Tattoo After Care

Dragon Tattoo
Rev Charles Cain at Work

These tattoo after care instructions are the result of much research and many people’s personal experiences. Following them is the easiest way to a healthy, happy tattoo experience.

Tattoo Care: The First Day


30 minutes to two hours after your tattoo is finished, remove your bandage. The best way to do this is to take a HOT shower immediately after, or while removing the bandage.

Right after removing the bandage, wash your tattoo with HOT water and a mild soap. The less fragrance in the soap the better.

After washing your tattoo, apply a a mild hand lotion (such as Cetaphil Moisturizing Lotion, Vaseline seriously sensitive or Vaseline intensive care mild for sensitive) as often as needed to moisten the tattoo and keep your skins elasticity. Rub the lotion into the tattoo as you would any other body part. Re-apply lotion as needed during the first seven to fourteen days.

For three days, you may apply a triple antibiotic ointment (such as bacitracin) in a very thin layer to your tattoo. Do not apply a thick layer or use an ointment for more than three days. A thick layer of ointment could cause petroleum buildup and result in an infection. A thick layer of ointment also deprives the tattoo of air, a much needed element in the healing process.

Tattoo Care: The First 2 Weeks

Always wash your hands thoroughly before handling your new tattoo. Your hands come in contact with all manner of bacteria and possibly infectious material during a normal day. Ignoring this instruction is the quickest way to culture a nasty infection.

Avoid scratching, picking, or irritating your new tattoo. Your tattoo is, at this point, a wound and should be given the same consideration as any wound would.
Throughout the healing process, wash your tattoo gently twice a day with hot water. Add moisture after each washing, and as necessary throughout the day.

Customers who have followed these instructions in the past have had healing times as short as five days. Ten days is the average. Remember, an equal amount of moisture and air are your friends. Scabs, and/or smothering a tattoo prolong healing time and can cost you color in your tattoo.

Come back in after 3-4 weeks for a checkup. We like to know how you are doing.