Can You Tattoo Over Freckles?

  • Written By Dan Hunter on January 7, 2020
    Last Updated: November 27, 2020

Yes, you can tattoo over freckles. In fact, tattooing over freckles is the same as tattooing over clear skin. Depending on the freckle color and the ink used, the results can be stunning. Even so, before getting a tattoo, make sure you aren’t confusing freckles for moles.

What are Freckles, and Why Does it Matter?

Freckles are small spots on the skin that are darker than the surrounding area and are thought to be genetically linked. They’re harmless and appear more with regular exposure to the sun, which causes the production of melanin, hence their appearance.

They can start to appear during childhood and could disappear in adulthood. The color of the freckles varies depending on skin type and hair color. People with fair skin and red hair, for example, are more likely to have freckled skin.

Types of Freckles

There are two main types of freckles:

  • Lentigines
  • Ephelides


Also known as solar lentigo, lentigines refer to types of freckles that are larger and mostly found in areas of previous sun damage or sunburn. Typically, they’re much darker compared to ephelides freckles and won’t fade during winter. 

The cellular structure containing melanin pigments is normal in appearance and structure. In some cases, lentigines could be part of a rare genetic syndrome. However, for the most part, they’re generally unimportant and isolated spots.

These spots could increase in size over the years and occasionally join together to form larger spots. It may not be advisable to tattoo over these types of freckles, especially if they’re lumpy. Getting advice from a dermatologist will give you a definite way to go. 


Ephelides are flat spots on the skin that vary from 0.04 inches to 0.08 inches and are typically flat. These spots are slightly reddish, tan, or light-brow. They appear mostly during the sunny season and disappear during winter. 

People with a light complexion tend to develop this type of freckle, with them being hereditary. Also, people with green eyes and reddish hair develop these types of freckles. You can tattoo over this type of freckle, and avoiding the sun will suppress their development.

Things to Consider With Freckles and Tattoos

Even though there’s no issue with getting tattooed over freckles, consider these points to make your tattoo look amazing:

  • Design and color
  • The artist
  • The sun

Design and Color

Consider your skin tone and how your freckles will blend in with the design. If you think about it, your freckles could become part of your artwork — a true portrayal of self-expression.

As a part of the style and design of your tat, get a color that suits your skin and freckles. For example, if your freckles are dark, you’ll likely see better results from your tat by incorporating deep colors.

Tattoo Artist

How well a tattoo turns out depends on the skill level of your tattoo artist. It is, therefore, important to do your research on local tattoo artists. The preferred candidate should be professional and should have experience working with freckled skin. An experienced artist is more likely able to design a tattoo to incorporate the freckles and can design a tattoo to match where the freckles are.

The Sun

Exposure to the sun for long periods triggers the production of more melanin, which makes freckles appear darker. Your freckles can, therefore, become more pronounced during summer.

With this in mind, it’s advisable to get your tattoo when freckles are prevalent. That way, your tattoo artist can account for the changes in the skin. Skilled artists can adjust the tone, color, and design of the tattoo accordingly.

Taking Care of Your Tattoo

A significant number of people with freckled skin also have fair skin complexion, which also means sensitive skin. It, therefore, would help if you took extra care before and after getting the tattoo.

While the below advice is valid for any type of skin, they’re more-so important for sensitive skin:

  • Avoid the sun
  • Don’t go swimming
  • Drink plenty of water before and after tattooing
  • Avoid stimulants and alcohol
  • Get plenty of rest
  • Follow the tattoo artist’s skincare advice

Making up Your Mind

If you have freckled skin and want a tattoo, there isn’t a huge amount to consider — go ahead and get that awesome tattoo you’ve always desired.

However, if your skin has solar lentigo, also known as liver spots, you may have to seek a second opinion from a dermatologist. Similarly, if you have moles, which are often confused for freckles, you shouldn’t get a tattoo over them.

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