Tattoo Aftercare: How To Take Care of Your New Tattoo

Tattoo Aftercare: How To Take Care of Your New Tattoo

Getting a new tattoo is exciting, but you have to be careful about how you take care of it. 

Tattoos are meant to last forever, so even if your artist did an amazing job, there's still some work on your end to keep the ink looking good for years and years.

We know that caring for your new tattoo can be confusing because of all the conflicting information out there on the internet. That's why we've created this comprehensive guide for aftercare instructions based on our experience. By following these simple steps you'll help ensure that your tattoos will look great for many years!

7 Useful Tips For Tattoo Aftercare

1. Keep your tattoo moisturized

new tattoo care - always use moisturizer


Per your artists recommendations, keep your tattoo moisturized. Applying moisturizer to your tattoo will help it heal faster. A thin layer of lotion also serves as a protective barrier from the friction and bacteria that you come into contact with during the day. Keep in mind that you should only apply lotion to clean, unconditioned skin-otherwise, your tattoos won't absorb any moisture and will dry out. People commonly use products like Aquaphor, Hustle Butter, etc. Your artist will usually have their preference on the product they’d like you to use to preserve your art.

We suggest moisturizing new tattoos all year long because aging can fade ink gradually over time. If you don't want your new tattoo to fade, always apply a new layer of lotion before bed and after you shower.

2. Keep your tattoo covered and never expose it to direct sunlight

Sunlight will fade your tattoo quickly which is exactly what you wanted to avoid! This is because of the UV rays in the sun break down the color in your tattoo. If you plan on spending time in direct sunlight (beach, pool) make sure to cover up your tattoo with a swim shirt or rash guard. We suggest wearing SPF 30+ sunscreen on any areas of exposed skin that aren't covered by your tattoos. This will keep them looking fresh and vibrant for years!

3. Clean the area around the tattoo regularly

We can't stress this enough. Germs and grime from your everyday life can build up around a tattoo and cause infection. Clean the area around your tattoo regularly with warm water and antibacterial soap. You should also clean the skin that the tattoo is on at least once a day because sweat and oil can clog pores causing blemishes.

4. Avoid swimming or bathing for at least one week after getting a new tattoo

tattoo care - no swimming

We know that you want to show off your new ink, but submerging new tattoos in water will damage them. Water is filled with chlorine and other chemicals that are harmful to new tattoos. We suggest waiting at least one week after getting a new tattoo before entering any chlorinated pools or hot tubs. Any FULL Submersion into water is not good for your tattoo.

5. Never pick, scratch, or peel off scabs on your new tattoos! Doing so can cause scarring that will last forever

The itch is real, but resist the urge to scratch new tattoos-it's not worth scarring them for life! We know it can be tough to let new tattoos heal without touching them, so you'll just have to try your best. Moisturizing helps reduce itching.

6. Once the area around your tattoo begins to heal, gently exfoliate

Once you've given your new tattoo time to breathe, gently exfoliate using an all natural loofah or sea salt scrub. Exfoliating helps keep dead skin cells from building up which can create scabbing and wrinkled looking tattoos!

7. Make sure you're taking care of yourself

tattoo care - drink lots of fluids


Eat healthy foods and drink lots of fluids like water and tea to stay hydrated while caring for your skin.

You have to take care of your body to take care of new tattoos-it's that simple. By making sure you're getting plenty of sleep and drinking lots of fluids, new tattoos will heal faster and your skin will be radiant!

Frequently Asked Questions After Getting A New Tattoo

How do you take care of a new tattoo?

First, you have to keep new tattoos covered at all times-even when sleeping! After that, be sure to always apply a new layer of lotion before bed and after showering. You should also clean the tattoo with warm water and antibacterial soap regularly (don't scrub too hard). When you do go into the sun new tattoos should be protected with SPF 30+. If you can, avoid direct sun exposure altogether. We recommend exfoliating new tattoos gently once they're healed up because new skin will build up around them if left unattended.

moisturize tattoo always

What can you not do after getting a tattoo?

You can not submerge new tattoos in water-it will damage them. To avoid new tattoos getting dirty, clean the area around new tattoos regularly with soap and water. New tattoos should not be peeled or picked at, but if you have to, exfoliate gently after the new tattoo has healed up. You also need to pay attention to what you eat because new tattoos are sensitive, so try to avoid spicy foods and junk food!

Is it bad if your new tattoo gets sunburnt?

Exposing new tattoos to direct sunlight can damage colors causing them to fade over time which is exactly why you wanted a new tattoo in the first place! If your skin does get burnt around new tattoos make sure you cover them up.

How long should you wait to shower after getting a tattoo?

Your new tattoo should be covered for at least the first 72 hours of healing. We recommend waiting at least one week before you shower because new tattoos are sensitive to new smells and chemicals. Once new tattoos are healed, gently exfoliate using a loofah or sea salt scrub once per day.

What is the best way to get rid of new tattoo pain?

new tattoo care

To minimize new tattoo flash pains, apply an ice pack wrapped in a cloth towel on top of your new tattoo for up to 15 minutes every hour during the first few days. New tattoos may still feel some slight pain. Using tattoo numbing creams like Painless Tattoo Numbing cream can help ease the pain too.

How long should a new tattoo be covered?

You should keep new tattoos covered for at least the first 72 hours of healing. After new tattoos are healed, continue covering them with new tattoo protection lotion daily to speed up new tattoo healing! Your artist will have their own opinion on this and is best to follow their direction. Especially when using other products like saniderm bandages.

How can I speed up my tattoo healing?

Eating healthy food and drinking lots of fluid can help new tattoos heal faster. 

Final Thoughts

New tattoos are a way to express yourself, but if you're new to tattooing it can be difficult to take care of new tattoos. If new tattoos don't heal properly they may fade over time or become irritated which is why caring for new tattoos is important-if you follow these simple steps. Your new tattoo should last forever!

I hope that I have provided enough information on new tattoo aftercare, and that readers of this article will benefit from this knowledge. Consider sharing our blog post so that you can help people who are having problems in taking care of their tattoos or those who are interested in getting one!