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The art of a tattooing is an ancient practice that dates back as far as 3370 BC. Today, tattoos are still seen and created all across the globe, transcending different cultures and traditions. At a glance, a beautiful tattoo might look effortless, but any artist knows that it takes more than the skilled use of hands to achieve a good looking piece of art.
The quality of the tattoo ultimately depends on the quality of the ink used to create it. Poorly chosen tattoo ink is likely to result in equally poor outcomes. So if you’re a tattoo artist hoping to satisfy each and every customer that walks into your store, be sure to purchase only the best tattoo ink for your pieces.
Not quite sure which ones are really worth the money? These top picks should help you make a decision.
Top 10 Tattoo Inks Table
What to Consider When Buying Tattoo Ink
The reason why different tattoo styles have emerged throughout the years isn’t only because each tattoo artist has his own aesthetic, but because every tattoo ink brings something unique to the table.
Finding the best tattoo ink for your needs and preferences ultimately depends on what you think might suit you best based on these factors and considerations.
- Pre-Dispersed vs. Stable Ink. Pre-dispersed inks are those that are what artists like to call “shake-and-use,” which means what it says. These inks can be used straight from the bottle without any need for mixing or preparation.
Stable inks are those that first need to be mixed and thinned before they can be used. While the process is relatively more tedious compared to pre-dispersed, there are lots of artists who patronize this type of ink.
The main difference lies in the way the inks appear once settled and healed into the skin. Pre-dispersed inks tend to have a deeper, richer pigment compared to stable inks. However, the stable variant also has a very pleasing light fade that works to the advantage of certain tattoo styles, especially portraits.
Choosing between these two types ultimately depends on what style of tattoo art you prefer and what aesthetic you want to achieve. A secondary consideration would be your own convenience. If you don’t want to have to prepare anything, a pre-dispersed option is best suited for you.
- Colors. Tattoo inks come in a variety of colors, and these all help artists create unique, realistic pieces of art that can accurately capture their client’s preference.
Despite the wide selection, however, there are lots of artists that stick to black and gray pieces, refusing to dabble in other colors of ink; this is mostly because black and white tattoo inks are much deeper pigmented than others.
Plus, working with colors can be confusing, especially when you don’t have a particular eye for color coordinations. Consider what type of color scheme you want to practice before splurging on a color set, so you’re sure that what you’re buying is just what you need.
- Cost. Any tattoo artist knows that tattoo ink is easy to finish up; this is especially true if you find yourself working with lines of clients every day.
Buying single bottles separately can become very expensive very quickly, so if you want to maintain a budget, consider buying them in bulk instead. Lots of sellers offer sets of ink that are sold in bulk, so you can cut back on some of the expense to limit what you spend on inks.
Top 5 Best Tattoo Ink Reviews
Millennium Mom’s is one of the most well-known brands in the tattoo ink market. Their inks are known to be deeply pigmented, long-lasting, and incredibly vibrant compared to other options available.
When it comes to value for your money, the Millennium Mom’s Tattoo Ink Set is the best tattoo ink option. This affordable set includes 14 bottles of premium, rich colored tattoo inks that are guaranteed to add a pop of life to your pieces.
These inks are pre-dispersed, which means you can use them straight from the bottle without the need for tedious preparation. Each color comes in an easy squeeze bottle that makes dispensing the ink very convenient and mess-free, ideal for artists who don’t like the process of cleaning up too much afterward.
Looking for a deep, rich, dark black ink that will stand out on any skin tone? The Skin Candy Tattoo Ink All Purpose Black is one of the best black tattoo ink options on the market, allowing artists to create precise black lines perfect for outlining, coloring, and shading.
This is a stable ink, which means that users may have to prepare it with specific steps for certain purposes. Despite that, however, it has gained the trust and patronage of countless artists who have dubbed it the top tattoo ink on the market.
This intense black tattoo ink allows artists to create beautiful black and gray portraits with precise contrast and shading. The deep pigments stay and last for years without the need for touch-ups and reworking.
As a pre-dispersed formula, there isn’t any preparation that users need to perform to use the Intenze Professional Tattoo Ink Zuper Black. However, it is possible to add some water to the mix to create a gradient of grays, perfect for shading and shadows.
Another rich, deeply pigmented black tattoo ink is the Black Buddha Colors Professional Tattoo Ink in Nightmare Black. This ink comes in a pre-dispersed formulation; however, water can be added to achieve a gradient of grays.
Long lasting and highly consistent, this color pigment has been patronized by lots of different tattoo artists across the globe. Many artists prefer this ink for the stick and poke method, which entails dipping a needle into the ink and directly applying it onto the skin.
Convenient, rich, and reliable, the Black Buddha Professional Tattoo Ink in Nightmare Black is definitely a premium choice if you’re looking for a reliable black tattoo ink that you can use to create vibrant, high contrast images that don’t fade over time.
Millennium Mom’s Black Onyx Tattoo Ink is a worthy contender to all the other black inks on the list. While Millennium Mom’s is best known for their colored inks, their black ink is also a good choice for the right type of tattoo artist.
While it isn’t quite as pigmented as other black tattoo inks, the Millennium Moms Black Onyx Tattoo Ink is just the right darkness for shading and shadows. This makes it a good option if you’re looking for a trusty tattoo ink that you can use for black and gray images and portraits.
Adding a small amount of water to the ink can also help you achieve different shades of gray for a more versatile ink. With that, the Millennium Moms Black Onyx Tattoo Ink is definitely the perfect ink to have in your arsenal for a vast gradient of grays for shadows and shadings.