Tattoo Aftercare

If at any time during your healing process, there are symptoms of infection developing, please consult a physician.

Day 1

Remove your tattoo dressing within two hours of it being applied. Rinse the tattoo with hot water until all petroleum jelly is gone. That evening wash one more time with the hot water before bed. The hot water will sting at first but then feel soothing. Pat dry with a clean paper towel and leave open to air dry.

If you have a large tattoo or one that is in a place that might be under pressure while you are sleeping, wear a loose cotton piece of clothing over it. If during the night the tattoo seeps into the clothing and it is stuck to it in the morning, do not pull it off. Instead get in the shower and let the hot water run on it until you can remove the clothing without effecting the tattoo.

Day 2–3

Rinse your new tattoo in hot water twice a day (morning and evening). After rinsing, apply a thin layer of A&D ointment. Gently rub it into the tattoo. Blot any excess ointment off with a fresh paper towel. The amount of A&D should be enough to moisturize the tattoo but not so much that it is wet or gooey. (During this time you can use the Udderly Smooth lotion instead of A&D if you prefer) DO NOT pick or scratch at your tattoo while it is healing. If it is itchy, you can gently slap it.

Day 4 – 2 Weeks

Continue the hot water rinses at least once a day. Apply a non scented lotion (Udderly Smooth, found in the pharmacy section) twice a day. You want the tattoo to remain soft but not moist. If it is starting to dry out more than that or if scabbing occurs, apply lotion more frequently during the day. Do not apply a thick coat. Each time the tattoo feels tight or is pulling, put on another thin layer of lotion and rub it in well. This allows the old skin to flake off on it’s own time. During this time the tattoo may appear to be falling out. It is frequently refereed to as the “ugly stage”. This is a natural part of healing and do not be concerned. Do not pick at it. Do not swim in natural bodies of water or pools or hot tubs for at least three weeks after being tattooed to prevent infection – this includes soaking in the bathtub.


Once your tattoo is completely healed, apply sunblock whenever it will be exposed to the sun for prolonged periods of time. Protecting your tattoos from the sun will extend color brightness and keep your line work crisp.

If you have any questions about the healing of your tattoo or the healed result, please feel free to email me at