Should I Get a Tattoo or Piercing First?

Should I Get a Tattoo or Piercing First?

Should I Get a Tattoo or Piercing

Interesting question. While somewhat related when it comes to social culture the two are inherently different. That said, the title indeed represents a frequently asked question online. In our never-ending duty to answer them ALL we are weighing in with key things to consider when you feel that you must absolutely decide between the two.

5 Things to Consider When Deciding Between a Tattoo or Piercing

Do You Have Commitment Issues?

Do you find yourself changing your mind often? Do you jump between jobs more than a temp? Do your fashion choices swing like 50+ year old couples in Palm Springs? Then you may have an issue with commitment. If so, you may want to go with a piercing first. If after a few months or a year you’re still stoked that you had it done you may be ready for a follow-up in the form of a tattoo.

Is Budget a Concern?

This is the primary qualifier for many. If money is tight and you want to get one or the other very soon, then go with a piercing first. For one, even when compared to a small tattoo a piercing (nose, ears, or body) is typically significantly cheaper. Secondly, when your budget is very tight (to the point that you must choose between a piercing or tattoo) then there’s a good chance that you’ll be settling for a smaller and less complicated tattoo – a design that isn’t the one you’ve always dreamed of. Move forward with your piercing and start saving for that dream tattoo. Need some help? Follow our 5-step guide to saving for a tattoo.

What Is Your Threshold for Pain?

Both will hurt, but obviously the pain lasts longer when getting a tattoo because the process is much more time intensive. If you know that you have a low threshold for pain, start with one or two (or more) piercings to build up your tolerance, before getting a tattoo.

What Will the Boss Say?

Worried about how the boss will react to a tattoo or a piercing in a non-traditional (anywhere but the ears, to them) spot? A tattoo can be hidden by clothing with ease, whereas a facial (nose, upper-lower lip, brow, or cheek) piercing cannot. But honestly, in 2020 neither a tattoo or piercing is frowned upon in the corporate workspace as it once was. This is especially true in a time where personal expression is protected to attract talent that knows demand for skilled labor in Canada is far lower than the current supply. In fact, a tattoo in 2020 can be seen as a means to promoting your personal brand.

Tight on Time?

For some, time constraint is a perceived problem. You may have a short window (you’re in town on vacation, etc.) to get one or the other done. A piercing is quick so time is not an issue. But if you have your heart set on a tattoo too, then make sure that a prospective tattooist is well aware of this fact and can give you a time estimate to completion that allows for a buffer should the session take longer than expected. That said, did you know that you can actually get a tattoo and piercing on the same day? It’s certainly possible, as long as these five conditions are met.


Adrenaline Studios parlors in Greater Vancouver BC and Toronto ON offer tattooing and piercing services. Schedule an appointment at one near you. We will help you come to a conclusion that you’re most happy with, and deliver the best possible result in the process.