Where Do Tattoos Hurt the Least & Most?

Although this question will never have a solid, factual answer, personal opinions from thousands of people over time have formed a good solid base for deciding which areas on your body are likely to be the most painful places to get a tattoo.

It’s important to remember once again though that everybody is different and everyone will have a different pain threshold for each different area of their body.

Usually though, the areas of the body discussed below generally receive the same opinions about pain levels from the majority of people who have had work done on the said areas of their bodies.

Where are the Most Painful Places to get a Tattoo?

The most painful areas to get a tattoo are usually places where there are not much fat shielding areas of bone and muscle. Extremely fleshy and loose areas are also likely to hurt more than the areas mentioned in the section above. Generally, the more painful areas when getting tattooed are:


The area where there are bones near the skin will have a more pain.  For example, your outer ankle bone will be more painful than getting an ankle tattoo in the area that is fleshy.  Other areas are the skull, behind the ear and ribs. Getting tattoo on these places can be very painful.


Majority of people have experienced more pain in their butt. Even though the bone area is the most painful, the fleshy places can also be very painful. So, getting a tattoo on the butt is also painful. To know more about this, simply take your fingernails and lightly pinch your butt. Now try the same on the shoulder. You will notice unless you have a very firm butt, the level of pain is much higher in the butt.


Top of the foot/ankle – these two places are painful, but it can be very attractive if you choose to get it. Ankle and foot tattoos can be covered or expose if you want to look more professional. These make them very painful and versatile.


Getting a tattoo on foot can be very painful because the feet are filled nerves endings. Now we are referring to the real foot, not the ankle area; some people automatically think the feet and the ankle have the same level of pain simply because they are close to each other. Getting a tattoo on the will be very painful but getting a tattoo on the ankle is also painful.


The chest is one of the most painful places to get a tattoo. This is because there are no fat to block the nerve endings from grinding into the moment of pain. However, there are better places to consider if you need to avoid pain. If you are thinking about getting a tattoo on the chest – you have been warned.

5 Least Painful Places to Have a Tattoo:


The calf is predominantly made up of muscle and due to it being on your leg, the skin tends to be a little thicker. The bone is fairly far away as well, meaning there is next to no risk of hitting bone when getting a calf piece done.

2) HIP

Hips do tend to be very sensitive, however, due to the amount of fat around the area, the hips tend to cushion the blow of the tattoo needle. It tends to be less painful for women, however men should find it a pretty easy tattoo too! The only concern is if you happen to be thin enough so that your hip bone sticks out, that could get quite painful.


A favourite for many tattoo enthusiasts, the upper arm tends to be one of the least painful places to get inked. The sheer amount of thick skin as well as fat and muslce make an upper arm tattoo a fairly unpainful experience.


Your shoulder, more the deltoid area, is another great place to get tattooed if you want less pain. More in men, but as well with women, the deltoid area tends to have a lot of muscle, as well as a decrease in nerve endings, meaning more cushion and less sensitivity to the needle.


The commonly known “tramp stamp”, but actually a good place for nice tattoos, is the lower back. This area is very popular, especially within women, not only because of the exposed location (with belly tops), but also because skin seems to be very tough in that particular area, as well as being desensitized.

It is completely down to the individual, as well as the needle and technique being used when it comes to tattoo pain, but the above are the most common. In general, the least painful areas to get a tattoo are normally places where there a lesser amounts of nerve endings and higher amounts of fat to cushion against the more sensitive muscle and bone areas – although there are exceptions.