Designing a dedicated tattoo planning platform for a lasting purchase.


8 Week Student Project (2021)
Role: Product Designer
Team: Jay Do (Art Director) and Sabrina Rivera (Copywriter)

01 Overview


There's a lot to consider when getting a tattoo.

For those that are getting tattoos for the first time, criteria such as size, location, price, etc. can be hard to get a good grasp on. Even for people that have already gotten tattoos before, it can be overwhelming to think through every aspect of getting a tattoo.

As tattoos grow more popular, so does the need for external services and resources.

As more people get tattoos, educational resources and systems need to grow and develop to match that demand. Currently, there isn't any singular place to go learn and plan your next ink, with the tattoo product market fragmented and piecemeal.


How can we improve the tattoo planning process?

Key User Research

87% of people surveyed treated tattoos as a high-level purchase.

When interviewing the tattoo community, we noticed how people described getting a tattoo was very similar to purchasing anything else material. In the small (>50) sample size of people surveyed, most did some level of comparison like they would with groceries.

Focusing on the planners, not the flash sheet-ers.

Taking the grocery store analogy further, we realized that we wanted to help those that plan out their grocery visits, and do the research on their shopping project. In tattoo terms, it meant we wanted to focus on people that really planned out their purchases from start to finish

02 Solution

Product Overview

A full stack planning tool for more thoughtful tattoos.

Sigil is a product that helps people plan their next tattoo, and helps people understand the nuances behind their design choices.

Home Landing

Starting blue-sky discovery

Tattoo art is all about self expression, and that can come in many forms. While Sigil focuses on guiding users through an in-depth planning process, we wanted to still retain a certain element of discoverability.

However, underlying this discovery we still want to make sure tattoo education and information lays at the core of the experience.

A comprehensive tagging system makes sure you always know the back-end information to tattoos, tattoo artists and tattoo culture.


Defining new criteria for planning.

With open discovery, seeds of thought are planted. This is where users begin to transition into a more directed search. This search begins to categorize threads of thought, again providing educational resources at every moment.


Deep-diving into tattoo planning

The core function of Sigil, we want to be able to properly lead and quantify people's tattoo planning efforts through searching, bookmarking and building tattoo "one-sheeters".

End Goal

Planning multiple tattoos

Users are able to create a personal library of potential tattoos, as well as recommended artists to catalyze conversations with.

03 Strategy

Key Findings

Tattoo educational resources are all over the place.

Many tattoo-getters and potential purchasers of tattoos had vastly different explanations as to how they planned their tattoos, but most of our targeted user base echoed similar sentiments:

There isn't a single centralized platform that helps the tattoo planning process.

Some planned their tattoos through Pinterest boards, others searched for an artist on Instagram first. Others, overwhelmed or confused where to start, never got around to getting inked. There wasn't a single great place to start one's journey of getting a tattoo, and that's what we aimed to fix.

Main Focus

Creating a platform that speaks to focused tattoo planning.
04 Process


Determining purchasing habits

Through our user research, we were able to categorize and define our user base into two types of personas, focused on how they would "purchase" a tattoo.

Each type of shopper focused on different stages of the purchasing journey.

By mapping out each shopper journey, it was easy to identify the key features we want to build into our product.

To translate this user journey into a more tangible experience, a product flow was defined for the core planning aspect of the product itself.

By mapping out the product flow, we were able to pinpoint three important checkpoints in the experience:

1. Discovery, where initial research is done.
2. Deep Diving, where we needed to provide a moment of pause to learn.
3. Completion, where users attend to their secondary wants and needs.

These three translated into key screens that would anchor the experience.


Iterating the most important flow.

After determining concise product flow, first iterations of lo-fi wireframes were sketched out and created

Initial sketching helps get a quick first iteration out, which can then be translated in Figma.

These initial wireframes were then synthesized with a basic visual design system created by Jay, our visual designer.


Creating and testing hi-fidelity components.

In this particular platform, it was important to make sure basic discovery functions weren't lost. When moving from low fidelity to high fidelity, we tested particular components and key screens that were important in the shopping process.


Putting together the final product.

Through testing and refinement, a final product was able to be reached with a cohesive flow mapped out.

Play with the final prototype

Home Screens




Project Creation

05 Reflection
Could we plan our own tattoos?

This project was actually put to the test with both me and Sabrina (copywriter) testing out our own ways of planning out tattoos. In the high-fidelity screens, we actually planned out a tattoo that Sabrina was thinking of getting.

There are, of course certain holes that still need to be filled. For example, how can we better integrate location-based services into Sigil? With more time, I'd love to take a stab at a couple of these questions still left.

Next Project: Stockholm Olympics

Discord | Sigil | Stockholm Olympics | Castella | HarmoniaBlossomsAdding Matter