Congrats on the new tattoo! Please keep in mind that your body is treating your new addition just like it would any other open wound. That means being conscious of aftercare, as well as your surroundings, while it heals. Keep in mind that different tattoo artists provide variations on aftercare – just because it’s different doesn’t necessarily make it wrong, but please reach out to us if you have questions about deviating from our recommended aftercare.
- Your fresh tattoo was bandaged upon completion. Try and keep that on for at least a few hours, ideally until the end of the day; if Saniderm or Tegaderm was used (the plastic cling wrap – sometimes referred to as second skin), keep this on for at least a couple of days – if it naturally begins to peel up, you can remove it sooner.
- Once you’ve removed the bandage, rinse and wash it gently using warm water, antibacterial soap and your hands (try and avoid anything that is going to be textured or abrasive to your skin).
- Pat (don’t wipe) dry with a paper towel. You can use a cloth towel but be aware that the ink has an may stain whatever fabric you’re using.
- After drying, lightly apply lotion. This should be done 1-2 times a day. We recommend Lubriderm or Jergens – you can use pretty much anything, just make sure it’s unscented. Remember, lightly, there is such a thing as too much and too heavy, which can cause issues with healing.
- Again, treat it like you would anything else that’s healing – keep it clean! Normal showers are fine, but avoid soaking the tattoo, particularly as it’s scabbing.
- A tattoo can take anywhere between 2 and 4 weeks to heal entirely, based on the individual. Not sure if yours is entirely healed? Shoot us a photo and we’ll be able to tell.
And now for the list of what to make sure you avoid:
- Don’t over moisturize. There should be a middle ground for the scabbing that occurs, so avoid it overly drying out.
- Avoid scratching (expect a little bit of an itch) or picking any scabs that form. They’re normal and scratching them off may lead to slight scarring and loss of ink.
- If it’s standing water, stay away from it. No pools. No hot tubs. No Oceans, definitely no rivers. In some cases, this may absolve you from doing the dishes for a week.
- Avoid direct sunlight, especially while it’s still wrapped (think of that ant on the sidewalk and a magnifying glass overhead). Once your tattoo has healed, remember to apply sunscreen (don’t worry, we forget about that one too).
Something that we didn’t go over or you’re unclear on? Shoot us a text or an email!