covering up old tattoo work
If you’re thinking about covering up old tattoo work, do some research before committing to a new design. The most important step is to select an artist that has experience covering up old tattoo work, as well as a style you love. The first step is to book a consultation with your tattoo artist to discuss ideas and confirm the best way to handle the design.
How Covering Up Old Tattoos Works
During your consultation, your tattoo artist will assess the shape, color, and size of your tattoo to determine the best cover up or retouching techniques. They may take photos or tracings of the original piece to help ensure alignment during the design process. Once the artist has confirmed that a cover up is possible, you can discuss colors and designs. It’s helpful to have reference images for tattoo options that you like. Whether you prefer traditional, illustrative, Japanes, or floral, consider selecting a tattoo design that is bigger and darker than your original piece. After you and your artist have agreed on an appropriate drawing, it’s time to start inking.
The Tattooing Process
Similar to the typical tattoo process, the artist will print your new design onto a sheet with transferable ink. The ink transfer will be placed onto your skin with care to ensure the new lines merge correctly with the old tattoo work. The new tattoo will be deposited into the same layer of skin that the original design occupies. In many cases, using a darker or more vibrant color than the original piece will allow your tattoo artist to cover or camouflage the old work. The healing process will be similar for your cover up tattoo; make sure the area stays clean and moisturized. Read more about tattoo aftercare.
Covering Up an Old Tattoo vs. Refreshing
If your old tattoo work is faded or blurry, your tattoo artist may be able to retouch or refresh the original design. Refreshing an old piece is often easier than covering up old tattoo work, but you’ll need to work with your artist to determine what is possible. Book a consultation to learn more about tattoo retouching.
Tattoo Cover Up Design Ideas
Depending upon the size and color of your original piece, covering up old tattoo work can provide endless options, including:
- Japanese sleeves or back pieces
- Floral or illustrative designs
- Animals or characters
- Tribal and geometric designs
- Natural landscapes, plants, or trees
- Crosses or other symbols
Look for larger pieces that are asymmetrical and bolder or darker than the original tattoo. Or get inspiration from our artists’ portfolios.
Choosing A Tattoo Shop
When covering up old tattoo work, choose a shop that focuses on quality and safety. At Remington Tattoo we use sterilized equipment, new needles, and new inks for every client, every time. Our studio is recently upgraded with the latest technology, supplies, and sterilization techniques. Each of our artists offer a distinct perspective and style. Get in touch to book an appointment or read our FAQ page for more information about the process.