Whenever David Beckham whips off his shirt or Angelina Jolie does an especially revealing editorial, we can’t help but wonder, who did their tattoos?
The more mainstream tattoos become, the more ink we spot on our favorite celebs. And given that A-listers have famously high-standards in everything from cars to vacation spots (why wouldn’t they?), our bet was that their favorite tattoo artists were some of the top talents in the industry.
Turns out, we were right. Here, the top ten tattoo shops where celebrities go for fresh ink.
Where do you get tattooed? Tell us in the comments below.
25-year-old artist Bing Bang—who trained beneath legendary tattooer Paul Booth—is the talent behind Rihanna's much-photographed ink. Known for painterly tattoos and vivid use of color, Bing Bang is already accepting appointments for his new shop, set to open in New York City this fall. 26 Clinton Street, New York City; bangbangnyc.com.
Bing Bang/Bing Bang
Scott Campbell may be making a name for himself in the fine art world, but he's best known as one of the finest tattooers around, even designer Marc Jacobs is among his devoted clientele. The founder of Saved Tattoo in Brooklyn (which boasts a roster of big-name artists like Chris O'Donnell and Thomas Hooper), booking ink with Campbell will cost a pretty penny. 426 Union Avenue, Brooklyn, New York; savedtattoo.com.
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The star of TLC's mega-popular LA Ink, Kat Von D—who works out of her splashy Hollywood shop, High Voltage—has tattooed everyone from Margaret Cho to Eve. Vivid portraiture is her calling card, but the savvy Von D has inked her share of product endorsements, too, including a collection of beauty products for Sephora. 1259 North La Brea Avenue, Los Angeles; highvoltagetattoo.com.
Steve Jennings/Getty Images For Sephora
Mark Mahoney's three-decade career has made him one of the biggest names in the tattoo business. Appropriately, his client base is pure A-list, with the likes of Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie and even Cher patronizing his Hollywood shop, Shamrock Social Club. 9026 West Sunset Boulevard, Los Angeles; shamrocktattoo.com.
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Brandon Bond operates a bustling tattoo haven in his massive All or Nothing tattoo shop in Atlanta. His unique style of artwork—dubbed "Ala Prima," or all at once—is drawn directly onto the skin, and has earned him legions of fans including the likes of Nas and Kellis. 2569 South Cobb Drive, Smyrna, GA; allornothingtattoo.com.
In terms of free advertising, there's nothing better for a tattoo business than having a famous athlete with a penchant for going shirtless as your client. Lou Molloy—who operates the Middleton Tattoo Studio in Manchester—is responsible for David Beckham's edgy chest art work. 327 Oldham Road, Manchester, England; tattoos.co.uk.
Lady Gaga changes outfits as often as most people change their socks, but when it came time to make a permanent decision about getting an inked unicorn, she went to Becca Roach at New York City's North Star Tattoo. Now, if that's not a testament to the lady's talent, we don't know what is. 74 East 7th Street, New York City; northstartattoo.com.
Sometimes referred to as "the girl with the golden needle," UK tattooer Saira Hunjan has tattooed stylish Brits like Kate Moss and Jude Law. Working out of London's Good Times Tattoo, booking time with Ms. Hunjan may be a more painful process than actually getting inked. 147 Curtain Road, London, England; sairahunjan.com.
Soma Magazine/Soma Magazine
Paul Timman's distinctive tribal tattoos and celeb clients have made him a giant in the industry. Working from Hollywood's Sunset Strip Tattoo (classic rock fans will remember Axl Rose wearing an SST tee in the Sweet Child of Mine video), his famous clientele includes Mark Wahlberg, Pamela Anderson, and Ben Affleck. 7524 Sunset Boulevard, Los Angeles; sunsetstriptattoo.com.
Jonathan Shaw is nothing if not old school. Having studied with writer Charles Bukowski before opening New York City's first public, brick-and-mortar tattoo shop in 1991, it's no wonder that the likes of Iggy Pop, Marilyn Manson and Naomi Campbell have found their way into his East Village spot, Fun City Tattoo. 94 Saint Marks Place, New York City; funcitytattoo.com.