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50 Shades of Grey or 50 Different Shades Entirely? | Tattoo Ink Suppliers


The art of tattooing has evolved in many ways over the centuries, one of those evolutions was the use of colour! While colour tattoos have been around for a long time the way that colour has been used in tattoos across different cultures has undoubtedly changed, this becomes evident when you see the sheer diversity of styles and techniques that have surfaced over the last couple of generations. In fact, the use of colour has been so revolutionary that my mum, who was never lets say a ‘fan’ of tattoos, saw my colour tattoos and was so shocked by what was able to be achieved with the use of colour nowadays that she went and got a tattoo herself! It really is amazing what tattoo artists have accomplished in the realm of colour tattoos, but does that mean they are better? As tattoo ink suppliers it’s something we are interested in finding out.


Black and grey ink, for a long time, seemed to be the certified medium for realism. In fact, I have met tattoo artists today who flat out refuse to do portraits in colour, which is understandable as all tattoo artists have their preferred styles, but many tattoo artists are breaking that stereotype and creating amazing realism tattoos with colour. Of course, there are some tattoo lovers who will only get black and grey, I’ve heard some people say colour tattoos look too cartoonish, but when you look at the variety of effects colour can achieve, from watercolour tattoos to trash polka tattoos and much more, your options are virtually limitless in terms of the character of your tattoo, not to mention tattoo ink suppliers are offering a larger variety than ever of diverse colours in different shades.


Admittedly, the majority of my own tattoos are colour but I have recently strayed into the realms of black and grey with an Edgar Allan Poe chestpiece, vibrancy not being something that is typically associated with this particular poet. I think that brings up an important point when choosing if you want your tattoo in colour or black and grey, it’s really a deciding factor in what the tone of your tattoo will be. Colour tattoos tend to really make a statement, some might say they are more expressive because of their liveliness. Black and grey tattoos can make just as much as a statement, especially with bold designs such as tribal or block black silhouettes. The finer black and grey pieces can set quite a serious tone for your tattoo, perhaps even understated.


When thinking of tattoos “practical” might not be the first word that springs to mind but it is important to consider, as our relatives are always telling us, our tattoos will still be there when we are 80! In terms of practicalities, black and grey might just win it due to its sustainability, black ink tends to fade less over time and isn’t as affected by the sun. Whereas colour tattoos might need to be touched up and sun damage affects coloured ink more noticeably, but applying sunscreen should fix that problem. While colour is better for cover-ups, black ink shows up better on darker skin tones and will blend in well with any outfit.  

When it comes to whether your tattoo should be black and grey or colour, I don’t think there is a right answer as it’s entirely subjective. It’s important to remember that all the techniques and effects you can achieve with the one you can transfer to the other also. Tattoo ink suppliers and tattoo artists have made the choices endless with what you can do with your body art but if you really can decide whether you should go with black and grey or colour, then you could always a try a blastover tattoo which can achieve really awesome, layered looks with both colour and black ink, so you get the best of both worlds!

What are your thoughts? 

Love Katy...

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  • Katy Jackson