Follow this recipe to make sure your tattoo looks as good as the day you got it.
Always wash your hands well before touching your tattoo and make sure you have the Aveeno Body Wash, Aquaphor and a clean towel handy.
Remove the wound covering after 5 hours, or the following morning if your artist finished late in the day. The first few days the tattoo will secrete a thick black slimy layer when you remove the wrap. This is totally normal.
Using the body wash, hot water and your bare hands, firmly wash the tattoo. The goal is to get all of the slime off the tattoo so it looks flat and matte every time you wash it.
Dry the tattoo with the towel and apply a very thin layer of Aquaphor.
Completely rewrap your tattoo with plastic wrap after each washing for 3 days. This keeps the tattoo clean and flexible, as well as serving as a barrier against your clothes. DO NOT RECOVER WITH ANYTHING BUT PLASTIC WRAP. No pads, gauze or fabric that can stick to the fresh tattoo.
Wash your tattoo like this 3 times a day for a week. After a week decrease washing to once or twice a day.
Reapply Aquaphor throughout the day and anytime the tattoo feels dry, tight or like it is pulling when you move. The key is to keep it moist and flexible.
Your tattoo will form a thin sunburn-like crust after a few days. This is normal and the layer needs to flake off naturally. Picking and scratching will result in damage to the inked area.
While your tattoo is in its initial healing stage (first two weeks) you must not soak it in baths, hot tubs, or swimming pools. Showering is fine, just no soaking. Refrain from dry heat like a sauna, as well. Limit your range of motion and no working out or yoga for the first week.
In the second stage of healing (two – six weeks) the tattooed area must not be exposed to strong direct sunlight. Doing so will cause the tattoo to age prematurely and look dull.
After the tattoo is healed always use sunblock to prevent fading.