Congratulations, you did it! You finally got that tattoo you’ve been thinking about for so long now. Or perhaps, you decided to get a tattoo in a spur of the moment. Or… maybe you’re just looking up tattoo aftercare tips for future reference. Regardless of the reason, we're here to tell you your top five must-know tips for taking care of a fresh tattoo.
1. No soaking
Tattoos are forever, so you’re going to want to make sure those weeks leading into the tattoo being fully healed have you on good, tattoo-healing-friendly behavior. We all know to stay out of the sun, but not everyone knows to keep from submerging your tattoo. Although it's common practice to believe that “salt water heals all wounds.” it won’t help your tattoo. For the two-ish weeks, it takes to heal your tattoo, no pools, jacuzzis, hot tubs, swimming holes, oceans, seas, rivers, you name it.
2. Make sure to pick a fragrance free ointment
After the initial bandage that the tattoo artist applied, it is up to you to care for your new tattoo. You’re going to want to apply a thin layer of ointment twice a day to the new tattoo for a couple weeks in order to make sure it heals properly.
When it comes to picking the correct ointment, be sure to choose one that is fragrance free. Fragrance free does not mean the ointment has no smell, but rather it is free of additional fragrances. Added fragrances are often the results of adding a chemical to the lotion or ointment, which can irritate a new tattoo.
Our recommendation is our Bag Balm Hand & Body Skin Moisturizer, as it is a simple formula that really packs the punch. The same rule applies for picking a soap to clean the tattoo with—always choose fragrance free.
3. Choose a sunscreen designed for tattoos
Keeping your tattoo protected from the sun is critical to ensure it heals properly. But which sunscreen should you use? A higher SPF (like 50+) is a safe bet, but now they’re even making sunscreen designed for tattoos! Coppertone actually has a sunscreen line called Tattoo Guard and comes in stick or lotion form. If Coppertone isn’t for you, try shopping around, as there are loads of options.
4. Beware gym equipment
Just because you have a new tattoo doesn’t mean you need to halt your workout routine. Depending on where your tattoo is located, however, you’re going to want to be careful using gym equipment while the tattoo is healing. Despite a gym’s best efforts, the equipment can get a bit grimy. Who knows how many people touch the machines, and who knows how many people actually wipe it down when they are done? It is recommend wiping down the machines both before and after use, to keep your tattoo safe clean. And after a workout, be sure to clean the tattoo with soap and water.
5. Keep applying ointment after the tattoo is healed
Your tattoo is ink below the surface of your skin. In order to keep the tattoo looking beautiful and fresh, you need to keep your skin healthy. This is why we recommend continuing to use your preferred ointment (such as the Bag Balm Hand & Body Skin Moisturizer) on the area in order to have smooth, happy skin.
Enjoy your new artwork!