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Best Tattoo Shops In New York City

Tattoo Artists Gather For The International London Tattoo Convention
(Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

Marriage may not always be permanent, but tattoos are. If you'd rather wear your heart on your arm than your sleeve, it pays to do your homework and feel the love from one of the artists at these top studios.

We've covered our favorite tattoo parlors in NYC before. Click over to find our older picks.

Foursquare Favorite: Wooster St. Social Club
43 Wooster St.
New York, NY 10013
(646) 545-3300
Read all the tips on Foursquare

Every fan of Wooster St. Social Club seems to have their own favorite tattoo artist, but the bottom line is that everyone on staff is a standout. Head to Foursquare to sort reviews by these tastes:

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Come for creative designs and bright colorful work, but be sure to reserve ahead for a consultation ($200 minimum).

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Kings Avenue Tattoo
188 Bowery, Floor 2
New York, NY 10012
(212) 431-5464

Passionate and professional, the Kings Avenue Tattoo staff is as attentive and patient as it is creative. An extensive array of portfolios are available to flip through while you wait, although most patrons say they are seen quickly, even without an appointment. Artists include New Zealand legend Rose Hardy and fan favorite Phil Szlosek.

White Rabbit Tattoo
121 Essex St.
New York, NY 10002
(212) 228-1803

Known for their emphasis on vegan products, and ability to create a soothing atmosphere, the artists at White Rabbit Tattoo will answer all of your questions during a free consultation. An intimate cadre of studio artists include Mikhail, known for his adept, realistic portrayals of people and the natural world, and stippling artist, Felix. Appointments for international guest artists, such as Rose, are scheduled months in advance, so call early if you want work done by a must-have favorite.

Supernova Tattoo & Piercing
3801 23rd Ave.
Queens, NY 11105
(718) 274-5712

These guys take care of you the way your mother would if she was a tattoo artist. Don't even think about going there under the influence, or if you haven't had a good night's sleep. There may be a wait for an appointment with artist Andreana Verona, but if you're into tribal design or need a tat artist who understands color nuance, it will be worth it. Other artists include Bulldog, known for his edgy creativity, and master of black and white, Adriano Marques.

Eight of Swords Tattoo
115 Grand St.
Brooklyn, NY 11249
(718) 387-9673

A custom-design tattoo studio coupled with a fine art gallery, Eight of Swords is known for its emphasis on supporting local charities as well as on quality design work. Artists include Zoe Bean, known for her feather-light touch and whimsical buoyancy, and multi-talented uber-professional Dave C. Wallin. Walk-ins are welcome but appointments are preferred.

Red Rocket Tattoo
78 W. 36th St.
New York, NY 10018
(212) 736-3001

With a strong emphasis on guest artists as well as in-house talent, this immaculate, midtown tattoo studio has been a favorite of the international set as well as uber-inked New Yorkers for almost 15 years. Tattoo artists come from a myriad number of artistic backgrounds and display work indicative of many influences, from Americana to traditional Japanese art. Portfolio browsing is highly recommended. Make sure to check out the gentle, feminine designs of Erica Flannes, and the powerful use of color and shape which influences much of Billy Jordan's work.

Corey Whelan is a freelance writer in New York. Her work can be found at

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