Expertise.com

2024

Last updated:

Best Tattoo Shops in Washington DC

Our Recommended Top 7

We did the research for you!

  • Licensing
  • User Reviews
  • Mystery Shopping Calls

Our goal is to connect people with the best local professionals. We scored Washington DC Tattoo Shops on more than 25 variables across five categories, and analyzed the results to give you a hand-picked list of the best.

128Reviewed

79Curated

7Top Picks

Learn about our selection process.

Providers

featured provider = Featured Provider

Website
1762 Columbia Road Northwest, Washington, DC 20009
  • Traditional Tattoos
  • Neotraditional Tattoos

Why choose this provider?

Embassy Tattoo is a tattoo shop servicing residents of Washington DC. It offers a wide range of tattoo styles, including script, color, realism, and black and white. The business also offers piercing, tattoo removal, and tattoo cover-ups. It is owned by Fernando Gonzalez, who has more than 15 years of tattoo experience. Embassy Tattoo's team of expert tattoo artists is committed to providing a clean and friendly environment to its clients.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.6
Yelp
4.5 / 5 (256)
Google
4.6 / 5 (211)
Facebook
5.0 / 5 (52)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Website
1333 Connecticut Avenue Northwest, Washington, DC 20036
  • Piercings
  • Traditional Tattoos

Why choose this provider?

Fatty’s Tattoos & Piercings has been offering body art services in Washington, DC since 1994. Working from three locations in DC and Maryland, the studio is home to professional mixed-media artists who specialize in custom tattoo designs in a wide range of styles. It also offers permanent makeup, cosmetic tattoo services, and high-quality body jewelry. The artists at Fatty’s Tattoos & Piercings have won awards in various tattoo conventions and festivals, including the Washington DC Tattoo Convention.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.1
Yelp
4.0 / 5 (250)
Facebook
4.7 / 5 (42)

Website
2444 18th Street Northwest, Washington, DC 20009
  • Traditional Tattoos

Why choose this provider?

Tattoo Paradise is a tattoo parlor that has been serving the greater Washington DC area since 2003. With locations in Washington, Wheaton, and Rockville, the parlor is staffed with renowned in-house artists and a rotating array of international and nationally acclaimed guest artists. The parlor also offers body piercings, microblading, and merchandise such as t-shirts, jackets, sweatshirts, hats, and gift certificates in addition to tattoos. Tattoo Paradise has been featured in local newspapers and in Tattoo Burst Magazine.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.2
Yelp
4.0 / 5 (296)
Facebook
4.7 / 5 (88)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Website
8696 Liberia Avenue, Manassas, VA 20110
  • Piercings
  • Traditional Tattoos

Why choose this provider?

Exposed Temptations Tattoo is a tattoo and piercing parlor serving clients in Washington, DC. Established in 1994, it specializes in realistic black and gray and custom color pieces. The firm is home to eight state-licensed artists and two piercing experts who conduct consultations with clients before their sessions. Exposed Temptations Tattoo values the health and safety of its customers, which is why the studio is equipped with UV HEPA filtration systems and private rooms. It is also available for walk-ins and appointments seven days a week.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.0
Yelp
4.0 / 5 (142)
Facebook
4.4 / 5 (7)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Website
7410 Coca Cola Drive, Hanover, MD 21076
  • Body Art

Why choose this provider?

Tattooed Heart Studios is a tattoo parlor, serving clients living in and around Washington DC. It was established in 2005 and caters to appointment-only customers. Its artists have over 30 years of collective body art experience, with some members being graduates of Fine Arts degrees. The company offers clients various kinds of tattoo styles and designs such as geometric shapes, ornamental images, floral designs, and animal-based portraits. It also educates clients on safety guidelines for each session and aftercare.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
5.0
Google
5.0 / 5 (214)
Yelp
5.0 / 5 (31)

Website
3821 14th Street Northwest, Washington, DC 20011
  • Traditional Tattoos
  • Body Art

Why choose this provider?

Established in 1993, Globe Electric is a tattoo parlor that operates from Washington, DC. It meets with first-time, second-time, and veteran clients to discuss traditional or customized tattoo options. Consultations include deciding the style of the tattoo, the number of colors needed, and the number of hours and sessions required. Globe Electric also provides tattoo touch-ups for old or improperly applied work. The parlor was founded by tattoo artist couple Eric and Susan Doyle, who have a portfolio of their previous work on Instagram.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.5
Yelp
4.5 / 5 (26)

Website
4818 Lee Highway, Arlington, VA 22207
  • Traditional Tattoos
  • Neotraditional Tattoos

Why choose this provider?

Rick's Tattoo Studio was the first licensed tattoo studio in Northern Virginia after opening its doors in 1980. Serving clients in Washington, DC, this shop houses eight seasoned tattoo artists who can work on various types of tattoos, including western/traditional and black and grey designs. It was founded by Rick Cherry, who started the business through his passion for producing custom tattoo machines. For more than 20 years, he has been manufacturing customized frames and hand-wrapped coils for other tattoo artists.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.5
Yelp
4.5 / 5 (213)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

FAQs

  • Introduction

    A tattoo is body art that leaves permanent designs or pictures on the skin. They're applied via needle by depositing ink onto the second layer of skin. While the first tattoos were applied manually with a single needle that was first saturated in ink, today's tattoos are done by a machine. These machines feature multiple needles that pierce the skin simultaneously, speeding up the process and creating tattoos that are more visually appealing.

    Tattoos are usually done in licensed tattoo shops. These shops adhere to health and cleaning standards and are typically regulated by state and municipal governments. While tattoos are generally safe, there are associated risks, including skin infections. Any person getting a tattoo is legally required to be at least 18 years of age. It's also inadvisable for anyone who isn't in good health to get a tattoo, as the body requires time and energy to heal and prevent infection.

  • What should you know before getting your first tattoo?

    Before getting tattooed, it's important to think about design and placement. A tattoo is a permanent fixture on the body, and it's important not to rush into things. You should also consider the artist's background and take time to look into their portfolio to ensure their style best suits the tattoo you want.

  • What are some examples of tattoo styles?

    There are many types of tattoo styles, and it's important for a person to familiarize themselves with them before they select a design. Styles include:

    • Americana: Bold lines, vivid colors
    • Japanese: Large images that cover the back, arms, and legs
    • Black and Grey: Colorless grayscale designs
    • Stick-n-Poke: Thick, bold, black lines and small designs
    • Blackwork: Bold black lines and larger geometric shapes

  • Is tipping expected & how much to tip on your tattoo?

    While most tattoo artists don't expect tips, it's often appreciated. If you're happy with the work your tattoo artist has done, consider tipping between 15% and 25%. If the tattoo requires multiple sessions, a flat amount per session is appropriate.

  • What are some basic tattoo aftercare tips?

    It's important to follow all aftercare directions provided by the tattoo artist. Usually, artists will advise clients to ensure that tattoos are kept clean and dry. After showering, the tattoo should be gently patted dry and treated with Vaseline or another tattoo aftercare product.

  • What are the best practices for healing a tattoo?

    After removing the dressing, it's important to keep the tattoo clean, dry, and uncovered. Applying Vaseline or another recommended ointment can help to speed up the healing process. As they heal, tattoos can sometimes itch, but it's vital that you don't scratch or pick at it.

  • What are the most and least painful places to get a tattoo?

    Parts of the body that have the most nerve endings are generally the most painful to have tattooed. That includes the head, ears, and face. Places that don't have a lot of fat, such as the fingers, shoulder blades, and feet, are typically more painful. The least painful parts of the body to get tattooed include the outer arm, buttocks, and thighs.