clock menu more-arrow no yes

10 LA Shops for Stylish Tattoos, From Dainty to Dramatic

View as Map

Racked is no longer publishing. Thank you to everyone who read our work over the years. The archives will remain available here; for new stories, head over to Vox.com, where our staff is covering consumer culture for The Goods by Vox. You can also see what we’re up to by signing up here.

Note: The article was first published on April 30th, 2014.

From Venice hippie models like Erin Wasson to Silver Lake artists like Langley Fox to Hollywood heavyweights like Cate Blanchett, fashionable folks have officially jumped on the body art bandwagon. But don't call it a comeback à la that ugly sandal trend; this form of expression has been a local staple for decades, thanks to LA's generous plethora of world-famous tattoo parlors.

From Dr. Woo's brilliantly detailed work at Shamrock Social Club to Craig Jackman's mad skills at American Electric Tattoo, here are 10 of the best places (in alpha order) to produce your next permanent statement. (If real tatts aren't your thing, there's always Mr. Kate's gold foil temporary beauty marks.)

Photo: The Coveteur

Read More

1. Alchemy Tattoo

Copy Link
3321 W Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90026
(323) 666-1313
Visit Website
If you're going for bold, try one of the many intricate creations at Silver Lake's Alchemy Works. Artist Rus Laich is an ace when it comes to floral pieces and Jason Profant is known for his imaginative animals. This reasonably-priced studio has a $50 minimum. [Photo: Alchemy]

2. American Electric Tattoo

Copy Link
3532 W Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90026
(323) 664-6530
Visit Website
Wanna be like Cara Delevingne? Score your next feline finger tattoo at American Electric. The parlor hosts a handful of fan-favorite artists, including geometric genius Julie Bolene and portrait master Craig Jackman, who is also the popular shop's founder. [Photo: Yelp]

3. Body Electric Tattoo

Copy Link
7274 Melrose Ave
Hollywood, CA 90046
(323) 954-0408
Visit Website
If crazy-vibrant technicolor art is what you're looking for, ask for artist Taka Tamada at this Melrose favorite. Body Electric's specialities include realism, Japanese, tribal, anime and traditional Americana. [Photo: Body Electric]

4. Broken Art Tattoo

Copy Link
2400 Hyperion Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90027
(323) 661-4777
Visit Website
If you want to transform an embarrassing tatt into a stunning cover-up, head here. Founder Jeremy Swan corrected a handful of regretful etches on TLC's America's Worst Tattoos, and he'll do the same for you. [Photo: Instagram]

5. Shamrock Social Club

Copy Link
9026 W Sunset Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90069
(310) 271-9664
Visit Website
This legendary shop is not only home to world-renowned artist Mark Mahoney (clients include Lady Gaga, David Beckham and Rihanna), but it's also the place to find one of LA's most sought-after artists, Dr. Woo. One look at his inspiring Instagram page will show you just why Woo's unmatchable precision is beloved by Erin Wasson, Langley Fox and Ellie Goulding. [Photo: Instagram]

6. Studio City Tattoo

Copy Link
11032 Ventura Blvd
Studio City, CA 91604
(818) 769-4049
Visit Website
A hot spot for Valley folks, Studio City Tattoo is great options for all your large-scale body art needs. The Ventura Boulevard haunt offers ten in-demand artists, including Mike Erwin who's known for delicate feathers, wild sci-fi images and freehand-style sketches. [Photo: Studio City Tattoo]

7. Sunset Strip Tattoo

Copy Link
7524 W Sunset Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90046
(323) 874-4596
Visit Website
Stars like Angelina Jolies, Mark Wahlberg, Pamela Anderson and Ben Affleck flock to this Sunset shop to sit with artist Paul Timman. His detailed work ranges from colorful feminine art to black and white tribal pieces. [Photo: Sunset Strip Tattoo]

8. The Honorable Society

Copy Link
8424 Santa Monica Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90069
(323) 654-2440
Visit Website
Walking into WeHo's The Honorable Society Tattoo Parlor and Lounge is like stepping into a time machine. A frequent draw is Italian artist Marco Cerretelli, who cut his teeth working for the iconic Maurizio Fiorini aka "Il Maestro" aka the oldest-living Italian tattoo artist. [Photo: THS]

9. Velvet Grip

Copy Link
7213 1/2 Santa Monica Blvd.
West Hollywood, CA 90046
(323) 876-5048
Visit Website
In addition to offering stress-free and sanitary piercings,Velvet Grip is also a great place to score a one-of-a-kind tattoo. Owner Todd Sorensen (aka "The Todd") is a wiz at highly-detailed pieces, including text tattoos and fine lines. [Photo: Velvet Grip Family]

10. Zulu Tattoo

Copy Link
165 S Crescent Heights Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 782-9977
Visit Website
Known as "The Godfather of Spiritual Tattooing," Roni Zulu's clients include pop stars like Mariah Carey, Janet Jackson and Christina Aguilera. In addition to his inspiring work, Zulu's other artists are equally talented, offering high-quality replicas of photographs and creative graphics with bursts of color. [Photo: Zulu Tattoo]

Loading comments...

1. Alchemy Tattoo

3321 W Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90026
If you're going for bold, try one of the many intricate creations at Silver Lake's Alchemy Works. Artist Rus Laich is an ace when it comes to floral pieces and Jason Profant is known for his imaginative animals. This reasonably-priced studio has a $50 minimum. [Photo: Alchemy]
3321 W Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90026

2. American Electric Tattoo

3532 W Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90026
Wanna be like Cara Delevingne? Score your next feline finger tattoo at American Electric. The parlor hosts a handful of fan-favorite artists, including geometric genius Julie Bolene and portrait master Craig Jackman, who is also the popular shop's founder. [Photo: Yelp]
3532 W Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90026

3. Body Electric Tattoo

7274 Melrose Ave, Hollywood, CA 90046
If crazy-vibrant technicolor art is what you're looking for, ask for artist Taka Tamada at this Melrose favorite. Body Electric's specialities include realism, Japanese, tribal, anime and traditional Americana. [Photo: Body Electric]
7274 Melrose Ave
Hollywood, CA 90046

4. Broken Art Tattoo

2400 Hyperion Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90027
If you want to transform an embarrassing tatt into a stunning cover-up, head here. Founder Jeremy Swan corrected a handful of regretful etches on TLC's America's Worst Tattoos, and he'll do the same for you. [Photo: Instagram]
2400 Hyperion Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90027

5. Shamrock Social Club

9026 W Sunset Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069
This legendary shop is not only home to world-renowned artist Mark Mahoney (clients include Lady Gaga, David Beckham and Rihanna), but it's also the place to find one of LA's most sought-after artists, Dr. Woo. One look at his inspiring Instagram page will show you just why Woo's unmatchable precision is beloved by Erin Wasson, Langley Fox and Ellie Goulding. [Photo: Instagram]
9026 W Sunset Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90069

6. Studio City Tattoo

11032 Ventura Blvd, Studio City, CA 91604
A hot spot for Valley folks, Studio City Tattoo is great options for all your large-scale body art needs. The Ventura Boulevard haunt offers ten in-demand artists, including Mike Erwin who's known for delicate feathers, wild sci-fi images and freehand-style sketches. [Photo: Studio City Tattoo]
11032 Ventura Blvd
Studio City, CA 91604

7. Sunset Strip Tattoo

7524 W Sunset Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90046
Stars like Angelina Jolies, Mark Wahlberg, Pamela Anderson and Ben Affleck flock to this Sunset shop to sit with artist Paul Timman. His detailed work ranges from colorful feminine art to black and white tribal pieces. [Photo: Sunset Strip Tattoo]
7524 W Sunset Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90046

8. The Honorable Society

8424 Santa Monica Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069
Walking into WeHo's The Honorable Society Tattoo Parlor and Lounge is like stepping into a time machine. A frequent draw is Italian artist Marco Cerretelli, who cut his teeth working for the iconic Maurizio Fiorini aka "Il Maestro" aka the oldest-living Italian tattoo artist. [Photo: THS]
8424 Santa Monica Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90069

9. Velvet Grip

7213 1/2 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood, CA 90046
In addition to offering stress-free and sanitary piercings,Velvet Grip is also a great place to score a one-of-a-kind tattoo. Owner Todd Sorensen (aka "The Todd") is a wiz at highly-detailed pieces, including text tattoos and fine lines. [Photo: Velvet Grip Family]
7213 1/2 Santa Monica Blvd.
West Hollywood, CA 90046

10. Zulu Tattoo

165 S Crescent Heights Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90048
Known as "The Godfather of Spiritual Tattooing," Roni Zulu's clients include pop stars like Mariah Carey, Janet Jackson and Christina Aguilera. In addition to his inspiring work, Zulu's other artists are equally talented, offering high-quality replicas of photographs and creative graphics with bursts of color. [Photo: Zulu Tattoo]
165 S Crescent Heights Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90048