Whoa, you have a new tattoo! Now it’s time to pass through the final phase tattoo aftercare.

This is the time when the ink locks in and the skin heals. There are a few basic tips you need to follow to make sure your tattoo will look great for a long time. Every tattoo artist will give you his personal advice about how to take care of your new tattoo. Still, these general tips will be in every tattoo artist “How to” list.

When to remove the covering?

It is a crucial moment- when to show off your fresh piece of ink. You should wait at least 2 hours before taking off the covering. Most professionals will advise you to let it sit for a few hours. This the average time range for keeping it covered after leaving the tattoo studio.

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Tattoo hygiene

Once you’re ready to remove the covering the next step is to wash your new tattoo. You should always, and we mean always, use anti-bacterial soap. Even better natural without scent. Liquid baby soap is a great option. Wash your tattoo gently with clean hands and don’t ever scrub your skin. When the tattoo is cleaned, leave it to dry out on air or pat it with a soft clean towel.

Personally, I always recover new ink with cling film after its initial wash. Getting into bed with fresh ink is a pain in the ass, and if it isn’t covered on the first night you will wake up with ink all over your bed. Whilst everyone has their own ways, I can say I haven’t lost any colors in my tattoos. Once I started covering them for the first night I also found my new tattoos healed much quicker and very rarely scabbed. Which anyone with ink will tell your itchy scabs are so frustrating.

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What creams to apply for the healing process?

Now I’ve been getting tattooed for more years than I’m willing to admit and the advice on what creams to use has changed over this time. Years ago it used to be vaseline, which was horrible and messy. Then for some years Preparation H (haemorrhoid cream) was the go-to cream, until they changed the ingredients. More recently the majority of people I know use Bepanthen (nappy rash cream). I personally use Bepanthen to heal my new ink. Obviously, there is also a vast array of specific healing creams nowadays, due to the size of the tattoo market now. We won’t be plugging any…well unless they want to come pay us for the plug haha.

Don’t scratch and peel your fresh tattoo

When the tattoo starts to heal your skin’s upper layer will start to peel. Many people feel their skin itchy and tempt to scratch the tattoo. This is wrong and dangerous for your skin. The fresh tattoo is like a wound and scratching can damage your skin and create a horrible infection.

When your skin starts to peel, you should leave it until the tattoo is fully healed. You should never peel your new tattoo unless you want bad colorization to appear.

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Keep it moisturized

Fresh ink should never stay dry. Use the cream or lotion your tattoo artist recommends. To lubricate the tattoo is important to keep the colors bright and fresh when it finally heals. Do not put too much lotion and don’t leave it to stay on the skin. Gently rub the lotion until it soaks into the pores completely.

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Keep away from the sun

Here is a point where many people fail. Half of the tattoo wearers get their tattoos in the summer months. So what then? Well, since you can’t stay locked inside your dark house you should use a proper sunscreen. And of course, try to avoid direct sunlight on your tattoo, and thats forever if you want it to stay looking good. This means keep it covered on the beach when its fresh and for the future always use suncream on your tattoos.

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Don’t submerge it into water

Pools, baths, and sea water contain bacteria, which can cause infection. You should avoid swimming pools for a while if you don’t want to get your new tattoo infected.

Follow these general bits of advice and go for your next great tattoo idea!


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