What not to do when you're healing
One of the most surprising things about Tattoo Aftercare is that tattooers often have different opinions on how it should be handled.
What's most important is that you follow your artist's exact instructions for how to handle the first couple of weeks of Aftercare for that specific tattoo.
Why is this so important? Because the instructions will differ based on the style of tattoo
(& how much skin needs to heal), as well as the type of bandage used to wrap it up
after the session.
What not to do
There are a few critical mistakes to avoid in managing the Tattoo Aftercare process, including applying traditional "first aid" treatment (a big no-no):
1) Never re-bandage your tattoo after the original bandage comes off - even if the bandage falls off before the expected removal time.
Bacteria, pet dander, dust particles, sweat, skin oils, and so much more can easily get trapped under a 2nd bandage and potentially lead to infection.
2) Never wash a fresh tattoo with scented soap, antibacterial soap, shampoo, or soap containing oils.
Fragrance-free/unscented oil-free soap such as Ivory is what I recommend to all my clients.
3) Don't apply any type of petroleum-based ointments (vaseline, polysporin, etc), even if you experience irritation or suspect that an infection could be brewing. If there's a problem you should contact your artist immediately & see a doctor.
4) Do not expose a fresh tattoo to direct sunlight during the first 14 days after getting tattooed. Doing so will fade & possibly blur your tattoo irreparably.
5) Never pick or scratch healing or drying skin (or scabs if they occur).
6) Never follow the Aftercare advice of well-meaning friends, other tattoo artists, tattoo balm companies, or online articles. Only your tattooer knows what's needed for the level of damage that's been done to your skin & the type of bandage they've used for it.
7) Submerge your fresh tattoo under water during first 14 days (showers are ok, just keep ‘em short + avoid direct shower stream on tattooed area the best you can).
So what should you do for Tattoo Aftercare? Well, if you're one of my clients you'll receive detailed instructions to take home with you after your session, and encouraged to reach out and share photos of your healing progress if anything unexpected happens (such as your bandage coming off early).
My team & I monitor these things closely and guide you through the process every
step of the way.