Caring for a new tattoo can be a tricky and sometimes painful process. Most people would prefer to get through it as soon as possible, so they might look for ways to speed up the healing process. Well, if you’re one of those people, you’ve come to the right place.
Now to be fair, the rate of the healing process depends on the speed at which your body is able to heal wounds. Your tattoo is essentially a controlled wound that needs to heal.
You can’t speed up the rate at which your body heals wounds, but you can certainly assist it by providing it with what it needs to carry out the healing process, and avoiding activities that make its job more difficult.
Moisture is your best friend during the healing process. Moisture prevents your skin from cracking and peeling, which disrupts the healing process.
During the first week following your tattoo session, you should be moisturizing your tattoo multiple times a day using a tattoo aftercare product such as tattoo aftercare cream. Be sure to use only a thin layer of moisturizer of aftercare product, as over-moisturizing could clog the pores of your skin and lead to breakouts.
By the third week you should be moisturizing twice a day, and doing it once a day in the weeks that follow.
Activities to Avoid
As mentioned earlier, you can’t speed up the healing process, but you could definitely slow it down if you engage in any of the following activities:
- Exposing your new tattoo to direct sunlight: Sunlight has the ability to break down the pigments in your tattoo ink as well as irritate your skin. This can prolong the healing process, and even fade your tattoo over time.
- Swimming with your new tattoo: You should avoid swimming for at least 4 weeks as the chemicals in swimming pool water or salt from seawater could irritate your skin and slow down the healing process.
- Engaging in exercise: Activities that stretch your skin, or cause friction and sweat can also cause damage to your still-healing skin.
The healing process for a new tattoo is only as slow as you allow it to be. Remember to moisturize regularly and avoid engaging in the aforementioned activities. Within a few months your tattoo should be completely healed, and you can proudly show it off.
For more tattoo aftercare tips, check out our tattoo blog.