An overview of TV shows that have to do with tattoos. The tattoo genre has been a mainstay of reality television since the early 2000s.
We’ve got something for tattoo artists, enthusiasts, collectors, and even just curious viewers.
These series have a wide range of programming that will appeal to anyone who likes reality TV, or even those who don’t. Several tattoo TV shows follow tattoo artists’ daily lives, including their business deals, clients, and personal lives.
Some competitions feature stiff competition between artists from around the world who want to showcase their talents. Tattoo series also show people designing tattoos for their loved ones (for better or worse) as well as artists fixing tattoo errors for clients who want do-overs.
Black Ink Crew
Instagram: ceaserblackink – blackinkcrew
Where To Watch: Chicago (Paramount+), VH1, Netflix
Stars: Ceaser Emanuel, Sassy Bermudez, O’Shit Duncan, Alex Estevez, Dutchess Lattimore, Puma Robinson, Sky Days, Teddy Ruks, Donna Lombardi
Release date: January 7, 2013 –; present
Related shows: Black Ink Crew: Chicago; Black Ink Crew: Compton
It was originally titled Black Ink Crew, but after its success (in the tradition of other tattoo shows like Miami Ink) inspired a few follow-ups, it was renamed Black Ink Crew: New York.
In 2015, Black Ink Crew: Chicago premiered on VH1 and followed a group of artists from Chicago, but focused more on the relationships between these professional inkers and their friends and families.
The show follows a tight-knit team of tattoo artists as they serve a growing list of celebrity clients at a tattoo studio in Harlem, New York. Pro athletes, video vixens, hip-hop stars, and a who’s who of urban elite frequent the shop.
Black Ink Crew: Chicago returns TUES AUG 9 at 8/7c on @VH1
Where To Watch: Netflix, Paramount+
Stars: Dave Navarro; Chris Núñez; Oliver Peck
Release date: January 17, 2012 –; present
Networks: Paramount+, Paramount Network
A 13-season competition between some of the best tattoo artists in the world, “Ink Master” is the best tattoo realted show to watch. As well as Dave Navarro, who doubled as a judge each week, Chris Núñez and Oliver Peck also starred.
Several spin-off shows have been released, such as Ink Master: Redemption, Ink Master: Angels, and Ink Master: Grudge Match. A number of special episodes have also been released, such as Halloween-themed episodes.
In addition to serving as a judge, musician Dave Navarro also hosted the show along with tattoo artists Chris Núñez and Oliver Peck. Both Navarro and Núñez appeared in every episode of season nine, except for Peck’s absence on two episodes. It is common for episodes to include an additional guest judge, usually a well-known tattoo artist who specializes in the style of tattoo chosen for that week’s elimination challenge (such as New School, Traditional (old school), Japanese, Portrait, Black and Gray, etc.).
How Far Is Tattoo Far?
Where To Watch: Amazon Prime Video / MTV / CTV
Stars: Nico Tortorella, Nicole Polizzi, Courtney Raimondi
Release date: October 11, 2018 – October 3, 2019
How Far is Tattoo Far? was hosted by actor Nico Tortorella and Jersey Shore’s Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi in 2018. A reality show where people create tattoos for friends, family, and couples that won’t be revealed until the end.
Aimee Hall, Nilsa Prowant, Angelina Pivarnik from Jersey Shore, Cara Maria Sorbello from The Challenge, and Soju from RuPaul’s Drag Race were among the stars of Season 1.
Where To Watch: Amazon Prime Video
Stars: Katherine von Drachenberg, Adrienne Ironside, Corey Miller
Release date:August 7, 2007 – September 15, 2011
On August 7, 2007, TLC’s LA Ink premiered as a spin-off of Miami Ink, following the experiences at the High Voltage Tattoo (and, later in the show, American Electric) tattoo studios in Los Angeles.
Kat Von D opens her own tattoo shop in Los Angeles. High Voltage Tattoo soon has musicians and rising stars lining up for Kat’s black and gray tattoos in a town known for its tattoo culture.
With a fast-paced, rebellious lifestyle, Kat lives by her own rules. Her life is free: she sets her own schedule, picks her clients, sleeps late, and parties all night long. Kat needs to manage a colorful staff of renowned artists while balancing her lifestyle and business.
A lot of celebrities got tattooed there, and Von D often showed up late to high-profile appointments; she also often got into arguments with her artists.
Von D told People that TLC manipulated footage to capitalize on her breakup with Jesse James after TLC cancelled the series.
Instagram: Miami Ink – Love Hate Tattoos
Where To Watch: (Discovery+)
Stars: Katherine von Drachenberg, Ami James, Darren Brass
Release date: July 19, 2005 –; August 21, 2008
Miami Ink is a tattoo reality show (and one of the first of its kind) that is much less competitive, but very popular. 5 tattoo artists move to South Beach to open up a tattoo shop.
The series first aired on TLC in 2005, and follows the lives of tattoo artists at Love Hate Tattoo in Florida, which was originally called 305 Ink when it opened a year before the series debuted.
Many of the artists, including Kat Von D, became celebrities after appearing on the show – like comedian Craig Ferguson and former Jackass cast member Bam Margera.
Where To Watch: (Discovery+)
Stars: Ami James, Tommy Montoya, Megan Massacre
Release date: June 2, 2011 –; May 2, 2013
A reality documentary TV series on TLC called NY Ink premiered June 2, 2011. There was a 1.3 million average viewership for the first season, which TLC renewed for a second season in August 2011. Season three starts filming in August 2012 and premieres on April 4, 2013.
Israeli-American artist Ami James is also an alum of Love Hate Tattoo who would later have his own series spun off from Miami Ink. From 2011 to 2013, NY Ink on TLC followed his time as the owner of Wooster St. Social Club (later called Five Points Tattoo). A number of celebrities appeared in the series, including Slipknot frontman Corey Taylor, rapper Method Man, and actress Bai Ling.
Instagram: 51Tattoo, Chris 51
Where To Watch: A&E
Stars: Josh Bodwell, Heather Maranda, Chris 51, Caroline Russell, Chris Jones, Jeff Wortham
Release date: August 20 – October 22, 2014
Their Oregon-based shop, Area 51 Tattoo, is made up of talented tattoo artists who are passionate about tattooing pop culture.
At Area 51 Tattoo in Springfield, Ore., Epic Ink features in-demand artists and their cutting-edge designs. Featuring popular characters from sci-fi films, comics, cartoons, and pop culture, the shop specializes in hyper-realistic ink works. Five of Area 51’s artists, including owner Chris 51, have been licensed to tattoo Lucasfilm properties worldwide by the studio.
Chris Jones, a Welsh-born tattoo artist who has been nominated for multiple Tattoo Industry Awards in the category of Best U.K. Male, Josh Bodwell, known for his realism and portraiture work, and Heather Maranda, who is self-taught, are also featured on the series. Aside from tattooing at comic cons and shows, the artists travel the world geeking out with hardcore fans.
Instagram: Rob Ruckus / Dirk-Fuckin’-Vermin
Where To Watch: Available On Amazon Prime Video
Stars: Rob Ruckus, Dirk Vermin, Brian Blu
Release date: August 11, 2013 – August 20, 2014
Ink Master is known to showcase some of the best tattoos in the industry, but like Bad Ink, it shows the ugly as well. Located in Las Vegas, hosts Ruckus and Dirk set out to find people with terrible tattoos and offer to fix them.
Like Ink Master, Bad Ink can revive a person’s confidence. It also provides comic relief and entertainment for anyone who watches it. There is no doubt that Las Vegas offers many opportunities for adventure – the nickname “Sin City” wasn’t given by accident – but with adventure comes sometimes bad decisions.
Dirk works his magic to transform cringe-worthy tattoos into noteworthy masterpieces for those who he finds among convention goers, tourists and locals alike with cringe-worthy tattoos on the series Bad Ink.
Where To Watch: Netflix
Release date: 2021
Stars: Jessimae Peluso – Tommy Montoya – Rose Hardy
With the help of their loved ones, top artists can transform tattoo disasters into stunning cover-ups. The Netflix series Tattoo Redo premiered in 2021, also following the body art renovation trend.
In similar fashion to other shows we’ve previously highlighted, this reality show involves loved ones bringing unhappy customers (or even losers of an ill-fated bet) to have their ink covered up, but this one has a twist.
Additionally, the person who signed up for the redo gets the final say on the design, so the client will not see the new tattoo until it’s finished.
Where To Watch: Paramount+ , Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV
Stars: Myke Chambers, Joey Tattoo
Release date: July 2013
In needy tattoo shops, Joey Tattoo fixes their business model and attitude.
As a tattoo artist with years of experience, Joey Tattoo (real name: Joey Germinario) shares his knowledge to help others. Following Joey and his team of professionals as they visit tattoo shops across the nation that are facing financial ruin, this hourlong series is similar to Spike’s “Bar Rescue” and “Car Lot Rescue.”
It’s been 26 years since Joey started tattooing and he’s tattooed over 17,000 people. At 19, he got his first tattoo – a design he drew himself – and got an apprenticeship at the same time.
You are able to stream Tattoo Rescue by renting or purchasing on Amazon Instant Video, iTunes, and Vudu.
Instagram: tattoo shows
Where To Watch: A&E
Stars: Thomas Pendelton, Monica Pendelton
Release date: May 27, 2009
Mobile tattoo shop/tour bus travels the country with tattoo artists.
Thomas Pendelton and Monica Pendelton, his business partner and wife, are the main characters in this half-hour series.
Their tattoo parlor is a renovated 1970s tour bus that they use to travel around the country, making the experience even more personal when they are able, as Pendelton says, “park right in the middle of someone’s life.”
Bondi Ink Tattoo Crew
Where To Watch: Available To Rent On Amazon Prime Video
Stars: Megan Massacre, Shaun Bones, Wendy Tadrosse, Jimi May
Release date: 28 July 2015 – 20 April 2017
Tattoo reality series Bondi Ink follows the running of a successful tattoo studio in Bondi Beach, one of the world’s most famous beaches.
Based in Australia, Bondi Ink Tattoo Crew follows a group of tattoo artists who have opened a shop in one of Bondi Beach’s most famous streets.
It features some of Australia’s top tattoo artists, along with the back stories of those who made it to the show. Despite being canceled after two seasons, this show still remains one of the best about tattooing on television.
Where To Watch: A&E
Stars: Pink, Carey Hart, Jeff Bowler
Released: March 28, 2005 (United States)
Carey Hart manages a tattoo shop in Las Vegas, Nevada. In a trendy tattoo parlor that showcases the stylings of contemporary ‘day in the life/fly on the wall’ reality shows, eccentric patrons bare their souls (and more). TV tattoo.
Rumble & Hum
Where To Watch: Tubi ,
Stars: Lianne Williams, Quinten Vorster, Adrianne Black
Release date: November 20, 2017 (South Africa)
The show follows the lives of South Africa’s most renowned tattoo artists, Lewis “Vudulew” Williams and Cole Moebius and Adrianne Black, as they go about their daily routines.
An award-winning South African tattoo artist, Lewis “Vudulew” Williams, stars in the series Rumble & Hum (which refers to the sound a tattoo machine makes).
Cole Moebius and Adrianne Black, his friends and colleagues, run a tattoo and body piercing shop with him. Like Epic Ink, the series is more about celebrating the craft itself and the passion that goes into it than it is about staff drama.
Where To Watch: Paramount+ , SpikeTV
Stars: Tommy Helm, Jasmine Rodriguez, Big Gus Demented
Release date: 16 October 2012 –; 1 September 2015
Tattoos are like first impressions: They better be right or you might regret them. ‘Tattoo Nightmares’ is about ugly tattoos, embarrassing tattoos, and hilarious tattoos.
In this show, people tell horror stories about their unfortunate tattoos and their attempts to fix them. With reenactments, we’ll see how people got their tattoos, from hilarious to downright disturbing. Each contestant will then go under the needle for a removal or cover.
There are people who seek help from the best cover-up tattooists to see if their nightmare can be turned into something beautiful. A reenactment shows how they ended up with awful “art.” Warning: Always hire a professional if you want something done to your body. Don’t ink without thinking!
Where To Watch: Hulu
Stars: Jay Hutton, Lou Hopper, Sketch Porter
Release date: 23 June 2015 –; 29 January 2019
Even though tattoos are very permanent, some of them can be fixed, as the cast of Tattoo Fixers demonstrate. Taking place in Hackney, London, the series follows tattoo artists who transform crude and ugly items into beautiful ones.
Each episode features a new client with a horrendous tattoo story that they cover up with their cover-up skills.
Tattoo designers in the UK help clients transform their tattoo mistakes into works of art. In Britain, about one in six people who elect to undergo surgery later regret their decision.
An ex-partner’s name, an inappropriate quote or outrageous artwork can be chosen hastily, but the results will last forever. During their consultations at the pop-up studio, the talented inkers meet desperate customers. Following the meeting, the client chooses whose design ideas they like best, and the artist begins working on them. After the session is completed, the new tattoos will be revealed.
Where To Watch: abctv
Stars: Sibylla Budd, Vudu Dahl, Lily Barrios, Young Bae, Ryan Henry, Van Johnson
Release date: 1 April 2015
Tattoo Tales was filmed on Bondi Beach in Sydney, Australia, for its eight-episode, one-season run in 2015. This refreshingly immersive tattoo reality show puts the clients in the spotlight with five cameras rigged in the busy tattoo parlor used as the stage.
Cameras mounted on fixed rigs capture the daily antics and artistry inside Sydney’s Bondi Beach tattoo studio. In this series, we discover why so many Australians get tattooed in a unique, entertaining, and sometimes poignant way.
America’s Worst Tattoos
Where To Watch: TLC, Amazon Prime
Stars: Megan Massacre, Jeremy Swan, Tim Pangburn and Lisa Del Toro
Release date: June 21, 2012
It is not uncommon for tattoo artists to cover up some of the worst tattoos in America. America’s Worst Tattoos features some of the most awful, hilarious, grammatically-incorrect and just plain weird tattoos the country has ever seen.
During each episode, a few lucky participants will have their interesting works of art transformed into tattoo masterpieces. The program features famous tattoo artists such as NY Ink’s Megan Massacre, as well as the process of covering up and revealing the tattoo.
Where To Watch: Oxygen, Amazon Prime
Stars: Pete Wentz, Sabina Kelley, Joe Capobianco, Hannah Aitchison
Release date: March 27, 2012 – February 26, 2014
The winner of this contest will receive $100,000 and an article in Tattoo magazine. As part of the program, they are challenged in a number of ways to test their skills and perseverance.
During the competition, recording artist and television host Kimberly Caldwell guides the contestants. Caldwell, an inked tattoo enthusiast, epitomizes the show’s gutsy attitude through her fearless vocals, passionate performances, and earthy charisma.
How Many Seasons of Ink master Are There ?
Ink Masters currently has 13 seasons. Known tattoo artists and enthusiasts judge the head-to-head battles between ten of the best tattoo artists on the planet. One artist will be crowned Ink Master after his or her skills are tested.
Is ink master coming back in 2022 ?
Yes, Ink Masters will be returning to TV. The show has been picked up by streaming giant Paramount+. ParamountPlus will air all-new episodes of the hit tattoo competition later this year. Featuring challenges unlike anything ever seen before, the nation’s top tattoo artists will compete for $250,000 and the title of “Ink Master.”
What Tattoo Show is Pete Wentz on?
Peter Wentz was on the TV show Best Ink. On Oxygen, Best Ink is a reality competition series that judges tattoo artists. Three seasons of the series were produced, the first in 2012, the second in 2013, and the third in 2013-2014. In Seasons 2 and 3, Pete Wentz hosted the show in place of Kimberly Caldwell.
What Is the Tattoo TV show called?
Ink Master is an American reality competition television series that originally aired on Paramount Network (formerly Spike). There are a series of challenges that tattoo artists have to complete in order to test their tattooing skills and related artistic abilities.
Are There Any Tattoo Shows on Hulu?
You can watch Tattoo Fixers on Hulu. An episode follows tattoo artists tasked with turning something crude and ugly into something beautiful in Hackney, London. Their cover-up skills are unmatched, and each episode features a new client with a horrendous tattoo backstory.
Why do tattoo artists hate E4’s Tattoo Fixers?
When MTV launched rival series Just Tattoo of Us starring Charlotte Crosby and Stephen Bear, it was to take on Tattoo Fixers.
According to professional tattoo artists, the show misrepresents the industry, artists work poorly, hygiene standards are poor, and designs are plagiarized. A key criticism is that the quality of work produced by artists on the show isn’t as high as the producers claim.
What was the name of the tattoo show on TLC?
From 2005-2008, Miami Ink aired on TLC and followed the events at a tattoo shop in Miami Beach, Florida. Many of the show’s spin-offs were also broadcast on TLC, including LA Ink, London Ink, NY Ink, and Madrid Ink.
Here is a quick list of Tattoo TV Shows over the years
- Bad Ink (2013–2014)
- Best Ink (2012–2014)
- Black Ink Crew (2013–present)
- Black Ink Crew: Chicago (2015–present)
- Black Ink Crew: Compton (2019–present)
- Bondi Ink Tattoo Crew (2015–2017)
- Epic Ink (2014)
- How Far Is Tattoo Far? (2018–2019)
- Ink Master (2012–2020)
- Ink Master: Angels (2017–2018)
- Just Tattoo of Us (2017–2020)
- LA Ink (2007–2011)
- London Ink (2007–2009)
- Miami Ink (2005–2008)
- NY Ink (2011–2013)
- Tattoo Fixers (2015–2019)
- Tattoo Nightmares (2012–2015)
- Tattoo Titans (2013–2014)