Getting Ready for your tattoo
There are a few things to consider prior to getting your new art piece.
- Getting your skin ready for the tattoo is very important and can make a difference in how it heals. If your skin is damaged prior to the tattoo process, it can ruin the tattoo or delay your appointment. Avoid getting a tattoo on skin that is cut, scraped, scabbed, rash, sun burned, or has bad acne. Tans are nice but not healthy and not good for tattooing. Moisturizing the skin for a few days prior to your appointment would help and be a good idea.
- It's good idea to shave the area that the tattoo will be located and gently exfoliate the skin to remove surface dead skin cells.
- Make sure that you get a good night’s sleep, bathe (you would not believe how many come in with funk!) eat a small light meal, and drink lots of water. Drinking alcohol even 24 hours before your tattoo can thin your blood and make the tattoo hurt more. Don’t come in hung over.
- Wear comfortable, appropriate fitting clothing for your tattoo location, and ones that you won’t care if they get ruined. Remember, there is a small amount of bleeding, and tattoo ink can spatter during the process and it does not come out of clothes!
- You can bring ONE friend if you like. No one under the age of 18 is allowed in the shop, even with parents consent. A tattoo parlor is not a proper environment for kids. Please leave them at home and make arrangements for them.
- If you have any health conditions that could affect your tattoo or your body getting a tattoo, contact your doctor first.
Conditions that affect the heart or blood can have serious ramifications with any procedure.
- Let your artist know if you must take antibiotics prior to dental or medical procedures. If you have any continuing health concerns, check with your doctor prior to getting a tattoo.
- If you are taking any medications, please let your artist know.
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- Always wash your hands prior to touching your tattoo.
- In 6-8 hours, remove the bandage and gently wash tattoo with soap and water. This will remove all ointment, excess color, and white blood cells.
- If we use a tegaderm bandage, you will just leave that on for 48 hours, then remove it in the shower, and proceed to keep it clean and moisturized until it’s healed.
- Dry tattoo by blotting with a dry, clean towel. Do not rub your tattoo.
- Use ointment for the next 3 days. This usually is approximately 3 times a day. Gently rub in enough to keep the tattoo from getting dry. Apply a thin film. Do not, however, drown the tattoo in ointment or lotion. Soggy is not good. Listen to your body.
- After the first 3 days of the above care, switch to a fragrance/dye-free lotion.
- Keep your tattoo out of direct sunlight or tanning booths for 7-10 days. Use sunscreen of at least SPF 30 after healed.
- Your tattoo may scab, flake, or peel. This is natural. Do not pick at the scab. This may remove ink and damage your tattoo. Sometimes the skin flakes that come off are the same color as your tattoo. This does not mean your tattoo is “falling out.” If you have any questions, please call your artist.
- If you think you are allergic to the tattoo, aftercare products, or got it infected, please contact your doctor. Discontinue use of the aftercare product if you think you are having a reaction to it.
Things to remember
- Don’t soak your tattoo until it is completely healed. No swimming, no spas, no long baths, no long showers. Get in, get clean, and get out. You can actually damage your tattoo if you do not take proper care of it during the healing process.
- Do not let your tattoo dry out during the healing process. If you let it crack and then scar, it might not be possible to fully repair the damage to the art.
- Keep tattoo out of direct sunlight. If your tattoo is healed, still remember to keep sunscreen on your tattoo. Sunlight will fade colors. Remember what color your outdoor furniture was before last summer?
- Do not pick at your tattoo.
- Do not scratch your tattoo.
- Some areas of the body do not keep color as well as others. Also, some bodies do not like certain colors. This is completely natural. Contact your artist if your tattoo needs a touch-up.