Taking Care of Your Tattoo
- Leave bandage on at least 2 hours, or up to overnight
- Remove bandage and wash immediately, do not rebandage
- Wash thoroughly with a mild bar soap (avoid scents, exfoliating beads, loofahs, and washcloths)
- Rinse, wash. repeat. The first wash is sometimes painful, but its the most important
- Pat dry with clean towel or let air dry
- Once dry, apply a very SMALL amount of moisturizing ointment. We recommend Redemption, Aquaphor, or basic white hand lotion
- Wash again 1-3 times a day. After each wash, apply a small amount of ointment
- After 3-5 days the tattoo will be flakey and may have scabbing
- Wash it once a day, and apply lotion 2-3 times a day instead of ointment
- If it scabs, let the scabs do their thing. Don’t pick, scratch, or bump any scabs
- After 3-4 weeks, the tattoo should usually be healed
Things to Avoid for the First 2-3 Weeks
- Do not rub poop on your tattoo while healing
- Do not submerge in water, no swimming, no baths, no hot-tubs, but showering is okay
- Do not scratch that itchy tattoo. Instead; try patting it, or washing and reapplying lotion
- Do not workout if the workout feels like it is pulling on or squeezing the tattoo
- Do not tan or spray tan
- Avoid penetration from the Sun
- Avoid heavy petting from the Sun
- Do not rub kittens or puppies on your tattoo
Things Worth Knowing
Although performed in a clean environment with single use and/or sterile equipment, tattoos begin as open wounds and it is possible to get them infected. Rubbing poop in them is a surefire way, another good method is just to not wash your hands all day, and then touch the tattoo. These are bad ideas. Try to avoid infecting it.
In general bacteria enjoys a dark, warm, moist environment. Try not to provide that too much, let your tattoo breathe, and don’t smother it in moisturizers.
If you see redness all around the tattoo and it is painful, please stop using any moisturizers, and call us so we can see the tattoo in person.
If you see just redness and tightness around a scabby area and but not red around the rest of the tattoo, that is normal, scabs shrink some once formed and can pull on surrounding skin.
If black or colored ink is flaking off and the color under the flake is different, that is normal. Expect more.
If you miss a few chances to wash it or moisturize it, don’t worry, your body is completely capable of healing it without any help at all.