Taking care of your skin is important PRIOR to having a needle poking your skin. Keeping your skin moisturized 1-2 weeks BEFORE your appointment can help your skin accept ink better. Rather than crusty dry skin. Please use UNSCENTED lotions or OILS.
With this being said, DO NOT use oils on your skin the day BEFORE or OF your appointment. When the skin is too greasy or oily. It is also hard for the skin to accept ink. A thin amount of UNSCENTED lotions is okay. But don’t go slathering yourself down.
Please shower the day of your appointment and CAREFULLY shave the are and 1” extra around the space to be tattooed. If the area of skin is injured it can NOT be tattooed. So be very careful! If you do not feel comfortable doing this in hard areas like the elbow and ankle. I can shave the area, but prefer to save one less razor and find it’s a cleaner shave when doing this yourself. A small amount of UNSCENTED lotion can be applied to the area. DO NOT apply any oils, oils soak into the pores differently than lotions. And can cause the ink to bounce out of the skin.
Please do not wax the area. Waxing will remove to many skin cells. And also can cause bumps with regrowth. This is not good for the area when healing.
Remember to plan for comfortable clothing. A photo of the tattoo will be taken afterwards. Do not wear anything too tight that will rub and cause irritation to your freshly poked skin.
A&D ointment will be given to you, but should be switched to a lotion after 2 days. Purchasing an antibacterial UNSCENTED soap and lotion is best before your appointment.
Open Air Healing
Wash your hands first ! Remove the bandage after 2-3 hours in a clean environment. Wash the area with UNSCENTED antibacterial soap + warm water. ( DO NOT take a super hot shower ) When washing the area do not use anything abrasive ( a loofa, scrub pad, scratchy wash cloth). Let the area dry and pat it dry lightly. Putting excessive pressure on the tattooed area is not good for healing. Do not use A&D ointment for more than 48 hours. Switch to a thin, non scented lotion ( Aquaphor, Cetaphil, VaniCream LIGHT, Curel) . Continue to apply a small amount of lotion or Unscented balm throughout the day. A slight shine is good, BUT do not slather or over do the lotion. It will be too much for the healing process . Wash your tattoo 2-3 times a day when using an open air healing method and reapply lotion. Remember to be conscious of dust, dirt, pet hair and dirty clothing.
Second Skin ( Clear Adhesive Barrier )
Clear barrier wraps are products used to help HEAL your tattoo. Keeping the bandage on and sealed is important! This is a product made specifically for tattoos. It is not the same as a clear bandage from a Walgreens or CVS. SecondSkin is latex-free, waterproof breathable and hypoallergenic. Please inform your artist is you are ALLERGIC to ADHESIVES.
The first 24-48 hours are extremely important! It’s best to avoid extreme heat. So if your are a gym junky plan to NOT go to the gym and take those as your “days off”. Exercise + Sweat + Hot Shower, or excessively long showers. Can cause skin reactions and cause the barrier to lift and be unsecured. If the barrier becomes unsecured, has large air pockets, or is lifting REMOVE the bandage and follow open air healing. If left on unsecured, bacteria can get trapped inside and cause infection. Do not remove and reapply the bandage EVER.
LEAVE IT ON ! Unless the barrier is compromised and is lifting due to excessive motion. Leaving the bandage on up to 5 days is what is going to HEAL your tattoo. DO NOT leave it on more than 7 days. The best thing to do is leave the barrier alone. Try not to touch it, itch or wear clothing that will rub up against it.
REMOVING THE BARRIER… take a warm shower, or soak in warm water. Use antibacterial soap to lightly wash the dirt off the outside of the barrier and area of the tattoo FIRST. Always make sure your hands are clean clean clean!! At the END OF YOUR SHOWER , or after soaking. Then remove the bandage SLOWLY, but keep the skin firm and peel small sections slowly. Allow the water to seep in and help lift the bandage off. Wash the area clean, with antibacterial and UNSCENTED products. It’s best to try and use Unscented Hair + Body products at this time as well. As they can cause skin irritation. Dr. Bronner’s Unscented Soap is an alternative.
General Aftercare
Wash your tattoo 2-3 a day with an Unscented ANTIBACTERIAL soap. Apply an Unscented LOTION 2-3 times a day as needed. ( Don’t over do it! ). Depending on the care and size of your tattoo. Healing can take up to 2-3 weeks.
Avoid excessive heat and exercise within the 3 days. Ideally just take the week off, if your tattoo is larger than 3”. IT DOES MATTER!
BEST TO AVOID ALL THESE THINGS ( For at least 2 weeks, if you have a large tattoo up to 6 weeks )
NO direct sunlight or tanning ( bed or outdoors)
NO Scented products of any kind
NO Scratching or picking at scabs ( let them heal, and fall away naturally )
NO submerging ( taking a bath), swimming of any sort in water for at least 2 weeks.
No petroleum based products. ( These can cause the ink to not retain in the skin properly)
TRY to avoid excessive pet hair or pets licking the skin… it’s dirty and can cause an infection.
Rayna Art + Co is not responsible for improper care of your tattoo. We are not medical professionals. Any given information is for your best care of your tattoo procedure.
Healing is varies from person to person. It can take 2 weeks up to 6 weeks depending on the size and style of your tattoo. If after 2 weeks or at anytime you see lots of yellow or green discharge. Excessive swelling or feel that the tattoo is not healing properly. Please let us know! BUT we can not do anything about this. We recommend seeking out a medical professional as soon as possible.