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What Is The Color Of Your Tattoo?

What Is The Color Of Your Tattoo?
21 Jul, 2022

What Is The Color Of Your Tattoo?

Tattoos can be black, white, colorful, or even glow in the dark. Generally, people prefer their tattoos to be black only. Today, colored tattoos are becoming more and more common. They are hands down, the most pretty and complex pieces of body art. They are permanent piece of art that often holds a meaning or acts as a form of self-expression for some people.

While light skin tones are considered the standard canvas for colored tattoos in the tattooing industry, all skin tones can take up colored ink even dark skin.

Choosing the right colors for your tattoo is highly critical and equally important because not every color would match your skin tone or complexion. As most tattoo artists would say, tattooing is just like painting with watercolors on an empty canvas. The ink is the paint and the skin is the canvas. If you have a basic understanding of art, you know that colors appear differently if the canvas was a bit lighter or darker. The same applies to tattoo ink. Different skin tones absorb colored ink very differently. You have to be wise and attentive while picking the right colors for your tattoo so that you get the perfect well-contrasted and well-defined tattoo.

Here is everything you need to know before getting a colored tattoo:


The melanin found in most organisms is responsible for the pigmentation of the skin. The more melanin your melanocytes produce the darker your skin gets. Normally exposure to the sun stimulates more melanin production. People with lighter skin tones have a little number of melanocytes, and thus produce a small amount of melanin when in contact with the sun. While those with darker skin tones have a greater concentration of melanin in their dermis and are able to produce more and more melanin under sunlight.

Melanin is formed in the dermis of the skin where the tattoo ink is usually deposited. The amount of melanin present in your dermis will determine whether you’re a good candidate for a colored tattoo or not.

For Lighter Skin Tones

The lighter your skin tone is the more options you have. If your skin is white or pale, get creative and crazy! Go for bright colors like red, orange, yellow, pink, green, purple, or blue. These bold colors will really compliment your light and radiant skin.

For Medium Skin Tones

For those who have a medium skin tone with a moderate amount of melanin, you should opt for darker shades or colors like blue, green, black, red, or purple. Any light color would be hard to visualize with your skin complexion.  Darker colors are usually the best match for your brown skin.

For Dark Skin Tones

Dark skin tones would dilute the colors of the ink. If you inject light colors into your dermis they are most likely to fade away, appear darker, or even end up muted.  However, this doesn’t mean that dark skin can’t show any colors, it just means that bright colors are not likely to show up as expected. The best suitable colors for dark skin are red, blue, and green. If you have a very dark skin, avoid getting a white tattoo or white outlines as they are more likely to fade away after the tattoo has healed.

Pick The Color Style You Like The Most

Regardless of what colors would go best with your skin tone, it’s chiefly important that you pick a color style you like. Tattoos are permanent and are supposed to stay on your body for a long time.

So, it is essential that you choose the colors you like or prefer.

Consult With Your Artist

Yes, research is important but if you’re still not sure about which colors to pick for your tattoo, a professional artist is more than able to guide you and help you pick the more adequate colors that match your skin tone and tattoo design. A skilled artist that has tattooed different skin tones can better determine what colors would look best on your skin no matter how light or dark it is.

Size, Style and Body Placement

Keep in mind that the size, style, and placement of the tattoo can also affect your choice of colors. Each style has its own color palette. To learn more about tattoo styles, read

Size is another factor that can influence the choice of color. For instance, tiny or detailed designs with fine lines are less likely to show clearly on darker skin tones. However big tattoos with more negative space (empty areas with no ink) will help be more in contrast and pop out more on a person’s skin.

Now for a tattoo on an area that sees more light, it’s better to avoid bright colors as the sun will make the colors fade away.  Tattoos that are covered most of the time, like thigh or back tattoos, are less likely to fade so you might want to pick lighter shades for such tattoos.


Final Words

Colored tattoos are feasible on any skin tone may it be light or dark. Saying that dark skin tones are hard to tattoo is completely false and unfounded. The trick is that you have to pick the right combination that will go best with your complexion. If you have a darker skin tone you should consult a well-skilled artist that has experience in tattooing and working with different skin tones. Go for darker shades, in fact, the best choice of color for a tattoo on dark skin is the counterintuitive one.

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