Everything You Need To Know About Stick And Poke Tattoos


The general public loves tattoos for a single reason: they look good. As long as a tattoo artist is experienced, it’s guaranteed that the tattoo will turn out excellent. Most people know tattoos as the ink under the skin, but the older poke and stick tattooing method is gaining traction in recent years.

This article will discuss everything there is to know about poke and stick tattoos. Read on below to get started.

More about Poke and Stick Tattoos

The Poke and stick tattoo method has been around since ancient Egyptian times. It’s known for being the first tattooing method, so the poke and stick method is also referred to as the traditional or primitive method.

The process is similar to what we see today in modern tattoo parlors. Colored ink is administered via a needle repeatedly poked into the skin. The process is painful, but the result is something that looks beautiful.

These days, poke and stick tattoos are popular among some street artists. Some organizations also use it to brand their members. The Yakuza is one of the most famous groups that use poke and stick tattoos to show membership.

The Inks Used

There are various inks used in traditional tattooing. Poke and stick tattooing is no different. In the past, the inks used included soot and ground-up minerals.

Nowadays, poke and stick tattoos are most often done with pigment-based inks. This includes colors like black and red. However, some artists still use soot and minerals. The use of pigments also allows for multiple colors to be used.

Tattoo Aftercare

After a poke and stick tattoo, the next step is tattoo care. The raw needle has to be cleaned up so no bacteria are left. The needle is then boiled in water to sterilize it.

The tattoo itself needs to be cleaned up, too, using soap and water. It’s also best to use an antiseptic to reduce the chances of infection. The skin is then covered with a bit of oil or a salve. This is meant to eliminate the redness from the poke and stick tattooing.

In the past, people would just bandage the tattoo. However, it’s best to use a bandage that only lightly touches the skin. This is so that it doesn’t sweat into the tattoo.

Pros and Cons of Poke and Stick Tattoos

Like any other method of tattooing, poke and stick tattoos have their own pros and cons. Some of them are:


Poke and stick tattoos are cheap because they aren’t done in a sterile environment. For this reason, they’re also fast because poke and stick tattoos are done with a needle. Poke and stick tattoos are also more permanent because of the inks’ quality.


Poke and stick tattoo aftercare is difficult. Modern-day techniques make poke and stick tattoos easier to hide, but the wounds aren’t closed up. The tattoo must be constantly cleaned and covered with oil or salve to guarantee healing, which can be pretty uncomfortable.

Should You Get It?

Poke and stick tattoos are great for those who can’t afford a modern-day tattoo parlor. They are also great if you’re a street artist. However, poke and stick tattoos can be pretty uncomfortable during and after the process. It’s best to think about whether you can handle the pain and the aftercare before you decide to get a poke and stick tattoo.


Poke and stick tattoos are slowly making a comeback. They’re becoming popular among street artists and those who can’t afford more expensive tattoos. However, poke and stick tattoos are not as humane as modern-day tattoos, so it’s best to talk to a tattoo artist to know your options before getting one.

If you’re looking for the best tattoo places in Buffalo, NY, Lucky DeVille has got your back! We pride ourselves in providing quality services for tattoos, cosmetic or otherwise. We can guarantee that you’ll get your money’s worth with us, so contact us today and let’s get your ink on!