Category: News

Useful Tips For Tattoo Aftercare

Tattoos are delicate items to handle and requires an aftercare so that they look as good as new and don’t loose their shine and color. Tattoo artists, and people with tattoos, vary widely in their methods of caring for new tattoos. Some artists’ advice people with newly inked tattoos to get it wrapped for the first twenty-four hours, while others suggest removing temporary bandaging after two hours or less.

Many tattooists advise not to get in contact with hot tub or pool water, or soaking in a tub for the first two weeks as it might damage the tattoo charm by preventing the tattoo ink from being washed away or fading due to over-hydration and to avoid infection from exposure to bacteria and chlorine present in water. On the other side, other artists advice that a new tattoo be bathed in very hot water early and often.

General advice for care suggests against removing the scab that forms on a new tattoo, and avoiding exposing one’s tattoo to the heat and light of the sun for extended periods; both of these can contribute to fading of the tattoo image and making it look blur. To add, it is also agreed that a new tattoo needs to be always kept clean. Experts may suggest various products for application to the skin, ranging from those intended for the treatment of cuts, burns and scrapes, to cocoa butter, salves, lanolin and A&  which is just to protect your skin and tattoo. Oil based ointments are almost always advised to be used in very thin layers due to their inability to evaporate and therefore over-hydrate the already perforated skin.

Now days, companies have been developing specific commercial products for tattoo aftercare. Although opinions about these products vary from person to person, there is near total agreement that either alone or in addition to some other product, soap and warm water work well to keep a tattoo clean and free from infection.  Ultimately, the amount of ink that remains in the skin throughout the healing process determines, in large part, how robust the final tattoo will look. If a tattoo becomes infected if now taken care properly (uncommon but possible if one neglects to properly clean their tattoo) or if the scab falls off too soon (e.g., if it absorbs too much water and sloughs off early or is picked or scraped off), then the ink will not be properly fixed in the skin and the final image will be negatively affected, giving a look which is not very much appreciated as its different from what is expected.

Tattoo Aftercare Special Topic – Why Overmoisturizing Your Tattoo is a Bad Idea

When you get that new tattoo, you will probably take extra special care of it, if you’re like the majority of tattoo customers. But did you know that by taking “extra” care of your tattoo, you could be hurting the long-term appearance of your ink?

While neglecting your new tattoo can be a bad thing, focusing too much on tattoo aftercare can also harm your tattoo, and the usual culprit is overmoisturizing. So yes: you can apply too much healing ointment, you can apply it too often, and water can mess up your tattoo!

This might seem counterintuitive, and even some experts are mixed on this topic because at the root, there are two inter-related issues: healing speed and healing effectiveness.

By applying thick coats of healing ointment five to six times per day, you can dramatically speed up the healing process. But healing fast doesn’t necessarily mean healing well. In the process, this overmoisturization will cause your inks to lose their color and saturation. So while your tattoo will scab over and heal faster, it will look worse.

Another problem is overmoisturization from water. Most people know that chlorinated water is very, very harmful to a new tattoo. But also, any oversaturation is bad, including the average shower, for the same reasons mentioned above: they will result in some level of fading.

To combat these dangers, be sure to follow your tattoo artist’s aftercare instructions to the letter. Here are a few more guidelines:

  • Apply a thin film of antibiotic ointment four times per day, making sure not to use too much. A thin film is all you need. 
  • Wear loosely fitting, breathable clothing over your tattoo until it scabs over.
  • Don’t swim or take baths.
  • Take short showers, and attempt to keep your tattoo out of the water. You can loosely cover it, or just try to hold it out of the water. 

Moisture isn’t bad — overmoisturization is bad. Keep that from happening and you have a good shot of finding just the right balance between healing time and healing effectiveness. 

Why Use a Tattoo Aftercare Product?

As Part-Owner of a tattoo aftercare company, I am of course biased as to the use of these products. Some people disagree that they are necessary in the healing process of new tattoos. We beg to differ, and would not have started our company up unless we believed in the effectiveness of tattoo aftercare.

Aftercare spray soap: the reason you want to use a gentle spray soap as opposed to a regular bar of soap for cleaning the site is simple – you do not want to go overboard and include all sorts of chemicals that are not necessary or may impede the healing process. The soap is meant to naturally thoroughly clean the wound site, that's it! Keeping your new tattoo clean is of utmost importance to the proper healing of the site. Without proper healing, you can be left with a mess, an infection that will not look like the tattoo you should have ended up with. Strong soaps that contain all sorts of harsh detergents should be avoided. Soaps loaded down with unnecessary chemicals should be avoided. Just use a mild liquid spray soap and you will be good to go. Remember to keep everything that touches your tattoo clean – including clothes that touch it and even your bedding. Keeping it clean during the healing process really does make a difference in how it heals.

Aftercare Salve: The reason you want to use a salve is to help keep the site moisturized, thereby reducing the peeling and itching that comes along with healing. The salve is to be applied after use of the soap. Again, harsh chemical preparations including alcohol or ingredients you have never heard of should be looked at with caution. For example, many contain alcohol when alcohol dries your skin, so why would you use it? Salve should be soothing to the skin, naturally.

Both products are normally used for the first 3-4 weeks (typical healing period), but can be continued afterward. Anything you do to keep the area clean and uncontaminated during the healing process will help. Of course, sun exposure during this time is a no-no, please read our other articles on that subject.

Tattoo Aftercare – Six Deadly Sins To Avoid

Once you have your new tattoo it is important that you provide it with the proper aftercare. Although your artist should provide you with an aftercare sheet the actual responsibility for preventing infection and worse rests firmly on your shoulders. Here are some of the cardinal sins of tattoo aftercare which should be avoided at all costs to prevent your tattoo experience turning into a potential nightmare.

Removing the bandage too soon. No doubt you will be under pressure from family and friends to show off you latest creation. Under no circumstances should the bandage be removed within the first 2 hours of the tattoo being completed. To prevent infection it is imperative that no bacteria is able to penetrate what is in effect an open wound.

Using abrasive wash clothes. You will need to wash the tattoo area after removing the bandage. Use lukewarm water and a liquid antibacterial soap. Do not use a washcloth or anything abrasive to apply the soap. Your hand is your best tool for this purpose.

Cleaning with Detol or Neosporin. Although a fantastic product for cuts and crazes these type of product are not suited to tattoo aftercare. In particular there is a high potential of an allergic reaction to the Neosporin, which may result in little red bite like lumps dominating the tattoo area. Unfortunately once the lumps die down they for some reason can take the ink with them resulting in a polka-dotted tattoo finish.

Oversoaking your new tattoo. Getting a tattoo wet in a shower is fine but getting it soaked is definitely out of the question. Completely submerging your new tattoo before it is fully healed either in the bath or sea can lead to infection and / or impair the long term quality of the tattoo.

Sharing your aftercare products. To avoid cross infection never share your aftercare products with anyone

Picking and scratching at scabbing and peeling areas It is not unusual after 3-4 days for some minor peeling and scabbing to form on the tattoo area. Do not ruin your tattoo by picking and scratching. Applying some warm moistened cotton buds a few times a day to the scabs for several minute will cause them to soften and eventually fall away.

Exposure to the sun Once your tattoo is fully healed it is important that you keep it adequately protected from the sun's ultraviolet rays. The powerful sun's rays are more than capable of damaging and effecting the vibrancy of even the most colourful tattoo in next to no time. Make sure that the tattoo is protected with a minimum factor 16 sunblock.

Tattoo Aftercare – Are You Doing it the Right Way?

Do you know what the most important issue about tattooing is? Yes, it is tattoo aftercare. Unfortunately, thousands are interested to have sketches on their bodies without having an idea how to keep these sketches look attractive.

But first, what do you know about tattoo designs?

In fact, tattoo designs could be subtle and lovely like dolphin tattoo designs. Or, they can also have an enigmatic look like Egyptian tattoos.

For example, wrist tattoo designs could tend to imitate the bracelet look with intertwining slender pictures. Whereas tattoos on forearms could be more of metaphors and that is why forearms are great locations for zodiac tattoo designs.

Moreover, tattoos -like henna tattoo designs- could also be feminine and stylish simultaneously. Anyway, whatever the design is, you should be very cautious and look after your tattoo to prevent any unwanted penalties.

How does tattoo aftercare start?

The best starting point is actually the duty of the artist. Mainly, he / she should protect the drawing by covering it with a bandage as soon as he / she is done with drawing. Later, you should keep this bandage for 6 hours. And, during this time-frame, it is needed to avoid getting in touch with water.

So, what should you be careful of ?

It is really recommended to stay away from any materials that include chemicals, eg soaps, creams, and liquid sprays. Indeed, using these materials is not wanted due to the fact that they can imbibe some of the ink and draw it out. In this context, you should keep your skin away from any contact.

What is the most important factor that a lot of people commonly overlook?

It is really amazing how many people forget to cover their tattoos under strong sunlight. Indeed, it has been seen that direct sunlight absorbs the brightness of the ink. Consequently, your tattoo will look very shady and it does not impress anybody.

What does tattoo aftercare significantly include?

It involves using an ointment to maintain your skin a little moist, but not wet. Additionally, special creams can be used to keep your skin open to the wind, but not to the sunlight. Furthermore, getting in touch with tough cloth must be avoided as it can trigger itch and irritation.

Hence, it is suggested to get your design painted on places where there is no cloth, eg neck or wrists. Furthermore, you can get a drawing printed on your lower-back in the event you are going to plan seashore holidays.

What can I personally recommend?

Bacitracin ointment is definitely one of the items for tattoo aftercare with less allergic reactions. Online chat rooms tell us that many of folks are pleased with it and they did not encounter any irritation difficulties.

What is my last tip for you?

Should you be interested to acquire sketches painted on your body, then it is strongly suggested to think globally. This means that you should not only worry about the design, yet you should also consider the way to keep your sketching looks great.

Tattoo Aftercare – Ignore It, and Your Tattoo Might End Up a Mess

Tattoo aftercare is vitally important to the health of your new tattoo, and it must not be ignored. Many people believe that once the needlework is done, their tattoo is a lock, but that is far from reality. The fact is that unless you properly care for your new tattoo, it could easily fade, lose saturation, flake, scar, or you could wind up with an infected mess on your body.

But if you ask a dozen tattoo artists how to take care of a new tattoo, you'll probably get a dozen different answers. The conclusion is that no one knows precisely what will work for everyone, so your best bet is to follow a conservative, consensus-driven aftercare procedure.

Before getting into any specifics, it's important that you follow your tattoo artist's directions precisely. If their guidance conflicts with this article, always refer to their instructions. But in the absence of directions, here's what you need to know.

Tattoo Aftercare Do's

  • Do use an approved aftercare moisturizer / healing cream
  • Do leave your initial bandage over your tattoo for at least four to six hours, but no more than 12 hours
  • Do keep your tattoo out of direct contact with water (this includes the shower)
  • Do keep your tattoo moisturized
  • Do pat your skin dry when the tattooed area gets wet

Tattoo Aftercare Don'ts

  • Do not expose your tattoo to sunlight until fully healed
  • Do not submerse your tattoo in water, and especially avoid chlorinated water
  • Do not let your tattoo dry out completely
  • Do not over moisturize your tattoo
  • Do not pick your tattoo scabs
  • Do not cover your tattoo with a bandage once the initial bandage has been removed
  • Do not scratch, bruise, or allow anything to rub against your tattoo with friction

Tattoo Aftercare Procedure

1) Four to six hours after you leave the tattoo parlor, wash your hands thoroughly with an antibacterial soap. You'll want to ensure that your hands are free from dirt, germs, or anything infectious.

2) Carefully remove the bandage that was placed over your tattoo at the parlor. With a mild antibacterial soap, carefully wash the tattooed area, removing any of the greasy covering, ink residue, blood, etc. You'll know the area is clean when it just feels like wet skin. Be very gentle with your skin. Pat your skin dry – do not brush or rub dry.

3) Apply a thin layer of moisturizer / healing ointment. Popular brands recommended at parlors include A & D Ointment, Neosporin, and Bacitracin. There are also tattoo-specific products that are designed exclusively for aftercare, and they include Tattoo Goo, H2Ocean Aftercare, and Black Cat Tattoo Cream. If you have a large, expensive tattoo, or a tattoo with deep colors that you want to protect, they are probably worth the investment.

4) Three to four times per day, apply a thin film of anti-bacterial / healing ointment to your tattoo. You will want to use enough to moisten the tattooed area, but not so much as to leave streaks or allow it to build up. Your goal is to moisturize the area only, so start with a small amount and work it in with your fingers.

The problem with over moisturizing the skin is fading inks. If you slather on a thick coating of Neosporin and keep it moist throughout the day, your tattoo might heal in just over a week – but the inks will fade. If, however, you lightly coat the area three to four times per day, your tattoo might take two to three weeks to heal, but the colors will set properly. The lesson to learn is healing quickly does not necessarily mean healing properly.

5) Cover the tattooed area with light, loose fitting clothing, and be mindful of your tattoo. Do not scratch or pick your tattoo! If you must, gently slap the skin or use rubbing alcohol to relieve any itching or irritation.

While there might seem to be quite a few steps to follow, they are quite simple. The bottom line is that you need to pay attention to your tattoo, and allow the body to heal itself as naturally as possible. You will do everything you can to assist that process, but you do not want to rush it – just help it. If you can do that, and stay diligent with your care for 2 to 3 weeks, you will be blessed with a rich tattoo that can be enjoyed for years.

Following these steps will ensure that your tattoo heals quickly and properly, and will help the inks set and stay vibrant and bold. Then you can enjoy your new tattoo for a lifetime.

Creative Tattoo Aftercare Instructions – How to Care For New Tattoos

Did you know there are really just 3 key factors you need to know about how caring for a new tattoo? Whether it’s your first tattoo or your fiftieth, people still have many differing views on how long it should remain covered, when it should be washed and what, if any, tattoo creams should be used. But by paying attention to the following simple (yet CRITICAL) steps, you will avoid tattoo infection and have a design that not only looks great, but is healthy and vibrant for years to come.

After months of researching tattoo designs and ideas, I recently had my first tattoo done at Kat Von D’s “LA Ink” studio (or High Voltage Tattoo, as it is officially named.) Although I was worried initially that it may hurt & I wouldn’t like the experience, I actually did enjoy it!

However, I’d heard conflicting ideas on how to best care for a new tattoo, especially when it comes to moisturizing… Some people disagree with applying tattoo creams like Tatt Wax, Aquaphor, Bepanthen, Tattoo Goo, etc. Many believe the skin will not breathe and heal properly as it may become over-hydrated. Most tattooists though DO recommend moisturizers (non-petroleum, non-fragranced) to aid the healing process and stop the tat from drying out, flaking or peeling early.

From all the aftercare tattoo information I was bombarded with, there seems to be 3 consistent factors that tattoo professionals and tattoo fans do agree on:

1) Most importantly — keep your new tattoo CLEAN

2) Keep it PROTECTED from SUN and WATER

3) Do NOT PICK or RUB the tat as it heals

After getting my new Gemini lower back tattoo I had no infections or problems, by following the simple tattoo aftercare instructions and advice from the guys at LA Ink:

CLEANSING: Initially your tattooist will apply a gauze bandage or patch to protect the freshly damaged skin, remembering that a tattoo is really an open wound, even if it looks artistic! This should be left on for about 4 hours then carefully removed, possibly even as you shower, to avoid peeling any areas of inked skin that may have stuck to the patch. Gentle washing with mild soap and warm water will be fine, but don’t rub too hard and gently pat dry with a clean towel. To keep your tat infection free, make sure you avoid letting other people touch it and wash your hands thoroughly before YOU touch it. The tattoo does not need to be kept covered and heals within about 2 weeks, but take care and patch it temporarily if it will be exposed to dirt or bumped while working, playing sport, etc. It’s a good idea to avoid excess sweating if possible.

PROTECTION: While showering is fine to clean your tattoo DO NOT SOAK in water and avoid swimming, or soaking in a bath or spa for at least 2-3 weeks. Over-hydration of the skin may cause the ink to wash out or fade and there could be a higher risk of infection in the soft tissue. The sun is also a problem for tattoos, both new and old. Even short periods of exposure can lead to fading and damage of your tattoo, (skin damage in general) so it’s best to keep your new tat lightly covered or under loose clothing for at least 2-3 weeks. DON’T use sunscreen/sunblock creams or sprays until after the skin has fully healed, to help avoid infection!

HEALING: Avoid rubbing or picking at the tattooed skin, even if it itches or scabs. If you pick or scratch the healing layers of skin, you may end up with a design that appears faded or slightly patchy, as the ink needs time to settle into the middle layers of your skin. I highly recommend using a good moisturizer like Aveeno Daily Moisturizer Lotion. By cleansing and then applying just a small amount of that cream 2-3 times a day, my tattoo didn’t scab! I simply had soft little inky flakes of skin wipe off each time I showered or moisturized for the first week — no nasty, itchy scabs to deal with and my newly tattooed skin felt soft, without being greasy or over-hydrated.

For anyone contemplating getting their first tattoo done, or even if you’re adding to the collection of skin art that you already have — you’ll find paying attention to these 3 points is essential to maintaining the colour and beauty of the awesome tattoo design that you’ve invested in!