7 Tattoo Aftercare Tips Worth Knowing

7 Tattoo Aftercare Tips Worth Knowing

7 Tattoo Aftercare Tips Worth Knowing

So you have finally got your dream tattoo, after tossing and turning the idea around in your mind for months. Though eager to flaunt it, it’s natural to worry about the proper care to take to ensure it heals well without any infections or complications. This is where these tattoo aftercare tips can help you out.

Follow your artist’s instructions

Different artists may offer varied and confusing advice. You should specifically follow your artist’s advice as you follow you doctor’s advice after a surgery. They know what’s best for their tattoo.

Immediate care

Your artist will clean the tattoo once it’s done, apply a thin layer of ointment and cover it with some non-stick, absorbent sterilized pad and medical tape. Depending on the location, they may even use plastic wrap and medical tape to keep it covered.

First few hours

Most artists recommend leaving the tattoo covered for the first 2-5 hours after which you remove the covering and gently wash it with mild liquid soap and lukewarm water. Then apply a thin layer of your artist’s recommended unscented moisturizing cream and either leave it open or covered with gauze as advised. You will most probably have to repeat this 3-5 times a day.

Don’t worry if your tattoo feels swollen or is hot and sore at the end of the day because it’s normal. It’ll, in fact, last for a few days, and there may even be some bruising which normally disappears in the first week. Avoid bending if it is in a ditch spot for the first week or so.

Keep it clean using minimal water

The tattoo has to be kept dry and clean, without soaking in water for at least a month. While it’s okay to take a shower, baths and swimming are a no-no. It’s best kept covered with gauze and medical tape if your clothes will rub on it.

No direct sunlight

Keep the tattoo away from direct sunlight, unless necessary because they can fade in the sun, especially the colored ones. Cover it with some a high SPF sun cream lotion while out in the sun.


Like any injury or surgery, your tattoo also takes time to heal. How long, well it depends on the design’s size and style. While simple, small line designs need about a week to heal, the larger and more complex designs require a few months.
Then follow your artist’s aftercare instructions for as long as prescribed. Keep the tattoo clean and moisturized for a few months after that and don’t use any abrasive skin products on it.

No scratching

There may be some itching and flaking for the first few weeks as the tattoo heals. Though you may be tempted to pick at the flakes, don’t. You may end up removing some ink which leads to fading patches. Just slap it lightly if it’s really itchy.

However, if the tattoo stays raised, is uncontrollably itchy, bleeds for more than a day or two or has red surroundings after a few weeks, then it may be infected. Though infections are rare, it can happen. Don’t worry, but do seek medical advice.

Last, but not least, don’t worry if you lose ink as studios usually retouch your tattoo for free, even after 6 weeks. Their reputation is at stake, and so they will do everything possible to ensure you are happy with their end product.