Why Does My Tattoo Look Cracked?

Why Does My Tattoo Look Cracked
Why Does Tattoo Cracking Occur? – Tattoo cracking, like almost anything in the world, occurs due to a number of contributing factors. So, to understand its occurrence, we need to understand the causes of the cracking. Here are the most common reasons tattoo cracking occurs;

  • The skin is drying out, or your skin is generally dry – this is one of the most common reasons tattoos crack. Either your skin is naturally dry, which means your daily water intake does not meet the recommended amount of a minimum of 8 glasses of water per day. Or, your tattooed skin isn’t properly moisturized. Hydration and moisturizing of a tattoo are essential during the aftercare; that promotes proper healing and ensures the tattoo doesn’t crack.
  • Formation of scabs during healing – as the tattoo heals, it will start raising and forming scabs. Now, scabs don’t have to be a major issue, since they generally dry out and fall off on their own. However, with a lack of hydration and moisturizing, the scabs can become severe and larger or thicker than usual, which contributes to the cracking of the scabs, and as a result, the cracking of the tattoo.
  • Infection or allergic reaction – although rare, tattoo infection or allergic reaction to tattoo ink can cause tattoo cracking. This means that bacteria or germs have invaded the tattoo, which is at the beginning considered to be an open wound. This required immediate medical attention and proper treatment to prevent further tattoo damage and health issues.
  • You’re cleaning your dry tattoo with warm water – now, this is a major no-no. By washing a dry tattoo with warm water, you’re taking away all the moisture from the skin. This will promote dryness and enable the tattoo cracking, especially if you don’t apply lotion or ointment afterward.

Do not be alarmed by the formation of scabs on the tattoo. This is a normal occurrence as the tattoo is an open wound that needs to heal. One of the parts of the healing process is the regeneration of the damaged skin which can only heal by creating a protective barrier, which is, in this case, scabs, Now, the scabs will normally crack.

Why does it look like my tattoo is cracking?

Tattoo cracking is most commonly caused by very dry skin during the healing process. A tattoo that drys out too much can produce thick scabs that are susceptible to breaking open in multiple areas. Scabs that crack can lead to bleeding, infection, and possible fading or scarring.

Do tattoos look cracked when healing?

– Tattoo dry healing isn’t risky in itself, but there are some risks and side effects that you should be aware of before trying it out:

  • Your skin may itch or burn because of a lack of moisture in the area, so it may feel impossible to ignore the urge to scratch.
  • Larger areas of your skin may get extremely dry, scabbing more deeply and cracking open over large swathes that can affect how your tattoo looks when the healing process is done.
  • Dry skin may tighten up, making it easier for skin to crack and affect how your tattoo looks after it heals.

How do you tell if your tattoo is ruined?

Why does my tattoo look cracked and shiny?

Yes, it’s normal for your new tattoo to be shiny. This is a completely normal part of the healing process, though. The color of your tattoo will be more vibrant at this point. Your skin is building itself back up again, so it’s new skin that you’re seeing. Your shiny new skin is called “onion skin.

How do you know if 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
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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.

Why does my tattoo look like it’s missing ink?

You’ve recently had your first tattoo, and you’re doing everything your artist told you to do, following their instructions to the letter. But to your horror, you can see that the ink is coming off as you shower! Is this normal or is it the tattoo not healing properly?! – The quick answer is that yes, it’s perfectly normal for ink to come away as a tattoo heals.

  • Ink is driven deep into the skin by the tattoo needles, but some will be on the surface of the skin, and some others will collect in scabs above the tattoo;
  • It is normal for some of this excess ink to be lost as the body tried to repair the wound that the needles made in your skin;

There will still be enough ink for your tattoo to look bright and intense, if you follow instructions carefully. Just remember to blot tattoos dry with a paper towel, rather than rubbing with a cotton one, and wear loose clothes over it, rather than anything tight.

What is an overworked tattoo?

Dry Healing Your New 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.

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.

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.

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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.

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.

  1. Also avoid contact sports, where the protective scab can be knocked off;
  2. Don’t soak in any kind of water including bathtubs, oceans, lakes, swimming pools or hot tubs;
  3. 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.

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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.

Should my tattoo look cracked?

How Can I Treat Tattoo Cracking? – In case your tattoo is cracking, there are a few things you can do as an emergency response. For example;

  • Observe your tattoo and determine whether it is just dry or infected!

Sometimes, self-diagnosis can go wrong pretty easily, but, before you do anything to treat the cracking, you need to analyze your tattoo. Now, if the tattoo is just cracking and visibly dry, or has mild scabbing, then you’re good to go. However, if the tattoo cracking is accompanied by thicker, bleeding scabs, pain, itchiness, or swelling, then you’re dealing with a tattoo infection. In such a case, all you can do is seek medical attention and proper medicine.

  • Do more to keep yourself and your skin hydrated!

Now, if you’re not dealing with an infection, chances are you’re dealing with skin dehydration. This means you’ll have to amp up your skin hydration. You can do this by starting to moisturize your tattoo twice a day, and additionally once after taking a shower. The best moisturizers for this occasion would be the ones that are gentle, fragrance-free, organic, vegan, and based on either shea or cocoa butter.

  • Do not touch the scabs, and don’t even think about peeling them off!

If you think that by removing the scabs your tattoo will be smooth and shiny, you’re wrong. By forcibly removing scabs, you can cause more harm than good. First of all, you can introduce additional bacteria from your fingernails, causing an infection. Then, you can enable severe tattoo cracking by removing the skin’s protective barrier, which is the scabs.

  • Do not shower with hot water!

As we mentioned, showering with hot or warm water can dehydrate the skin and strip it of its natural oils. As a result, your tattoo can start cracking, and it’s not a pretty sight. To prevent that, make sure to shower with lukewarm water. After the shower, do not forget to apply a thin layer of moisturizer to hydrate and nourish the skin.

How long does your tattoo crack?

– In all, your tattoo should heal within a few weeks. After this time, you shouldn’t see any peeling, swelling, or redness. However, if peeling or other symptoms last longer than a month or two, see a dermatologist for advice..

What is an overworked tattoo?

Dry Healing Your New 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.