Tattoo Aftercare Instructions
- Wash your hands well, FIRST. NEVER touch or clean your tattoo without thoroughly washing your hands first.
- Leave bandage on for 2-4 hours to prevent bacteria from entering and to allow any blood to clot. Once the covering is removed, do not cover it again during the healing process. The tattoo will need to be exposed to the air in order to heal.
- Wash your tattoo with luke-warm to cool water and mild soap. Remove all coagulate by scrubbing gently with your hand. Avoid antibacterial soaps except on your hands before washing your tattoo. Blot dry with a clean paper towel. Do not use your bathroom's cloth towel as it contains bacteria. Allow to air dry for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Apply a VERY THIN coat of ointment. Repeat three to four times a day for the first 2 to 4 days, and as needed thereafter. We cannot stress enough that although ointment is good to help you heal, in the first few days you must NEVER reapply ointment without washing your tattoo, first. Ointment, although protecting your tattoo, also acts as a dirt and germ magnet. If you don’t wash the old stuff off before applying new you are rubbing these contaminants into a fresh wound.
- After 3-4 days of using ointment, you may switch to an artificial fragrance-free moisturizing lotion.
- The tattoo will "bleed" ink during the first few days of healing. Wear clothes that you wouldn't mind getting a bit of ink on. The ink will wash out of most clothing, but it might require bleach. Depending on the area of your body you have tattooed, you might want to put a towel down or wear some pajamas at night to avoid getting ink on your sheets. If you just HAVE to sleep buck naked, make sure you have clean sheets. Dirty sheets harbor oils and bacteria that can cause infections.
If at any time severe redness, swelling, yellow or greenish seepage occurs, or if your new tattoo is very hot or painful when it’s not being touched or irritated, call your tattoo artist and see your personal physician immediately!!!
- Somewhere between 3 and 6 days, the tattoo will start to flake off like tissue paper. Do not pick at or scratch. Let the skin peel naturally. You will notice small pieces of dry skin containing color coming off while using the lotion or washing the tattoo. This is normal- it is just a top layer of dead skin coming off. Your tattoo is not disappearing
A Few Don’ts…
- DON’T swim, soak in a hot tub or take a bath for two weeks after getting your tattoo. Chemicals like chlorine and the bacteria found in most lakes will cause the tattoo to fade and/or an infection. Soaking the tattoo will also cause the scab to come off faster, and along with it, some of the ink.
- DON’T tan for at least two weeks after tattooing to allow it to heal. After two weeks has passed, you can lie in the sun or go to the tanner as long as you put a light layer of SPF 25 or higher sun block over the tattoo. Sunlight will fade the ink, especially in bright colors or black. If you expose it to too much sun, you might end up having to get it redone in a few years to brighten up the color.
- DON’T touch or play with your tattoo while it is healing, and don’t let anyone else get their dirty hands on it, either. It needs to stay clean to prevent infection. Only your attention and care can guarantee this.
- DON’T pick at scabs or dried skin while your tattoo is healing. Do not scratch or abrade. If it itches terribly, apply moisturizing lotion or give it a quick, stinging slap. This will alleviate the itch for awhile.
- DON’T apply alcohol, vaseline, lanolin, sunblock or mineral oil to a fresh tattoo.
- DON’T shave or wax the area for at least 2 weeks.
REMEMBER…Once you leave the parlor or shop, proper care of your tattoo is YOUR responsibility