How to take care of a new tattoo: 12 steps (with pictures)

How to take care of a new tattoo: 12 steps (with pictures)
How to take care of a new tattoo: 12 steps (with pictures)

It is important to take care of a new tattoo as soon as it is finished so that it heals quickly and retains its color well. Keep the bandage the tattoo artist has put on you for at least a few hours before gently removing it and rinsing the tattooed area with lukewarm water. Keep your skin clean and hydrated, avoid the sun, and refrain from scratching the tattoo so that it heals perfectly.


Part 1 of 2: Caring for a tattoo on the first day

Care for a New Tattoo Step 2

Step 1. Keep the bandage on

Leave it in place for 2 to 6 hours. After the tattoo is complete, the tattoo artist will clean the area, apply antibacterial ointment, and cover your skin with a plastic or cloth bandage. When you leave the tattoo parlor, do not peel off the bandage. It is there to protect your tattooed skin from dirt and bacteria and should be kept for at least 2 hours before removing it.

  • Since the exact way to cover the tattoo depends on the tattoo artist, ask yours how long you need to keep the bandage on.
  • If you remove the bandage before the date given by the artist, you are more likely to get infections and the ink may leak.
Care for a New Tattoo Step 3

Step 2. Wash your hands

They should be clean when you remove the dressing. Wash them off right before to avoid infecting the tattoo by touching it. To make it easier to remove the bandage, you can wet it with a little lukewarm water to loosen it from your skin. Remove it slowly and gently to avoid damaging your new tattoo.

Throw away the dirty bandage after removing it

Care for a New Tattoo Step 4

Step 3. Wash off the tattoo

Wash it gently with barely lukewarm water. Instead of soaking it, take some lukewarm water in the palm of your hands and pour it over the area. Apply mild antibacterial or antimicrobial soap in liquid form to the tattoo and rub it gently with your hands to remove any smudged blood, plasma, or ink. This will prevent a scab from forming too early.

  • Do not use a washcloth, loofah, or sponge to clean the area, as these items may harbor bacteria.
  • Do not place the tattoo directly under running water, as the spray from the tap may be too powerful for this very fragile area.
Care for a New Tattoo Step 5

Step 4. Let the tattoo dry

Let it air dry or gently dab it with clean paper towels. It is best to let it dry naturally after cleaning it, but you can also dab it very gently with clean kitchen paper until it is dry. Do not rub it, as this may irritate your skin.

A bath towel can irritate the tattooed area or deposit lint or fibers on it. It is therefore preferable to use absorbent paper

Care for a New Tattoo Step 6

Step 5. Apply antibacterial cream

Use a fragrance-free product. When the tattooed skin is perfectly dry, apply some antibacterial moisturizer, preferably all natural, to the tattoo. Form an even layer and gently dab the area until it has absorbed the product. If you are unsure of what to use, ask the tattoo artist to recommend a product suitable for your skin.

  • Aquaphor and a good balm often recommended to moisturize tattooed skin.
  • Do not use any petroleum jelly product, such as petroleum jelly, as it will be too thick and may clog your pores.
  • When you are done cleaning and moisturizing the tattoo, do not cover it again.

Step 6. Listen to the tattoo artist

Follow the instructions he gives you. He will teach you how to take care of your tattoo right after you get it done. Try to follow all of its instructions. The way to apply the bandage may differ from artist to artist. This is why it is important to listen carefully to the advice of your particular tattoo artist so that your tattoo heals well.

You could write all of these instructions down on a sheet of paper or save them to your phone so you don't forget them

Part 2 of 2: Promote healing

Care for a New Tattoo Step 7

Step 1. Maintain the tattoo daily

Wash and moisturize it every day until the rind is gone. Wash the tattooed area with lukewarm water and antibacterial soap two or three times a day until it is completely healed. It may take 2 to 6 weeks depending on the size and location of the tattoo.

  • It is important to apply a moisturizer, but be careful not to use too much to avoid suffocating the tattooed skin. A thin layer is sufficient.
  • Continue to clean the area with a mild, fragrance-free soap.
Care for a New Tattoo Step 10

Step 2. Don't scratch yourself

Force yourself not to scratch the tattooed skin. As it heals, it will start to scab, which is perfectly normal. Let the scabs dry and fall off on their own, and don't try to pull them off or scrape them to speed up the process. If they fall off too early, they could leave holes or light spots in the tattoo.

  • Dry, crusty, or scaly skin can be very itchy, but if you scratch the tattoo, you may tear off the scabs.
  • If you have severe itching, keep applying moisturizer.
Care for a New Tattoo Step 9

Step 3. Pay attention to the sun

Do not expose your tattoo to its rays. The harsh sunlight can blister your skin and discolor the tattoo a bit. Keep it covered and out of direct sunlight for at least 3 to 4 weeks while the area heals completely.

When the tattooed skin has healed, it will be important to apply sunscreen to prevent the tattoo from fading

Care for a New Tattoo Step 8

Step 4. Avoid water

Do not let your tattoo soak for a long time. While waiting for it to heal, avoid swimming in a pool or the sea and taking baths. If the tattoo is exposed to a lot of water, ink may escape from your skin and the design may be spoiled. It is also possible that the water may contain bacteria, dirt or chemicals that could infect tattooed skin.

You can resume these activities once the area has healed well, but until then, just rinse it off in the shower or sink

Care for a New Tattoo Step 11

Step 5. Wear loose clothing

Put on clean, loose clothing to avoid irritating the tattooed skin. Avoid tight or tight tattoo items, especially at first. As it heals, your skin will release plasma and ink, which may cause it to adhere to your clothes. These items will hurt you when you take them off and could tear off any scabs that will form.

  • If something sticks to your skin, don't pull on it. Wet it with water to loosen it enough to remove it without damaging the tattoo.
  • Tight clothing will also prevent oxygen essential for the healing process from reaching the tattoo in sufficient quantities.
Care for a New Tattoo Step 12

Step 6. Avoid physical exertion

Wait until the area has healed before making intense physical efforts. If the tattoo is large or is near a joint (such as a knee or elbow), it may take longer to heal if the skin it covers moves too much during physical activity. This movement will crack and irritate your skin, which will slow healing.

If you are doing something that requires physical effort, like dancing or masonry, it might be wise to get a tattoo just before you have a few days off so the area can start to heal before you resume. job


  • Use old, clean sheets for the first few nights in case the tattoo oozes when you are in bed.
  • If the tattoo needs touch-ups, return to the salon where you had it done.
  • Make sure that all your clothes and towels are perfectly clean during the healing period.
  • Check the ingredient list of the soaps and lotions you use to make sure they don't contain alcohol or synthetic fragrances at all.
  • If the tattoo is on an area that is hard to reach, you may need someone else to help you fix it.


  • Do not wash a new tattoo with hot water.
  • Do not keep the dressing for more than 6 hours.
  • Do not shave tattooed skin until it is completely healed. If you shave the area around it, be careful not to put any foam or shaving cream on the tattooed area to avoid irritating it.

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