What Should I Wash My Tattoo With?
Aftercare for Your Tattoo – So, how can you make sure that new tattoo is something you don’t end up regretting? Follow these steps while your new tattoo heals.
- Be sure your artist covers your new tattoo in a thin layer of petroleum jelly and a bandage.
- Remove the bandage after 24 hours. Gently wash the tattoo with antimicrobial soap and water and be sure to pat dry.
- Apply a layer of antibacterial/Vaseline ointment twice a day, but don’t put on another bandage.
- Gently wash your tattoo area twice a day with soap and water and gently pat dry before reapplying the antibacterial/Vaseline ointment.
- Keep applying a moisturizer or ointment after you clean it to keep it moist.
You should repeat this process for 2 to 4 weeks. Also try not to wear clothes that will stick to your tattoo, and avoid swimming and the sun for about 2 weeks. And take cool showers. Scalding hot water will not only hurt, but it can also fade the ink. Wear a physical blocker sunscreen with at least 7% zinc oxide sunscreen during the daylight hours and/or cover it up (with clothing, a bandage).
- 1 What soap can I use to wash my tattoo?
- 1.1 What can I use if I don’t have antibacterial soap?
- 1.2 How often do you moisturize a new tattoo?
- 1.3 Is coconut oil good for tattoos?
- 1.4 Should I wash my tattoo with hot or cold water?
- 2 Do and don’ts after tattoo?
What soap can I use to wash my tattoo?
The Best All-Natural Tattoo Soap – Dr. Bronner’s products are vegan, all-natural, and cruelty-free, and their formulas help me with everything from BO to hormonal acne, so why should tattoos be any exception? Following Bryce’s advice to opt for the unscented, I picked Dr.
- Bronner’s baby soap — the most gentle of all their formulas — as the best all-natural tattoo soap pick;
- Coconut, hemp, jojoba, and olive oils make sure that even though this soap is super effective, it won’t dry out your new tattoo;
And, because the formula is so concentrated, you only need to dilute a few drops with water to get the rich lather you need to fully clean your skin. “I ordered this to clean a fresh tattoo and I was extremely happy with it,” raved one fan on Amazon, “When I got my first tattoo I used the original gold dial soap, but I can’t stand the smell of that so I was really happy to find this alternative.
What should you not wash your tattoo with?
Disregard any advice from friends and family. We are licensed professionals and the proper healing of your new tattoo is very important to us. Your bandage should be worn for 1 to 2 hours. Thoroughly wash your hands and dry them with a paper towel before removing the bandage.
If you find that the bandage is stuck to your tattoo, try running the bandage under water. You DO NOT however, want to soak your fresh tattoo in ANY water to include but not limited to bathtubs, swimming pools, hot tubs, lakes, and ponds.
These all have chemicals, dirt, and all kinds of nasties that can cause infection. Showers are fine-just NO SOAKING! Using a mild, fragrance-free soap (Dove, Dial, and Neutrogena); gently wash all excess blood, ointment, ink, and plasma from your tattoo.
Only use your hand – DO NOT use a washcloth or loofah as they can harbor bacteria. If you are not sure which soap to use, read the ingredients. If alcohol is listed as one of the first few ingredients, DO NOT USE IT.
Soap with fragrance and alcohol will burn and can over-dry the skin. After washing the tattoo, pat it dry with a paper towel. DO NOT use a hand or bath towel. Towels can harbor bacteria. DO NOT re-bandage your tattoo. It needs to “breathe” and get air to heal properly.
Wash your tattoo once or twice a day for the duration of the healing time. Too much washing can wash away your body’s natural bacteria which helps your skin to heal. Washing the tattoo in the morning and at night before you go to bed is sufficient.
For the first day, the tattoo will “ooze” clear plasma. This is completely normal. There is NO NEED to use any ointment on your tattoo. Most ointments are for fighting infection and are contributing to antibiotic resistance. Additionally, ointments can “suffocate” the tattoo by not letting enough air get to it which can cause excessive scabbing.
Ointments also lead to higher rates of dermatitis in tattoos. Before going to bed, wash your hands and wash your tattoo. Sleep in something old (yet clean) to cover the area that was tattooed. Most tattoos will ooze clear plasma the first night and this can stain and stick to clothing and sheets.
By the second or third day, your tattoo will start to dry out. It will start to flake like a sun burn. You will see large black and colored flakes coming off, especially in the shower. This is completely normal. DO NOT under any circumstances, pick or “help” these flakes come off.
Doing so will result in the loss of line and color in your tattoo as well as cause scarring. And YES, we can tell when someone has picked at their tattoo! In addition, DO NOT wear tight clothing that may rub the tattoo.
When your tattoo starts to flake and peel, you may then start using 1or 2 drops of fragrance-free hand lotion. Keri, and Curel are both good choices. Rub the lotion in completely or blot excess off with a paper towel. If you unsure if the lotion you have at home will work, read the label.
If alcohol is near the top of the list of ingredients, then DO NOT USE IT. You may also do a spot test if you are unsure. Rub just a small drop into a small section of the tattoo. If it starts to burn or sting in a couple of minutes, then wash it off immediately and discontinue using it.
Continue to use the above steps until your tattoo is completely healed. Healing time varies with each individual and the area that was tattooed. Generally, tattoos are fully healed in two to three weeks. During the healing process, DO NOT use anything on your tattoo that you wouldn’t use on any other wound or abrasion.
This includes oils, glitter, sun block, etc. If you have special circumstances that require you to alter our advised healing method, please ask the artist or staff. An example would be someone that works in an industry where their fresh tattoo might be exposed to dirt, germs, etc.
while it is healing.
Can I use dish soap to wash my tattoo?
First Time Cleanup – Leave the tattoo bandaged for 2 to 24 hours. DO NOT RE-BANDAGE or put Vaseline on the tattoo again.
- The first time you clean the tattoo, remove the bandage gently , getting it wet if it’s stuck.
- Wash gently with clean hands , and not a wash cloth. Don’t be afraid to really wash your tattoo thoroughly, or you won’t get the vaseline off.
- Use mild soap like Dove, Ivory or Dawn dishwashing liquid. It’s best to avoid very hot water.
- Be sure to remove all the Vaseline – it usually take 4 to 6 or more times washing and rinsing the tattoo before the vaseline is gone.
- Pat dry with a fresh, clean towel. A paper towel is fine if it’s not linty. Don’t rub the tattoo – just pat it. For cleanliness, don’t use anything that you or other people have already used.
- Apply a tiny amount of water-based lotion such as Curél or Lubriderm — most lotions are oily, and don’t let the tattoo “breathe. ” We’ll tell you how much lotion to use for your particular tattoo, but in general, use an amount that absorbs completely in about 5-10 seconds when you’re rubbing it into the tattoo.
- You can also use bag balm or fresh aloe vera leaves (but not aloe vera products sold in stores, as they have stabilizers in them which aren’t good for your tattoo).
- You can remove tape residue by rubbing with olive oil, then wash with soap and water (try not to get olive oil in the tattoo).
PLEASE NOTE: We do NOT recommend Neosporin or similar ointments – they clog the pores and the antibiotic formula can draw out color.
When should I wash my fresh tattoo?
The first wash – After usually no less than 5 hours, it is safe to remove the bandage and wash the tattoo. After thorough hand-washing, a person can gently wash the tattoo with hypoallergenic soap and warm water using their fingers. The moisturizer on the skin will come off, and the tattoo may appear as if it is oozing ink or a thick, sticky substance.
This reaction is not usually a cause for concern, as it is just the excess fluid and ink from the tattoo process. After washing, a person should pat the skin with a clean paper towel and allow it to air-dry for up to an hour.
When the area is completely dry, they can apply a thin layer of moisturizer to the tattoo, but leave it uncovered to allow the skin to breathe.
Can I just wash my tattoo with water?
Wash and Treat – After you remove the bandage, you should wash your tattoo. Use lukewarm water and mild, liquid antibacterial or antimicrobial soap to gently remove any ointment, blood, and plasma and to completely clean the area. Provon Antimicrobial Lotion Soap is a good choice; it’s a mild moisturizing cleanser specifically made for piercing and tattoo care.
Never use a washcloth; it’s too abrasive. Your hand is your best tool. If your tattoo feels slimy and slippery, you have probably been oozing plasma. Try to gently remove as much of this as possible; scabs may form if it is allowed to dry on the skin’s surface.
Then, pat—don’t rub—the area firmly with a clean towel or paper towel to get it completely dry. Follow with a very light application of A&D , Bacitracin, or a similar antibacterial ointment—but not Neosporin. This is a wonderful product for cuts and scrapes, but not for tattoos.
- Many people have allergic reactions to Neosporin, which can cause little red bumps;
- When the bumps go away, so does the ink, and you can end up with a polka-dotted tattoo;
- If you prefer, you also can use a specialty product such as Tattoo Goo Aftercare Salve;
It’s petroleum-free and made with herbs and oils meant to soothe and heal your new tattoo. After that, continue to keep your tattoo clean. After some time has passed, you can use a dye- and fragrance-free lotion when needed instead of ointment to keep the skin soft.
What can I use if I don’t have antibacterial soap?
What About Hand Sanitizers? – A hand sanitizer can cause people to think that they do not have to wash their hands as rigorously or as often. When soap and water are unavailable, the use of a hand sanitizer with 60% alcohol content can indeed be an effective alternative. The CDC makes the following recommendations for adults and children regarding the use of hand sanitizer:
- Use enough hand sanitizer so that all surfaces of the hand will be covered.
- Rub the sanitizer over the entire hand, including fingers and fingertips.
- Continue rubbing your hands for about 20 seconds until they are dry.
How often do you moisturize a new tattoo?
Should I apply lotion to my tattoo? What kind of tattoo care products do you recommend? – Yes! Moisturizing your tattoo regularly is extremely important. You should moisturize your clean tattoo 3 – 6 times per day, for roughly two weeks (though proper skincare is always important, and most tattoo enthusiasts moisturize their tattoos daily for life!). A white cream lotion or moisturizer, preferably unscented, should be used! We recommend these fragrance-free, white cream lotions: Aveeno , Curel , and Eucerin . Be warned: your favorite fragranced lotion is not a good option for moisturizing your tattoo – this can cause an excruciating burning sensation when applied to the tattoo, which is essentially an open wound. The fewer chemicals in the product, the better! Pure cocoa butter or shea butter is also popular for darker skin tones and is a fine option. There are some manufacturers who design products specifically for tattoo aftercare that work well for long-term care (such as Tattoo Goo , H2Ocean , and Hustle Butter ). Do NOT use aloe vera gel to moisturize, and we don’t recommend A&D ointment either, as the oil in these products can extract some of the ink from your tattoo.
Is coconut oil good for tattoos?
The Final Takeaway – Because of its moisturizing properties and vitamins that are good for your skin, coconut oil is ultimately more than safe to apply to your tattoo. It’s a natural, inexpensive way to heal your tattoo and keep it looking healthy and vibrant for years to come..
Should I wash my tattoo with hot or cold water?
- Don’t remove your bandage too soon! Keep your tattoo covered for as long as your artist recommends. The bandage absorbs excess blood, ink, topical anesthetics , ointments, etc
- Don’t use hot water to clean your new tattoo; wash with warm water instead. Hot water will cause your pores to open, leaving new tattoo susceptible to bacterial infection and ink leakage.
- Don’t put your new tattoo directly under running water—don’t soak it either.
- Never rip the bandage off! Use a bit of cold water to break down the adhesive until it’s no longer painful to remove.
- Don’t re-bandage or cover your new tattoo. Tattoos need to breathe and stay dry to heal.
- Don’t pick the scabs—yuck! Aside from that being a terrible habit, your fingers could transfer bacteria. Your tattoo is an open wound and vulnerable to infection during the healing process. Let the scabs fall off by themselves or gently wash them off in the shower.
- Don’t go tanning. Limit your tattoo’s exposure to sun, if possible. If you must be outside, find a tattoo-specific sunscreen with at least 30 SPF.
- Don’t swim, soak, sweat, or sauna for at least 6-weeks after your tattoo! That may be easier said than done, but wet tattoos don’t heal properly.
Do and don’ts after tattoo?
What should you not put on a new tattoo?
Can you over moisturize a tattoo?
What Are The Risks of Over Moisturizing a Tattoo? – By applying thicker layers of lotion or ointment, several times a day (or every hour or two as some people do), you’re risking over-moisturizing a tattoo. By over-moisturizing a tattoo, you can cause the following problems;
- Due to excess moisture, the tattoo won’t be able to dry and heal
- Excess moisture can create a perfect environment for bacteria and germ growth
- Over moisturizing can lead to tattoo inflammation and infection
- Excess moisture can cause clogged pores since the moisturizer prevents the skin from breathing
- Excess moisture can cause the tattooed skin to break out
To avoid these issues, make sure to follow the moisturizing rules we mentioned before. However, make sure to not under moisturizing your tattoo as well. Some people are afraid they might over-moisturize their tattoo, so they leave it dehydrated, which results in heavy scabbing and tattoo dryness. So, make sure to stay in the middle and simply apply a thin layer of lotion/ointment twice a day.
How do you shower with a new tattoo?
So, How Can I Shower Without Disrupting the Tattoo? – Here are few important tips to utilize when showering with a new tattoo;
- Use a mild, antibacterial soap – it is essential you use a mild, antibacterial, fragrance-free soap when showering with a tattoo, or when washing the tattoo itself. Try to be gentle and do not press or rub the tattoo. Use lukewarm water and try not to lather the soap during the very first tattoo wash.
- Apply a thin layer of Vaseline – if you want to take a longer shower, you can apply a very thin layer of Vaseline onto a healing tattoo. This should protect the tattoo from the water or a stronger soap. After you’re done with the shower, make sure to remove the Vaseline layer and gently wash the tattoo. Do not apply Vaseline otherwise, because it will clog the tattoo, prevent it from drying, and potentially cause an infection.
- Avoid using a washcloth or loofah – now, even though we used them to get clean, a washcloth or loofah are filled with all sorts of bacteria and germs. Gross, right? So, to prevent the tattoo from getting infected, avoid showering using these items. Use your hands to shower until the tattoo has healed completely. And even then, make sure to use a new and clean washcloth or loofah.
- Avoid spraying the tattoo directly – during showering, avoid direct water pressure on the tattoo. It is best to simply stand under the shower and let the water run over the tattooed area.
- Do not shave the tattooed area – for obvious reasons, you should not shave an open wound, which your tattoo is in the beginning. Be patient and wait for the tattoo to heal, and only then try to carefully shave the area.
Can I use wet wipes on tattoo?
Always wash and dry your hands before touching a new tattoo. Leave the dressing applied by your tattooist on for 2 hours until skin stops bleeding. After carefully removing the dressing, gently wash the tattoo with non-perfumed baby wipes or warm water and an antibacterial liquid soap (hand wash).