How Much Does a Knuckle Tattoo Cost?


Written by:  Howmuchisit.org Staff
Last Updated:  August 8, 2018

A knuckle tattoo is a specific tattoo that either uses two groups of four letter words or one eight letter word spread across the knuckles when put together.

Tatuagem Amor Vida Love Life Knuckle Tat by TattooArteBTU, on Flickr
Tatuagem Amor Vida Love Life Knuckle Tat” (CC BY 2.0) by  TattooArteBTU

How much does a knuckle tattoo cost?

The cost of a knuckle tattoo will depend on the design, the tattoo artist, colors involved and geographical location.  On average, a knuckle tattoo can cost you $55 to $150 for two knuckles with simple lettering.  However, this price can increase if the artist is in demand or if the details are complicated.  If the font you want is custom, for example, you could pay up to 50 percent more.  The same could be said if you were getting a symbol or design that you made yourself.  We reached out to a few shops in the United States and were quoted a “ballpark” estimate over the phone or via a contact form.  We had put in our estimates located inside the table below.

Regardless of the design, most tattoo artists charge by the hour, ranging anywhere from $75 to $150 an hour, but some may charge per tattoo design, and this price is different according to the size of the tattoo and the number of colors in the design.

Geographical LocationQuote
Addison, TX$95
Austin, TX$125
Denver, CO$150
Portland, OR$120
Watertown, NY$115
Whittier, CA$150

Factors that affect the price

Tattoo design

It is hard to quote a tattoo since there are some considerations that should be kept in mind.  However, like most tattoos, the price boils down to the design and its complexity.  The designs for knuckle tattoos, generally, are usually words, names and/or a mix of symbols.  If you have other elaborate designs in mind, you will most likely have to pay more.

The colors

The colors, just like the design, can affect the pricing.  If you want more than one color, then costs may rise.

The location of the shop

If the shop you choose has very little competition in the area, they may charge more simply because they can, but this isn’t always true because the cost of living can play a role, too.

What are the extra costs?

Since the tattoo fades fast, you may need to redo and touch up the tattoo over time, or at a minimum, have the outline of your tattoo highlighted to bring the original vibrant color.  If so, you more than likely will have to pay for the tattoo again.  Some artists, however, do not charge to retouch their own work or may charge less than the original.  Plan on spending around $30 to $50 for a touch-up.

Aftercare is extremely important to prevent infection and help the tattoo heal the way it should.  Aftercare products such as the skin ointment creams will be an additional cost to consider.

Tips to know:

Before you decide on your tattoo, you can either come in with your own custom design or you can choose from a design an artist may have at their shop.  The estimates mentioned above will include the design, the supplies and the time the professional has to put in to create the tattoo.

Most shops will have a minimum, regardless of what you want to have done.  Be sure to ask about this sort of policy before getting a quote.

This Instagram page has a few knuckle tattoo ideas if you can’t think of any.

How to save money?

Talk with at least three to five artists in your area.  Most of the time, you can either get a quote over the phone or even via a contact form online.   However, don’t go with the cheapest option as this isn’t always the best idea.  Be sure to ask for references, ask for certifications and see if they have any violations with the state.


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