A mild, fragrance-free liquid soap, preferably anti-microbial or germicidal and pH balanced. Remove the covering from your new tattoo in about 3 hours longer is okay but 3 hours is fine. If you will be asleep in the 3 hour time frame leave it on overnight making sure you are wearing some loose clean clothing over the bandage to ensure your tattoo doesnt leak from the covering onto your bedding. Once you have removed the initial covering from your tattoo do not re-bandage let your tattoo breathe.
CLEANING INSTRUCTIONS FOR NEW TATTOO
Wash your hands thoroughly prior to cleaning or touching your tattoo for any reason. Wash your tattoo with warm soapy water with just your hands ensuring a good thorough job. Always make sure you rinse your tattoo well after washing it allow a couple minutes of clean water to run over your tattoo and surrounding area. After washing and rinsing your new tattoo you should pat dry this is important with a disposable paper product (paper towel) do not rub or wipe, and try to absorb as much moisture out of your tattoo as possible. Allow your tattoo to air dry for 5-10 minutes put on clothing as usual and go about your business. Wash, Rinse and Dry your new tattoo 2-3 times a day for the next 14 days. Clean and dry are good things.
WHAT IS NORMAL?
Initially: some bleeding, localized swelling, tenderness or bruising. During healing: some discoloration and itching. The tissue may tighten around the tattoo as it heals. This is because they heal from the inside out, and although it feels fine, the tissue remains fragile on the inside. Be patient throughout the entire healing period.
WHAT TO DO
After the newness, redness, and soreness of your new tattoo subside generally in 2 days, you may then apply a white, non-scented hand lotion to your tattoo several times a day. Lubriderm, Aquaphor, and Eucerin are brands that work well as to keep it from drying out too much. Just a small amount of lotion rubbed in well not too much. Stay healthy; the healthier your lifestyle, the easier it will be for your tattoo to heal. Get enough sleep and eat a nutritious diet. Exercise during healing is fine; listen to your body. Make sure your bedding is washed and changed regularly. Wear clean, comfortable, breathable clothing that protects your tattoo while you are sleeping. Showers tend to be safer than taking baths, as bathtubs can harbor bacteria. If you bathe in a tub, clean it well before each use and rinse off your tattoo when you get out.
WHAT TO AVOID
Avoid cleaning with Betadine, Hibiclens, alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, Dial or other harsh soaps, as these can damage cells. Also avoid ointments as they prevent necessary air circulation. You do not need to apply any kind of ointment such as Neosporin, Vaseline, Prep H, or A & D. Keep your tattoo clean and dry and use a regular hand lotion. Avoid over-cleaning. This can delay your healing and irritate your tattoo. Avoid undue trauma such as friction from clothing, excessive motion of the area, playing with the tattoo, and vigorous cleaning. These activities can cause prolonged healing, and other complications. Avoid stress and recreational drug use, including excessive caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol. Avoid submerging the tattoo in unhygienic bodies of water such as lakes, pools, hot tubs, etc. Avoid all beauty and personal care products on or around the tattoo including cosmetics, lotions, and sprays, etc.
HINTS & TIPS
Your new tattoo is fragile allow it to heal nice and slow. Have lots of patience your tattoo will take time to heal about 2 weeks on the surface and another 2 weeks under the skin Common sense and gentle care are the most important things to remember. Do not pick or scratch your tattoo allow your body to heal the tattoo naturally and with gentle care. Showers and water to wash your tattoo are just fine but avoid prolonged soaking of the tattoo such as swimming and hot tubs for a few weeks. Direct sunlight and tanning beds fade the colors on new tattoos as well as old ones avoid sunshine by using a sun block or covering your fresh tattoo.
Keep your hands off the tattoo! Dirty (unwashed) hands are the worst enemy for tattoos. During the course of a day your hands become covered with germs. If you touch the tattoo, even just near the area, you will deposit bacteria at the site, possibly causing an infection. Eat correctly: It is a proven fact that if you eat a healthful, balanced diet your body functions better and heals faster. In most cases, taking vitamin C and zinc will promote healing. Liquid soap: It is widely accepted that a mild liquid soap used to gently wash the tattoo followed by thorough rinsing is suitable for most tattoos. Usually once or twice a day works best; dont over clean the tattoo. Also, dont use multiple cleaners at the same time. Each body is unique and healing times vary considerably.
Scott Marshall on Spike TV's "Ink Master" starting Tuesday, February 25 at 10/9c
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