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Tubes, Tips & Grips

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Tubes, tips, and grips are all necessary items in any tattoo studio. Tubes connect the power supply to the tattoo needle. Tips (also known as nozzles) are attached at the end of the tube and guide the needle into the skin. Grips are objects that wrap around the tattoo machine so tattoo artists have a more comfortable grip on the machine while working.

Tubes, tips, and grips come in a variety of configurations and materials. Reusable grips are made from aluminum, plastic or stainless steel. Artists can also choose from all-in-one disposable options where the grip is built into the tube and tip. For extra comfort, artists can also place grip covers over their grips, which are made from rubber or silicon. Wrapping grips in cohesive wrap is another option.

Tips come in a variety of shapes, including:

Diamond: Ideal for drawing straight, thin lines and are most compatible with round needles.

Flat: Ideal for shading and are best used with flat needles.

Magnum: Ideal for blending and shading and are compatible with flat and magnum needles.

Round: Ideal for drawing thicker lines and are most compatible with round needles.

There are pros and cons to both disposable and reusable pieces. Disposable pieces usually have the tube, tip, and grip as one unit, meaning you aren’t able to switch out pieces to your liking. For example, you can swap out the disposable grip for your own. However, reusable pieces need to be autoclaved after every use, while you can simply throw away disposable units right after use. While reusable pieces are more expensive upfront, they can save money in the long-run by eliminating the need to constantly buy disposable units. In summary, disposable units are more convenient while reusable pieces allow for customization. One type isn’t necessarily better than the other and instead depends on your preference.