Do not re-bandage your tattoo. Once the bandage has been gently removed after the designated 2-3 hours, do not place another bandage on top of the new tattoo. Another bandage can slow healing time and stop the area from “breathing” which means it can hold in harmful bacteria that will begin to grow in the moisture
created between the bandage and your skin.

Your tattoo should be washed with either a liquid antibacterial soap like Dial hand soap or any mild, castile soap like Dr. Bronner’s and ONLY with your hand or fingers. Always wash your hands prior to ever touching your tattoo. This will rid your hands of any bacteria, viruses, and other nasty things you may have touched before planning to clean the area such as: tetanus, Staphylococcus, influenza, and Group A Streptococcal Disease. Do not use a wash cloth or any abrasive materials to clean your tattoo. Abrasive materials will hurt, irritate the skin, and can leave fragments behind in your tattoo which may slow healing and generate a higher risk of infection. So, wash the area softly with your clean hand and allow the tattoo to air dry before applying *After Inked® Aftercare lotion. Follow this process for at least the first two weeks of healing.

Signs and symptoms of infection including, but not limited to, redness, swelling, tenderness of the procedure site, red streaks going from procedure site towards heart, elevated body temperature, or purulent drainage from the procedure site. Redness, swelling and tenderness are normal; however, if these signs worsen or persist seek medical attention.

Do not pick or scratch your tattoo. Leave your tattoo alone unless you are washing it. Picking or scratching the tattoo will pull out ink, fade the tattoo, and greatly irritate the area. If your tattoo itches, make sure your hands are clean, you may lightly tap the area with the palm of your hand in an attempt to lessen the irritating feeling.

Avoid hot tubs, pools, and the ocean during the healing process. Chlorine and other harmful chemicals from hot tubs and public pools can be extremely degenerative to your tattoo as well as irritating to the point of causing infection. Ocean water has many microorganisms and bacteria floating around in it that can inflame and infect your tattoo while it is healing. Some of the diseases that can be caused from swimming in these areas are: Cryptosporidiosis (crypto), Viral Hepatitis A, E. Coli, and Leptospirosis.

Do not over soak your tattoo with water while in the shower. Over soaking our tattoo will increase scabbing which may cause your new tattoo to look murky and faded after the area has finished healing.

Avoid contact with animals, dirt, and gardening.

Avoid direct sunlight or tanning beds for the first few weeks. Not only will sunlight and tanning beds be very painful to the tattooed area, but will cause the ink to begin fading and dispersing to the surrounding areas. This will leave the tattoo splotchy and irritated. Avoid the use of any tanning oils or lotions. The oils and lotions used for tanning have many harmful ingredients in them that should not be put on an open wound. Wait at least 30 days before allowing yourself to apply tanning lotions and oils to the newly tattooed area. Even after you have healed, direct sunlight and tanning beds will break up the ink in your skin and cause you to lose much of the detail and light colors. When out in the sun plan on using sun block that is at least 30+ SPF to hinder the effects of fading as much as possible.

Avoid tight fitting clothes which might irritate a new tattoo. Just as abrasive materials such as wash cloths, loofah’s, and towels will highly irritate your new tattoo, clothes that are constantly rubbing and very tight will have the same effect. Loose fitting clothing with the addition of Aftercare lotion will give you and your tattoo the highest amount of possible comfort.

*We offer and suggest After Inked® Aftercare products.
Alternately, a thin layer unscented hand lotion to keep moist while healing.
When using After Inked®, do not use any other aftercare products.
After Inked® products have been specially formulated as a daily skin moisturizer
for new and existing tattoos.


Use one or both of the following solutions for healing piercings:

  • Packaged sterile saline solution with no additives (read the label), or a non-iodized sea salt mixture: Dissolve 1/4 teaspoon of non-iodized (iodine-free) sea salt into one cup (8 oz.) of warm distilled or bottled water. A stronger mixture is not better; a saline solution that is too strong can irritate the piercing.
  • A mild, fragrance-free liquid soap—preferably anti-microbial or germicidal.

WASH your hands thoroughly prior to cleaning or touching your piercing for any reason.

SALINE soak for five to ten minutes once or more per day. Invert a cup of warm saline solution over the area to form a vacuum. For certain piercings it may be easier to apply using clean gauze or paper towels saturated with saline solution. A brief rinse afterward will remove any residue.

SOAP no more than once or twice a day. While showering, lather up a pearl size drop of the soap to clean the jewelry and the piercing. Leave the cleanser on the piercing no more than thirty seconds.

RINSE thoroughly to remove all traces of the soap from the piercing. It is not necessary to rotate the jewelry through the piercing.

by gently patting with clean, disposable paper products. Cloth towels can harbor bacteria and snag on jewelry, causing injury.


  • Initially: some bleeding, localized swelling, tenderness, or bruising.
  • During healing: some discoloration, itching, secretion of a whitish-yellow fluid (not pus) that will form some crust on the jewelry. The tissue may tighten around the jewelry as it heals.
  • Once healed: the jewelry may not move freely in the piercing; do not force it. If you fail to include cleaning your piercing as part of your daily hygiene routine, normal but smelly bodily secretions may accumulate.
  • A piercing may seem healed before the healing process is complete. This is because tissue heals from the outside in, and although it feels fine, the interior remains fragile. Be patient, and keep cleaning throughout the entire healing period.
  • Even healed piercings can shrink or close in minutes after having been there for years! This varies from person to person; if you like your piercing, keep jewelry in—do not leave it empty.
  • Wash your hands prior to touching the piercing; leave it alone except when cleaning. During healing, it is not necessary to rotate your jewelry.
  • Stay healthy; the healthier your lifestyle, the easier it will be for your piercing to heal. Get enough sleep and eat a nutritious diet. Exercise during healing is fine; listen to your body.
  • Make sure your bedding is washed and changed regularly. Wear clean, comfortable, breathable clothing that protects your piercing while you are sleeping.
  • Showers tend to be safer than taking baths, as bathtubs can harbor bacteria. If you bathe in a tub, clean it well before each use and rinse off your piercing when you get out.
  • Avoid cleaning with Betadine®, Hibiciens®, alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, Dial® or other harsh soaps, as these can damage cells. Also avoid ointments as they prevent necessary air circulation.
  • Avoid Bactine®, pierced ear care solutions and other products containing Benzalkonium Chloride (BZK). These can be irritating and are not intended for long term wound care.
  • Avoid over-cleaning. This can delay your healing and irritate your piercing.
  • Avoid undue trauma such as friction from clothing, excessive motion of the area, playing with the jewelry, and vigorous cleaning. These activities can cause the formation of unsightly and uncomfortable scar tissue, migration, prolonged healing, and other complications.
  • Avoid all oral contact, rough play, and contact with others’ bodily fluids on or near your piercing during healing.
  • Avoid stress and recreational drug use, including excessive caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol.
  • Avoid submerging the piercing in unhygenic bodies of water such as lakes, pools, hot tubs, etc. Or, protect your piercing using a waterproof wound-sealant bandage (such as 3M™ Nexcare™ Clean Seals). These are available at most drugstores.
  • No Gardening: Avoid contact with dirt and soil.
  • Avoid contact with animals. Be mindful of contact of the procedure area with any pets
    you may have.
  • Avoid all beauty and personal care products on or around the piercing including cosmetics, lotions, and sprays, etc.
  • Don’t hang charms or any object from your jewelry until the piercing is fully healed.
These guidelines are based on a combination of vast professional experience, common sense, research and extensive clinical practice. This is not to be considered a substitute for medical advice from a doctor. If you suspect an infection, seek medical attention. Be aware that many doctors have not received specific training regarding piercing.



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