How To Make a Temporary Tattoo With Regular Paper

A tattoo is a body art that shows your personality and style. However, most permanent tattoos are hard to remove, which may inconvenience you in places that don’t allow them, for instance, at workplaces.

The best solution to this is temporary tattoos. You can easily remove one when you get bored with it. You can easily make a temporary tattoo at home using available materials like stencil paper or regular printing paper or perfume.

This article looks at how to make a temporary tattoo with regular paper, step by step.

How To Make a Temporary Tattoo With Regular Paper

What you need:

  • A gel pen with dark ink.
  • A pencil
  • A regular paper, preferably parchment paper or drawing paper
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Liquid bandage
  • A drawing of the desired tattoo design
  • Cotton ball


  1. Place your parchment paper over the desired design and carefully trace the image using a pencil. Note that if you’re not so good at drawing or in a hurry, consider using simple designs with clean lines to save on time and hustle of drawing. You can get a design online or draw something of your choice.
  2. Using your dark-coloured ink gel pen, retrace the image drawn on your drawing or parchment paper. Then cut off excess paper to remain with only a small part of the paper with the design.
  3. Identify the skin area on your body where you want to draw the temporary tattoo. Clean the skin area using a cotton ball soaked in the rubbing alcohol. If you don’t have alcohol, you can use warm water and soap to clean the area.
  4. Place the traced tattoo design on the cleaned area with the drawing in direct contact with skin. Dampen a paper towel with warm water and place it on top of the traced design and press for about 20 seconds. What happens here is that water from the paper towel goes through the image, and ink from the design will begin to bleed, transferring the entire design onto your skin.
  5. Gently pull off a corner of the parchment paper to see if the image is transferred to the skin. If you’re satisfied, remove the paper towel and peel the paper. The design by now should be transferred to the skin. Leave it to dry.
  6. You can trace over the design with your gel pen or ballpoint pen to make it appear darker. Spray your Liquid bandage on the design to make it appear brighter. This tattoo will last for 1 to 3 days. Make sure you avoid water or rubbing against a piece of fabric as it will remove it immediately.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you print a temporary tattoo with a picture?

Yes. If you want to avoid the hassle of drawings and tracing out, you can print an image and transfer it to the skin in a few simple steps.

  • First, design the tattoo, by drawing and uploading to the computer or digitally creating one using software like Adobe illustrator. You can also download an image from the internet.
  • Print the tattoo design onto decal paper using an inkjet printer. Cover the printed image with an adhesive paper.
  • Remove the sticky layer and apply the tattoo on your skin. Place a damp cloth or paper towel on the back and then remove after a few seconds.

What type of paper is best for temporary tattoos?

Commonly known as temporary tattoo paper, a type of craft paper is readily available in the market. This transfer paper is specifically made for body decoration. If you don’t get this, you can buy a drawing paper which is usually transparent, giving you an easy time when tracing out your image.

Can I use carbon paper to draw a temporary tattoo?

If you’re adept in drawing and confident enough to draw without tracing, a carbon paper is the best way to draw a temporary tattoo. You will need to think of a design and then draw it directly from your head to the skin. The tattoo will appear very bold and quite visible compared to tracing paper.

Can I apply lotion on a temporary tattoo?

Temporary tattoos usually last between a day and seven days. To keep one last for several days, avoid water, lotions or rubbing a cloth on the surface of your tattoo. You can use a soft brush to apply baby powder on the tattoo daily as long as you have it. It helps it remain shiny.


You can make temporary tattoos at home using a wide range of items like eyeliners, paint, henna, and paper. Drawing a temporary tattoo on paper is very easy and takes a few minutes. If you imagine how you’d look like with a tattoo, a temporary one is a great way to go before deciding on a permanent one.

About the author

I’m S.R Bhuiyan, a proud Tattoo artist. I will share the body art journey with you here in PrettyJust. I have 10+ years of experience in the field of tattoo, piercing, nail art, and skincare. Check out my bio which has my tattoo studio/cat/travel pics!

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