There is no industry wide ‘healing recipe’ for tattoos. Tattoo aftercare is different from tattoo shop to tattoo shop. We have built the following recommendations and guidelines based on decades of experience and industry best practices.
We can’t emphasize enough the importance of caring for your new tattoo. The tattoo aftercare process can have a significant reflection on the quality of the finished (healed) tattoo. The attention and care that went into creating the tattoo should also be reflected in your care during the healing process.
- Wash your hands with antibacterial soap (preferably Hibiclens)
- Wash your new tattoo with the same soap. This should remove all the clotted blood-tattoo ink mixture and moisturize the tattooed area as well.
- Rinse the area with lukewarm (room temperature) water.
- Do not wash the tattoo more than 2-3 times a day. Handle it as a regular personal hygiene procedure.
- After cleaning the area, pat dry it and apply a very thin layer of Aquaphor Healing Ointment over the tattooed area – this helps to reduce inflammation and irritation. If you over-apply the ointment, especially outside the tattooed area, you might get pimples, because you clog the hair follicles and suffocate them.
- Do not apply the ointment more than 3 times a day. Just keep the healing skin moisturized, it will keep the scab/wound soft, stop infection, and prevent the area from drying out.
- When the peeling period is over, there is no longer a need to use the ointment. The new skin is closed, if you wish to keep moisturizing it now you can switch to a natural lotion.
Most Important things to do and not to do:
- Remove bandage in 3 hours or when you get home. Do not rebandage it! The bandage might stick into your fresh scab and might reopen the wound. Bleeding might wash the ink out and leave a little blank spot when healing is complete. Fabric can get stuck into the tattooed area, especially while you sleep. If this occurs, make the cloth really wet, give it a little time to soften the scab up, and slowly/gently pull the cloth away.
- Do not soak the tattoo in water! Do not swim or soak in a tub! Soaking may wash the ink out, so we strongly recommend no swimming or bath tub soaking. Rather, take a quick shower and apply Aquaphor. This ointment has a water repellent effect, thus a shower would not cause too much trouble.
- Avoid getting sunburned! It includes natural sun and artificial tanning as well. This will not cause damage in the quality of the tattoo, it just causes extreme pain as your new skin gets sunburned and causes discomfort.
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