Frequently Asked Questions

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Welcome to the "Frequently Asked Questions" portion of our website.  Here you will find information about our shop and policies, as well as answers to various questions regarding tattooing and body piercing procedures.  If you have any questions or concerns, please take the time to read the following information carefully.  Our goal is for our clients to feel as comfortable and informed as possible before beginning their tattoo journey.

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What are your business hours?

Tuesday-Saturday 12pm-8pm (CLOSED SUNDAY & MONDAY)

How old do I need to be to get tattooed?

At least 18 years of age, with a valid photo ID (license, state ID, passport).  This is in compliance with Rhode Island state law.  Any shop within the state that agrees to tattoo a minor for any reason is doing so illegally.  We will not tattoo anyone that does not have a valid photo ID.  We need to see and make a photocopy for health department records.

Do you offer body piercing?

Unfortunately we no longer offer body piercing.

Do I need to make an appointment, or do you also accept walk-ins?

We are a custom shop, mainly working by appointment only.  We less frequently offer walk-ins if an artist happens to have free time.  Please call or email the shop if you are interested in a walk-in appointment so that we can let you know if we have any time available.  

How do I go about making a tattoo appointment?

First, you want to schedule a consultation appointment.  It's always best to come by the shop to discuss the tattoo you have in mind with the artist.  If you are unsure which artist would be best for your tattoo, we can reccommend some one for you.  Please bring in any reference material you have for the piece and be prepared to pay a deposit if you are then ready to schedule the tattoo appointment.  The deposit amount will come off the final price of the tattoo.  It's always quickest and simplest to call the shop directly for any kind of scheduling.

I am planning to get a tattoo --is there anything I should do to be prepared?

We suggest getting a good nights sleep, having a good meal before hand, wearing appropriate clothing, keeping good personal hygiene, and relaxing.  

Do you only accept cash?

No, we also accept Visa, Mastercard, and Discover.  There will be a 4% charge added to any purchase made with a card.  We DO NOT accept checks.

Should I tip my tattoo artist?

Tipping is a common practice if you are happy with your tattoo.  If you can afford it, a good tip is 15-20%, but anything is appreciated.  It is not expected or mandatory, but every little bit is greatly appreciated!

Can I bring some one with me to my tattoo appointment?

Yes, though our artists' rooms only allow enough room for you to bring one guest with you to your appointment.  All othger guests will be asked to wait in the lobby (which has limited space as well).  

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Is tattooing safe?

Most definitely at Powerline Tattoo.  We pride ourselves in practicing hospital sterilization and cleanliness.  We regularly test our sterilization equipment and only use single-use needles.  All of our professionals are certified by the Rhode Island Board of Health.

How does pricing work?

If the tattoo takes an hour or more, we charge by the hour, and the artist will tell you at the consultation what their hourly rate is.  If a piece takes less than an hour, it's priced by the piece.  Our shop minimum is $100.

Some one told me that I should get drunk before being tattooed to tolerate the pain--is this a good idea?

Absolutely not.  A professional artist will refuse to tattoo you if you are obviously under the influence of alcohol or drugs.  Also, alcohol is a blood thinner which can cause complications in both the application of the tattoo and the healing process.

Do you do tattoo parties?

Absolutely not.  Tattooing should only be done in a professional establishment to ensure the safety of both you and your artist.  Take the time to think things through--don't think that getting a $20 tat at a party is a good'll be paying for it later in many ways.

How will the ink colors appear on my skin?

Everyone's skin tone is different, causing the colors to show up differently on each person's skin.  If you have a lighter skin tone, colors will appear more vivid.  If you have a darker skin tone, the pigments will look more muted.  Your artist will select ink, making sure it is the best choice for your skin tone.


What about allergies to ink?

While it is possible to be allergic to anything, an allergic reaction to ink is extremely rare.  If you do have a reaction, you may want to consult a doctor and have proper testing done for an explanation.  You should still let your artist know if you have allergies to anything as there could be a material used during the tattoo process to which you are allergic (ex. latex).

If I have an allergy to latex can I still get tattooed ?

Definitely.  We always have gloves in alternative materials on hand, but definitely let your artist / piercer know as soon as you enter our establishment.

Can I get tattooed if I'm pregnant?

No.  Our staff at Powerline Tattoo does not want to put pregnant women or their unborn children at risk. Anyone with a serious illness should consult a doctor before being tattooed. 

How can I contact Powerline Tattoo?

You can call us at (401) 369-7771, come to our location, go to the CONTACT form provided in the menu bar, or email us at  Our hours of operation are as follows:  Tuesday-Saturday 12pm-8pm.


A word about preparing yourself for getting tattooed :

The better you take care of your body, the better it will take care of you.  You should come well rested and well nourished.  You should not consume alcohol the night before.  Also, choose your clothing wisely.  If you are getting a tattoo on your upper arm, wear a tank top.  If you are getting a thigh tattoo, wear comfortable shorts.  Also, if ink gets on your clothing it may not wash out--don't wear your fanciest white blouse.  The use of illegal drugs and alcohol will not be tolerated.

A Word About Pricing and Tattoos:

Once you have made the decision to get a tattoo, you'll need to evaluate your budget.  When it comes to tattoos, you often get what you pay for. 

There are several factors involved which impact the price of a tattoo, so it is highly recommended that you go into the studio and discuss the design in detail with an artist.  Some of these factors are:  color, size, placement, level of detail, and level of difficulty.  Generally these factors determine how long a tattoo will take to complete, and the more time an artist has to spend on a tattoo, the higher the price will be.  If you have a budget, you can include that in the discussion and the artist will take that into consideration when designing the tattoo.  Because there are so many factors involved, it is usually next to impossible to give an accurate estimate over the phone or internet.

When choosing an artist/studio, price should never be the deciding factor.  If a studio is offering discount tattoos, it is wise to question their reasoning.  Is the work that they produce of the highest standards?  Are they using the best equipment to ensure your safety?  Is their shop clean?  Does the staff make you feel comfortable and safe?  Even though a cheap price may sound good, the outcome of this decision may leave you with a poorly done tattoo, an infection, or a lifelong disease.


Tattoo Safety

Professional tattoo artists will sterilize their equipment after each use.  They use a steam pressurized autoclave when disinfecting their equipment.  Liquid cleaners should be used only to clean debris from equipment, preparing them for sterilization.  Once the cleaners have been used on the instruments, they will then be autoclaved, which will sterilize them. We do not re-use any equipment that could come in contact with bodily fluids.

When the tattoo artist does the tattoo, he/she should always wear disposable gloves. Equipment that will come in contact with the tattoo or the contaminated area must either be sterilized in between uses (ie. steel tubes) or disposed of upon completion (ie. needles, paper towels, ink caps, barrier film).  

Before the tattooist starts the tattoo, he/she should always open a brand new set of needles.  Pigment must be poured into small single use ink caps.  If the artist dips the needle into the big ink bottle, you very well may be sharing fluids with previous clients. 

The working area should always be clean and sanitary.   If you get a tattoo from a studio that is dirty or unsanitary, you could find yourself in a never ending spiral of infection and disease.


Tattoos and Time

Over time tattoos will change with the skin due to exposure to external elements, as well as internal aging and regeneration.  The way a tattoo looks may change with the skin as it shrinks, stretches, and ages. 

The length of time that a tattoo remains healthy and vibrant in color depends on how well it is taken care of during the initial healing process, as well as how you continue to take care of it. Most tattoos will heal completely within a few short weeks, though they must be kept moist to prevent excessive scabbing.  If allowed to scab, the scab that forms may remove some of the color from the tattoo.

The number one enemy of tattoos is the sun.  Just like other colors that are exposed to sunlight, the pigments found in tattoos will fade.  Yellow and red are the hardest colors to maintain over time, while blue and black are the easiest and most stable to maintain.  If you know that your lifestyle requires that you be out in the sun often, you may want to forego color and choose black and gray. Tattoos need to be maintained to keep their colors bright.  If you are going to be out in the sun, you should always cover your tattoos as well as wear a quality sunscreen.