The findings from an Australian survey highlight a significant trend: approximately 20% of the population now boasts at least one tattoo. With many of us jumping on the tattoo bandwagon, it has become a popular form of self-expression and art. Unfortunately, despite the growing trend, many people lack essential knowledge on how to properly care for their fresh ink to maintain its vibrancy over the years.
Owning a tattoo is a lifelong commitment, demanding diligent care and maintenance. Naturally, we all want our tattoos to look vibrant and new for as long as possible. The good news is that with a little TLC (tender loving care), we can achieve just that. Here’s our rundown of the top tips for keeping your tattoos looking their best.
Keep it Clean
The first step in making sure your ink stays vibrant is to keep it clean. Immediately after getting a tattoo, your artist would have wrapped it up in a protective bandage, which you would need to keep on for a few hours, or as instructed. Once you remove the bandage, gently wash your tattoo with warm water and a mild, fragrance-free soap. To dry, lightly pat the area with a clean towel or let it air dry – no rubbing! Repeat this process two to three times a day for the first few days.
Once your tattoo heals completely, continue to keep it clean and moisturised. Good hygiene can help prevent infection or fading of your tattoo, especially if the placement is in an area that’s prone to dirt and sweat build-up (for instance, the neck or hands).
Moisturise, Moisturise, Moisturise
Your skin will need to be hydrated more than ever after getting a tattoo. Applying unscented, alcohol-free lotion or ointment will aid in lubricating the skin and preventing dryness and scabbing. Your artist may recommend a particular product or provide one for you depending on your needs. Strictly follow their instructions for aftercare to reduce the risk of irritation or skin damage.
Alternatively, you can use natural moisturisers such as coconut oil or shea butter for hydration. Remember to apply only small amounts at a time and gently massage it onto the tattooed area using clean hands. Overmoisturising can harm your tattoo by clogging pores and preventing it from breathing.
Shield it from the Sun
Your skin will need extra protection from the sun’s harmful UV rays after getting a tattoo. Direct sunlight will cause the ink to fade or discolour over time, so avoid exposing your tattooed area for extended periods. If you must be out in the sun, make sure to wear sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 and reapply as needed throughout the day. We advise using mineral-based sunscreens as they are less likely to cause irritation or discolouration.
Stay Hydrated and Watch What You Eat
Your skin will serve as the canvas of your tattoo, so keeping it healthy will ultimately affect the vibrancy of your ink. Drinking plenty of water and eating a well-balanced diet will provide your skin with the necessary nutrients to stay healthy, helping maintain the elasticity and moisture levels of your skin. Vitamin-rich fruits and vegetables, which include leafy greens, citrus fruits, and berries, are packed with antioxidants that promote skin healing and combat free radicals that cause premature aging.
Even with proper care, tattoos will fade over time due to various factors such as sun exposure, aging, and the natural shedding of skin cells. Your skin needs to completely heal before your artist can do any touch-ups, which typically takes six to eight weeks. We highly recommend booking the same artist for touch-ups as they are familiar with the design and ink used on your tattoo. Following a touch up, your skin and ink will require the same meticulous care as your initial tattoo.
Why Choose Us for Your Next Ink Adventure
Our dedicated team of artists takes immense pride in the art of creating personalised, awe-inspiring designs. But our commitment goes beyond the studio, as we are equally passionate about educating our clients on the art of tattoo care. We’ll help you make informed decisions when it comes to your ink, so you can enjoy its vibrancy and beauty for years to come. Hit us up for your next ink adventure, and we promise to make it worthwhile!