How Do You Do a Tattoo at Home?

tattoo-home Credit: Romona Robbins Photography/Image Source/Getty Images

Home tattooing requires a needle, a pencil with an eraser, a ballpoint pen, tattoo ink, cotton swabs, rubbing alcohol and a bandage. To create a tattoo, make a tattoo implement, sterilize the needle and the skin, draw a design and tattoo the image into the skin. Time varies according to the design.

  1. Make the tattooing implement

    Poke the dull end of a long, thin needle into the eraser of a pencil. Sterilize the needle by placing the sharp end in an open flame until the metal becomes red. Allow the needle to cool, then wrap the needle in fine white thread, leaving the tip exposed. Alternatively, purchase a home tattoo kit.

  2. Disinfect the tattoo area

    If necessary, shave any hair on the skin's surface. Wash the area with antibacterial soap. Use a cotton pad soaked in rubbing alcohol to wipe and disinfect the area. This can be done while the needle is cooling. Failure to adequately disinfect skin and implements during tattooing could lead to infection. Follow all safety measures carefully.

  3. Draw the picture

    Use a ballpoint pen to draw the tattoo design on the skin. Alternatively, use a tattoo stencil. Be certain you are satisfied with the image. Tattooing can be painful, and the ink is permanent.

  4. Ink the needle

    Disinfect a canning lid by immersing it in boiling water. Allow it to cool. Squeeze a small pool of tattoo ink into the lid. Dip the tip of the tattoo needle in the ink.

  5. Tattoo the skin

    Poke the tip of the needle into the skin until the dermis appears to stick to the tip. When you remove the needle, a small dot of black should be left under the skin. Continue this process, tracing along the tattoo design. Dab the area periodically with a cotton swab soaked in alcohol.

  6. Care for the tattoo

    Smear a thin layer of A & D lotion on the tattoo to soothe it. Cover the tattoo loosely with a bandage, allowing air to reach the skin to promote healing.