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TATTOO AFTER CARE – EXPERT GUIDANCE FROM OUR LEEDS TATTOO ARTISTS

Tattoo aftercare is a crucial aspect of preserving your new ink’s vibrancy and ensuring its optimal healing. Your tattoo is, essentially, a form of skin damage, and it requires careful attention to heal properly. While our tattoo studios offer a safe and sterile environment for your tattoo experience, once you step out, it becomes your responsibility to nurture your new artwork. Neglecting proper aftercare could risk compromising the final outcome, and that’s something we all want to avoid! Our team of tattoo artists at our studios in Leeds City Centre are dedicated to providing you with the best guidance on aftercare tailored to your unique tattoo.

WHAT TATTOO AFTERCARE PRODUCTS SHOULD I CONSIDER?

We highly recommend using specialised aftercare products designed specifically for the tattooing industry. These products are formulated to promote tattoo healing and maintain that coveted ‘New Tattoo Look’ for extended periods.

HOW TO CARE FOR YOUR NEW TATTOO AFTER LEAVING THE STUDIO

After your tattoo session concludes, your tattoo artist will ensure the inked area is appropriately covered and will advise you on the recommended duration for keeping this covering in place. It’s vital to heed their guidance to provide your fresh tattoo with the best conditions for healing. Depending on size and location, tattoos can take up to a month to heal, with initial scabbing occurring within the first few days.

1. Following your session, your tattoo artist will wrap your tattoo in cling film and prescribe the appropriate duration for keeping it on after leaving the studio. Cling film serves to maintain moisture, jumpstart the healing process, and prevent your tattoo from drying out. The duration for cling film use may vary based on your tattoo’s size and placement, and your tattoo artist will provide the exact timeframe.

2. Over the next few hours, expect a build-up of ink residue beneath the cling film. This is entirely normal and will be the first task you’ll tackle when you can remove the cling film, usually during your first wash.

3. Begin by washing your hands and ensuring they’re impeccably clean before initiating this process. Whenever possible, use antibacterial hand wash and dry your hands on a hygienic surface.

4. Use lukewarm water to wash the tattooed area, minimising direct hand-to-skin contact as much as possible. Channel the flowing water to gently remove any dried ink or residue that may have seeped from the tattooed region. Once all debris has been rinsed away, allow the area to air dry naturally, avoiding towels or materials that could irritate or leave debris behind.

5. You can now apply the recommended aftercare products, adhering to a consistent routine to prevent the tattooed area from becoming dry and itchy.

6. Cling film usage is not necessary from this point onwards. Your tattoo will be exposed to the elements, and maintaining cleanliness will significantly reduce the risk of complications during the healing process.

7. Frequent washing of the tattooed area, particularly in the initial days, is essential to remove any accumulating debris and prevent drying. A cleaner canvas translates to a smoother healing process.

8. The area may eventually develop scabs and itching, particularly if it’s allowed to become dry. Stay diligent with your aftercare products, sticking to the prescribed routine and applying as needed.

9. If you have any concerns during the healing process, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We are always available to provide additional aftercare advice as required.

It’s not uncommon to explore the possibility of laser treatment for a tattoo site followed by a cover-up tattoo in the same area. Once a tattoo has been removed or lightened, you have the option to tattoo the area again.

WHAT TO AVOID WITH YOUR NEW TATTOO

Depending on your tattoo’s size and placement, some temporary adjustments to your clothing choices, daily routines, and social activities may be necessary to ensure long-lasting, vibrant results.

1. Resist the urge to pick at scabs. Although tempting, they are an integral part of the healing process. Removing them prematurely could potentially damage the skin and lead to areas of your tattoo appearing less vivid.

2. Steer clear of strenuous physical sports and activities that could strain or impact the tattooed area. Additionally, avoid prolonged submersion of your tattoo in water, making swimming and long baths activities to be postponed.

3. New tattoos may exude ink considerably during the initial days, potentially staining clothes, bedding, sofas, and anything they come into contact with. Use older bedsheets and opt for clothing that you don’t mind getting stained. Consider wearing looser attire around the tattoo site to minimise friction and irritation.

4. Avoid excessive application of aftercare products; your tattoo artist will provide specific instructions on the appropriate quantity to use.

5. Protect your new tattoo from sun exposure and UV lights. If you’re planning a beach vacation, it’s advisable to wait until your tattoo is fully healed or, at the very least, give it a month before sun exposure.

SHOULD I USE TATTOO AFTERCARE PRODUCTS PERMANENTLY?

Keeping your tattoos well-moisturized is a valuable habit to cultivate. Your tattoo becomes a part of your body, and like your body, it will naturally age. Tattoos can lose their luster over time, so, eventually, you may consider consulting one of our tattoo artists to rejuvenate the design. Employing a quality moisturizer or specialized tattoo industry products can help maintain the longevity of your tattoo’s brilliance.

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High quality custom tattoos by Chris Lambert,
co-owner of Leeds tattoo studio Snake and Tiger.