As a self-proclaimed tattoo commentator and writer, I rely on my personal experience and time working in a tattoo studio.
Now that you've made the decision to get a new tattoo or have just had your amazing piece of art inked in the last few days, it's time to consider your aftercare. You probably paid a good few hundred dollars already for your artwork. A typical day sitting with my artist is a flat $850, so a few more dollars on tattoo aftercare creams and lotions will be a smart investment that will make your tattoo shine!
The moment your artist wraps your fresh tattoo at the end of your session, it begins its healing process. Typically, a tattoo can take anywhere from three to six weeks to heal itself, then a further three months to be able to withstand the heat from the sun.
During the first week, your tattoo will need help to repair and regenerate itself. You will need to wash it with anti-bacterial wash and apply the appropriate tattoo aftercare cream and lotions.
I personally recommend using a tattoo kit. Keeping your tattoo clean and using the balms and lotions has helped many of my tattoos heal nicely. I just wish I had of known about tattoo aftercare and the products a lot sooner!
There are box set or kits available for complete aftercare. Read on for reviews on three of the best kits available and a standalone aftercare ointment.
Why Buy a Tattoo Kit?
- When you purchase an aftercare kit, it will usually have an antibacterial foam soap wash, a healing balm, and a lotion for moisturizing. Additionally, it may contain a sunscreen for protection against the sun. (A fresh tattoo should not be exposed to the sun's harmful and often painful rays in the first few months).
- When you use a kit, you know the company that produces each of products is the same uses similar ingredients. In turn, this limits a person's potential allergic reaction or discomfort that can sometimes be experienced when using any product.
- Each individual item in a tattoo aftercare kit is designed to work in conjunction with the others at specific stages of your tattoo's healing process. One company producing your tattoo aftercare products ensures that ingredients do not activate unwanted results when mixed with another company's product.
- By buying all of your aftercare products at once, you ensure you will have the specific product required for each step of the process on hand. You do not miss out on any steps of the healing because you were not prepared.
INK OIL Aftercare Tattoo Wash & Salve Set
Ink Oil is one of the best 100% natural, organic tattoo aftercare kits on the market! The beautiful, natural-smelling wash and balm contains only organic, petroleum-free ingredients. For those who are conscious about cruelty-free products, it contains no animal products.
Keep your tattoo fresh and free from germs with the easy to use spray on tattoo wash, ideal for when you only have one hand free! Ink Oils Salves' natural oils and butters (petroleum-free) aids in the quick healing of your tattoo!
**This Product is the Author's Number #1 - All Natural - Recommendation**
AfterShock Tattoo Aftercare
Premium tattoos require superior tattoo aftercare products, and AfterShock Tattoo Aftercare Kit offers that superiority and much more.
It contains five exceptional tattoo aftercare products developed by a pharmacist and pharmaceutical chemist to prepare for every stage of your tattoos healing process: a skin lotion, foam soap, hydrating spray, body balm, and exfoliating gel. Each is made of only naturally occurring, clean organic oils with no artificial perfumes or toxic chemicals.
The foam soap, body balm, and skin location are all loved with natural healing oils. The foam soap is made from coconut, refined hemp, and jojoba oil, and the body balm and skin lotion have ten different oils as well.
The hydrating spray is particularly nice because it easily applied without the potential contamination of using your hands. It contains a soothing pro-vitamin B5.
Included in the ultimate AfterShock Tattoo Aftercare Kit is the rarely offered exfoliating gel to aid in removing old dead, flaky skin.
**The Author recommends the Exfoliating Gel**
H2Ocean Ultimate Tattoo Care Kit
This is a quality tattoo aftercare kit made by the industry for the industry. Containing a unique, all-natural water-based three-step system, it will help new and existing tattoos remain bright and brilliant for years to come. The foam wash provides moisture and nutrients to the tattoo while cleansing it at the same time, avoiding any unpleasant, potentially damaging dryness commonly experienced when using other antibacterial foam washes.
H2Ocean Foam acts as an all-natural liquid bandage that provides a layer of moisturizing protection, while locking in color, against airborne micro-organisms known to cause infections and damage tattoos while healing. A truly practical tattoo healing product.
Tattoo Goo Aftercare Kit
Tattoo Goo's aftercare kit is well known and trusted within the community and is a great budget option. Developed over time with input from industry professionals, Tattoo Goo meets all stages the healing process with a required product from its vast range.
It contains the three steps of traditional tattoo aftercare kits as well as a sunscreen product with SPF 30 to protect against the sun's color-fading rays.
Ink Fixx Tattoo Aftercare Lotion and Ointment
Ink Fixx Tattoo Aftercare Lotion and Ointment was created by industry specialists and artists and is a leading product for the budget-conscious. Its tattoo-healing lotion is the only aftercare solution without the unnecessary ingredients. Its rich blend of vitamins and minerals revitalize and rejuvenate natural healing of the skin's damaged cells. The grape seed extract protects 50 times more than vitamin C, and its anti-inflammatory properties reduce swelling.
Tattoo Aftercare Process
Your fresh tattoo, in its most basic form is an open wound and should be treated as such. The main reason your artist wrapped your tattoo once they were finished, was to give it some protection from infection-creating particles that exist in your everyday environment.
- When you're in a clean place, i.e your bathroom, remove the wrap and wash the tattoo thoroughly with antibacterial foam wash.
- Allow it to air dry for approximately one hour.
- Apply appropriate aftercare cream sparingly.
- Reapply three to five times a day.
- Wash your new tattoo three times a day for the first three to five days.
- Continue applying aftercare cream when required, allowing any scabs or flaking skin to dry naturally. Do not apply aftercare cream to scabs.
By assisting your tattoo with the necessary moisture supplied by aftercare lotions and minimal exposure to infection, you're giving your tattoo its best chance at developing into a well-healed tattoo with no damage or blow out.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
Luna Blanca on October 15, 2016:
The first time I got a tattoo I used Aloe Vera cream and that was the biggest mistake ever! It burned like hell and it actually pulls the ink out! The second time I got a tattoo I went to a tattoo studio in Cottonwood AZ and they had a locally made care product that I really liked. It was made out of organic cacao butter and some other organic oils. Lesson learned, do your research before putting on random care products on your tattoo!
Kathy from California on January 23, 2014:
Good information, well organized hub and detailed directions for new tattoos!