We try on clothes before we make a purchase—why not do the same with tattoos before we commit to them? Temporary tattoo brands have been evolving, and don’t worry, their creations are nothing like those smiley faces your elementary school teacher gave out. These brands have designs to fit whichever tattoo style you prefer, and are the perfect way to help you decide whether you really want to go for that permanent design.


Inkbox created a temporary tattoo formula that looks extremely authentic, and also lasts for up to 2 weeks. They have over 4,000 designs to choose from, starting at $10. You can also customize them to match the exact design and shape you would get as a permanent tattoo. If you’re feeling creative, they sell bottles of freehand ink so you can draw the tattoo on yourself. They have content their website to teach you how to apply their tattoos and techniques if you're free–handing. Some reviewers say that these are not the easiest to apply, but that they’re the longest lasting temporary tattoos on the market. Their tattoos all come in muted colors, and are a good substitute for blackwork tattoos.


While these temporary tattoos aren’t long–lasting, they imitate a style that is difficult to achieve with the more time–resistant formulas. Paperself makes tattoos that look like watercolor tattoos, and their options are very colorful. If you are interested in a white ink tattoo, this brand also produces temporary tattoos that imitate that style. There is no option for customization, but if you are looking to try out ideas for different tiny tattoos, the Paperself designs can give you inspiration.


Tattapic claims their tattoos are so realistic, that “even tattoo artists are fooled.” These tattoos are guaranteed to last for over a week, and are extremely easy to apply. Unlike Inkbox, these tattoos don’t absorb into the skin, but instead "fuse" with it, making for an authentic look. You can choose from pre–made designs, create one yourself, or even upload a picture that you want to turn into a tattoo. Tattapic users also have the option of color tattoos, so the sky is the limit.

Conscious Ink

This semi–permanent tattoo brand specializes in manifestation and healing tattoos. These temporary tattoos are meant to be “powerful transformational tools utilizing powerful words, inspiring quotes, and healing affirmations to support you on your personal journey.” The hope is that the impact of the tattoo becomes permanent even though it is on the skin only temporarily. With Conscious Ink, “each word has been meticulously chosen, as well as each color and color combination for its specific healing properties.” If you are considering a real tattoo of this type, it's important to test out how the message makes you feel before you ink it permanently, making these temporary tattoos the perfect tool.


Tattly temporary tattoos start at $2 and are designed by real, quality artists. There are countless different designers and styles to choose from, and their artists come from all over the world—even some from Philly. By browsing the different artists, you can see which designs you connect with and keep that in mind when you choose one for your real tattoo. Plus, these tattoos are non–toxic and made out of a vegetable–based ink.

Before you get your next tattoo, consider test driving it with the help of one of these great brands. Now when your judgmental aunt says, “you know that will be on your body forever, right?” you’ll have no doubts.