The 'get ready' blog series by lu loram martin, top large bold blackwork floral tattoo specialist, and illustrator, based in toronto, canada, best

How to Prepare for a Tattoo: DURING

Welcome back to my Get Ready blog series on how to prepare for a tattoo! Here we will go over what to expect during your tattoo session.

It's totally normal to feel nervous or anxious going into your tattoo appointment, even if it's not your first time getting tattooed. But don't fret, I am here to put your mind at ease and make your tattoo experience the best one possible.

I always tell my clients to treat their tattoo appointments like a self-care day! Akin to going to the spa, or getting your hair done, tattoo appointments give you a chance to take some time out for yourself, and to do something for yourself that makes you feel good.

Most of us have incredibly busy lives and rarely get the opportunity to just lay down and be still. Surprisingly, getting tattooed can be relaxing for many people.

Studio 508 by lu loram martin, top large bold blackwork floral tattoo specialist, and illustrator, based in toronto, canada, best

I have a private studio, which means tattoo sessions with me are always in a peaceful, quiet space. It can be worth checking out what the studio you will be visiting is like. Many are open plan and busy so it can be nice to be prepared for the environment you’ll be in. 

In my private studio I like to provide my clients with a few comfort items. Some things I provide include:

  • snacks (sweet and salty!)
  • drinks (water and something sugary)
  • squeezy things! (like a stress ball)
  • heat mat
  • fan
  • eye mask (for the bright lights)
  • ear plugs

Like most artists, I want your experience to be the best one possible. Remember to talk to your artist! Just ask if you need something, I am always happy to help. It is important that you feel comfortable enougth to ask your artist anything, no question is silly or unecessary. 


Lu Loram Martin tattooing in her private studio in Toronto, Canada.


I always go over the process with my clients before any tattooing takes place. Normally what happens is as follows:

  • You’ll arrive and get settled, and fill out a consent form.
  • I always allow time for you to ask any questions.
  • We prepare your skin for the tattoo and depending on your design, we either apply a stencil, or if I am doing a freehand design, I draw on your skin with sharpie marker (examples of my freehand method can be found on my instagram highlights). Either way, you always get to see the stencil placement before we get started.
  • I like to give you at least a good 10 minutes of thinking time after the stencil is placed. You’ll be able to check it out in the mirror, and take your time over the design and placment.
  • Once we are 100% on the placement, you will then lay down and get comfy on the tattooing bed (I supply my clients with a heating pad and pillows for extra comfort).
  • I always do a little intro, where I start a small line of the tattoo and then check in with you to see how it's feeling.
  • The first 10 minutes are normally the worst (it can suck), but after that most people tend to relax into it and settle in for the remainder of the process.
  • I’m not much of a chatter when I get into the tattoo process, so I’m more than happy for my clients to pop in their headphones and zone into some music or a movie.
  • Rest assured, I encourage you to take as many breaks as you need, for snacks, stretches, or just taking a breather, we work together to get through your tattoo session as pleasantly as possible.
  • Also never feel any pressure to continue or finish if you're not feeling it, it’s always possible to complete a tattoo over more than one sitting!
Tray setup by lu loram martin, top large bold blackwork floral tattoo specialist, and illustrator, based in toronto, canada, best

Some other tips that I recommend to keep you comfortable include downloading your favourite movie, playlist or audio book, and wearing your comfiest clothes (don't forget, dark colours are usually best to avoid ink stains). 

Feel free to bring anything that makes you feel more at ease. Some things I suggest are, warm socks or slippers, layers in case you get chilly or warm, and sunglasses (as the lights I use can be very bright). 

Stick to these tips and I am confident that you will come out of your appointment feeling as stoked about it as I always am.

tattoos by lu loram martin, top large bold blackwork floral tattoo specialist, and illustrator, based in toronto, canada, best

 Check out the next blog of this series for tips on how to prepare for what comes after your tattoo appointment. If you have yet to book, don't worry! Check out the first blog post of the series on how to prepare before your tattoo appointment, and subscribe to my newsletter for first dibs on one offs and last minute cancellations! 



PS, If you are interested in my booking process, you can find all you need to know HERE, and if you have any other questions just CONTACT ME.

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