As well as machine-made tattoos, we also offer hand-poked tattoos, otherwise known as ‘stick and poke’. It’s an old tattoo tradition that does not involve any electricity. The tattoos are hand pushed into the skin, using a sterilised tattoo needle. Relatively, this method is time-consuming, where hours are required to get a small tattoo done, so always make sure that if you book one, it’s on a day where you don’t need to be anywhere else but the tattoo studio. The same approach goes for any tattoo you book with us.
Generally, a stick and poke tattoo will heal faster than a machine-based tattoo but this depends on your skin (which varies from one person to another) and how you look after it. We would recommend to look after your tattoo in the same way you would a machine-based tattoo, to keep it clean and heal in the best possible quality.
Are Hand-Poked tattoos permanent?
Yes they are, providing the correct tattoo tools are used. Fading is a possibility but this is not down to the hand-poke technique but the location on the body, how it heals and again, the tools used to create them with. Any tattoo will fade overtime, regardless of whether it’s done with a machine or by hand anyway so you may need to revisit for a touch-up or a top-up to maintain the quality of your tattoo.
Are hand-poked tattoos more painful than machine-made tattoos?
Hand-poked tattoos cause less trauma to the skin but you will still feel pain as it’s a bunch of needles entering your skin or body. It depends where you get tattooed so in comparison, getting a tattoo on your forearm will hurt less than your ribs or any other sensitive part of the body. It will also depend on your chosen artist and their technique. If they’re heavy-handed then chances are, it will hurt more and possibly cause blowouts if needles get pushed into deeper layers of the skin than necessary, so choose wisely.
So why get a hand-poked tattoo when you can get a machine tattoo much quicker?
A hand-poked or stick and poke tattoo is both a method and a particular style of tattoos. Sure yes electricity exists now so what’s the point? Getting a hand-poked tattoo is a different experience altogether and some say it’s relaxing or spiritual! Our hand-poked tattoo artist, Pokeyhontas is originally from The Philippines, where the ancient hand tap tattoo method is still practiced today so this is the closest she can be to her cultural roots!
Are Hand-Poked or Stick and Poke tattoos cheaper?
Short answer is no. Hand-poked or Stick and Poke tattoos are priced the same as machine-made tattoos. It takes just as much effort, if not more, to create skin art by hand. Because the needle is continuously poked into the skin rather than glided, it takes a good technique to ensure correct depth into the skin each time.Tattoo artists tend to charge less initially if they’re trying to build a portfolio as apprentices but in general, you should find them to be priced the same.
If you’re interested in getting a hand-poked tattoo, Pokeyhontas is based at our tattoo studio in Birmingham. She’s currently an apprentice but already has a strong portfolio. If you wish to see a regularly updated portfolio and to take advantage of offers, please head over to Instagram and follow @pokeyhontastattoo