How do I take care of my Tattoo after receiving it?
After Care Instructions:
No more than a few hours after the finish of your tattoo, you should remove the bandage and wash the tattoo. We recommend you wash the tattoo with an anti-bacterial hand soap, such as Dial or Dove, to reduce your risk of infection. Also, use lukewarm water as opposed to hot water, which could burn the tattoo. It is important to wash the tattoo lightly, but be sure to remove all ointment, blood, and any other residue.
After washing the tattoo, apply an ointment. Some commonly recommended ointments would be A+D Ointment and Aquaphor. We would recommend staying away from Vaseline and petroleum jelly. It is VERY IMPORTANT to only use a very tiny amount of ointment and that you lightly rub in on in a thing, shiny, “barely there” layer over the tattoo. The tattoo should just have a slight sheen after rubbing in the ointment. using too much ointment can oversaturate the tattoo and cause excess scabbing, or cause scabs to come off prematurely. It is NOT “the more, the better.”
It is recommended use of the ointment for around 3-5 days. During these days it is also important to wash the tattoo several times throughout the day. The more you wash your tattoo, the easier and faster your tattoo will heal.
Around the third to fifth day, you should notice your tattoo has formed a thin, hard layer., which will begin to peel. The peeling is similar to that of a sunburn peeling – only the skin will come off in the colors of the tattoo. This is normal. At this stage in the healing process, you can switch from using the ointment to a non-scented hand lotion such as Aveeno, Curel, or Lubriderm. For the next two weeks, keep washing the tattoo and use the lotion as needed. Keep the skin moisturized to prevent crackling and bleeding. There may be a couple scabs on the tattoo that take longer to come off than others – Some taking up to a few weeks to come off. DO NOT PICK AT THE SCAB, as this could result in the loss of ink. The majority of your tattoo’s healing should be over in 2 weeks, but it does take about 6 to 8 weeks for a tattoo to be fully healed.
Try not to sleep on your tattoo. For example, if the tattoo is on your back, sleep on your stomach. Not only will the tattoo become stuck to your clothing and linens, it will leave a lovely imprint on your sheets. Should you wake up and your clothes are stuck to your tattoo, do not rip them off. For this could result in the ripping off of scabs, instead, wet the area of clothing that is stuck to the tattoo with water and it will become unstuck.
Avoid submerging the tattoo. Soaking in water could cause scabs to come off prematurely. Also, avoid swimming due to possible bacteria and irritants in the water. So no ocean, lake, pool, Jacuzzi, or bath tub for at least 10 days. Showers are okay.
Avoid the sun! Getting a sunburn on your tattoo can cause some serious problems. Think of your tattoo as like a bad sunburn; you wouldn’t want to get more sun on it. If you’re going to be in the sun for an extended period of time, wear loose clothing over the tattoo.