WHAT IS TATTOO INK MADE OF?
THE INK WE USE AT OUR SHOP:
• Is made of organic pigments, deionized water and hamamelis water.
• Is free of animal by-products and is vegan.
• Is not tested on animals.
• Is supplied in a medical grade sealed bottle, ensuring its longevity before and after
• Pigments are regularly evaluated for testing.
• Cooperates with all regulations.
Inks may sometimes have a mild scent! This is because we only use organic pigments and sometimes nature has a scent. We do not use additives to hide the occasional scent - it wouldn't be natural if we did.
All tattoo pigment (ink) is essentially similar. There are many different manufacturers that supply tattooers, and some artists make their own pigment. Each recipe is a little different, and these variations result in differing attributes that artists use to determine which brand they prefer. Many pigment manufacturers do not share their proprietary ingredients, and only offer a generic MSDS sheet. This is why most experienced artists will only work with pigment from manufacturers that have been in business a long time and who’s colors are known to work well.
Most tattoo inks technically aren’t inks. They are composed of pigments that are suspended in a carrier solution. The pigment provides the color of the tattoo. The purpose of the carrier is to disinfect the pigment suspension, keep it evenly mixed, and provide for ease of application.
Tattoo ink consists of pigment and a carrier. The carrier may be a single substance or a mixture. The purpose of the carrier is to keep the pigment evenly distributed in a fluid matrix, to inhibit the growth of pathogens, to prevent clumping of pigment, and to aid in application to the skin. Among the safest and most common ingredients used to make the liquid are:
· ethyl alcohol (ethanol)
· purified water
· witch hazel
· propylene glycol
· glycerine (glycerol)
Here's a listing the colors of common pigments use in tattoo inks. It isn't exhaustive - pretty much anything that can be used as a pigment has been at some time. Also, many inks mix one or more pigment:
-Iron Oxide (Fe3O4)
-Iron Oxide (FeO)
Natural black pigment is made from magnetite crystals, powdered jet, wustite, bone black, and amorphous carbon from combustion (soot). Black pigment is commonly made into India ink.
Logwood is a heartwood extract from Haematoxylon campechisnum, found in Central America and the West Indies.
Ochre is composed of iron (ferric) oxides mixed with clay. Raw ochre is yellowish. When dehydrated through heating, ochre changes to a reddish color.
-Cadmium Red (CdSe)
-Iron Oxide (Fe2O3)
Iron oxide is also known as common rust. Cinnabar and cadmium pigments are highly toxic. Napthol reds are synthesized from Naptha. Fewer reactions have been reported with naphthol red than the other pigments, but all reds carry risks of allergic or other reactions.
-Disazodiarylide and/or disazopyrazolone
The organics are formed from the condensation of 2 monoazo pigment molecules. They are large molecules with good thermal stability and colorfastness.
-Ochres (iron oxides mixed with clay)
-Cadmium Yellow (CdS, CdZnS)
-Chrome Yellow (PbCrO4, often mixed with PbS)
Curcuma is derived from plants of the ginger family; aka tumeric or curcurmin. Reactions are commonly associated with yellow pigments, in part because more pigment is needed to achieve a bright color.
-Chromium Oxide (Cr2O3), called Casalis Green or Anadomis Green
-Ferrocyanides and Ferricyanides
The greens often include admixtures, such as potassium ferrocyanide (yellow or red) and ferric ferrocyanide (Prussian Blue)
Blue pigments from minerals include copper (II) carbonate (azurite), sodium aluminum silicate (lapis lazuli), calcium copper silicate (Egyptian Blue), other cobalt aluminum oxides and chromium oxides. The safest blues and greens are copper salts, such as copper pthalocyanine. Copper pthalocyanine pigments have FDA approval for use in infant furniture and toys and contact lenses. The copper-based pigments are considerably safer or more stable than cobalt or ultramarine pigments.
-Manganese Violet (manganese ammonium pyrophosphate)
-Various aluminum salts
Some of the purples, especially the bright magentas, are photoreactive and lose their color after prolonged exposure to light. Dioxazine and carbazole result in the most stable purple pigments.
-Lead White (Lead Carbonate)
-Titanium dioxide (TiO2)
-Barium Sulfate (BaSO4)
Some white pigments are derived from anatase or rutile. White pigment may be used alone or to dilute the intensity of other pigments. Titanium oxides are one of the least reactive white pigments.
Allergies to tattoo pigment are incredibly rare, but sometimes do occur. The severity of an allergic reaction can range from mild, to severe. Red is the most common color associated with allergic reaction, but even this is extremely uncommon. Tattoos sometimes go through irritation phases during the healing process which are mistaken for allergic reaction, even by doctors. If you have concerns about allergic reactions to tattoo pigment, discuss them with your tattoo artist prior to being tattooed.