serve you. The tattoo of your dreams is just a step away. We look forward to hearing from you.