It's All About The Ink: How To Care For Your New Tattoo
When it comes to getting your first tattoo, you want to make sure that the time is right. Choosing your first ink is a big step in your life. The last thing you want to do is make mistakes along the way. That's why it's so important that you take the process seriously; from choosing the tattoo to caring for the ink. In fact, aftercare may be the most important step in the entire process. After all, if you don't make sure your tattoo heals properly, you could be left with scars and other problems that won't go away. To make sure your tattoo heals properly, here are four crucial steps you should take during the healing process.
Listen to the Artist
When you sit down for your first ink, you may be too excited to hear much of anything, including the aftercare instructions that your artist will give you. However, if you want your ink to heal properly, you've got to listen to the artist, especially when it comes to wound care. The most important information the artist will give you will involve the bandages. Once the artist places the bandages over your new ink, you'll need to keep them clean and dry. You'll also need to leave them in place until your artist gives you the go-ahead to remove them. Avoid the temptation of removing them for a peak. You'll see your ink soon enough. Leaving the bandages in place will help prevent infections.
Clean and Dry Your Tattoo
Once your artist gives you the go-ahead to remove the bandages, the real work will begin. You'll need to start cleaning your tattoo as soon as the bandages are removed. To do that, you'll need a clean basin, a soft washcloth, and a mild liquid soap. Fill your basin with lukewarm water and add several drops of liquid soap. Get your washcloth wet and gently cleanse your tattoo. Be careful not to rub, or you could injure your skin. Instead gently pat the area to remove any dried blood that might be present. Once you've cleaned the area, pat it dry with a clean, soft towel. Repeat the process at least twice a day. Just be sure to keep your tattoo clean and dry while it's healing. It's also important for you to apply a thin layer of moisturizer to your skin each time you wash your tattoo.
Avoid Picking at the Skin
While your tattoo is healing, you may notice that the skin gets dry and flaky. You may even notice areas where your skin looks like it's peeling. Don't pick at your skin. Peeling the flakes off your tattoo could lead to serious scarring, and can remove some of the ink, which will lead to discoloration and fading. If your tattoo becomes itchy while it's healing, go ahead and apply a bit more moisturizer.