industry insight (1)

The tattoo industry is still going strong in the US, with no signs of slowing down. Body ink has become much more mainstream thanks to celebrity trends and the overall higher visibility of tattoos in society. Tattoos and body piercing businesses have relatively low start-up costs, so industry experts believe that tattooing is here to stay for the time being. 

In addition, millennials are the age group that is most likely to have tattoos, so as they are entering the workforce, attitudes are shifting to become even more favorable toward tattoos in general. Here’s a snapshot of tattoo industry trends that should give you some more insight.

tattoo industry revenue, tattoo industry trends, Tattoo industry statistics, Tattoo statistics

Tattoo Industry Revenue

MarketResearch notes that tattoo industry revenue has nearly doubled since 2007. It’s now a $3 billion-per-year industry. One thing to keep in mind, however, is that when you see the words “tattoo industry,” it really means the following: tattoo studios, body piercings which are an added service of tattoo studios, and tattoo removal which is typically done by a MediSpa or dermatologist. Tattooing accounts for $1.3 billion per year, body piercing generates nearly $1 billion and tattoo removal accounts for the remainder of revenue.

Tattoo Industry Statistics

The tattoo industry has been increasing by nearly 10 percent every year for more than a decade now. Industry analysts believe that this trend will continue well into the 2020s. On the other side of that coin, the tattoo removal industry is now outpacing the growth of tattoo studios. Tattoo removal services are expected to increase by 18 percent annually for the next few years.

tattoo industry revenue, tattoo industry trends, Tattoo industry statistics, Tattoo statistics

Startup Cost for a Tattoo Business

Opening a tattoo and body piercing shop has a nationwide average of around $27,000. This can vary depending on state and local licensing, regulatory fees, facility rental and other factors. Once a tattoo artist has an established clientele and builds a good reputation, they can earn upwards of $50,000 per year. It’s not unusual for a larger tattoo studio to generate more than half a million dollars in revenue per year, if they have several artists renting space. Profit margins for tattoo studios are around 55 percent, which is extremely good. (Restaurants tend to have a 7 to 10 percent profit margin, by way of comparison.)

Regulatory Issues and Tattoo Studios

Tattoo studios used to have a more negative reputation. Just a couple of decades ago, it wasn’t unusual to find the one tattoo studio in a town located down by the railroad tracks, next to a dive bar. Today, you’re more likely to find a tattoo studio on Main Street next to your favorite coffee shop, as city officials have become more amenable to the business. That being said, local regulations surrounding the industry can vary widely from one city to the next.

Tattoo Statistics

  • $3 billion annual industry
  • 10 percent project annual growth rate for tattoo studio
  • Low start-up costs and above average profit margins

Whether you plan to run a tattoo and body piercing studio, or if you want to offer tattoo removal services in your MediSpa, liability insurance needs to be a part of your business plan. Marine Agency has been insuring tattoo and body piercing studios since 1990 and we’re standing by to prepare a quote for you. Give us a call today at 800-763-4775 to get the process started!


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