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Tattoo Aftercare

For Best Healing Practices


1. Remove bandage in a CLEAN bathroom after 2-3 hours. When the bandage is removed on the first night, the tattoo may stick to or stain bed sheets. The tattoo can be covered with a sterile non-adherent bandage and a thin layer ointment ONLY on the first night after your tattoo and ONLY after you’ve thoroughly cleaned the tattoo first. Maintain clean bedding throughout the healing process (about 2 weeks).

2. After removing bandage, wash the tattoo immediately with warm water and soap. A liquid soap, like Dr. Bronner’s Unscented Castile Soap or Dial Gold hand soap or bar soap are best. The first two washes are very important, as the body creates an excess of lymphatic fluid in an immune response to the tattoo process and this is difficult for healing if it is not washed away.


• Carefully remove bandage and tape
• Make a lather in your hand with soap and warm water
• Gently clean tattoo using a circular motion, until all ointment, blood, and lymphatic fluid are removed
• Rinse the tattoo and wash once again, gently, until the skin is clean
• a hair dryer on the ‘cool’ setting may be used; a clean paper towel may also be used to dab the tattoo dry

3. Only use CLEAN HANDS to wash your tattoo.

4. Once the tattoo is dry, apply A&D ointment or Aquaphor. Apply a thin layer and rub it in, then dab excess off with a clean paper towel. Use the Aquaphor for the first 2-3 days then switch to a fragrance-free regular lotion such as Lubriderm, Aveeno, or any other fragrance free brand.

5. Fresh tattoos sometimes “weep” during the first couple of days, meaning that plasma and ink form a thin moist coating on the skin. This can be DABBED with a clean paper towel. Press the paper towel to the skin and remove. Do not wipe the tattoo or be rough with it. Do not panic when you see the colors of the tattoo on the paper towel, or on your hands as you clean it. This is simply excess ink being sloughed from the surface or the skin.

6. Twice a day is usually enough cleaning for any new tattoo. Lotion may be applied to the tattoo as it dries out; however if your skin is extremely sensitive, lotion may cause acne-like break outs. This can be taken care of by reducing the number of lotion applications per day.

7. Wear loose, preferably cotton clothing over the fresh tattoo. Tight fitting garments covering the fresh tattoo will cause discomfort and should be avoided during healing.

8. After a few days, the tattoo will begin to form flaky skin and sometimes scabs that will fall off on their own. DO NOT PICK OR SCRATCH AT YOUR TATTOO. Keep it moisturized and the dry skin will flake off eventually. Once again, they will be the color of the tattoo. It normally takes 2-4 weeks for a tattoo to completely heal, and sometimes longer for the skin to completely settle in. If you have ANY questions about your healing, please contact the shop at (518) 813-4778. Please do not consult your friends about healing issues, as everyone’s experience is unique. I will be happy to answer and questions or concerns regarding your tattoo.

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