Tattoos are beautiful body art that will last a lifetime. They are made by inserting irremovable ink into the dermis layer of the skin to change the pigment. Proper aftercare has to be provided after tattooing, to achieve the best healing, resulting in the most attractive tattoo with fewer complications in future. Tattoo aftercare varies from person to person and artist to artist. Usually your tattoo artist will provide instructions on, “how to take care of your new tattoo?”. But, it’s better to be prepared of these instructions before getting your tattoo. Tattoo aftercare is simple, if you properly follow the instructions.
Usually the tattoo artists, cover your tattoo with a bandage, cling wrap or gauze. You have to keep your new tattoo covered for two hours or overnight, depending on the size of the tattoo or the advice of your tattoo artist. This is done to prevent any bacteria entering into the skin and to avoid the blood from clotting. When it’s time to remove the bandage, do so slowly and gently with clean hands. If the bandage sticks, stop peeling and pour cool water between the bandage and skin. Wait for a few minutes and start peeling again. Remember not to hurry while taking the bandage. Do it slowly and gently, to avoid peeling your skin or parts of the tattoo. Otherwise it will create a dull gap in your beautiful tattoo.
After removing the bandage, gently wash the area with warm water. Use a mild anti-bacterial soap free of deodorants or other additives. Rub the soap on the tattoo gently with your fingers. Make sure that you remove all traces of blood from it. After cleaning, pout cold water on the tattoo for a few minutes. The cold water will help the tattoo heal quickly, as it tightens the pores. Cold water also helps the color to set in. Now, gently pat the tattoo dry with a clean, dry cloth. Don’t rub it dry.
Now, apply a very thin layer of antibacterial ointment like Neosporin or Bacitraycin, with your fingers. Do not apply thick layer of ointment, otherwise your skin cannot breath. A thin layer is enough to cover the tattoo, depending on its size.
Avoid hot tubs, pool water, or soaking in the tub during the first two weeks. This is to avoid the fading of the ink due to excess hydration and to prevent the exposure to bacteria.
You have to keep your tattoo clean in order to avoid bacterial infection. Wash the tattoo at least twice a day for the first week. Apply ointment on the tattoo 4-6 times for the first three days. It will keep the tattoo moisturized and prevent its fading.
After 3-4 days of using ointment, switch to moisturizing lotions like Lubriderm and Eucerin.
The tattoo will bleed ink for the first few days after tattooing. So wear something that you doesn’t mind having a little ink on.
Do not re-bandage a tattoo. Never use petroleum-based products or products with extra additives like skin softeners or scents for the first two weeks. Try to use water-based products on your tattoo.
Try to stay away from sun for at least two or three weeks. Too much exposure to sun will result in the fading of the color of the tattoo. After two weeks, you can lie in the sun or go to a tanner. But, remember to apply a thin layer of SPF 25 or other sunscreen lotions over the tattoo.
Like all other wounds, your tattoo will also itch during the healing process. Do not scratch on your tattoo. It will remove scabs of tattoo from your skin, which will turn it ugly. Apply lotion on the tattoo to relieve itching.
By following these simple instructions, it’s sure that you can have a great tattoo on you without any complications.
After your tattoo has been healed you can return to your normal life. But, remember to use sun screen lotions when you get out. Try to cover your tattoo, if you are going to the tanning bed. Apply skin lotions to give your tattoo a better look.