Tattoo studios need to be as well equipped as a doctor's office, if they want to succeed. Aside from the usual items that any store would need (cash registers and the like), a tattoo studio also needs a thermal copier, a tattoo machine, tattoo needles, tattoo ink, flash designs, tattoo power supplies and accessories and a tattoo chair.
An important item that needs to be included in a list of tattoo supplies is a thermal copier. This piece of equipment allows the tattoo artist to make a copy of a design that can then be transferred onto the skin of the person getting the tattoo, making sure that the tattooee gets exactly what he or she wants. This is helpful for flash designs or for people who have their own designs they wish to have tattooed.
Tattoo machines (sometimes called tattoo guns) are the actual machines used by tattoo artists to apply the tattoo. The needle bar of the tattoo machine moves up and down, marking the skin with ink that has been applied to the needles at the end of the needle bar. Some supply companies also sell tattoo kits along with their tattoo machines.
Tattoo needles are usually used in groups, allowing the tattoo artist to create lines or shade. The groups can be round, used for creating lines, or flat, used for shading. Depending on the regulations in your state, tattoo needles may be used and sterilized or new. Ask your tattoo artist, if you're not sure whether the needles will be new or used. Either way, be sure the needles used are clean and sterilized.
Flash designs are standard tattoos designs, purchased by a tattoo studio, for use in tattooing. The designs can be of various qualities. At best, some flash is quite attractive, while other flash designs are simplistic, or, at worst, awkwardly drawn and distasteful.
Tattoo Power Supplies and Accessories
Tattoo power supplies and accessories are used with the tattoo machines. They provide the way to power the tattoo machine and a way to connect the tattoo machine to the power source.
Tattoo chairs are similar in appearance to doctors' tables and dentist chairs. They are meant to help keep the person getting the tattoo in one position for a long period of time. They are especially helpful when doing lower back tattoos. A quality tattoo chair is essential in any tattoo business because it allows the artist to get in different positions, while keeping the client comfortable. TATSoul Tattoo Furniture are leaders in providing tattoo furniture. They offer the high end of tattoo chairs, and have been featured in the reality show Miami Ink on The Learning Channel.
Other Tattoo Supplies
Some minor tattoo supplies that studios need include disposable razors (for shaving the area where the tattoo will go), disposable latex gloves and ink cups and ink cup holders. Some other supplies that aren't necessarily tattoo related include paper towels, gauze, tape, and antiseptic spray or lotion.
Locating Supplies for Tattoos
So where can you find all these supplies? To get a thermal copier, a tattoo machine, tattoo needles, tattoo ink, flash designs and tattoo power supplies and accessories, there are a number of wholesalers and retailers that have websites, including:
You can look through online auction sites like eBay, but be careful. You don't know what you're getting if you're not buying from a reputable seller. Usually quality tattoo supply companies will not advertise on eBay. Finally, you can check your paper for sales and auctions. They might not yield some of the smaller, consumable tattoo supplies, but they are a good source for big items, like copiers and tattoo chairs.