Tattoo Prices By Size

When thinking about getting your own tattoo, there are plenty of things to factor into your decision. Things to consider include what kind of tattoo you want. You have to decide the design and the meaning behind the design. Next comes deciding what artist you are you going to pick to give you your tattoo. A lot goes into that decision as well. Do you feel comfortable with your artist? Do they tattoo the kind of tattoo you are looking for? After you figure this out, the last thing you need to make this transaction complete is to pay your artist but what if you are working on a budget? You don’t want to sacrifice the quality of the tattoo you are going to get so the next option is decide on how big you want it.

It is obvious that the bigger the tattoo, the more money you will have to pay. So, the question becomes; how much will my tattoo cost by size? This question is more common than you think you but there are some factors that go into this. As a rough guide, you can follow the chart below but every artist has a different price depending on how long they have been tattooing and what kind of tattoo you are looking for.



Average Artist

Experienced / Popular Artist

Small Tat (3-7in)

$20 – $50

$40 – $80

$80 – $200+

Medium Tat (8-19in)

$40 – $100

$80 – $200

$150 – $350+

Large Tat (20+in)

$100 – $800

$300 – $1200

$500 – $4000+

Half Sleeve




Full Sleeve




Hourly Rate ($)

$20 – $50

$50 – $90


Outside of this chart, there are many factors to take into account and I will go over a few of them so you have a better idea of what to expect when you walk into your tattoo shop to inquire about your next tattoo and how big you should have it.

Artist Experience and Skill

This is probably one of the biggest factors when looking to get your new tattoo no matter the size of the tattoo you are getting. The skill set of an artist can vary a great deal from artist to artist.

On one side you’ve got your typical scratcher that works out of his mom’s house that will charge you $20 dollars for a tattoo or the guy that bought a kit off the internet for his first kit ever. On the other side of the coin you’ve got your tattoo artist with over 20 years of experience that will charge you $175 an hour.

Just keep in mind that you deserve a better artist than the guy that is tattooing out of his garage but you also don’t need to have an artist ink you up that has over 20 years of experience to get a good tattoo. It is all in the talent and you have to feel that out and do you research.

To be clear, there are fantastic artists out there with only a few years experience that will give you as good a tattoo as the guy with over 20 years of experience. You don’t have to have the guy that has been in the industry the longest to get a sold tattoo.

As far as price goes, remember to include a tip at the end. It is just common courtesy. In addition, if you take of your artist this time around, they will make sure to treat you great next time you come in for a follow up or addition to your current piece.

The key is to take your time and look through their body of work. You could very well get a big tattoo from a talented artist with just a few years in the industry for half the price of a guy that has been around forever but just hasn’t progressed.

This is probably the biggest factor in looking when trying to determine how much your tattoo will cost and what size you can get for a specific price point.

Another factor to consider is the popularity and exposure of the artist you are thinking about working with. It seems to be common sense that if you are seeking out an artist that is very popular with a big waiting list, your medium sized tattoo will cost more than if you were going to get it from your friend down the street. Be ready to pay a premium price for the popular artists. In addition, if the artist you are talking to happened to get some early exposure, they might get pricey too. They might not even be the most talented artist out there but they may have gotten a shot on a show like Ink Master or something similar. In this case, the artist is able to charge more strictly based on the exposure he or she got from the show.

Popularity of Tattoo Shop

Even if you choose to go to an artist that is relatively unknown, you might still be charged more if they are at a really popular shop. Their shop is the name that is bringing all the customers in so if you happen to go in there, the artist might have to charge more because the shop is charging them more.

Shop Location

One more factor that could impact the price of your next tattoo is the location of the studio. You have to take into account the overhead costs of the shop which might be getting pushed onto the artist. If they work out of a shop in downtown NYC or Los Angeles, their prices might be much more steep than the talented artist that works in the suburbs.

The point of this article is that even though you would like to know a straight answer on how much your tattoo will cost based on the size, it is almost impossible to give you that rate. Everything is on a case by case basis and it will depend on the artist you choose. Our recommendation for anyone curious of the pricing for the size of the tattoo is to do your research and take your time in doing so. There are a lot of fantastic artists out there without the big name, but they have the big skills.

If you have any questions or need help finding an artist to complete your tattoo, let us know because we’d love to help.