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Updated: Dec 11, 2021

If you have chosen a professional tattoo studio and proper sterilization and infection control standards are practiced than tattooing is safe. This means anything that comes in contact with blood or other body fluids is medically disposed of (i.e. single use needles) or is sterilized using an autoclave.

An autoclave is a device that sterilizes equipment using heat, steam, and pressure. An autoclave maintains a temperature of 250 degrees Fahrenheit under 10 pounds of pressure for 30 minutes or 270 degrees Fahrenheit under 15 pounds of pressure for 15 minutes. This is the only accepted method of sterilization to kill every living microorganism.

Photo of a tattoo artist tattooing a client with the text FAQs, Is tattooing safe?

Single needle use means one customer, one needle. The needles that are used on you are brand new, have been individually packaged, sealed, and autoclaved. After these needles are opened and used, they are disposed of in a safe medically appropriate manner.

All pigments, ink cups, ointments, gloves, razors, paper towels (used and unused), surface coverings, and any other materials used during your tattoo process is disposed of immediately. Nothing is reused. Upon the disposal of these items all work surfaces are disinfected with an EPA approved veridical that kills any surface bacteria or viruses. All of this eliminates the possibility of contamination of materials.

A professional tattoo studio must be licensed which includes health department inspections. In addition, all professional tattoo artists must be licensed which includes passing a bloodborne pathogens exam. The studio and artists’ licenses should be visible. If you don’t see them, ask for them. Professionals take pride in their skills and work environment.

Visit our FAQ page for the answers to your most frequently asked questions.


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