BELOW ARE INSTRUCTIONS FOR STANDARD METHODS OF TATTOO AFTERCARE. If you are using Saniderm tattoo bandages or similar products, please visit this page for more information. NOTE: Some people can have allergic reactions to Saniderm or similar bandages. If you notice any redness or itchiness beneath the bandage or at its edges, please remove it immediately.
Always wash your hands before touching your tattoo!
When you arrive at home: Remove wrapping 2-3 hours after getting your tattoo, and do not re-bandage again.
Once the wrapping is removed, wash your hands, then gently wash your tattoo with a pH neutral soap and warm water until all surface plasma, ink and blood are gone. Be gentle: do not use a washcloth, fabric or anything that exfoliate your tattoo—only use your hands. Finally, gently pat your tattoo dry with a clean cloth or paper towel.
Do not use any cloth bandage or pads, as the fibres of this material can adhere to your open tattoo and hinder the healing process.
Within the first 2-4 days: Rub a small amount of ointment on your tattoo. Only a thin layer is necessary. You can use Bepanthen, Neosporin, A&D, similar ointments, or specialized tattoo ointments. You can also use coconut oil or pure aloe vera, so long as it is only being used for your tattoo and nothing else. Always use clean hands and do not place your fingers back into the ointment after touching your tattoo. Make sure to gently rub it in a thin layer so that it is not too shiny. Do not use Vaseline, petroleum products or balms. Apply ointment 2-3 times daily, as needed.
After day 4: On the third or fourth day your tattoo will begin to develop scabs, which will slowly begin to peel and fall off on their own accord. This is normal! Do not pick at the skin. Let the scabs fall off naturally. Continue using the ointment that you had previously been using until all the scabs have fallen off.
Continue using the ointment for a minimum of 2 weeks, 2-3 times daily.
Note: Wear clean, soft, loose clothing over your tattoo for the first 2 weeks—nothing abrasive or irritating, such as wool. For a foot tattoo: go barefoot as much as possible.
Things to Avoid:
Do not pick, scratch, peel, rub or irritate your tattoo.
You can shower, but do not soak your tattoo while it is healing, especially while scabs have formed. A shorter shower time is recommended. No swimming, soaking, saunas or hot tubs.
You should not expose your tattoo to the sun for at least 3 weeks. During healing, do not apply suntan lotion to the tattoo; instead keep it dry and covered with loose, dark clothing. Avoid tanning beds and stay out of the sun as much as possible. Once healed, keep your tattoo covered whenever possible to avoid fading or discolouring the tattoo. After healing, you should always wear sunscreen in the presence of sun, in case it is exposed. It is recommended that you use a sunscreen with a high SPF, at least 50. Apply the sunscreen thoroughly over the entirety of your tattoo.
Do not wear abrasive materials, jewellery, shoes or anything that can rub against or catch on to your tattoo.
Do not let anyone else touch your tattoo, unless they have washed their hands and received your consent.
In regards to sports, if you sweat excessively during a game or workout, pat your tattoo dry afterwards with a clean cloth or paper towel. Contact sports are not recommended during the scabbing process as your tattoo may accidentally be rubbed, scraped or damaged, either by yourself or other players. Beware of gym equipment: wash it well before using to avoid infection.
Many of the instructions and recommendations above differ from one tattoo artist to another, and from person to person, so think rationally and cautiously when experimenting with different methods of aftercare. If you are unsure about anything, please contact me or another tattoo artist that you trust for advice.
Before getting your tattoo, you will receive a consent form. This implies a binding trust between you and myself.
After the tattoo and healing process, if touch-ups are necessary, due to mistakes on my part, then a touch-up session is free within one year of first receiving your tattoo. If complications arise during the healing process due to negligence or mistakes on your part, a touch-up is not free.
If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.