Choosing a tattoo design is very personal – it’s going to be a permanent part of you after all.

But while it’s important to consider every facet of the design you’re keen to have inked on your body, it’s also crucial to deeply consider the ink used to create it.

Broadly speaking, there are two kinds of tattoo palettes – colour, and black and white (also known as black and grey).

Colour designs use every hue in the rainbow (including black and white), while black and white designs embrace the two basics.

Both produce stunning, yet completely different, results.

Black and white styles

Black and white or black and grey tattoo styles are the oldest body art types.

The style uses black ink to create a tattoo, with areas of skin used for highlights as well as white ink for shading or contrast.

In the hands of a skilled artist, this style of tattoo can produce striking designs with three-dimensional effects using different tones, textures and contrasts.

There are no restrictions for this type of tattoo regarding the tone of a person’s skin – similar effects can be achieved by anyone – but the design will need to be tweaked depending on the skin it’s being applied to so details can ‘pop’ with good contrasting.

Unlike with colour tattoos, black and white tattoos are less likely to show signs of fading. If your style is more in the classic realm and you like tattoos that are simple in nature, then a black and white design might be the choice for you.

Choosing a colour tattoo

These days, colour tattoos have emerged as a popular choice, giving rise to a myriad of styles and designs that weren’t previously possible in black and white.

But these colourful styles still have some limitations for certain skin tones as certain shades and colours should be matched and adjusted to each person’s particular skin tone.

As a general rule, if your skin tone is dark you will need an artist to apply darker hues if you want the tattoo to make a bolder impression on your skin.

Get expert advice before you ink

Before deciding on colour or black and white, make sure you speak to a skilled tattoo artist about what alterations might need to be done to your design so it suits your skin.

Get in touch with one of our friendly artists for their expert advice today.