LWG’s Tattoo Budgeting Tips + 52 Week Savings Challenges – Littered With Garbage

While it’s been strange to go from getting tattooed whenever we please to stuck at home unable to get our ink fix, it’s been tattoo artists who have really suffered in 2020 (no offence is meant by these comments – people have lost so much this past year, but this article is specific to the tattoo industry).

Tattoo artists have been forced to close up shop and refrain from tattooing, instead taking on art commissions, selling shirts and tattoo vouchers (for future appointments) in order to pay their bills. Furthermore, they’ve had the the hassle and enormous amount of stress with booking and rescheduling appointments each time a new lock down was announced.

For tattoo collectors we’re always ready to throw cash at our favourite artists and for them to decorate our bodies in return. Now that we’re slowly beginning to see things change and tentatively returning to “normal” you may now be in the position to think about booking your next (or even your first) tattoo.

If the pandemic has been a financial pressure and wiped out your savings, with your money going towards basic necessities rather than luxuries like a new tattoo, we hope that you’ll soon be in a position to replenish those savings and treat yourself.

No matter your current position, we think that what we have to share will be of interest to you.


Tattoos are expensive, but the great thing about them is that (if they’re done well) they last forever. With hourly rates ranging from $100-$250 – or several hundred for in-demand artists with hundreds of thousands of followers and years-long waiting lists – a decent sized tattoo that requires a few hours of work could set you back up to $1000. We don’t all have that much money lying around, so adding the expense of tattoos to your budget is essential to begin saving for your next piece.

Here’s a few little tips to remember when beginning your tattoo savings journey:

  • Pay your debts before getting a tattoo. It’s best that you take care of any outstanding debts before treating yourself to a luxury item like a tattoo.
  • Start saving before contacting a tattoo artist. Having a couple of hundred dollars already saved means you have money on hand to pay a deposit to secure your appointment. It also means you’re already well on your way to saving the remainder of what you require.
  • Get a quote from your tattoo artist. Don’t be afraid to ask how much the tattoo will cost – but definitely do not haggle! Some tattoo artists will give you a flat rate price for a piece, while larger tattoos that require several sessions may be priced by the hour or a half day/full day rate.
  • Always budget for more than what your tattoo artist has quoted you. A quote is an estimate and the final price can differ if more work is required. Also, if you live in a country where tipping is expected, add a further 20% to your savings goal. It’s best to have more saved than not enough.
  • Your deposit is deducted from the final price of your tattoo. You may need to confirm this, but most tattoo artists will deduct the amount of your deposit from what you’ll pay on the day.


We’re guilty of watching far too many cash envelope stuffing videos on YouTube these past few weeks – the algorithm really knows how to target you. Taking inspiration from these videos, we’ve created some tattoo savings challenges for ourselves that we’d love to share with you.

Click on your country below to discover the five different savings challenges we have created for you.

U.S.A. Tattoo Savings Challenges

U.K. Tattoo Savings Challenges

Australia Tattoo Savings Challenges

Canada Tattoo Savings Challenges

New Zealand Tattoo Savings Challenges


On Instagram, either tag us @litteredwithgarbage or use the hashtags #LWGTSC or #LitteredWithGarbageTattooSavingsChallenge and show us which challenges you’re participating it. We’d love to see updates over the coming months and how successful you’ve been over the course of 52 weeks.

NOTE: While these savings challenges are specific to certain countries (ones where the majority of our readers live) and their currencies, if you’re from elsewhere in the world, it’s easy enough for you to make some slight alterations with the help of a currency converter tool.