Tattoo Sizes and The Costs – Everything You Need To Know

Tattoo sizes and the different cost and placements. It’s essential to think about tattoo sizes, design, and placement before getting inked. Getting a tattoo is an exciting experience. After all, you will see that tattoo every day for the rest of your life!

The size of your tattoo is one of the most important factors to consider. Different sizes can dramatically affect how visible it is. With so many different body parts and angles to think about when coming up with your perfect tattoo design, choosing an appropriate size for your new ink can be tricky.

A tattoo’s size matters, whether you want the finished piece to stand out on its own without being overshadowed by future designs.

This blog post will explore some of the most popular tattoo sizes and what they mean for your new ink.

The Importance of Tattoo Size

Your tattoo’s size affects many things, including its placement.

  • Depending on the amount of ink used, the tattoo will cost more.
  • Time commitment – if your tattoo is large, you will need multiple sessions.
  • In some cases, a large tattoo may not fit in your desired location.
  • Shade and detail – certain designs aren’t suited to very small sizes, and vice versa.

Where To Place My Tattoo?

If you have a specific part of the body in mind for your tattoo, you’ll want to consider its dimensions. If you’re going to get one of the more traditional tattoo sizes, you’ll want to make sure it will fit within that space.

For example, if you want a leg tattoo, you’ll want to make sure your leg is long enough to fit it. If you want a forearm tattoo, you’ll want to make sure it will work on your forearm without making your arm look too small. A chest tattoo would need to fit on a chest without making it look too small or too large.

What Is A Standard Tattoo Size?

Tattoo sizes are usually categorized into small (2×2), medium (4×4), and large (5×5 and above). It’s important to note that these are just the most common sizes. Several factors determine tattoo size. The amount of space on your body and the amount of detail you want to include in your design.

Since there isn’t a global standard for tattoo measurements, it’s vital that you communicate exactly what you want and to whom you are getting tattooed.

tattoo sizes

Why Measure A Tattoo?

The first and most important reason for measuring a tattoo is to ensure the tattoo artist creates work that’s proportional to your body. It’s common for artists to use a standard size chart that they’re used to creating with, but this can easily result in an oversized design. Choosing an artist wisely is essential, and getting a chance to discuss the design ahead of time will help you choose the best person for the job.

In addition, a poorly sized tattoo will create issues throughout the healing process and cause a lot of unnecessary pain and frustration. If the infection or pain isn’t manageable, you may even need to see a doctor. Therefore, measuring and discussing your design before getting inked is essential.

How to Measure a Tattoo

The best way to measure a tattoo is to start with a piece of paper. Draw a two-inch by two-inch square as best you can, and then use a ruler to mark the center of the square with a dot. This dot will be the center point for your tattoo, and you can then measure from here to whatever other parts of your body you want the tattoo applied.

You can also use a tattoo sizing app to help with the measuring. These apps take your measurements and show you how your tattoo will look on your body. They’re an easy way to visualize the final product, and they can be helpful if you’re working with an artist online.

1. Tiny Tattoos

Finger Tattoos and Tattoos Behind the Ear

Finger tattoos and tattoos behind the ear are two popular and discreet options for tiny tattoos. These designs are usually 1×1 tattoo sizes or smaller and are typically small enough to fit on the finger without being overwhelming; they are also some of the most popular ear tattoo designs.

Finger tattoos can either be words or symbols, but designs like stars and the sun are also commonly used, especially since they take up very little space yet still have a beautiful meaning. Ear tattoos are also popular for their discreet nature. In addition, the ear is a surprisingly versatile canvas, making it an excellent choice for a tiny tattoo.

2. Small Tattoos

Ankle and Foot Tattoos and Wrist Tattoos

Small tattoos are usually 2×2 and 3×3 tattoos, designed for areas like the ankle, foot, or wrist. A standard 3×3 tattoo is about 9 square inches. It is a typical tattoo size for smaller pieces like a single word or a few words in a single language. These sizes are often called palm size tattoo.

This size is also commonly used for single symbol tattoos; you can get a wide variety of designs, ranging from small and elegant to bold and colorful.

The ankles and feet are common locations for smaller tattoos; ankle and foot tattoos are a great place to start if you want to try out a tattoo but aren’t sure if you’re ready to commit to a larger piece. Wrist tattoos, like ankle tattoos, are also an excellent choice for first-timers. There is plenty of room on the wrist, and it’s highly visible, which allows you to try out a tattoo without being too bold.

Tattoo Size Chart

Tattoo Size Size Cost Size Placements
1 inch $50 Ear, wrist, toe, finger
2×2 inches $100 Wrist, ankle, neck
3×3 inches $150 Wrist, ankle, arm, calf
4×4 inches $200 Chest, neck, lower arm
5×5 inches $300 Shoulder, ribs, lower back, thigh
6×6 inches $400+ sleeves, upper arm, upper back
7×7 inches $500+ Sleeves, hip, thigh, neck
10-15 inches $600+ Back, side body, full leg sleeve
>15 inches $900+ Full body Art

3. Medium Size Tattoos

Arm Tattoos, Thigh Tatts, and Lower Back Tattoos

Medium-sized tattoos are usually around 4×4 inches, i.e., 16 square inches. Arm, thigh, and lower back tattoos are all great options for medium-sized tattoos. All three of these areas have the advantage of being highly visible and having a lot of room for a design, making them ideal for larger pieces.

Arm tattoos are prevalent, making them increasingly common in both popularity and design selection, so you’ll want to do your research to ensure you get something truly unique and meaningful.

Thigh tattoos are another increasingly popular area, likely because they’re extremely visible and don’t often require a lengthy healing time.

Lower back tattoos are also a common choice since they are easily concealable with clothing but still highly visible.

Finally, this size can be good for a full chest tattoo, but if you only want part of your chest tattooed, a 4×4 tattoo will be too large.

4. Large Pieces

Shoulder to Hip Pieces, Full-Back Pieces, and Chest Pieces

You can often find large pieces on the shoulder to hip area and on the full-back. A 5×5 tattoo, which is about 25 square inches, is usually suitable for these areas and the thighs. A 5×5 is a good size for a thigh or shoulder tattoo if you want to cover your entire thigh or shoulder. However, it’s not a good size tattoo if you only want to cover part of your thigh or shoulder. A 5×5 is also a good size for a full back tattoo if you’re going to cover your entire back, but not if you only want to cover part of your back.

In most cases, the areas such as the shoulder, hip, and full-back are for large, bold designs. For example, a full-back piece is typically one or two large images or illustrations that span the back, with smaller tattoos added above or below for decorative impact. Large shoulder to hip tattoos are often designed to be the focal point of an outfit and can be very attention-getting. A full-back tattoo is usually the top choice for people who want a large design covering the entire back.

tattoo size and time chart

Full-Body and Half-Body

A full-body tattoo is a single piece of artwork covering the entire body. A half-body tattoo is a single piece of artwork that covers the front or back side of the body. Both of these types of tattoos are much more involved than just getting a single tattoo. Because of this, they also come with a much larger price tag. If you want a full-body or half-body tattoo, make sure you’re ready for a lifetime commitment.

Tattoos are permanent, so you’ll need laser removal or another expensive form of treatment to get rid of them if you change your mind. If you’re considering a full-body tattoo, make sure the subject matter is appropriate for a large-scale piece of art. A full-body tattoo that is inappropriate for that size may be jarring or distracting.

On the other hand, a half-body tattoo can be more appropriate for a large-scale piece of art, as the subject matter can be zoomed in on a smaller scale.

What Is the Ideal Size for Your First Tattoo?

If you’re new to tattoos and thinking about the perfect design and size for your first tattoo, keep in mind a few key things. First, you don’t have to have your first tattoo be a large piece. It’s often better to start small since you can try different designs and styles before committing to a large design. Second, if you are thinking of getting a large piece, you will want to be sure your design is something to which you are committed.

These tattoos are typically a lot more expensive and take longer to heal, so you will want to be confident that you don’t regret your design choice.

Third, there isn’t an ideal size for everyone, but there are some general rules to follow when selecting the size for your first tattoo. You can choose a small design, like a wrist tattoo or a thigh tattoo, if you want to commit to a piece but don’t want something too visible or prominent.

Tattoo Sizes

The Tattoo Size

You can also go with a medium-sized piece, like an arm tattoo, to try out different design styles while still being able to wear long-sleeved clothing without covering up your new tattoo. Finally, if you are ready for a larger design but don’t want something covering the entire body, consider getting a shoulder to hip tattoo or a full-back tattoo.

These areas are easily seen and can be very striking, but they aren’t as pervasive as a full-back tattoo, which means you are less likely to run into someone with the same design.

Recommended Placement of Tattoos

It’s essential to keep in mind that the placement of your new tattoo will affect the size of your design. The higher up on your body that you get your tattoo, the smaller it will appear compared to a design located lower on your body. It’s essential to choose the best location for your tattoo, as this will ultimately affect the size of your design.

Another vital factor to think about when selecting the placement of your new tattoo is where you want to draw attention to your body.

For example, if you want your tattoo to draw attention to your chest, you probably don’t want to get it on your lower leg. Think about the placement of your design and how the placement might affect the size of your tattoo

Costs Of Tattoos According To Size

It’s important to note that the size of your tattoo isn’t the only factor that determines its price. Several other factors can affect the cost of your tattoo, including the amount of detail in your design, the difficulty of your design, the location of your tattoo, and the artist with whom you choose to work. Large and detailed tattoos will cost more than a simple, small design.

The size of your tattoo might impact the price in a few different ways. The most obvious way the price of a tattoo will be affected by the size is the cost of materials.

How Much Would A Small Tattoo Cost ?

It’s impossible to determine your final cost without getting a quote from the artist, but a rough estimate would be about $10 per square inch.

What Would The Size Of A $500 Tattoo Be ?

Hips/thighs. You can expect to pay $500 for a standard hip or thigh tattoo (about 1ft in length), or $1,500 to $2,000 for full color.

Good Sizes For Your First Tattoo

The size is maybe two by three inches. Starting small is definitely a good idea and if you’re unsure of it, wait. You should also go to reputable shops, tip well, and follow the after-care instructions. Tattoos can also become addictive.

How Big Is A Five-Inch Tattoo?

The majority of people don’t want their tattoos to cover their entire bodies since they don’t want them to look too big. Therefore, you must take into account the size of the tattoo and how it will appear on you. Large tattoos will cost you a lot.

A two-inch tattoo is considered a small or quick tattoo as a general rule. The size of a tattoo also affects its consideration. A tattoo between two and four inches is considered small, a tattoo between four and six inches is considered medium. Anything above six inches is considered large. According to this rule, the five-inch tattoo is a medium-sized tattoo.

What Is The Smallest Tattoo You Can Get?

Micro tattoos, or tattoos that are extremely small, have become a popular trend over the past few years. Usually, these are smaller than 0.5 inches and can be applied to the tiniest areas of your body.

These tattoos look great on a finger or wrist.

How Tattoo Size Impacts The Design

The size of your tattoo will impact the design in a few different ways. Before getting inked, it’s essential to understand all the various factors that can affect the final product. With an increased surface area, it’s not uncommon for the design to stretch and become distorted, especially if it’s a detailed or highly saturated piece.

This is especially true with more complex designs, so it’s essential to keep this in mind when choosing a size.

how to measure tattoo size

How Tattoo Size Impacts Healing and Aftercare

The size of your tattoo will impact the healing process in a few different ways. A large tattoo will require longer for the skin to heal fully because your body needs time to create new collagen and elastin. The size of your tattoo will also impact how much your body can heal your tattoo.

A large tattoo will put more stress and pressure on your skin, making it more prone to infection. A larger tattoo will also require more ointment and other aftercare products.

Be sure to follow the instructions that come with your products and keep your new tattoo as clean as possible. It’s essential to be diligent with aftercare and keep an eye out for any signs of infection.

Planning For Future Tattoos

If there is a larger-sized tattoo that you are hoping to add to in the future, you will want to consider the size of your current tattoo. For example, if you plan to add a large-sized piece to an ankle or wrist tattoo, you may consider making it slightly larger so that the future piece does not overshadow it.

There are ways to make your smaller tattoo work with your larger design to be visually balanced.

You can choose a similar design, color scheme, or theme and even incorporate your smaller tattoo into your larger piece in some creative ways. With so many different design options and size options, there is a perfect tattoo out there for you. Whether you are getting your first tattoo or adding to an existing collection, you’ll want to take the time to plan it out.

From deciding on a design to deciding on a size, there are many factors to consider.

Can tattoos cause medical problems?

Short answer is yes. If your tattoo equipment is contaminated with blood, you can contract various bloodborne diseases, such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), hepatitis B, and hepatitis C.

Does anyone need to avoid getting a tattoo?

People who rarely have flares or have small flares are better candidates for tattoos. In contrast, those with frequent, large, or severe eczema should consult their doctor before getting a tattoo. Tattoo ink pigments may cause allergic reactions in people with eczema because of their more sensitive skin.

Does tattoo ink go into blood?

The particles become lodged in the cells since the cells are unable to break them down. In addition, the lymph nodes take on the color of your tattoo. There is also some evidence to suggest that tattoo ink particles may travel through the bloodstream and lodge in the liver.

Keloid scarring

Scarring is a possibility with tattoos. If you have an infection or an allergic reaction, your tattoo won’t heal correctly. A keloid scar is a raised bump containing old scar tissue.

Allergic reactions

After getting a tattoo, some people might develop an allergic reaction. This is usually caused by the ink – especially if it contains plastic – rather than the needling process itself. Red, yellow, blue, and green pigments tend to be the most allergenic, according to the Mayo Clinic.

Red rashes, hives, and severe itching can be signs of an allergic reaction to tattoos. There may also be swelling. This may happen years after the tattoo was applied.

Is Tattoo Ink Safe?

Compared to the past, tattoo ink is much safer now. Certain colors can, however, make you sensitive, particularly those with brighter pigments.

Inks must be labeled according to FDA standards to prevent cross-contamination, but you could still be vulnerable if such practices aren’t followed. If you want to reduce your risk, ask your provider if the ink is completely sterile.

Components of tattoo pigments are also a concern. Danish researchers found nickel, lead, and other cancer-causing agents in 65 tattoo inks studied in 2010.

Also, according to the FDATrusted Source, some inks contain the same chemicals as car paints and printer inks, but the agency does not regulate them.

To determine the overall risks for people wishing to get tattoos, more tests are needed involving tattoo ink safety.


  1. Safety of tattoos and permanent make-up: Final report:
  2. Charles Zwerling, MD, ophthalmologist, Goldsboro Eye Clinic; president, American Academy of Micropigmentation.
  3. Arisa Ortiz, MD, director of laser and cosmetic dermatology; assistant clinical professor of dermatology, University of California, San Diego.
  4. FDA Advises Consumers, Tattoo Artists, and Retailers to Avoid Using or Selling Certain Tattoo Inks Contaminated with Microorganisms :