1. Leave your bandage or tattoo covering on for 2-3 hours after your tattoo is finished. This process is collecting blood and excess ink from the fresh tattoo, so keep it on! You don’t want to ruin any new clothes or overly expose it at first.
2. Make sure to wash your new tattoo with a mild, non-scented, antibacterial soap (Dial is a great option) to keep it clean and avoid potential infection. While the tattoo is healing avoid going into large bodies of water (pool, ocean, hot tubs, etc.), the gym or activities that lead to excessive amounts of sweating and exposure to the sun for the first two weeks. This could damage the tattoo in the healing process. Showers are fine as long as they are quick and not overly hot. You don’t want to burn your new ink! Remember, never touch your tattoo unless you have just washed your hands!
3. For the first few days after washing the tattoo make sure to apply an ointment to keep it hydrated. Great ointments to use that can be picked up at a drug store are A+D or Aquaphor. Use this sparingly! A thin layer is better than drowning the tattoo in ointment and will help it heal faster.
4. After the first week of using ointment switch to a non-scented lotion after you wash your tattoo (Aveeno is a great product to use in this case).
5. For the first two weeks, avoid wearing tight clothing. Otherwise you run the risk of scabbing and ink loss when clothes rub up against your tattoo. If possible, avoid sleeping on your tattoo so you don’t agitate the healing process.
6. Continue this process until the tattoo is healed. And remember, don’t pick, peal or scratch any scabbing or hard layers. These hard layers are normal and picking them off could remove color or damage your tattoo.