“I have a bunch of very small tattoos myself. But I always warn people, for example, if you get something with an O in it, just realize what it’s going to look like 10 years from now,” Pignanelli said. While some clients may be concerned about legibility for years to come, others may also be easily satisfied with the inevitable faded tattoos.

“There’s an adage in the tattoo world: Bold will stand. It’s true—while everything spreads over time, bold lines tend to be the sharpest over time,” Pignanelli explained, but Again, personal preference and talented artist are key to making this decision. “Having said that, I’ve seen a lot of fine line tattoos that heal beautifully and last for years.”

Find artists on Instagram – but watch out for their posts.

When it comes to tattoos, ‘grams are an endless source of inspiration, and if you’re like us, you have a folder full of ideas from artists around the world. But like everything else, appearances can be deceiving. As you scroll through an artist’s page, Pignanelli recommends looking at the artist’s grid and their tagged posts to get a complete picture of their work – whether that’s when the ink is fresh or has weeks or months to heal up .

“It’s a good sign that an artist is releasing a healing piece,” she said, noting that tattoos — especially small, delicate ones — look great in the moments after they are tattooed. But it may look less brittle when healed. What’s more, Pignanelli said, some artists have actually been arrested for editing photos of clients’ tattoos. (For clarity, adjusting the photo for consistency or visibility is standard, but modifying the appearance of the actual tattoo is not.)

“Instagram is a great marketing resource, right? You can put anything on your Instagram,” she explains. “That’s another reason I’m starting to really encourage people to look up [artists’] Things that heal, or even things that people label them with. “

Honestly, ask your artist for guidance.

Obviously, tattoo artists are professionals in looking at a person’s body and designing art around it. If your artist is experienced, they most likely have their own font library ready to help their clients achieve the desired results.