5 Tips to Help Your Tattoo Heal

Congrats! You’ve just made the amazing decision - to get a tattoo. Whether you’ve been planning it for years or were just feeling spontaneous, the healing process is important to ensuring a vibrant life for your new ink. While Save Your Tattoo isn’t for fresh tattoos, we’re here to help with 5 things to do after you get your tattoo to keep it looking fresh for life.

1. Keep the Covering On - No Peeking!

We know it may be tempting to look underneath the banadage, but leaving it on is an important first step in the process. Removing it too soon can cause it to over expose, heal improperly, or get unwanted blood or ink on your clothes. While most artists agree that the minimum time to leave it on is 2 hours, your tattoo artist will be to tell you exactly how long you should wait depending on the size and placement. When it’s time to remove the bandage, soak it with warm water first to help it come off easier.

2. Keep it Clean

Gently wash the tattoo with lukewarm water and unscented, mild soap 2 or 3 times a day for a few weeks. Do NOT use a washcloth, loofa, or any sponge as these can harbor bacteria. Also, avoid holding the tattoo directly under the water as the stream may be too harsh on your healing skin. Splash water on the inked area and gently rub with your hands. Then, pat it dry with a paper towel and allow it to breathe for 30 minutes before covering it again.

3. Moisturize

Using an ointment after washing your tattoo for the first few days will help prevent infections and keep it hydrated. A thin layer is all you need. Once it begins to peel, switch to a unscented lotion. We suggest keeping a bottle at home and purchasing another that you can bring with you to use throughout the day if you are often on-the-go. Avoid any heavy ointments or lotions that may contain petroleum as these can be too heavy and cause the ink to fade.

4.Wear the Right Clothing

For the first couple of weeks, it’s important to avoid wearing tight-fitting or restrictive clothing. As your skin heals, it will inevitably excrete plasma and excess ink which may cause your clothes to stick to your skin. Gross. In the case that it does get stuck, soak it with warm water like you did with the bandage to avoid damaging your tattoo.

5. Other Do’s and Don’t

  • Avoid going into large bodies of water (pool, ocean, hot tubs, etc.). Showers are fine as long as they are not too hot.
  • Keep the tattoo out of direct sunlight.
  • Avoid activities that lead to excessive amounts of sweating.
  • Resist the urge to pick, peel, or scratch at any scabs or hard layers of skin.
  • Once it’s finally healed, use Save Your Tattoo to keep it looking clean and bright.