When Can I Start Using Lotion On My Tattoo?
You should start moisturizing your tattoo as soon as it starts to dry — not before. This can generally take about 1–3 days after you got your tattoo. Be sure to wash and dry your tattoo with antibacterial soap and choose the appropriate moisturizer as well.
If you’re new to tattoos, we recommend that you educate yourself on the complete healing process. We go into detail on the precautions you need to take, how to get the job done, and how often to moisturize.
If you’re a tattoo-head, it might be worth your while to get a refresher, as well.
- 1 When can I switch to lotion on my tattoo?
- 2 What happens if you moisturize your tattoo too soon?
- 3 What lotion is safe for tattoos?
- 4 Should I moisturize a scabbing tattoo?
- 5 How do I take care of my tattoo the first week?
- 6 Does shaving over a tattoo make it fade?
- 7 When should you switch from Aquaphor to lotion on a tattoo?
- 8 When can I stop using Aquaphor on my tattoo?
- 9 Can I put scented lotion on my tattoo after 2 weeks?
When can I switch to lotion on my tattoo?
– There will come a point during your washing-drying-ointment routine when you’ll have to switch from using ointment to using lotion. This is usually after several days to a week or so after you first received your tattoo. There’s a difference between ointment and lotion.
Ointments like Aquaphor do a more heavy-duty job of moisturizing the skin than do lotions. That’s because ointments have an oil base, while lotions have a water base. Lotions are more spreadable and breathable than ointments.
Aquaphor has the added benefit of anti-inflammatory effects, which can make the tattoo healing process speedier and more comfortable. After a given number of days of using ointment (your tattoo artist will specify how many), you’ll switch to lotion. This is because you need to keep your tattoo moist for several weeks until it’s completely healed.
During your aftercare routine, instead of adding ointment, apply a thin layer of lotion at least twice a day. However, you might need to apply lotion as much as up to four times a day to keep your healing tattoo hydrated.
Be sure to use unscented lotion. Perfumed lotions typically contain alcohol, which can dry out the skin.
Can I put lotion on my 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.
What happens if you moisturize your tattoo too soon?
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 know your tattoo is healed?
– It’s important to know the signs that your tattoo isn’t healing properly or has become infected. Symptoms of improper healing include:
- Fever or chills. A fever may indicate that your tattoo has become infected, and you should see a doctor right away.
- Prolonged redness. All tattoos will be somewhat red for a few days after the procedure, but if the redness doesn’t subside , it’s a sign that your tattoo isn’t healing well.
- Oozing fluid. If fluid or pus is still coming out from your tattoo after 2 or 3 days, it may be infected. See a doctor.
- Swollen, puffy skin. It’s normal for the tattoo to be raised for a few days, but the surrounding skin shouldn’t be puffy. This may indicate that you’re allergic to the ink.
- Severe itching or hives. Itchy tattoos can also be a sign that your body is allergic to the ink. The allergic reaction to a tattoo can happen right after, or as much as several years after getting the tattoo.
- Scarring. Your tattoo will scab over because it’s a wound, but a properly healed tattoo shouldn’t scar. Signs of scarring include raised, puffy skin, redness that doesn’t fade, distorted colors within the tattoo, or pitted skin.
What happens if you don’t moisturize your tattoo?
It’s a tricky line to tread, looking after your new tattoo and making sure it doesn’t get infected, while also leaving it alone to do its healing without being fiddled with! Too much balm can be problematic, as skin needs to breathe while healing, but what happens if you don’t put any on at all?
- Itchiness Without moisturiser, there’s a risk that healing skin will get very dry, tight and itchy, and itchy skin that you can’t scratch – that in fact you shouldn’t touch at all – is not much fun! If you do itch then you risk damaging the new tattoo.
- Tightness and Scabbing Dry skin can also cause very tight scabs to form; these can flake and fall off easily, pulling the ink away with them, which you also really want to avoid.
- Infection Lastly, uncovered skin can be more open to infection, which can also damage the design; a fine layer of breathable balm works like a sticking plaster to protect against irritants and microbes.
Your skin needs to be looked after whether it’s been tattooed or not; it goes through the same natural cycle of repair and regeneration every 3-4 weeks, rebuilding its outer layer so that it can provide a robust barrier to the outside world.
What lotion is safe for tattoos?
Should I moisturize a scabbing tattoo?
Tattoo Scabbing | Aftercare & Healing – A new tattoo will flake and peel during the healing process and may even scab a little bit. To prevent a new tattoo from overly scabbing and thus possibly losing color and clarity, the first two weeks is the most critical time to carefully follow aftercare tips.
- Whether you use an aftercare product suggested by the tattoo artist, an over-the-counter ointment or an unscented hand lotion or moisturizer, you must keep your tattoo moist;
- If it dries out and starts cracking, where it splits is where you are going to see scabbing;
While keeping it moist is vitally important, you can overdo it and keep it too moist or what you’d call saturated. Avoid using petroleum or lanolin based product that clogs your pores. These products can not only pull out color, but they actually hamper the healing process.
A slow healing tattoo has the potential to scab just as much as one that doesn’t get enough moisture during healing. Wear loose clothing while your tattoo is healing. Tight clothes that rub on a new tattoo can irritate and scrape the area to the point of pulling off flakes and scabs that aren’t ready to come off.
It’s also wise to wear clothing made of breathable materials such as cotton. Avoid nylons and polyesters. Keep it clean Gently wash your tattoo with a mild, antibacterial soap and your fingers. Never use a wash cloth, sponge, bath puff or any other material while washing the area.
Then, thoroughly rinse all of the soap off. It’s important to carefully remove this debris to prevent a new tattoo from scabbing. Don’t rub Rubbing your tattoo can pull off the thin layer that is also referred to as a scab which forms a protective layer over the fresh ink.
This scab is necessary and you don’t want to pull it off before it’s ready or you will end up with larger scabs that are harmful. Re-apply ointment, lotion or moisturizer Avoid Sweating Sports, gum etc can irritate a new tattoo, so try to avoid extremely physical activity.
Also avoid contact sports, where the protective scab can be knocked off. Don’t soak in any kind of water including bathtubs, oceans, lakes, swimming pools or hot tubs. Not only can the water seep under the skin and draw the ink out, any germs found in the water source can potentially cause infection, which can lead to scabbing and scarring.
Tattoo Scabbing – Healing Scabs can be unsightly, painful and itchy. Scabs are the encrusted formation that forms atop a wound during the healing process. Designed to keep germs and bacteria from invading the wound and leading the infection, they can be unsightly.
Improper caring of scabs can lead to permanent scarring. Reasons for Scabs: The tattoo starts to scab over, similar to a scab that may occur if you’ve been badly sun burned. This is a natural reaction, as the top layer of skin becomes a little crusty, protecting the open wound (tattoo) underneath.
After a few days, the natural healing process of the tattoo causes the skin to form a complete scab over the entire image. This scab should be very thin and flaky if you’ve taken care of your tattoo correctly. Once the tattoo finishes healing, the scab begins to peel, eventually falling off completely on its own.
During this time, it’s important not to pick the scab or it could pull the ink out of the fresh tattoo underneath. What to avoid: Don’t pick at the scab; give it time to heal undisturbed. Picking scabs open not only exposes the cut to bacteria, but keeps it from healing properly and will eventually lead to scarring.
Clean the scab with warm, soapy water. Don’t rub on it or you risk having it fall off. Dry it immediately after washing. Keep the scab moist by applying a warm, wet compress one to two times a day. This will help promote healing by allowing the skin beneath the scab to regenerate.
- Apply lotion to the scab to keep it healthier and less likely to fall off or become cracked;
- Apply an antibiotic ointment to the scab between soakings to help keep it from hardening;
- Avoid soaking the scab in excess water;
This can cause the scab to fall off, which will restart the healing process, making it so another scab has to form. Allow the scab to get as much air as possible to promote healing. If you cover the scab, make sure it still has airflow. Talk to your doctor about chemical peeling for scabs and scars.
How do I take care of my tattoo the first week?
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).
Should I moisturize my tattoo while its peeling?
Moisturizing is Essential During the peeling process, unless you’ve decided to take on the dry healing method it’s essential that you keep your tattoo moisturized. For the first three days after you get your tattoo, you should be cleaning your tattoo and washing, drying, and putting ointment on it regularly.
What is an overworked tattoo?
Natalia Lebedinskaia/Shutterstock New tattoos usually take two to three weeks to fully heal, and with good aftercare, they should heal perfectly, per Glamour Magazine. However, there are times when the healing process of a new tattoo doesn’t go as smoothly as it should. This can be so in the case of overworked tattoos. Otherwise known as a tattoo blowout (via Healthline ), an overworked tattoo is what happens when a tattoo causes scarring or when the tattoo ink goes past the dermis layer and reaches the hypodermis, per Demi Ink.
- An effect of this is that the tattoo begins to look blurry, per Byrdie;
- Overworked tattoos are more likely when you patronize beginner tattoo artists, and the problem with overworked skin is that it only becomes truly apparent to the client once the tattoo begins to heal, per Saved Tattoo;
The discolored skin that slowly forms is a big hallmark of a tattoo blowout. It can be the result of the high voltage on the machine affecting its speed, per Tattooing 101. A tattoo artist going over a patch of skin more than once can also result in a tattoo blowout.
Why is my tattoo fading after 3 days?
This is a bit of a trick question. The reason being, is that a tattoo “fades” to the naked eye within days of application. This occurs because as the skin heals, the top layer dies and new skin forms to take its place. During this period the epidermis typically has a faded appearance. However, this is a natural part of the tattoo healing process and as the peeling subsides and the dead skin falls away the design will once again look crisp and fresh.
Still, it won’t have that same deep dark tone as it did when your tattooist put his/her gun away. Anyone who has received a tattoo already knows this. But what you want to know now, is when can you expect a tattoo to fade in the longer term.
Let’s have a look.
Does shaving over a tattoo make it fade?
The Final Takeaway – There is always a chance of irritation when a routine is interrupted, however, preparing the area by gently exfoliating and moisturizing a few days before getting a tattoo might minimize any ingrown hairs, irritation, or dry skin.
When should you switch from Aquaphor to lotion on a tattoo?
What to Wear the Day After and How to Deal With Leaky Ink: – So it’s the day after your tattoo and you have to go to work. What do you do about clothing? For starters, you’ll definitely want to wear something loose, or something that doesn’t touch your tattoo at all if possible.
But if it’s winter and you need to wear sweaters or pants over your tattoo, you can cover it with plastic wrap for the length of your commute, then repeat your wash/dry/Aquaphor routine before letting it air out through the day.
This content is imported from Instagram. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site. Make sure to wear dark colors in case you have any ink leaking out. You’ll want to occasionally dab at the tattoo with a paper towel to keep it dry, and reapply Aquaphor once or twice throughout the day.
- Once you get home, wash/dry/Aquaphor it again and let it air out until bedtime;
- I tend to wash my new tattoos two to three times a day, so you may choose to wash it again before bed or just reapply a little more Aquaphor;
Keep doing this for the next four to six days, until scabbing begins to form and your tattoo starts peeling. Once your tattoo starts to scab, switch from Aquaphor to Lubriderm unscented lotion, but continue washing it twice a day.
When can I stop washing my tattoo with antibacterial soap?
You should never stop washing your new tattoo with soap. After the tattoo has healed, you should continue to wash it just as you would any other piece of skin on your body. That being said, you can definitely ease up on your tattoo cleansing routine as soon as the area has fully healed. This is the point in which germs and bacteria will no longer be able to successfully infiltrate the wound. As part of the healing process, you can stop washing your tattoo with soap after:
- The tattooed area has completely finished scabbing and peeling
- Your artist has confirmed it’s ok to do so
- Your doctor has advised you to stop
When can I stop using Aquaphor on my tattoo?
PROCESS FOR WASHING A FRESH TATTOO: –
- Carefully remove bandage and tape
- Make a lather in your hand with soap and warm water
- Gently clean tattoo using a circular motion, until all ointment, blood, and lymphatic fluid is removed
- Rinse the tattoo and wash once again, gently, until the skin is clean
- a hairdryer on the ‘cool’ setting may be used; a clean paper towel may also be used to dab the tattoo dry
3. Only use CLEAN HANDS to wash your tattoo. NO washcloths, bath towels, bath sponges, or loofahs on a fresh tattoo. Once the tattoo is dry apply AQUAPHOR healing ointment, made by Eucerin. Apply a thin layer and rub it in, then dab excess off with a clean paper towel.
Use the Aquaphor for the first 2-3 days then switch to a regular FRAGRANCE-FREE lotion such as Lubriderm, or any other fragrance-free brand. Fresh tattoos sometimes “weep” during the first couple of days, meaning that plasma and ink form a thin moist coating on the skin.
This can be DABBED with a clean paper towel. Press the paper towel to the skin and remove. Do not wipe the tattoo or be rough with it. Do not panic when you see the colors of the tattoo on the paper towel, or on your hands as you clean it. This is simply excess ink being sloughed from the surface or the skin.
Once a day, in the shower, is usually enough cleaning for any new tattoo. Consult your artist if you plan to do any strenuous activity within the first ten-day of having your tattoo. Lotion may be applied to the tattoo as it dries out; however if your skin is extremely sensitive, lotion may cause acne-like breakouts.
This can be taken care of by reducing the number of lotion applications per day. Wear loose, preferably cotton clothing over the fresh tattoo. The tattoo need not be rebandaged except in certain, rare instances. A bra strap, tight waistband, sweaty gym shoe or itchy cotton sweater can potentially create healing problems.
- Consult your tattoo artist for advice on what clothing to wear/avoid;
- If you choose to re-bandage your tattoo after washing be sure that only sterile bandages are used;
- After a few days, the tattoo will begin to form flaky scabs that will fall off on its own;
DO NOT PICK OR SCRATCH AT YOUR TATTOO. Keep it moisturized and the scabs will slough eventually. Once again, they will be the color of the tattoo. It normally takes 2-4 weeks for a tattoo to completely heal. If you have ANY questions about your healing, please contact one of our artists at (512) 392-0938.
Can I put scented lotion on my tattoo after 2 weeks?
Tattoo artists should recommend avoidance of scented lotions and instruct clients to care for their new tattoo like a wound in their aftercare instructions.