So, “How far does the tattoo needle and ink go into the skin?” …. This question comes up quite often in conversations. It is hard to explain, unless you can see the breakdown of all the different layers. The above picture lays it out very clear and helps answer that question.
The skin has a total of 3 layers: Epidermis (composed of 5 sub-layers), Dermis, and Subcutaneous tissue. The tattoo needle and ink should penetrate into the Dermis layer. If the depth is too shallow, the tattoo ink will “bleed out”. This is due to the fact that the Epidermis layer is constantly growing outwards which would take any ink that was deposited into that layer with it. If the depth is too deep it will cause unnecessary pain and run the risk of infection.
The Dermis layer of skin is between 1mm and 2mm into the skin. The tattoo needles and machine are adjusted accordingly. Once the tattoo needles have been set and adjusted the tip of the needle should not be sticking out anymore than 2mm and no less than 1mm.