Tattoo Etiquette: Dos And Don’ts Before And After Getting Inked

Tattoo Etiquette: Dos And Don’ts Before And After Getting Inked

If you’re about to get your first tattoo or are already an experienced enthusiast in the world of ink, it’s crucial to grasp the importance of proper tattoo care, both before and after the procedure

Sunny BhanushaliUpdated: Sunday, March 17, 2024, 12:59 AM IST
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Pic: Freepik

If you’re about to get your first tattoo or are already an experienced enthusiast in the world of ink, it’s crucial to grasp the importance of proper tattoo care, both before and after the procedure. This understanding goes beyond merely maintaining your tattoo’s aesthetic; it’s also about safeguarding your health and the longevity of the artwork.

For those who are adding to their collection of tattoos, it’s important to remember that each new piece of art requires the same level of attention and care as the first. The skin’s reaction to tattooing can change over time, and previous experiences don’t always predict future healing processes.

Before getting a tattoo

Research

Do: Carefully select a reputable tattoo studio and an experienced artist. Look for reviews, inspect their portfolios, and ensure they follow stringent hygiene practices.

Don’t: Compromise on quality and hygiene for a cheaper price or quicker appointment.

Prepare your body

Do: Stay hydrated and eat nutritiously to ensure your body is in optimal condition for enduring the tattooing process. This preparation aids in managing pain and maintaining your overall well-being.

Don’t: Consume alcohol, caffeine, or blood-thinning medications like aspirin, as they can increase bleeding and affect ink absorption.

Careful Planning

Do: Carefully consider the design and its placement on your body. Decide if you prefer a location that allows for easy concealment or one less susceptible to stretching and fading.

Don’t: Rush into a tattoo design or placement decision without considering its long-term impact on your life and career.

After getting a tattoo

Follow after-care instructions

Do: Pay close attention to the aftercare advice provided by your tattoo artist. This includes detailed guidance on cleaning, moisturising, and protecting your new tattoo.

Don’t: Ignore these guidelines, as improper care can lead to infection, colour fading and loss, or distorted designs.

Protect Your Tattoo

Do: Keep your tattoo covered and away from sunlight initially. Once healed, regularly apply sunscreen (SPF 45 or higher) to prevent fading.
Don’t: Soak your tattoo in water (swimming pools, hot tubs, baths) for at least two to three weeks.

Be patient with healing

Do: Expect some peeling and itching as part of the healing process. Keep the area clean.

Don’t: Scratch or pick at the tattoo. This can cause scarring and affect the tattoo’s appearance.

Wear appropriate clothing

Do: Choose loose, soft, and breathable fabrics to wear over your new tattoo.

Don’t: Allow tight, abrasive, or dirty clothing to rub against the tattoo.

Monitor for infections

Do: Keep an eye out for signs of infection, like excessive redness, swelling, or pus.

Don’t: Hesitate to seek medical advice if you suspect an infection.

Touch-ups and maintenance

Do: Consider a touch-up if needed after your tattoo has fully healed.

Don’t: Forget to return to the same artist for consistency in style and colour.

A tattoo is a significant and personal investment in your body art. It requires careful consideration, from choosing the right design and artist to diligently following aftercare instructions. By adhering to these comprehensive dos and don’ts, you can ensure that your tattoo not only heals properly but remains a vibrant and meaningful symbol for years to come. Remember, a tattoo is a reflection of your story and identity – cherish and care for it with the utmost dedication.

(Sunny Bhanushali is the Founder and CEO of Aliens Tattoo Studio and Aliens Tattoo Art School)

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