How Long Does an Inner Lip Tattoo Last?

How Long Does an Inner Lip Tattoo Last?

When taken care of properly, an inner lip tattoo lasts on average a few years. However, because everyone’s body is different, an inner lip tattoo can last a few days to 4-5 years.

Someone who consistently gets regular touchups on their inner lip tattoo can expect their ink to last far longer than those who choose not to get it touched up.

Continue reading on to learn more about inner lip tattoos and the considerations you should take before deciding whether to get one.

Why Get an Inner Lip Tattoo?

People get tattoos for many different reasons but the most common reason for getting an inner lip tattoo is to have ink that can be hidden.

There are several places to hide tattoos on the body, but the inner lip has gained a reputation for hidden rebellion.

For those people who want a tattoo but for personal reasons do not want it to show, getting an inner lip tattoo is a great location.


You would only see an inner lip tattoo on someone who wanted to show you. As they would have to physically move their lip down to do so.

Do Lip Tattoos Hurt More?

Pain is subjective and therefore different people will consider lip tattoos more or less painful than others.

The method of tattooing the inner lip is more difficult than most other tattoos because the artist is tattooing a moist surface. Also, remember that you will have to hold your lip down for this tattoo spot, so be prepared to help the artist.

The biggest pain with an inner lip tattoo comes if the location gets infected. A lot of tattoo artists will let you know before getting your lip tattooed that there is a higher likelihood of infection when tattooing the lip.

This is because of the germs that are inside of your mouth. To help avoid getting an infection, be sure to keep the area clean and follow special aftercare instructions given by your artist.

Can I Get a Stick and Poke Lip Tattoo?

Stick and poke tattoos are non-electric methods of tattooing. While poke tattoos because mainstream in the 1970s, Indigenous tribes across the world have been using stick and poke tattooing methods for millennia.

Instead of a tattooing machine, or gun, the tattoo is applied using a single stick. Poke tattoos are usually composed of tiny dots that make up a larger image.

Any tattoo can be a poke tattoo, including an inner lip tattoo. Be sure to find a tattoo artist that is skilled in both inner lip and poke tattoos for the best results.

Why Do Lip Tattoos Fade Faster Than Others?

One of the biggest reasons lip tattoos fade faster than others is because of the mucosal cells that are found within your mouth.

These special skin cells are designed to shed and regenerate quickly, and they help to restore your mouth after eating certain types of foods.

Acidic foods are one of the reasons that mucosal cells exist, and another reason lip tattoos fade so quickly. The chemicals and acids found in everyday foods contribute to the breakdown of the ink pigment within the mouth.

This breakdown from acidic foods, combined with the human body’s amazing ability to heal itself, are the biggest reasons that lip tattoos fade.

How Can I Make the Inner Lip Tattoo Last Longer?

While it is not possible to completely prevent your inner lip tattoo from fading, there are a few ways to take care of your tattoo to extend its life.

Ensuring that you are following all of the aftercare instructions from your artist is the best way to extend the longevity of your tattoo. Here are some other ways to help prevent your inner lip tattoo from fading.

Get a Professional Artist

It might go without saying but the first step to ensuring your inner lip tattoo stays for a long time is to find a professional tattoo artist. Lip tattoos are not as common as other tattoos.

Because of this, you will want to find not only a professional tattoo artist but also one with experience in tattooing in this area.


Improve Ink Penetration

Tattoos need to be placed under the skin at a certain depth in order to have staying power. Unfortunately, the inner lip is a location where the ink cannot be put in deep enough to stay for a lifetime.

However, you can help improve the ink penetration by placing a napkin or paper towel between your tattoo and teeth. By pushing your lip into the material, you can press the ink down into your skin a bit more.

Use Anti-Fading Creams

There are many anti-fading creams on the market that are made for tattoo ink. While anti-fading creams do not completely eliminate fading, they do help to increase the longevity of your tattoo.

Wash Your Mouth After Eating

After your lip tattoo has been completed, you should wait to eat or drink anything. Your tattoo artist will let you know how long you should wait before doing so.

Once you can eat and drink normally, you should be sure to rinse your mouth out after every meal. This will help prevent infection and extend the life of your tattoo. The same advice applies to those who smoke.

An inner lip tattoo can be an excellent location if you are looking for a tattoo spot that can remain hidden.

While inner lip tattoos do not last as long as others, it can also be a great tattoo location for those who are still unsure about the idea of a tattoo and want to try it out before getting bigger or more noticeable ink.

With the proper care and attention, you should expect to have your inner lip tattoo last on average from 1 to 5 years.

Choosing the right artist, regular touch-ups, anti-fading creams, and keeping the area clean and dry are all ways to ensure that you can have your inner lip tattoo for a long time.

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