Once the tattoo is completed, the tattoo artist’s job is done. From then on it is up to the owner to properly care for a new tattoo. If she is not careful, a beautiful new tattoo can turn ugly very quick. Even worse, it can cause some medical problems that will require proper medical care.
Tips for Caring for a New Tattoo
- Do not touch the bandage. After a tattoo is done the artist will cover it with a bandage. This is done because until it fully heals a tattoo is still an open wound. It is essential to remain covered for a few more hours to prevent air-borne bacteria from entering the wound and causing an infection. The temptation to look at the brand new tattoo will be big but the owner must have patience if she knows how to properly care for a new tattoo. However, there is an exception to this rule: If the tattoo is covered in plastic, it should be removed immediately as it can suffocate the area and prevent healing.
- Wash the tattoo properly. After the bandage has been removed the area must be cleaned. This is done best with warm water and antibacterial soap. There is no need to apply any abrasive material on the area. A hand can be used perfectly to wash away the remaining blood, plasma and ointment. After the wash use a clean towel to dry off the area. Finally, an appropriate vitamin ointment should be lightly applied on the tattoo area and around it.
How to Properly Maintain the Tattoo
Those are the steps needed to ensure proper care for a new tattoo. However, tattoos require maintenance and there are some guidelines to follow.
- The ointment should be applied daily for another 3 to 5 days. After that a lotion is sufficient to keep the skin soft. There are plenty of products available for this job. There are special products made especially for this situation however, most ointments that have vitamins and antibacterial properties will work just fine. An exception is Neosporin. This is a product used for cuts and bruises, but it is not recommended for tattoos as it can cause allergic reactions on the applied areas which will ruin the tattoo.
- Avoid submerging the tattoo in water. This should be done for another 2 or 3 weeks. Taking a shower with it is perfectly fine. However, soaking it in a hot tub or a bath can cause some damage. Keep the area clean from shampoo and soap as well. Swimming in a pool should also be avoided.
- Expect some scabbing and peeling. It is normal after a few days for the tattoo to create a small amount of peeling and scabbing. If the scabbing persists then that could be the sign of a poorly done tattoo. Normal scabbing can be treated with a wet compress applied for a few minutes in order to soften the scabs. The process should be repeated 2-3 times a day until the scabs fall away on their own. The peeling can be treated with lotion. The most important thing if the new owner wants to respect the guidelines of properly caring for a new tattoo is to not scratch or pick the affected areas.
- The tattoo should always be protected against ultraviolet rays. Sunscreen is required to be applied on the area otherwise the tattoo’s colors will fade fast. Caring for a new tattoo at all times will ensure that it stays colorful and vibrant for many, many years.
Every new tattoo owner needs to follow these tips of how to care for a new tattoo in order to prevent infections, skin damage and keep the quality of the tattoo.
Ajeet Khurana blogs about a wide variety of topics. In his recent blog on Tattoo Ideas, he presents readers with ideas on getting themselves inked.