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How to Tip Tattoo Shop Employees

Updated on January 8, 2013

How do I tip?

Those four words have been whispered to me across the front desk literally hundreds of times. Clients that are happy with their finished piece, and want to show their appreciation, but have no idea what's appropriate. They don't want to leave so little that it's insulting, but they don't want to go seriously overboard, either. This hub will offer tips on, well, tips!

Cash tips

An appropriate tip for an artist is similar to a tip anywhere else - it's dependent partially on your budget, and partially with how satisfied you were. The better the experience, the higher the tip. As for what's customary, I've heard anywhere from 10-20%, but most pay closer to 20, or round up to the nearest 50 or 100 (if your total is 170, pay 200. If it's 210, pay 250, etc.). There is no set amount, of course - I've seen tips ranging from $5 to $200, and every amount between. Your artist will appreciate any tip you leave them, but, 20% does seem the standard.

Gift tips

Another way to tip your artist is with a gift. We see this a lot from repeat clients, who have come to know the shop staff well. A standard gift would be a bottle of wine, a gift card to a nice restaurant, or, our favourite, goodies! If you know how to bake cookies, bring those bad boys on! Not only do tips like this show your appreciation, they give the artists something to look forward to on their break, or at the end of the day.

It's all good

Whether you decide to add a few bills to the pile, or bring them their favourite baked good, remember that it will be appreciated. Never feel that you didn't tip enough - the artist already loves their job, and is happy to be giving you a beautiful new piece of artwork, so anything over and above that is sheer gravy.


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