Tattoo Aftercare: Do’s and Don’ts
Finally! You’ve been inked and you probably feel ecstatic. You might probably think, “Yes! I can go on with my life without minding my tattoo!”
If you think aftercare ends by the time you just had your tattoo, you are very wrong. In fact, tattoo aftercare lasts for a lifetime!
To make your life easier, we’ve made a list of what you should do and what you shouldn’t do to your beloved tattoo.
- Place a sterile absorbing pad and bandage over fresh tattoo to absorb all the ooze, ink, topical anesthetic, and blood.
- Remove bandage after 6 to 8 hours, and then clean the area with mild antibacterial soap to keep it from getting the numb skin
- Pat dry skin after washing.
- Apply pain relieving cream or ointment after washing.
- If you prefer topical anesthetic spray instead of cream or ointments, go ahead!
- Keep your tattoo exposed to air for faster healing.
- Put disposable sheets on top of your bed sheets. You don’t want them to get stained.
- Wear loose fitting clothes if possible.
- If you really hate your tattoo because it didn’t turn out exactly how you pictured it, you may have to use tattoo removal cream or have it removed by laser or surgery.
- Be mindful if you are allergic to certain adhesives used in covering your fresh tattoo because an allergic reaction near it might affect your tattoo. Inform your tattoo artist about this.
- Do not remove bandage immediately. Keep it for 2 to 8 hours. Why? The bandage will absorb all the excess blood, ink, topical anesthesia, and etc.
- Do not put your fresh tattoo directly under running water or soak it.
- Hot or lukewarm water may feel nice when you wash your tattoo but be careful not to overdo it because it will open the pores and cause leaching of ink out of your skin. It will also make it easier for the germs to get in. So at the end of your quick shower, use cold water or cold compress to close the skin pores.
- If bandage is stuck on your skin, do not pull it off. Just let a bit of cool water soak on it until it becomes easy to remove. You do not want to add more pain to your already present tattoo pain.
- Do not re-bandage your tattoo. It needs air to breathe!
- Do not pick the scabs! It’s a normal part of the healing process and it will just fall off by itself. After all, you don’t want to damage your tattoo, right?
- Do not expose the tattoo under the sun if possible. Use tattoo sunscreen lotion with a minimum of SPF 30 if you really have to.
- If possible, avoid swimming, soaking in the tub, excessive sweating, steam baths or anything that will make it wet.
- Keep your tattoo out of contact from clothes or avoid leaning on it. It’s a fresh wound just in case you forgot!
Weeks of healing and a little help from a topical anesthetic gel would probably get you through it all. If you take these tips seriously, congratulations! Once, your tattoo has fully-healed, you can show it off to your family and friends with pride! Ain’t that sweet?