How Tattoos Work

Creating a Tattoo: Prep Work

Prior to sterilizing the equipment, the artist cleans each item and places it in a special pouch. An indicator strip on the pouch changes color when the items inside are sterile.

Before working on customers, tattoo artists wash and inspect their hands for cuts and abrasions. Then, they should do the following:

  • Disinfect the work area with an EPA-approved viricide.
  • Place plastic bags on spray bottles to prevent cross-contamination.
  • Explain the sterilization process to the client.
  • Remove all equipment from sterile packaging in front of the client.
  • Shave and disinfect (with a mixture of water and antiseptic soap) the area to be tattooed.

Now, let's look at how the artist creates the tattoo.