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Best Tattoo Shops In San Diego – Client Reviews – Updated 2021

San Diego tattoo shops, home to some of the best tattoo artists and studios in the country. Bay Ink Tattoo, SD Tattoo, King’s Head.

San Diego, California, is widely known for its hip and happening culture—a unique identity that makes it an attractive destination for people seeking out-of-the-box experiences. Besides an ultra-modern aura, which creates an allure for pretty much everyone, it’s worth noting that the place is home to some of the best tattoo artists and shops in the country.

Tattooing is an in-thing in today’s era because it creates a style statement and conveys a message—either an untold story or a belief—that’s intended to stay embedded in your body forever. If you are fascinated by body art and looking for a tattoo shop, then San Diego has a plethora of options in store for you. Here goes the list.

Bay Ink Tattoo

Body art takes a new form at Bay Ink Tattoo, a custom parlor located in the center of San Diego. When it comes to responsibility, you can totally trust them. No matter what your idea is, the expert tattoo artists here will bring it out finely on your body. The environment is professional, amicable, and most importantly, clean.

Founder Fabio Fontinelle (@fabiofontinelle) specializes in portrait realism, but you can find a tattoo artist no matter what your style is.

The artists here will help you refine your design idea so that your tattoo creates the desired impact. They are open 7 days a week and welcome walk-in appointments.

Bay Ink Tattoo - tattoo shops in San Diego

Bay Ink Tattoo - tattoo shops in San Diego

SD Tattoo – Tattoo Shops In San Diego

Located behind the Pechanga Arena, SD Tattoo enjoys a premium status in the realm of body art and body piercing. Since its inception in 2011, the tattoo shop has been maintaining top-class professional standards. A skilled shop with friendly conduct, you can trust that your tattoo will meet the mark.

From personal consultations to excellent customer support to custom tattoo designs, the tattoo shop seeks to offer a holistic experience to people.  All the tattoo artists are well-trained in the field and follow the highest safety standards.

SD Tattoo has been voted San Diego’s best tattoo shop since 2015, prides itself on providing a welcoming, clean, and professional environment.

SD Tattoo & Body Piercing Walk-ins welcome everyday open 7 days a week 9 am to 10 pm

SD Tattoo - tattoo shops in San Diego

SD Tattoo - tattoo shops in San Diego

Chapter One Tattoo

Located in Newport Avenue, Chapter One Tattoo was established in 2011. The decade of experience under their belt is strong enough to push the tattoo shop to the list of the best ones in San Diego. They pride themselves on being a community of tattoo artists who are dedicated to their passion.

They exude inventiveness, exceptionalism, and excellence in the tattoos they create. Operating from a 2,500-square foot space, the parlor is where the talent of artists and respect for customers thrive.

Portrait tattoos, color realism, American traditional, black and gray, and Japanese styles are worth the consideration of anyone wanting to create a statement of their own.

Chapter One Tattoo shops in San Diego

Chapter One Tattoo shops in San Diego

Chapter One Tattoo shops in San Diego

King’s Head Tattoo

You will stumble upon this premier tattoo shop while strolling through the blocks close to Pacific Beach in San Diego.

The shop features a clean and comfortable environment—something that lures tattoo enthusiasts for a peek inside.

From tiny meaningful pieces to large custom designs, you can choose from an eclectic mix of tattoo designs here. Every artist in the studio is passionate about tattooing and body art. Boasting four decades of experience, you can trust that your tattoo idea is in expert hands.

Monday – Saturday: 12 – 8pm / ​Sunday: 12 – 6pm – Additional time options available by Appointment

King's Head Tattoo

King's Head Tattoo

Flying Panther Tattoo

If you are looking for lively and bold body artwork, then Flying Panther Tattoo is where you should go. Located in San Diego’s Golden Hill neighborhood, the studio specializes in simple to complex tattoo designs that are evergreen.

Established in 2006, the tattoo shop has built a reputation that celebrates its professionalism, artistry, and amicability. You can choose from a medley of styles—from American classics to fine line to coverups.

You can trust their professionals knowing that they will create the best-quality body art—a perfect recreation of your imagination. Do pay them a visit.

Flying Panther Tattoo

Big City Tattoo

Big City Tattoo has a track record of creating excellent body art since the 1980s. Several San Diego residents have come to swear by the professionalism, cleanliness, and safety standards followed by this custom tattoo parlor. They specialize in cover-ups, custom tattoos, hand-tap tattoos, and even piercings.

You can freely discuss your idea with the artist, who can then incorporate it with the utmost meticulousness.

The collection of styles includes black and gray, Japanese, old and new school and portrait. They are conveniently located on 2913 University Avenue in San Diego, making it the perfect stop for anyone wanting to explore the thriving tattooing realm.

Big City Tattoo tattoo shops in San Diego

Big City Tattoo tattoo shops in San Diego

Remington Tattoo Parlor

Remington Tattoo Parlor is counted amongst the best tattoo studios in San Diego and there is a good number of reasons for the same. Firstly, they are located accessibly in North Park at 3009 Myrtle Avenue—something that makes it extremely convenient for everyone.

Then it has some of the most seasoned tattoo artists who leave no stone unturned to exhibit their passion and talent. If you are looking for traditional, black and gray, illustrative, or custom tattoos, then this is the parlor you should visit.

You can also go for their neo-traditional, Japanese, floral and geometric styles. You will surely love the way they ideate and execute their designs with excellent craftsmanship.

Remington Tattoo Parlor

Remington Tattoo Parlor

Buju Tattoo – Tattoo Shops In San Diego

If you are looking for a fun and exciting tattooing experience, then Buju Tattoo is the shop for you. Each client has unique preferences, and the tattoo studio knows them well. Their tattoo artists incorporate the tastes of their clientele and design tattoos that make an impact. Their years of experience, coupled with their knack for innovative designs, make them respectable in this field of trade.

They are capable of coming up with a host of styles, such as traditional, fine-line, black and gray, and illustrative.

The studio is located on West Washington Street, and you will have no trouble spotting them owing to their vibrant workspace.

Buju Tattoo - Tattoo Shops In San Diego

Buju Tattoo - Tattoo Shops In San Diego

Full Circle Tattoo

Full Circle Tattoo started operations in 30th Street in 2008, and over the past many years, the studio’s strife for excellence has taken it to incredible heights in San Diego. The studio has a community of ten tattoo artists who know body art like the back of their hands.

Their experience in creating different tattoo styles counts a lot, especially for people who look for perfection. American, anime, traditional Japanese, black and gray, realistic and botanical are some tattoo styles you can explore at this custom tattoo shop.

Owner Bill Canales, who hails from Japan, shows impressive inventiveness in designing large dragon tattoos.

Full Circle Tattoo

Full Circle Tattoo

Funhouse Tattoo

If you happen to be in Garnet Avenue, you got to check into Funhouse Tattoo, a mecca for those looking for traditional creations. As a custom tattoo shop boasting years of experience, the place has a team of eight artists specializing in a variety of tattoos.

The catalog of tattoo designs is plain enormous; you have Polynesian tribal tattoos, fine-line tattoos, graffiti, black and gray, and a new school. Let’s not forget portraits, realism, and Mexican-Aztec, which are created by the finest artists.

You can have an initial consultation with them to get the necessary guidance and ideas.

Funhouse Tattoo

Luckys Tattoo Parlor

Yet another old tattoo shop in San Diego is Luckys Tattoo Parlor. Located on 1000 Broadway, the studio has been tattooing since 1989. It has a diverse crew that specializes in a wide range of tattoo styles.

The portfolio of designs is quite expansive and impressive. Whether you want a black and gray, tribal, multi-colored or custom tattoo, you can rely on the artists here.

Their creative juices flow amazingly while trying to enliven a message through body art. No matter what your symbol or design is, this tattoo parlor will surely cater to your needs at a reasonable rate.

Luckys Tattoo Parlor

Luckys Tattoo Parlor

Tattoo Shops In San Diego

The above are some of the many tattoo shops that are doing a commendable job in San Diego. The list is not exhaustive because the talent in this field is never-ending. Moreover, tattoos are slowly becoming more acceptable and mainstream in recent times, and the realm provides ample opportunities to emerging artists to express their passion and talent.

However, you should be careful about the choice you make while looking for a tattoo artist or a specialized shop. Not all of them follow the health and safety standards. At the same time, not all tattoo artists can come up with fine designs.

So, their experience and expertise are of great importance. While looking for a tattoo shop in San Diego, make sure you ask for personal references from friends, colleagues, or anyone who has got a tattoo done so that you are sure about the credibility of your choice.

Tattoo Shops In San Diego: FAQs

Q: How long will my tattoo take to heal?

A:Two to six weeks are needed to heal a new tattoo. If possible, avoid keeping it wet or dirty during the first few days.

Q: How much do tattoos cost in San Diego?

A: How much does a tattoo cost?  Most tattoo artists in Vancouver charge between $195 and $210 an hour for large pieces, whereas small tattoos only cost $100. Small tattoos are priced per piece.

Q: How do I take care of my new tattoo?

A: Immediately after your new tattoo is finished, keep your hands off of it! Your artist worked hard to make sure the lines are clean, so try not to touch them during this crucial time period. After that point, wash gently with water only – no soap – for the next ten days. Don’t pick at scabs – instead, be gentle while they’re healing, but don’t worry about being too gentle! As long as you’re properly moisturized on a regular basis your tattoos will be healed in no time.

Q: How do I know if it will scar?

A: If you treat your tattoo properly, it should not scar. Some people might be genetically predisposed to keloid scars. These people can still get tattoos – however, there is a higher risk of developing them after the fact. So far, there is no cure for these types of scars and they can be itchy or ugly looking.

Q: How long does laser removal surgery take?

A: Laser removal surgery takes about an hour per session and is performed in several sessions, usually until the blemish has completely gone away or diminished somewhat. It varies per person and depends on how extensive the tattoo or what type of ink was used and exactly which lasers are used in the process.

Laser removal surgery is typically performed with local anesthesia to numb the area, and it can leave scarring if not performed properly or when dealing with dark skin tones.

Q: Can I get a tattoo over an older one?

A: If you’re looking to add art to your body in this way, know that there are two different options for you to choose from. The first of these is dermabrasion, which is more of a cosmetic procedure for the treatment of facial scars rather than tattoos specifically. As such, unless you have severe scarring or seek cosmetic improvement of your skin tone or texture, then dermabrasion may not be worth it for you overall.

This usually takes place once per year. The other option is called dermal or subsurface scarring. This process requires your doctor to inject your old tattoo with a chemical solution that causes it to fade away over the course of ten to fourteen days. During this time, you should refrain from applying any new tattoos to the area.

While you are here, check out the best tattoo shops in Los Angeles.

Looking for Tattoo Removal or Cover Ups in San Diego?

Check out San Diego tattoo removal near you and book a tattoo removal consultation with Removery today. Learn more about tattoo cover-ups and how laser removal can help you.

San Diego City in California

San Diego is a city on the Pacific coast of California known for its beaches, parks, and warm climate. Immense Balboa Park is the site of the renowned San Diego Zoo, as well as numerous art galleries, artist studios, museums, and gardens. A deep harbor is a home to a large active naval fleet, with the USS Midway, an aircraft-carrier-turned-museum, open to the public.

There are sandy beaches in San Diego, a city in southern California with perfect weather and a laid-back atmosphere.

Known for their high-quality artists and dedication to the tattoo craft, tattoo shops in San Diego boast a family atmosphere.

This perfect vacation haven is sure to delight you whether you explore the zoo, enjoy the sports centers, marvel at the Naval museums, or honor your moments with a tattoo. There are many San Diego tattoo artists ready to offer you a truly unforgettable experience.