Here are some common questions one might ask before stepping into a tattoo/piercing studio:
Q. I'm getting my first tattoo, what is the process and where do I start?
A. First thing you'll want to do is get a visual of what you are looking for (style, location, size, etc). Once this is figured out, we can let you know if it is possible.
Not all ideas for tattoos are ideal for just any place or size. There's a minimum size for highly detailed tattoos. The reason for this is because we don't want to cram a bunch of detail in a small area so over the years, it bleeds together and doesn't look good anymore (our bodies are made up of an average of 70% water). We try to avoid these issues by being cautious of the size in the beginning of the process.
The next move will be to contact us via email or phone to set up an appointment for a consultation. If your idea does not require anything to be drawn up, we might be able to set up and schedule the same day (we sometimes accept walk-ins if there are cancellations but it's best to call beforehand to make sure as we are currently booking pretty far out). If a drawing is required, we will sometimes require a small deposit (which secures your appointment date and is put towards the total cost of the tattoo). This deposit is non-refundable.
Q. How much does a tattoo cost?
As vague as this question can possibly be, there is sort of a right answer for it.
Cost depends on many factors; size, detail, color/b&w, etc.
Unicorn Ink has a $60-$80 minimum. This means, you could get anything from a small dot, to a medium sized letter, or word and it will most likely fall into our minimum cost.
The time/cost difference between a cartoon style, high contrast, black and grey lion and a realistic portrait of a lion at the same size could be hours. So always consider this when planning and budgeting for your next tattoo. Aside from this we charge roughly $125/hour for larger pieces. So the longer the tattoo takes, the more it's going to cost. One must consider; the longer the tattoo takes, the better it's going to look too (at least when this comes to larger projects).
Q. Do you guys do white tattoos (white ink only)?
We will always recommend going to traditional route with black. The reason for this is because white ink fades over time, and should only be considered as temporary. It mostly looks like a scar, so if this is something you're going for, contact us to set up a consultation.
*White Ink tattoos cannot be guaranteed therefore will not fall in the shop standards of receiving a free touch-up.
Q. How old do I have to be in order to get my tattoo/piercing?
By Rhode Island law, any person must be at or above the age of 18 in order to get a tattoo (yes, even with parental consent).
For piercings, age is up to the piercer's discretion. That said, anyone under the age of 18 is required to bring their parent, along with the minor's birth certificate and parent's I.D. Without these two things, we cannot service you. Nipples piercings, genital piercings and tongue piercings are not to be done on anyone under the age of 18.
***IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT TATTOO AGE LIMIT (RHODE ISLAND LAW)***
§ 11-9-15 "Tattooing of minors." – "Every person who shall tattoo any minor under the age of eighteen (18) shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be imprisoned not exceeding one year or be fined not exceeding three hundred dollars ($300). For the purposes of this section, "tattooing" means the practice of marking the skin with indelible patterns or pictures by making punctures and inserting pigments. Nothing in this section shall be construed as prohibiting the removal of tattoo markings from the body of any person of whatsoever age."
Q. Do you guys use numbing cream before doing your tattoo? What if I can't handle it?
We recommend you do not get a tattoo unless you are mentally, physically and of course financially ready for it. We do NOT use numbing cream before tattooing. If you plan on getting your own and putting it on before you get your tattoo, please consult with your artist first so he can let you know how to proceed with this correctly.
Q. Do you guys tattoo the face?
This has sort of been the mutual agreenment here at the shop that we do NOT tattoo the face. Sorry!
Q. Do you offer a free touchup on your tattoos?
Unicorn Ink does offer a free touchup on your tattoo (once the tattoo is fully healed). The only areas we do NOT guarantee touchups are on the hands/fingers, wrists, feet and inner lip. This is because these areas are notorious for fading quicker than any other areas. We will always warn you before getting your tattoos on these specific spots. That said, if you are in getting another tattoo in a different area, and we already have our needles and inks out, we will most likely give you a quick touchup on these spots as a courtesy from us.
Q. What's with the Unicorn? What's the story behind the name?
Well it started one day when, artist and manager Greg, had gone into the woods to search for firewood and had come across a small purple puddle on the ground. He had no idea what it was, but was very intrigued by it. He broke a small branch off the tree and poked at it. It started to sparkle and he immediately knew there was something different about this.
He then heard a faint bristling in the leaves behind him and quickly shot around to find a bright, yellow, glowing unicorn standing there glaring at him with bright white eyes. Greg was so shocked and stiff, he couldn't even move. He sat there staring at the unicorn while the unicorn glared down at him. He seemed to either be angry or scared, but he couldn't tell. Greg looked down and noticed the unicorn was wounded on the leg. And out of it dripped, what seemed to be purple blood. Greg then immediately knew where the puddle came from.
He continued to stare at the unicorn and the unicorn stood there, glaring, as if he was in defensive mode. Greg noticed a large amount of markings on him, but couldn't make out what they were through its glowing, yellow presence. All of a sudden, his phone rang. The unicorn yelled out loud, with a chirping combination of sounds, that almost sounded like random keys being hit on a piano, then beamed forward and disappeared into thin air.
Greg didn't know what to think or what to believe! He was trying to wake himself up as if he were dreaming. But he wasn't. He looked back at the puddle, and immediately took out his empty water bottle from his large carrying bag to scoop away at the puddle. He noticed the bottle was so hot, it was almost about to melt! He burned himself slightly trying to get all the blood inside the bottle. He managed to get as much as could fit and started to walk back to the house.
He tried to wash the blood off of his skin but nothing worked. It was bright and permanent. He was debating whether he should go to the doctors or not but he knew they would have thought he was just crazy...
It wasn't until later that night, as he laid in bed that he thought of something crazy. I'm a tattoo artist, he thought. Why not use this as ink? How would it work? He knew it was a stupid and dangerous idea, but he thought it would be worth a try, considering he felt like he was going crazy anyways. He shot out of bed and set up his machine. He dipped the needle inside the bottle of blood (which was still boiling hot), and began to tattoo the top of his hand. He had no idea what he was doing or why he was doing it, but he kept going. He couldn't believe how bright and vivid the tattoo was. It hurt him so badly but he just couldn't stop! After he finished, he cleaned up and sat back in bed. As his hand burned he stared at his new tattoo in the dim lit room but was still able to see it bright as day! He was completely shocked and excited at the same time. He knew that from this point on, he would never stop using this for his ink. But he had to come up with a name for it. "Unicorn Ink", he said out loud. He knew then and there, this was the beginning of a new story. He knew nobody would understand what a truly magical tattoo would feel like, unless it was done by Unicorn Ink.
And so the story continues...