Your tattoo isn't 'done' until it's healed.
Aftercare is a hugely important part of the tattoo process. Your tattoo is an open wound and should be treated with great care. Not only are we trying to heal your skin like you would with any wound but we are also trying to preserve the art.
Everyone's Healing process is very individual. Everyone's skin is slightly different. If you have any concerns that aren't addressed here feel free to reach out and ask questions. No question is a dumb question especially when it comes to your body.
I might ask you to heal your tattoo differently depending on your tattoo, your skin, your lifestyle, and other factors.
There are two main ways I will ask you to heal your tattoo. If you left the shop with Saniderm (shown to the right) then you can shower and live your life as normal for the first 4-7 days of your healing. Try to keep your tattoo out of the sun because it is very sensitive to sun damage when it's this new. After 4-7 days you can remove the Saniderm. Do so in the shower under warm water or come back to the shop and let me do it.
You may notice an accumulation of plasma and excess ink under the Saniderm. This is totally normal and nothing to be worried about.
As always if you have any questions or concerns do not hesitate to reach out and let me know.
^ This tattoo is on my client. This photo was taken right after the tattoo.
Wash your tattoo well with diluted Castile soap and dry it with a paper towel twice a day (morning and evening). Make sure you wash all the plasma off.
Dry Heal! Sorta
If you did not leave with Saniderm then your heal is a little more complicated.
When you get home or within a few hours of getting your tattoo you should wash it well with diluted Castile soap. Make sure you wash off all the plasma! If your tattoo still feels a little slippery then keep rinsing.
Dry your tattoo with a paper towel not a regular towel.
Wash and dry your tattoo every morning and night!
For the first 3-4 nights after you have washed and dried your tattoo wrap it in food grade plastic wrap. This prevents your tattoo from adhering to your sheets or clothing while you sleep.
Do not use petroleum based ointments on your tattoo!
If your skin gets way too dry then use a natural moisturizer you know agrees with your skin such as shea butter, cocoa butter, argan oil, etc. If you're not sure about what to use let me know. Make sure to test products on an area that hasn't been tattooed first to make sure they agree with your skin.
Leave your tattoo unwrapped during the day as much as possible. If you need to do something that requires your tattoo to be wrapped then do the same thing you do at night (wash, dry, wrap). As soon as you are done with whatever requires you to wrap your tattoo wash, dry and leave it out to breathe. If your task requires it to be wrapped for many hours then change your wrap every 3 hours or whenever it gets uncomfortably gooey. This amount of washing will probably make your skin quite dry so make sure you have moisturizer nearby.
Your tattoo is going to flake and peel. This is totally normal. The peeling process itches but resist the urge to scratch as this could damage your tattoo before it's finished healing.
If your tattoo requires a touch up after it is healed make sure to contact me and let me know as soon as possible. I do touch ups for free for 6 months after the date you were tattooed. This ensures we are able to make your art look as vibrant and crisp as possible. If you wait too long between your tattoo being done and your touch up it is possible you will see a difference in in the fresh parts and the old parts.
< What's that nasty gooey stuff on my tattoo?
That is plasma and excess ink. your body will naturally produce this. Since you will have plastic on your tattoo at night you will wake up with some plasma accumulated on your tattoo. This is normal for the first few days.
< This tattoo is on me. These photos are from the next day when I woke up. Before and after washing.