Contestant says Inked Magazine tattoo contest was a scam

@morganalexandra95/TikTok inkedmag

‘I’m in like sixth place at that point’: Contestant says nationwide tattoo contest is a scam. Here’s why

'It’s been a scam for YEARS.'


Natasha Dubash


Posted on Feb 23, 2024

A woman is putting Inked magazine’s annual cover girl competition on blast, calling the competition a “flat-out scam” and saying that it is rigged.

Since 2017, Inked magazine has held an annual competition to find its next cover girl. Anyone can enter by filling out the official entry form. Voters then receive one vote per day to choose their favorite cover girl from a list of applicants. However, as one competitor points out, it isn’t as simple as it seems.

Mo (@morganalexandra95) took to TikTok to air her grievances with Inked magazine’s cover girl competition. 

“So I entered in the contest without knowing much information about it other than the fact that what they were advertising was you would be on the cover of the magazine, win $25,000, and also get a tattoo by Ryan Ashley from Ink Master,” Mo says. 

She adds that all these incentives attracted her, especially the session with Ashley, who Mo says is usually booked out for months and would be too expensive for her tattoo budget anyway. 

But, Mo says, when she logged in to check the rankings on Inked magazine’s website, things turned.

“I’m in sixth place at that point,” she says, but that’s when she also noticed something about her fellow competitors. “There were at least 10 girls in the top 20 [of the rankings] who had almost no tattoos,” she points out.

She adds that some of these women may have had a few small tattoos, but “nothing that would scream cover of Inked Magazine to me.”

She also notes that some of the contestants were, “blatantly saying, ‘I don’t care about being on the cover of the magazine, I just want the money and I just want a tattoo by Ryan.’” As a tattoo aficionado, this didn’t sit right with Mo. 

But Mo’s main issue with the competition is that people can pay for votes. 

Inked magazine is a multimillion dollar company so I don’t understand why they’re making people who are trying to be on the cover pay for a chance for them to win,” she says. 

“That’s kind of where the scam comes in because if you pay a bunch of money for all these votes, it doesn’t really bring you up in the ranking,” Mo explains, adding that she’d seen a video of another woman who claimed her husband paid $6,000 in votes but she only moved two spots in her ranking. 

“People paying for their votes is pretty much how Inked magazine is making their money right now,” she says. 

Mo received almost 129,000 views on her TikTok post, and several users shared their own outrage at the competition. 

@morganalexandra95 Really disappointed that companies like this get peoples hopes up for nothing. Do better Inked Magazine. #inkedmag #scam #scamalert🚨 #inkedmagazinecompetition #inkedmagazinescam #fyp ♬ original sound – Mo✨

“It’s been a scam for YEARS. Idk how people are just finding this out,” wrote one person. 

Another said, “[I’ve] been waiting [for someone to speak] on this! I saw a girl [with] NO visible tatts who wants to win (yes she was beautiful) but it’s called INKED magazine!”

One person also pointed out, “Paying $6k for a chance is insane—they could book an amazing tattoo for that.”

The Daily Dot reached out to Mo via TikTok comment and to Inked magazine via email for further information.

Share this article
*First Published: Feb 23, 2024, 3:54 pm CST