Tattoo Removal

Stretch Mark Cover Up Tattoos Before and After

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Published: 02.16.2024

Stretch marks are extremely common. In fact, 90% of people report finding a stretch mark on their body! Stretch marks are caused by the rapid stretching of the skin and most often occur on the stomach, arms, and thighs. These body parts are also popular tattoo spots. Since stretch marks create texture and color pigmentation on the skin, you might wonder, can you tattoo over stretch marks?

The short answer is yes! Tattooing over stretch marks is a specialized skill, but a professional artist can cover stretch marks with permanent ink. Read on for an overview of stretch marks, how they occur, and which tattoos cover stretch marks the best.

Stretch Marks: All You Need to Know

The medical term for stretch marks is striae. Striae appear as thin lines and occur when the skin is stretched quickly. Most stretch marks start red or purple and have a slightly shiny look. As stretch marks heal, the lines become white and mimic scarring. It is normal for striae to appear depressed in the skin, creating a textured skin surface.

Stretch marks are a result of rapid stretching of the skin. So they occur in places where quick weight or muscle gain happens, such as the arms, legs, hips, and stomach. In addition, many pregnant women get stretch marks, especially in the second and third trimester.

Why Do Stretch Marks Appear

Stretch marks are natural! In many cases, it is impossible to prevent stretch marks from occurring as they are a normal side effect of growth. Stretch marks appear after:




The body undergoes lots of changes during puberty, including growth spurts. 




Pregnant women might get stretch marks across their abdomen and lower stomach. As the uterus grows to accommodate a developing baby, the skin over the stomach is stretched, causing striae.


Weight Gain


Unexpected or fast weight gain stresses the skin and causes stretch marks.


Muscle Gain


Rapidly building muscle pulls on the skin and can result in stretch marks, especially around the biceps and shoulders.

Stretch Mark Cover Up Tattoos

Whether you want to conceal stretch marks for cosmetic reasons or coincidently have a tattoo design that overlaps with striae, tattooing over stretch marks is possible! However, the skin discoloration and texture of skin marks make tattooing a bit more challenging. Tattoo artists have tips and tricks to successfully conceal stretch marks in tattoos, including specialized applications and creative designs.

Do Tattoos Cover Stretch Marks Completely?

Tattooing over stretch marks is not easy, but a professional artist can completely cover scarred and damaged skin. There are several factors tattoo artists consider before beginning a stretch mark tattoo cover up.

  1. Design – Tattoo artists mimic the natural curvature of stretch marks in the tattoo design. Incorporating these lines in the final artwork makes it easier to camouflage the stretch marks, even if the ink doesn’t cover it completely. 
  2. Color – Tattoo artists will use color theory to cancel out skin discoloration. Many tattooists create custom ink hues to match skin color perfectly and cover up stretch marks.
  3. Technique – Tattooing over textured skin is challenging, but there are application techniques that help make raised or depressed skin less noticeable. 
  4. Pain Tolerance – In many ways, stretch marks are like scars. Damaged or inelastic skin is much more painful to tattoo over. As a result, managing the client’s pain tolerance is essential, and using a topical skin anesthetic might be necessary. Pain is an especially critical factor when stretch marks span a sensitive area. Check out the tattoo pain chart to learn the best and worst places to get inked!

Can All Stretch Marks be Tattooed?

Tattoo artists advise against tattooing over new stretch marks. For several reasons, it is best to wait for stretch marks to heal before getting a tattoo. 

New stretch marks are usually red or purplish in color. As they heal, it is common for stretch marks to turn white or silvery. These lighter tones are much easier to hide with ink. In addition, fresh stretch marks are extremely sensitive. The pain of tattooing over new scarring is unbearable for most people, and the results do not outweigh the suffering. 

If you want a stretch mark cover-up tattoo, wait for the skin to heal. You will know when the skin is ready to get tattooed once it is no longer tender to the touch and appears lighter in color. 

Can All Tattoo Artists Work With Stretch Marks?

Tattooing over stretch marks and scars takes practice. So, before selecting a tattoo artist, do your research! 

Stretch mark cover up tattoos require a lot of experience, so artists usually advertise this service and have an extensive portfolio. Check out their stretch mark cover-up tattoos before and after photos. Look for tattoos that mimic a design you want to get. 

Book a Tattoo Cover Up Consultation with Removery

Removery’s award-winning laser tattoo removal clinics are experts at helping with cover-up tattoo preparation! Their high-tech Picoway lasers effectively fade all permanent ink colors, making a cover up more successful. 

Laser tattoo removal is the only FDA-approved method to get rid of unwanted ink for good. Removery offers free consultations and flexible payment options. Meet with one of their experienced staff members to craft a personalized treatment plan to achieve your tattoo cover up goals!

Dr Kevin Shomaker Dr. Kevin Schomacker VP Medical Research

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