How To Keep A Tattoo Clean

Keeping Your New Tattoo Clean!

And WHY it's important to keep your fresh tattoo clean and hygienic!

Healing your tattoo correctly and keeping proper hygiene is very important, especially during the first stages of a new, fresh tattoo. A new tattoo is essentially an open wound. So this means you will probably be in need of some special aftercare attention to your new tattoo. 

Tattoo aftercare is extremely important - especially because the tattoo must be kept free from germs, dirt, prolonged UV exposure (sunlight) and contaminants. This can't be stressed enough. As an open wound, the fresh tattoo is very susceptible to germs and infection. If the tattoo is not properly cared for, then you may expose yourself to the risk of (potentially severe) infections and complications. 



Common symptoms and signs of a tattoo infection, may be what looks and feels like a rash, or red bumpy skin. This may be common with mild cases, however should be short lived if experienced. 

Other signs are excessive, painful swelling around the area. The presence of pus, as well as extensive wheezing (this can be common {to a certain extent} for bigger and more intense tattoos, but it should be short lived and always something to keep an eye on). 

If you do find yourself with a potential tattoo infection, do not get overly concerned, as they are typically easy to treat. Most infections can be treated fast and effectively with antibiotics and hygienic practices. However, in some rare instances, some tattoo infections can become quite serious and require long-term antibiotics or other medications. This should require immediate medical assistance. 

Do your research on the workplace and the artist. Any good tattoo artist will take care of you and ensure the cleanest and most hygienic result.

The worst tattoo infections may result in antibiotic care, but usually they won’t cause any dramatic and lasting concerns or issues.




ALWAYS Listen To Your Tattoo Artists Advice! After you have been tattooed, your artist will (SHOULD) give you advice on the do's and don'ts with what to do when you leave the studio and head home. 

The main thing to remember here is to follow your professional artists advice. Primarily because they have just spent a considerable amount of time being the closest person to your skin during the tattoo process, as well as plenty of experience with tattoo care. There is nobody that has been closer, or that should know more, about your individual tattoo situation and what should be done during the healing process, as well as the best ways to keep the fresh tattoo hygienic and clean, free from bacteria and infection. Couple this with common sense and the typical rules with skincare, such as spot testing. Spot testing means you apply a small amount on your skin to make sure there's no irritation or reaction. 
PS: Always check the ingredients for any known allergies! 

When you get home from your appointment, depending on how big and heavy your tattoo is, you may want to leave it to settle for a few hours or more. However it is important to wash with warm water and ideally a natural, antibacterial soap or body wash. As long as it doesn’t irritate and/or sting, give it a soft and gentle wash. It will probably hurt but it's important to keep it clean more than anything else.

Air dry or pat dry with a fresh paper towel or a very clean towel/hand washer. Be careful with bath towels as they can carry a lot of germs.

Once dry, re-wrap the tattoo if necessary, or be very careful not to hit or bump the tattoo on any surfaces. Repeat the wash and clean process regularly. 

Clean and re-wrap your tattoo right before you get into bed. Using medical tape around the edges is a good idea as the tattoo will expel fluid over night, leaking and staining your bed sheets. It may also stick to sheets or clothing, which can hurt and also be unsanitary. 

Continue this process until your tattoo has completed the stages of the tattoo healing process. You can read more about this on our Tattoo Info Blog Page.