When Should I Unwrap My Tattoo?
You’ll need to keep your tattoo wrapped in cling film from one to three days. Depending on the size of your artwork this may be longer and your artist will let you know but a general rule of thumb is: Small line-work pieces – keep the cling film on for one to two days.
- 0.1 What happens if I unwrap my tattoo too early?
- 1 Should I rewrap my tattoo at night?
- 2 Can I drink 2 days after getting a tattoo?
- 3 What should you not do after a tattoo?
- 4 Can I drink coffee after tattoo?
What happens if I unwrap my tattoo too early?
Fresh tattoos can take anywhere from 4 to 6 weeks to heal. During this healing phase, there are 7 things that can ruin your new tattoo before it has even healed. Bad art from a bad artist It’s possible to ruin your new tattoo by choosing an unskilled artist.
- When speaking about skills, I’m not referring to their artistic skills;
- This would be about the artists’ tattooing procedure and application skills;
- Everyone’s skin is different skin;
- Healthy, unhealthy, plump, loose, tight, oily, or dry;
Our skin’s surface, thickness, and tightness are also different throughout our bodies. These differences can have a detrimental impact on how the ink lays into your skin. An inexperienced artist can further implicate this. Finding and choosing an experienced artist goes without question 2.
- Keeping your fresh tattoo covered too long Fresh tattoos are open wounds, and after the tattoo session, the artist will cover your new tattoo;
- Every artist has a different preference for what they use;
- Some still use the old school plastic Saran Wrap crap made for sandwiches;
Try to avoid using this food cellophane wrap on new ink. Fresh tattoos should be wrapped with a sterile bandage. The best options are medical-grade adhesive bandages and protective tattoo films like Saniderm or Dermalize. Wrapping a fresh tattoo is essential to help the initial healing while providing protection from environmental contaminants like dirt, germs or anything else that should not go near an open wound.
- After the wrap has been on for a few hours, you will start to see blood and plasma underneath;
- Once this happens, it’s time to remove the wrap, as this can block your skin pores from breathing;
- This can ruin your new tattoo before the first day is over;
And trust me, I’ve ruined two tattoos by leaving the wrap on too long as per the artist’s instructions. The bandage or wrap should stay on no longer than 6-8 hours max. If using products like Saniderm or Dermalize, you can always remove it, clean the tattoo and apply a new layer.
Tattoo Infections As discussed above, the post-procedure wrapping helps protect your skin from getting infected. Once unwrapped, keep your skin clean and follow proper tattoo aftercare instructions. This will ensure your new tattoo heals without getting infected.
During tattoo healing, avoid touching your ink unless washing or applying aftercare. It’s very easy to transfer dirt and germs onto your fresh tattoo (open wound) from dirty hands. Sleeping with a fresh tattoo Getting a goods night’s sleep can be awkward during the tattoo healing process.
Even more awkward is the size and location of your new tattoo. Try to avoid laying on the tattoo, and or having it covered under the sheets or blankets. Covering a fresh tattoo under blankets or sheets can cause a risk of infection.
The bed is a great place for hidden germs that you do not want to get into an open wound. The same as above, your skin needs to breathe, so not covering up under the sheets helps. Then there’s the issue of laying on the tattoo. You risk having the tattoo stick to the bed or pick up dirt and germs.
- You can always lay down a clean towel on the bed if you need to;
- Another option for sleeping is applying a breathable medical wrap like Saniderm;
- Make sure to remove it as soon as you wake up so that there’s not too much blood and plasma accumulation;
Cleaning and excess water exposure Keeping a fresh tattoo clean goes without question. So never submerge a fresh tattoo underwater. Also, avoid excessive water exposure while showering. Our skin is like a sponge and it will absorb the water, which can damage the tattoo.
When it comes to cleaning your new tattoo, make sure you do this several times a day. You can read our 17 Best Tips To Heal New Tattoos here. Picking or scratching itchy or peeling skin During the tattoo healing stages, some people experience itchy and scabby skin.
The reason for this to happen is part of your skin’s healing process. But whatever you do, resist the urge to pick or peel your skin as this can damage the color and lines of your new tattoo. To avoid or end any itchy peeling skin during tattoo healing, always use a good aftercare product.
Keep your tattoo clean and moisturized several times throughout the day. Don’t let your tattoo get dry, and only apply a thin layer of tattoo aftercare after every cleaning. Now, in regards to peeling and itchy skin, I have never suffered from this.
I followed the above directions and none of my 21 tattoos have ever peeled or got itchy. Excessive sun exposure Excessive sun exposure is a fast way to ruin a new tattoo. Be aware of any direct sun exposure on your fresh ink. If you must be outside, always keep your tattoo covered, for at least the first 40 days.
Cover Up with clothing or try to stay out of the sun. Never apply any sunscreen on a fresh tattoo. Some of these products have ingredients that are not good for your fresh ink during healing. A list of nasty skincare ingredients will be for another blog.
After your new tattoo has healed, make sure to keep it protected with quality sunscreen product if going outside. Excessive direct UVA/UVB sun exposure accelerates skin aging, which causes tattoo fading.
How long should I wait before uncovering my tattoo?
A: Of course it’s going to hurt a little bit, but it’s not bad and it’s always worth it. – Everyone’s experience with getting a tattoo will be different, but H&H Orlando has a couple of advantages over other shops in terms of what it feels like including:
- The best tools available in the business, from needles to machines.
- The best artists in the nation, all trained to know exactly how to maximize effect and minimize discomfort.
Different areas of the body will feel different to get worked on, with “meatier” parts of the body – like thighs or calves tend to be more irritating than painful, according to many of our clients. The closer the skin sits to the bone, the more sensitive that area will be to get a tattoo. Long story short, the experience varies from person to person, but you can find a really comprehensive explanation as to what you should expect in this article about tattoo machines and the pain factor.
Because tattoos are a big decision, which you’ll have for the rest of your life, we definitely want to make sure you feel good about your choice of getting inked at H&H Orlando. We’re the premier tattoo shop in Orlando for a reason: we bring the very best artists to work with the highest standards of equipment and we take the time to answer all of your questions.
Why? We want you to feel as good as your tattoo’s going to look! You can call us with any curiosities or concerns you may have or to make an appointment. Or, if you’re in the area, just stop on by the shop, conveniently located in CityWalk at Universal Studios, Orlando, with free parking after 6pm if you’re a Florida resident..
Should I rewrap my tattoo at night?
Like any art, we tend to have divergent opinions when it comes to tattoo aftercare methods. One of the most discussed subjects is whether tattoo wrapping is necessary before bed. Yes, you should wrap your tattoo before bed, but only if recommended by your tattoo artist, as they know best for your own personal situation.
Can I drink 2 days after getting a tattoo?
Drinking before or after – That drink beforehand is not smart. Bruno Vincent/Getty Images If you’re thinking about downing some liquid courage before taking the plunge, think again. Drinking before and after getting a tattoo is a no-no. Alcohol thins your blood, which means excess bleeding. When you bleed more than normal, it can cause visibility issues for the artist, potentially compromising the quality of the design.
Excess bleeding can also thin the ink. Of course, there’s also the fact that alcohol impairs judgment, and you don’t want to make permanent decisions while impaired. And it’s not cute if you have to stop and puke in the middle of a four-hour tattoo session.
Furthermore, drinking after the fact can compromise the healing of the tattoo because of its effects on your blood, so take it easy for a bit.
Can I sleep on my tattoo after 5 days?
Download Article Download Article You’ve researched a tattoo, found an artist, gone under the needle, and now it’s time to rest. If you got a tattoo on your back, chest, or side, you’ll need to protect the tattoo while you sleep. This means putting clean sheets on the bed, letting air circulate around the tattoo , and changing your sleep position. Fortunately, your tattoo will heal quickly if you get lots of quality rest and you’ll soon be sleeping like normal.
- 1 Put fresh sheets on your bed before you go to sleep. Old sheets contain dead skin cells and bacteria that could cause infection, especially when you stop covering your tattoo. Change your bedding before sleeping with your new tattoo. 
- If you have enough sheets, put clean sheets on the bed every night.
- Use dark bedding instead of light-colored sheets since ink from your tattoo might stain the sheets.
- 2 Follow your tattoo artist’s care recommendations about wrapping. Ask your tattoo artist if you need to keep the tattoo covered while you sleep and when you should remove the wrapping. They might advise you to keep their bandage on for the first night before removing it. To put a new bandage on at home, you may be told to put a sterile absorbent bandage on the tattoo. 
- If the bandage doesn’t have adhesive, use medical tape to secure the bandage around the tattoo. Ensure that you don’t apply tape to the tattoo, which would be painful to remove.
- Avoid wrapping the tattoo with plastic clingfilm because it traps sweat and bacteria against the tattoo.
- 3 Choose a sleeping position that keeps you off of the tattoo. Your tattoo needs circulating air in order to heal faster. If you lie on the tattoo, you’ll irritate the skin and trap moisture against it as you sleep. If you got a tattoo on your: 
- Back, sleep on your belly.
- Side, lie on your opposite side.
- Chest, sleep on your back.
- Leg, raise your leg with a pillow or cushion.
- 4 Wait 4 to 7 days before you sleep on your tattoo. Your tattoo will ooze and bleed for a few days after you get it. Avoid sleeping on the tattoo at this point since it needs air circulation. Once the new layer of skin has formed over your tattoo, usually after 4 to 7 days, you can begin to sleep on it. 
- You’ll also see the old skin scab and flake off, which can make the tattoo feel itchy.
- 5 Try to get at least 8 hours of sleep. Since your body treats a tattoo like a wound, it’s important to get more sleep than usual. This gives your body more time to recover and helps your tattoo heal faster. 
- Remember that your immune system is responding to the tattoo, so support it by eating nutritious foods as well.
- 6 Wet any bedding that sticks to your tattoo during the night. If you wake up and see that your top bedsheet is sticking to your tattoo, do not pull it off, which could slow the healing process. Instead, hold the sheet and carefully walk to a sink. Get the sheet wet to loosen it and then remove the sheet. 
- To prevent the bottom fitted sheet from sticking to your tattoo, lay a clean towel or cloth under you before you go to sleep. Then, replace the towel or sheet if it sticks to you during the night.
- If the sheet is stuck to a tattoo that’s in a hard to reach place, such as on your back, get in the shower with the sheet stuck to you.
- 1 Wear loose clothing that doesn’t rub against the tattoo. Your tattoo site is extra sensitive and might still be painful, which can make it difficult to sleep. Prevent scratchy fabric from pressing hard against the tattoo and wear loose, soft clothing to bed instead. 
- If you prefer, don’t wear pajamas if they cover your tattoo.
- 2 Arrange pillows under your knees to make sleeping on your back more comfortable. You’re more likely to stay off of your tattoo if you have pillows or cushions that support you as you sleep. If your tattoo is on your chest and you’re trying to sleep on your back, put small pillows or rolled-up towels under each of your knees.
- Add extra pillows under your head if you feel like you’re leaning too far back on the bed.
- Raising your knees with the pillows supports your lower back so it’s more comfortable.
- 3 Put a pillow under your chest if you need to sleep on your belly. If your tattoo is on your back and you find that laying on your belly and chest is uncomfortable, slide a pillow under your chest. The pillow raises you up a little so you’re not putting as much pressure on your chest
- If you’re still uncomfortable, buy a specialized stomach sleeper pillow or a face-down pillow that has a hole for you to lay your head in.
- 4 Place pillows in front and behind you if you’re sleeping on your side. If you got a tattoo on 1 of your sides, lie on your opposite side. To prevent you from rolling over onto your other side, arrange a long pillow, bolster, or sleeping wedge near your chest. Put another 1 right behind you along your back.
- If it’s difficult for you to position the pillows, ask a friend to help.
- 5 Sleep alone for the first few nights after getting the tattoo. If you share your bed with a partner, ask them to sleep in another room so you can get good sleep. This is especially important if your partner is a restless sleeper or you’re getting used to different sleep positions.
- You might find that your support pillows take up a lot of space and there isn’t as much room for your partner.
- If you have pets that get into bed with you, try to keep them out of your bed for the first few days after getting your tattoo. This will prevent animal dander and germs from getting into your new tattoo.
- 6 Create a soothing bedtime routine before you go to sleep. To help you fall asleep easier, avoid bright light from televisions, phones, or computer screens in the hour before you go to bed. Instead, do a relaxing activity, such as reading, yoga, or talking with a friend. 
- Consider cutting back on caffeine during the day so you have an easier time drifting off to sleep.
Add New Question
- Question How do you wash a new tattoo? Grant Lubbock Tattoo Artist & Co-Owner, Red Baron Ink Grant Lubbock is a Tattoo Artist and Co-Owner of Red Baron Ink, a tattoo salon based in New York City. Grant has over 10 years of tattooing experience and he specializes in neo-traditional, black/grey, and color tattoos. Red Baron Ink’s main goal is for each tattoo coming out of their studio to be one of a kind custom pieces that will look good throughout a lifetime. Tattoo Artist & Co-Owner, Red Baron Ink Expert Answer First, follow your artist’s instructions. Every tattoo artist has a different process so whatever they tell you trumps whatever instructions you find on the internet. As a rule of thumb, you should wash your tattoo with antibacterial soap twice a day. Lightly hydrate the tattoo with a tattoo ointment three times a day to keep it from drying out.
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- If you’re traveling or staying in a hotel after getting the tattoo, bring your own clean bedding instead of relying on the hotel’s cleanliness.
How can I protect my new tattoo while sleeping?
Can you sleep on a new tattoo? – In an ideal world, you would be able to sleep and not have to worry about the tattoo. Actually, tattoos are effectively open wounds. This means that you need to take some precautions. Going days without sleep isn’t an option.
People have different techniques. If you can, you should try to avoid sleeping directly on the tattoo. For instance, if you have a tattoo on your back, try to sleep on your front and let the tattoo breathe.
A lot of tattoo artists recommend sleeping with the wrap that was put on. Others recommend re-wrapping, or just applying healing ointment and keeping the tattoo clean. The important thing is avoiding infection.
What happens if you sleep on your new tattoo?
Clean Frequently – In the early days of the tattoo healing process, we can’t stress enough how important it is to clean your tattoo frequently, but also moisturize it with nutrients that your skin needs to heal faster. After you take your wraps off, there’s a chance that your bed and mattress could make your tattoo dry.
Always clean your tattoo and moisturize it with special and antimicrobial moisturizers with hypoallergenic materials. It’d be also good if the moisturizer is unscented so it wouldn’t bother you at the night.
Editor’s notes: It’d be also good to apply a painkiller cream without aspirin that will spread across your tattoo and minimize the pain you experience. This is probably something that will also make the sleeping process much easier. If your tattoo dries out and glues onto the bed sheet or pillowcase, don’t pull it out violently or cut the sheet off.
What should you not do after a tattoo?
Can tattoos make you tired?
Symptoms Of a Tattoo Flu – Getting sick after a tattoo is also known as having a ‘tattoo flu’. But, how do you know you’re not dealing with an ink allergic reaction or a tattoo infection? What are the symptoms of tattoo flu? Well, just like the regular sickness of flu, the tattoo flu manifests through the following symptoms;
- Cold chills
- Fatigue and tiredness
- Feeling weak
- In some cases, stomach issues and diarrhea
- Tattoo swelling
- Nausea and possible vomiting
Can I drink coffee after tattoo?
Can You Drink Caffeine After Getting a Tattoo? – Unfortunately, the same applies to after getting tatted. During the healing period, your body is reliant on the blood to clot to help with skin repair. Since caffeine increases blood pressure , you should refrain from caffeine until your tattoo has healed. Keep in mind that caffeine is also present in many other common foods and drinks , some of which you may not be aware of:
- Breakfast cereals
- Frozen yogurt
- Decaffeinated drinks
- Chocolate — mmm, chocolate!
- Energy drinks
Can I take Saniderm off after 2 days?
So, How Long Should I leave It On? – According to the Saniderm’s website instructions, here’s everything you need to know about leaving the bandage on your new tattoo;
- After applying the first Saniderm bandage, you should leave it on your new tattoo anywhere between 8 and 24 hours. This is generally when your tattoo will stop oozing and bleeding, and start healing. Everyone’s healing time is different, which means that the so-called weeping stage of the tattoo will vary in duration.
- You should definitely remove your Saniderm bandage when the adhesion of the bandage starts to weaken. This is a bad sign, which means dirt, germs, water, and all the other infection-causing particles can enter the tattoo area and potentially cause an infection – if the adhesion is weakened, your tattoo is no longer protected.
- You should remove or change your Saniderm bandage if you notice your tattoo bleeds or oozes more than expected (regardless of the time the bandage has been on). This generally occurs in tattoos with colorwork and heavy saturation, since there’s more damage to the skin and more excess ink the tattoo is getting rid of in the first few hours.
- Regardless of the fluid buildup, you should NOT leave your Saniderm bandage on for more than 24 hours. After the first 24 hours, you need to clean the tattooed area, and only can you actually replace the bandage, using a new one obviously.
- It is recommended to apply s thin layer of aftercare product or moisturizer between the bandages just to keep the tattoo hydrated and moisturized. This is especially recommended to people living in low humidity climates, or those who have dry skin. Now, we are not sure about this Saniderm recommendation, since it is generally recommended not to apply any ointment onto a new tattoo, so make sure to consult your tattoo artist about this one.
- Now, the second bandage can be worn for up to 6 days, according to Saniderm instructions. They still recommend you change the bandage if you notice a tattoo leaking. In that case, you should clean the tattoo again, and apply a third bandage. Make sure to leave the third bandage on for approximately 5 days.
- Saniderm bandage should not be worn for more than 7 days total, according to Saniderm website instructions.
- Once you’ve removed your final Saniderm bandage, make sure to clean the tattoo area using lukewarm water and antibacterial soap. Then, tap-dry it using a clean paper towel and leave it to air-dry as well. At this point, you should be fine using thin layers of tattoo lotions to keep the tattoo hydrated. But, do NOT overdo the moisturization, since you can cause moisture buildup, prolonged healing, and infection of the tattoo.
Can I rewrap my tattoo?
Should You Re-Wrap Your Tattoo With Cling Film? – Some tattoo artists will say that you can use cling film or plastic foil to re-wrap your new tattoo. However, this is also highly debatable. Many think that tattoos wouldn’t be wrapped with plastic foils in the first place, while others believe the re-wrapping should be done with something medical-grade, like wrappings that are specifically made for tattoos with proper hygiene and sanitation.
- So, instead of re-wrapping your tattoo with cling film, we recommend you go for; TattooMed’s tattoo protection film – this is a waterproof, breathable protection film or bandage specifically made for tattoos;
Also known as the ‘second skin’ tattoo bandage, this film will ensure proper tattoo protection, and breathability, so your tattoo dries naturally and starts healing without any delay or issues. It is generally recommended to re-wrap a new tattoo with a sterile bandage or a cheese/muslin cloth to keep the tattoo protected and mess-free in the first 24 hours.