Top Brands in the Golden Age of Tattoo Inks | Painful Pleasures Community

Top Brands in the Golden Age of Tattoo Inks

For thousands of years, humans have used tattoos to commemorate milestones, remember loved ones and display social status. The pigments used to create tattoos were once crude and rudimentary, but tattoo inks have come a long way since their primitive beginnings. Ink manufacturers are creating a whole new generation of sterile, socially-responsible pigments to meet the ever-changing expectations of the modern day tattoo collector--someone who's part of mainstream society, health-conscious, concerned about animal rights, and all-around a catalyst for a new era of tattoo inks. The Golden Age of tattoo inks is here. Meet the brands rising to the challenge of bringing the art of tattoo ink development up to 21st-century standards.

by PainfulPleasures Last Updated: May 13, 2021

Tattoo Ink Through HistoryBloodline Tattoo Inks by Skin Candy Tattoo Supply

For thousands of years, humans across cultures have used tattoos in a wide variety of ways—to commemorate life’s milestones, to remember loved ones lost, as a display of societal position, or even as a symbol of punishment. The methods used to craft tattoo pigments were once primitive. People crushed flowers, muddled dirt and water, and compounded a variety of other natural substances that were then injected into their bodies with no regard to things like cleanliness and health risks.  

As the art form of tattooing has become progressively more mainstream in the past three decades, the tattoo ink creation process has been fine-tuned. Modern tattoo ink designers are concerned with making products that are socially acceptable—inks that are organic, vegan-friendly, and non-toxic—and that minimize health risks by being sterilized and tested for a broad spectrum of bacteria before being released. When Intenze tattoo ink founder Mario Barth first moved in the direction of sterilizing his products, he was a lone man on the path to making superior tattoo inks. Now everyone’s on the bandwagon, and tattoo inks have gotten harder and harder to differentiate from one another. Sure, each brand has its own naming scheme, and there are a wide variety of shades representing every color in nature and beyond, but how many unique colors can the top 10 brands invent without overlapping each other?

Before you can begin to differentiate tattoo ink brands and what each has to offer, you need to take a look at the history of the top tattoo ink brands, the things that shaped them, their goals, what they take pride in, and if they’re making progressive strides to carry their brands into the enlightened Golden Age of tattoo ink manufacturing. As new “baseline features” like sterility and social responsibility emerge, how are the best ink manufacturers taking their pigments to the next level?

In the sections below, we delve into 14 of the top tattoo ink brands on the market, how each came to be, and why it might just be the perfect tattoo ink for you.


14 Tattoo Ink Leaders

Click a brand name below to jump to the section detailing what’s known of that tattoo ink brand’s history, what makes it special, and where to buy it and/or learn more about it. Use the last two bookmark links below to learn more about all other tattoo supplies and to see where you can verify the information contained here.

Intenze 3-Piece Japanese Tattoo Ink Set - 12 Oz. BottlesAlla Prima Ink
Arcane Tattoo Inks

Bloodline & Skin Candy Tattoo Inks
Dynamic Tattoo Inks
Eternal Ink

Fantasia Tattoo Inks
Formula 51 Tattoo Ink
Intenze Tattoo Ink
Kuro Sumi Tattoo Ink
Mom’s Ink by Millennium Colors, Inc.
Panthera Black Tattoo Ink
Radiant Colors Tattoo Ink
Sacred Color Tattoo Inks
Starbrite Colors

Other Tattoo Supplies


Alla Prima Ink

Joshua Carlton and John Montgomery combined their 40+ years of tattoo experience when they co-founded Alla Prima Ink, a tattoo ink company that delivers a superior product. Josh and John knew that many quality tattoo ink companies tout performance—the ability of their inks to consistently deliver one good-looking tattoo after another. However, there aren’t many companies around who can boast about delivering a safe tattoo ink that performs consistently. From day one, Josh and John knew that was the niche they needed to fill with Alla Prima Ink.Alla Prima Tattoo Ink

Alla Prima Ink is a stable pigment-based ink. Unlike dyes, pigments are comprised of powder particles mixed with a liquid carrier. Stable pigment inks have larger pigment powder particles in them than pre-dispersed tattoo inks do. That composition is what makes Alla Prima tattoo inks the ideal, thick inks that old school tattoo artists prefer. It allows artists to mix Alla Prima pigments and varying amounts of sterile water freely to achieve a large spectrum of effects—to lighten tones, add degrees of shading, and even mix pigments to create new colors.

All Alla Prima Ink pigments are safe because they’re free of acrylic, solvent and PET plastic. They don’t have the acrid, chemical-filled smell of other “well-performing” tattoo inks. Alla Prima tattoo inks have a thick, creamy consistency that allows tattoo artists to create bright, bold tattoos that hold their colors over time. Alla Prima Ink is safe, it’s a dream to work with, and it stands the test of time. What more could a tattoo artist ask for?

Fun Fact: The term “Alla Prima”—which translates from Italian to “at first attempt”—is the alternate name for the wet-on-wet painting technique. It involves applying layers of paint to a canvas in quick succession so that the wet lower layers blend with the newly-added layers in a way that cannot be achieved once the lower layers are dry. The name is apropos to Josh and John’s pigment-based tattoo inks, which work best when mixed with water and thinned before use. 

Benefits of Alla Prima Tattoo Ink:

  • Alla Prima Ink is safe, non-toxic tattoo ink that’s free of acrylic, solvent and PET plastic.
  • It’s a thick, creamy, pigment-based tattoo ink—ideal for old school tattoo artists.
  • Alla Prima Ink colors hold well as tattoos age, staying brighter and bolder longer than pre-dispersed inks. As many artists say, “powder is louder” from the start.
  • Alla Prima tattoo ink is made in the U.S.A.Hallow's Orange Tattoo Ink

Notes About Alla Prima Ink:

  • Alla Prima isn’t an open-&-use line of pre-dispersed tattoo inks. Alla Prima is the type of pigment-based ink that old school tattoo artists prefer.
  • Whatever combination of Alla Prima Inks and water you use, you must mix it well before using it. An orbital mixer or a hand-held mixer may be helpful.

Related Links:


Arcane Tattoo Inks

John Montgomery and Josh Carlton developed Arcane as an alternative for new school tattoo artists who prefer to use pre-dispersed tattoo inks. The Arcane tattoo ink line offers all the same benefits of the original Alla Prima line, which means that Arcane inks are safe, acrylic- and solvent-free tattoo inks made from powdered pigments. The key difference is that they’re pre-dispersed, which means their pigment particles are broken down into a finer powder than those in original Alla Prima Ink. The smaller pigment particles result in a thinner tattoo ink that’s easier to manage and essentially ready to use right out of the bottle. Minimal mixing is required.

Arcane tattoo inks are body-friendly; they go into the skin smoothly, and tattoos created with these inks heal well and stay vibrant through time. Arcane tattoos stay bright longer because the pigment particles in Arcane inks are industrially microsized to increase potency and allow the body to hold more color longer. These are healthy, clean inks you can rely on to perform consistently time and again, and they deliver what every artist strives to create: quick-healing, bright, beautiful, and long-lasting tattoos.

Fun Fact: With the addition of the Arcane line, Alla Prima Ink is currently the only company to manufacture both pigment-based and pre-dispersed tattoo inks.

Benefits of Arcane Tattoo Ink:China Rose Tattoo Ink

  • Arcane is safe, acrylic- and solvent-free tattoo ink.
  • It’s pre-dispersed, so it’s thinner and easier to manage than original Alla Prima.
  • Arcane gives you “shake-and-use” convenience.
  • As with the original Alla Prima line, Arcane tattoo ink colors stay vibrant long-term.
  • Arcane inks and all Alla Prima products are made in the U.S.A.

Notes About Arcane Inks:

  • Arcane tattoo inks aren’t meant to mix and manipulate like original Alla Prima pigments. These are pre-dispersed tattoo inks.
  • Shake Arcane bottles well before dispensing, and then stir the contents poured into ink cups with a hand-held mixer before applying Arcane tattoo ink to the skin.

Related Links:


Bloodline & Skin Candy Tattoo Inks

Bellbottom Blue InkSkin Candy Tattoo Supply has been crafting premium tattoo inks in the U.S. since 1996. Their Bloodline and Skin Candy ink lines contain some of the most vibrant tattoo ink colors on the market. All of their inks are manufactured onsite in Skin Candy Tattoo Supply’s state-of-the-art, medical-grade clean room in Burbank, California. They use an EU-certified pigment dispenser to weigh out pigments before blending and color matching them. To create the purest product possible, the pigments are then mixed with zero water that’s also made onsite through a process involving UV filtration and reverse osmosis. Skin Candy and Bloodline tattoo inks have been thoroughly tested and found to stay brilliant over time.

Benefits of Skin Candy & Bloodline Inks:

  • These pre-dispersed inks enter the skin easily and distribute evenly.
  • Skin Candy and Bloodline are crafted from pure zero water and premium pigments.
  • These are sterile, top-quality products manufactured in a medical-grade clean room.
  • Skin Candy’s tattoo inks are all made in the U.S.A.

Notes About Bloodline & Skin Candy Inks:Bloodline Tattoo Inks by Skin Candy

  • Both Skin Candy and Bloodline tattoo inks are only offered pre-dispersed. They’re ideal for new school artists.
  • Shake bottles well before dispensing, and then stir the contents of your ink cups with a hand-held mixer before applying Skin Candy and Bloodline inks.

Related Links:


Dynamic Tattoo Inks

Dynamic Color Co. has been specializing in high-quality tattoo inks since 1990. The strength of some of their colors is so intense that Dynamic recommends using white to cut them and adding yellow to the mix when toning down browns. Dynamic Color’s inks are pre-dispersed, so they go into the skin quickly and smoothly.

Dynamic Tattoo InksBenefits of Dynamic Tattoo Inks:

  • These pre-dispersed tattoo inks are ideal for new school tattoo artists.
  • Dynamic tattoo ink is created using premium pigments.
  • Dynamic Color Co. is located in the U.S.

Notes About Dynamic Inks:

  • Dynamic’s suggestion to cut some of its more intense colors may mislead some to believe this is a stable, or pigment-based, ink. “Pre-dispersed” doesn’t mean that there isn’t pigment in the ink; it just means that the powder pigment particles are broken up much more finely than they typically would be in a stable pigment-based tattoo ink. When those finer particles are blended with a carrier liquid, the resulting ink flows freely and smoothly.

Related Links:Eternal Tattoo Inks | Set of Eternal Ink Colors


Eternal Ink

Founded by Terry “Tramp” Welker, Eternal Tattoo Supply has been a leader in the tattoo industry since its inception in 1980. Eternal’s focus has always been on the art of tattooing and finding continuously better ways to support tattoo artists in their efforts to design long-lasting, high-quality tattoos. The brand has grown to include Eternal Tattoo Ink, Welker Brand Tattoo Machines, and a variety of tattoo supplies, including tattoo needles, tubes and grips, latex gloves, stencil and art supplies, tattoo videos and books, and other tools of the tattooing trade.

Eternal Tattoo Supply’s goal with Eternal Ink and all of their products is to offer the best selection of top-quality tattoo supplies at the most reasonable prices to the best professional tattoo artists in the world. That’s why Eternal makes their full product selection easily accessible at all major tattoo conventions throughout the U.S., as well as through distributors like Painful Pleasures, who offers nearly 200 Eternal Ink products—more than nearly any other brand of tattoo ink we carry!

Benefits of Eternal Ink:

  • Eternal Ink is water-based, non-toxic and glycerol-free, which makes it suitable for vegans.
  • Eternal tattoo inks are pre-dispersed, so they flow smoothly and disperse evenly. Plus, they’re essentially ready to use right out of the bottle.
  • It’s manufactured by one of the oldest tattoo suppliers in the industry, so it’s backed by years of experience and has had more than 3 decades to be fine-tuned.
  • The variety of Eternal Ink colors, bottle sizes, and set options is nearly unparalleled.
  • Eternal Ink is manufactured in the U.S.

Notes About Eternal Tattoo Inks:

  • Eternal’s pre-dispersed tattoo inks are a favorite of professional tattoo artists, particularly of new school artists.
  • Pre-dispersed inks may not need to be mixed quite as thoroughly as pigment-based inks, but they still need to be mixed before using. Shake your Eternal Ink bottles well before filling your ink cups. It’s handy to have a hand mixer around to stir up cup contents right before you use a color, too.
  • Eternal’s Keep It Wet is an awesome product to have on hand, especially at conventions and when you’re working on time-consuming tattoos. If you put your inks out early and a color dries out on you before you need it, just add a couple drops of Eternal Ink Keep it Wet to revive it.

Related Links:


Fantasia Tattoo Inks

Fantasia Tattoo Inks are no longer available on our site, but we are still happy to share their brand’s history, story, and formula standards.

Fantasia tattoo ink is proudly made in Texas, U.S.A. It’s known for its bright, bold colors and pure, dark dispersions. Fantasia’s colors are made with a blend of non-hazardous pigments, alcohol and distilled water.

Fantasia Art Supply, the company that manufactures and distributes Fantasia, offers the following guidelines for thickening and thinning Fantasia ink as needed: Thicken Fantasia tattoo ink with glycerin, or dilute it by mixing it with alcohol, witch hazel, rose water, or distilled water.

Benefits of Fantasia Tattoo Ink:

  • Fantasia produces flexible, dynamic pigments in reliably bold, beautiful colors.
  • Fantasia pigments are made in the U.S.

Sterile Water for Thinning Pigment-Based TattoosNotes About Fantasia Ink:

  • Fantasia pigments technically aren’t certified for use in tattoos. The parent company, Fantasia Art Supply, cannot be held responsible for misuse of their inks, they hold no warranty, and they are not responsible for allergic reactions. The user assumes all liability.
  • Do not use Fantasia pigments around the eyes or mouth.

Related Links:


Though we no longer offer Fantasia Tattoo Ink on our site, you can still browse our entire selection of inks in our Tattoo Ink category.

Formula 51 Tattoo Ink

Formula 51 Tattoo Inks are no longer available on our site, but we are still happy to share their brand’s history, story, and formula standards.

Formula 51 debuted on its first distribution partner’s website,, in November 2011, and it’s been making waves by giving the finger to the tattoo industry’s status quo ever since. Formula 51 isn’t just climbing towards the top; they’re charging forward and making progress in leaps and bounds for 2 reasons: (1) They offer super high-quality tattoo inks in amazing colors, and (2) Formula 51 is a brand comprised of the people that works relentlessly for the people it serves: tattoo artists.

Formula 51 was conceived by tattoo artist Chris 51, who developed the brand with his tattoo artist partner, Joshua South, with one objective in mind: To deliver dynamic, high-quality tattoo inks that meet the ever-changing needs of today’s tattoo artists without outside influence or investors. These are tattoo inks “made by tattoo artists for tattoo artists”—a concept that serves as the foundation for Formula 51’s entire brand.

Chris 51 and his team use every Formula 51 ink color in their own studios on a daily basis. They feel Formula 51 inks are unparalleled, thanks primarily to the 100%-natural pigment base of every single color in the line. Formula 51 colors are developed from organic substances plucked straight from nature and infused with the spunky devil-may-care personality of Chris 51 himself—named so because he “was born in the infamous Area 51 facility and has never outgrown his alien roots.”

Formula 51’s off-the-wall color names and sometimes crass product descriptions are enough to make even the hardest sells in the industry crack a grin. There are now 50 Formula 51 colors available, ranging from Vulcan Blood green to Baywatch red to Hell No Kitty pink, and a rainbow of other irreverently-named shades that you won’t find anywhere else on the market. Whichever shade you try first, it’s certain to delight you with its vivacity, diversity, and smooth consistency.

Formula 51 tattoo inks are available throughout the U.S. and are gaining popularity worldwide. Many of the colors are now European-approved, and Chris and the Formula 51 team are “tirelessly working on becoming the only American-based ink company [whose] entire catalog is universally available and certified on all continents!”

Benefits of Formula 51 Tattoo Ink:

  • Formula 51 inks are pre-dispersed for consistency and client safety. Pre-dispersion provides reliable colors time and again, it’s much more sterile than self-mixing, and it eliminates the possibility for scary ingredients being added to the mix.
  • All of the pigments used to create Formula 51 inks are 100% organic.
  • You aren’t putting money in the pocket of some corporate SOB who’s never touched a tattoo machine when you buy Formula 51 inks; you’re supporting other hard-working tattoo artists like you whose only objective is to give you superior tools to ink amazing-looking tattoos that will put more money in your pocket.
  • Formula 51 tattoo inks are proudly made in the U.S.A.

Notes About Formula 51 Ink:

  • Embrace Formula 51’s irreverent, fun, pop-culture inspired naming scheme. It isn’t meant to offend, but to draw you in. Regarding the brand’s crazy tattoo ink color names and product descriptions, Chris 51 said: “…as with tattooing, [ink making] is also an art form and creative process that is very rewarding. I decided to market my ink a different way though. It seemed that every company was so politically correct and cautious with their product naming and marketing strategies, and this is the one industry that we don’t need to be. Let’s face it, we are not doctors and lawyers, we are the non-conformists of society, that is why we do what we do. Who wants to see another ochre on the market when you can be more descriptive and call it Crack Rock?”

Related Links:


Though we no longer offer Formula 51 Tattoo Ink on our site, you can still browse our entire selection of inks in our Tattoo Ink category.

Boris from Hungary Intenze Tattoo Ink


Intenze Tattoo Ink

“Intenze is a company that aims to innovate and elevate the abilities of tattoo artists above all else. We aspire to make tools that make your work easier and the outcome of your labor better.”

Intenze Creative Academy

No one can state the Intenze mission better than Intenze itself. Founded by Mario Barth over two decades ago, Intenze is an unparalleled industry leader that not only produces amazing tattoo inks, but that also encourages artist development and strives to infuse its products with generations of tattooing experience. By involving a variety of highly-talented tattoo artists in brand development, pushing artists to expand creatively through the Intenze Creative Academy, and being a strong voice in the tattoo industry, Intenze stands a head above its competitors.

Gold Label Eternal Tattoo Ink - Mario's Light BlueIntenze merges technology and artistic tradition to create the perfect inks for every artist—inks that suit artists’ demands no matter what their individual styles are or what their clients need. In addition to founder Mario Barth, other world-renowned tattoo artists like Bob Tyrrell and Mark Mahoney stand behind this brand that’s grown by focusing on artists’ needs and creating an almost infinite loop in which those needs power the development of new inks that serve the needs of those who inspire their creation and help them continue to grow and expand their artistic abilities. As Intenze says, the world-famous artists who work with them in brand development simultaneously “[enable] other artists to harness the power of [their] years of experience, and push their own tattoo work to remarkable levels”.  The end result is a line of tattoo inks that’s both evolutionary and revolutionary. “Intenze bridges that gap between who an artist is today, and the potential of who that artist can be tomorrow.”

Safety is at the forefront of the creation of all Intenze tattoo inks. They’ve incorporated part of the Hippocratic Oath into their own philosophy: to “First, do no harm”. Intenze works with biochemists at two labs whose daily focus is the development and sterilization of Intenze tattoo ink. Truly sterile tattoo inks are free of amines, or mutagenic toxins. Intenze safety standards require each batch of ink to be sterilized and tested by a 3rd party lab to confirm that the batch is amine-free as well as untainted by spores, Staphylococcus, Bacillus, Micrococcus, yeast, biological and fungal bio-burdens. The inks are then shipped to a temperature- and light-controlled warehouse to ensure that each bottle of Intenze ink stays sterile until the moment it reaches your shop and you open it. Mario Barth: Under the Skin DVD

As tattoos become more mainstream and tattoo regulations tighten up accordingly, Intenze strives to “stand at the helm of our industry standards. In this interest, INTENZE is Registered and Licensed as a cosmetics manufacturer under the New Jersey Board of Health in the United States and compliant with all EU quality standards.” Intenze has been a true industry leader in this regard and in its social consciousness overall. Mario Barth was the first tattoo artist to develop a line of sterile color inks meeting cosmetic regulations that are also vegan, go into the skin smoothly, heal seamlessly, and actually stay vibrant over time. He’s a pioneer and most definitely Captain of the immense Intenze battleship that other yacht- and dinghy-sized tattoo ink brands strive to be compared to and dream of overtaking.

Painful Pleasures carries more Intenze tattoo ink options than any other brand, with only Eternal Ink coming in close second. Choose from more than 180 Intenze tattoo ink color options that are available in 3 different bottle sizes, like Creamsicle and Cherry Bomb, or shop our selection of Intenze tattoo ink sets.

Bob Tyrrell Tattoo Ink Set

Benefits of Intenze Tattoo Ink:

  • Intenze offers more tattoo ink color options than any other brand on the market, providing you with an almost unlimited palette of possibilities.
  • These tattoo inks were created by world-renowned tattoo artist Mario Barth and have been developed in conjunction with an impressive list of world-famous tattoo artists who’ve supported the brand’s continuous growth and improvement.
  • Intenze tattoo inks are tried and true; they’re known to stand the test of time, as you can see by looking at still-vibrant tattoos created with Intenze inks more than 20 years ago.
  • Intenze inks are certified to be sterile and free of a variety of bacteria.
  • All Intenze inks are vegan; they contain no animal products and are not tested on animals.
  • Intenze is a registered and licensed cosmetics manufacturer in the US and compliant with EU quality standards.
  • Intenze tattoo inks are proudly made in the U.S.A.

Related Links:Bowery Stan Moskowitz Intenze Tattoo Ink Set


Kuro Sumi Tattoo Ink

Kuro Sumi Shading Tattoo InkKuro Sumi tattoo inks are created using top-secret formulas that have been handed down through generations of Japanese tattoo artists and that contain vegan-friendly, purely organic ingredients. As Kuro Sumi’s website says, they’re inks are “made from the best stuff on earth”. The name Kuro Sumi is derived from the Kuro Sumi Tangnuni warriors who were trained throughout their lives to “use the heart of the dragon to pursue their opponents”. The elite few chosen to become Kuro Sumi Tangnuni warriors bore distinguished markings under their jaws and on their stomachs that let the world at large know who they were at a glance. Their strength, prowess and fighting skills were unparalleled—so much so that these warriors developed a reputation as being supernatural creatures. The Kuro Sumi warriors will live on forever, much like the tattoos crafted with Kuro Sumi tattoo inks.

Kuro Sumi tattoo inks are held in the same high regard as their namesakes were. Tattoo Lou is quoted on their website as saying that in his 50 years of tattooing, he’s never come across another type of tattoo ink as bright and consistent. Kuro Sumi makes superior tattoo ink for superior tattoo artists.Kuro Sumi Cherry Shading Tattoo Ink

Painful Pleasures carries 40 Kuro Sumi colors in 4 sizes, as well as Kuro Sumi outlining inks, bronze and cherry shading sets, several Kuro Sumi sets, and boxes of black and gray wash ink shots.

Benefits of Kuro Sumi Tattoo Ink:

  • Kuro Sumi inks are vegan-friendly and made from organic pigments.
  • Kuro Sumi tattoo ink’s intensely-bright colors are long-lasting.
  • The brand is endorsed by some of the best tattoo artists in the world.

Related Links:


Millennium Mom's Tattoo InkMom’s Ink by Millennium Colors, Inc.

Mom’s Ink from Millennium Colors, Inc., is pre-dispersed tattoo ink made from pure, uncut, homogenized pigments. Millennium Colors promises that Mom’s delivers the “highest possible pigment content” and bright colors that flow into the skin quickly and smoothly.

The Mom’s Ink line is a favorite among professional tattoo artists around the world, primarily because of its extraordinary consistency. In the early 1990s, the line included just a few shades, but today there are more than 60 colors in the Mom’s Ink line, including a subset of Nuclear Colors that are touted as the world’s brightest and safest black-light ink. Millennium Colors stringently triple-checks each batch of Mom’s Ink for 3 things: pigment life, flow rate and color consistency.

Painful Pleasures offers nearly 20 Millennium Mom’s tattoo ink sets from which you can choose your perfect mix of Mom’s Inks. You can also shop for individual Mom’s Ink colors in multiple bottle sizes and boxes of ink shots (1 color per box).

Benefits of Millennium Tattoo Ink:Millennium Mom's Tattoo Ink Half Ounce

  • Mom’s Inks are pre-dispersed to provide a fast, smooth flow.
  • They’re made from pure, uncut pigments.
  • Mom’s Millennium tattoo ink is made in the U.S.A.

Related Links:


Panthera XXX Tribal Black Tattoo InkPanthera Black Tattoo Ink

Panthera Ink is manufactured by the Italian company Futura. It’s a one-of-a-kind black ink series that Panthera’s site says “brings life to your tattoos”. The Panthera Black Ink line has been well-received in Italy and throughout Europe, so it’s now being offered in the U.S., too.

The Panthera Black Ink series is a small line of primarily-black tattoo inks that are vegan-friendly and gamma ray-sterilized. These tattoo inks go into the skin smoothly and are ideal for lining and shading. The black shades in the series—which include Panthera Black Ink, Dark Sumy, Light Sumy, and XXX Tribal Black—are promised to maintain their rich black color for many years to come. The Panthera tattoo ink line also includes a Polar White color that you can use for shading and highlighting, so that your black lines stand out even more in contrast and so you can get more variation in your shading.

Benefits of Panthera Ink:

  • Panthera’s limited focus ensures delivery of a superior product. Their attention isn’t stretched over a rainbow of colors, but rather 4 shades of black ink and a single shade of white that are all crisp, brilliant and long-lasting.
  • Panthera tattoo inks are vegan-friendly and gamma ray sterilized.Radiant Colors Tattoo Inks

Related Links:


Tropical Rain Forest Frog Tattoo Inked With Radiant Colors Tattoo Inks

Radiant Colors Tattoo Inks

Radiant Colors’ tattoo inks live up to their name. This line is comprised of an array of resplendent colors that stay vibrant over time—colors developed through Radiant’s close relationships with tattoo artists who have expressed their needs and desires for better tattoo ink options. The photos here show just two examples of beautifully-bright tattoos inked with Radiant Colors, so you can see this stellar line of tattoo ink’s potential.

Radiant tattoo inks are crafted using the latest technology in ink pigmentation, so they’re pre-dispersed rather than pigment-based. These are sterilized tattoo inks made with pure, uncut, homogenized pigment and a homogenic fluid mix for a thin consistency that flows into the skin.

In addition to their array of brilliant color tattoo inks, Radiant Colors offer Harajuku Sumi black outlining and shading inks.

Painful Pleasures offers more than 60 Radiant Colors tattoo inks in ½ oz. and 1 oz. sizes, as well as the Harajuku Sumi black inks in 1 oz. and 8 oz. sizes.

Benefits of Radiant Tattoo Ink:Eye Tattoo Created With Radiant Tattoo Inks

  • Radiant tattoo inks are brilliant, pre-dispersed pigments with a thin, smooth consistency with a fast, steady flow.
  • All Radiant inks are sterilized.
  • Radiant Colors USA tattoo inks are manufactured in the U.S.

Related Links:


Sacred Color Tattoo Inks | Sacred Tattoo InksSacred Color Tattoo Ink

Sacred Color Tattoo Inks were developed by Lauro Paolini, the creator of high-end, top-of-the-line tattoo machines, and released in 2010. They were created after much research and experimentation to find a recipe that would meet the restrictive ResAP 2008 parameters and even stricter Italian Ministry of Health guidelines—regulations that had hindered tattoo ink production between 2008 and 2010. Almost as soon as they were released, Sacred Color Tattoo Inks were being used by major Italian tattoo artists and other international artists with great satisfaction, and now they’re available in the US, too.

As Lauro Paolini said, “In Sacred Color, there are no secrets, but a lot of quality in raw materials, much experimentation, passion for our work and the collaboration with a major Italian company who believed in our project and the reality of the tattoo artist.” Painful Pleasures is proud to offer nearly 30 Sacred Color tattoo ink options, including 27 stunning, colorful shades as well as Sacred Colors Dark Sumi, Light Sumi, Black Liner, and Tribal Black Liner.

Benefits of Sacred Color Tattoo Ink:

  • Sacred Color inks are developed in strict accordance with ResAP 2008 and Italian Ministry of Health guidelines and are now available around the world.
  • These are uniquely-colored tattoo inks, many of which appear to have been hand-picked from a Monet painting. In fact, Pink Monet is named after a pinkish-lavender floral shade often used by the artist. Sacred Color tattoo inks are available in lovely, somewhat-muted shades—at least compared to those offered by other popular pre-dispersed tattoo ink brands.
  • This line of inks is touted to work well on both dark and light skin tones, and to be resilient to damage from the elements, like sun damage.
  • These are non-toxic tattoo inks that are sterilized to ensure microbiologic safety.

Related Links:


Starbrite Colors Tattoo Ink

Deep Turquoise Starbrite Tattoo InkStarbrite Colors offer pre-dispersed, pure, uncut tattoo pigments in vibrant colors that tattoo artists love. The Starbrite Colors brand was created in the early 1990s. They put their stamp on the tattoo industry and changed it forever by offering tattoo artists unparalleled inks in amazing shades that healed well and stayed true to their original colors.

In the mid ’90s, the two-way partnership dissolved, and Tommy Ringwalt, Sr., branched out and created Tommy’s Supplies. Both Tommy’s and Papillon Industries hold the rights to the Starbrite Colors formula, so to this day, both companies manufacture and distribute the product with slight variations in labeling. PainfulPleasures purchases Starbrite Colors tattoo inks through Tommy’s Supplies, a world renowned tattoo supply company and producer of Starbrite Colors. StarBrite Colors are gamma-ray sterilized and produced in a class 100,000 A clean room. The most noticeable difference between Tommy’s and Papillon’s Starbrite colors is in Tommy’s version of the label, which spells the brand name as StarBrite and has a slightly different, bolder blue starburst.

Painful Pleasures carries more than 35 Starbrite Colors tattoo inks, most of which are available in ½ oz., 1 oz., 2 oz., and 4 oz. bottles. (Not all colors are available in all sizes.) We also carry a Starbrite Tattoo Ink Starter Set that will give you all the basic colors you need to create beautiful tattoos and just enough pigments to fall in love with Starbrite Colors forever!

Benefits of Starbrite Tattoo Inks:

  • Starbrite Colors manufactures pre-dispersed tattoo inks with a thin consistency that flows smoothly.
  • Starbrite tattoos heal well and the inks stay true to their original shades over time.
  • These are sterile tattoo inks manufactured with the aid of the most modern technology and in accordance with current regulations.
  • Starbrite inks are backed by more than two decades of tattoo industry experience.

Notes About Starbrite Ink:

  • These inks are distributed by Tommy’s Supplies; they’re not the same Starbrite Colors distributed by Papillon’s company.
  • Always shake Starbrite in bottles before pouring, and stir your ink cups with a hand-held mixer before using these stunning shades.

Related Links:


Other Tattoo Supplies

Tattoos aren’t created with ink alone. Once you decide which type of tattoo ink sounds like the best fit for you, be sure to check out these related products that will help you ink amazing tattoos with ease:

Orbital Mixer to Mix Tattoo InksDon’t forget to look for this week’s coupons before placing an order for tattoo supplies! If you’re interested in having coupons and other special offers delivered right to your inbox, sign up using the newsletter sign-up box in the bottom-right corner of every page on our site. Note that you have to be in the Wholesale Store or the Distributor Store to sign up for one of those newsletters. If you register from a page within the Retail Store or any other page of the site, you’ll be signed up to receive our Retail newsletter.


Note: All product links within this article point to our Wholesale Store, where we anticipate most tattoo artists will prefer to shop to take advantage of the wholesale prices we offer industry professionals spending $100 or more. If you’re planning on spending more than $500, you can shop the Tattoo Supplies section of our Distributor Store instead. For orders under $100, please shop our Retail Store.




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