Tattoo Tutorial: Tattoo Needle Size & Tubes

May 10th, 2012 by David

We get questions regarding what tattoo needle size goes with what tattoo tube all the time so we figured we would do a blog post about it to help everyone out there and save us some time. Tattoo needles come in a variety of groupings and sizes. Each size and grouping combination will fit specific tubes. There are 6 main needle groupings: Liners, Shaders, Flats, Weaved Magnum, Stacked Magnum and Round magnum. Below is a chart of the tattoo needle size & tubes they correspond with.
tattoo needles chart

Liner Tattoo Needles

Form a round tip that is tight. This formation is used for lining. These will go with a corresponding round tube.

Shader Tattoo Needles

Form a round tip that is loose. The formation is used for shading and coloring. These will go with a corresponding round tube.

Flat tattoo needles

Form a line formation that is used for geometric shapes, shading, etc.. These will go with a corresponding flat tube.

Weaved Magnum tattoo needle

These are quite similar to flats but instead of a single layer, they have 2 layers that are overlapped together in a loose formation, hence the name “weaved”.  These will go with a corresponding flat tube.

Stacked Magnum tattoo needle

Same idea as the weaved magnums except stacked mags are tightly stacked together.  These will go with a smaller sized flat tube that will correspond to the bottom row of prongs. So for example, a 7M2 will have 4 on the bottom and 3 on the top so a 4-5 flat tube would fit as opposed to a 7 flat tube.

Round Magnum tattoo needle

The round magnum have prongs that are arranged into a fan shape at the edges, this allows it to better conform to the skin. This will give a more consistent implantation of ink and cause less damage to the skin. The same rules apply for tubes for all magnums.