Tattoo care: know what to do before and after

It is not today that eternalizing a design you like on your skin has become commonplace.

Be it a phrase, an image full of meanings or a simple line, the tattoo is a form of expression that animates many people.

However, contrary to what one might think, the moment of choosing the location and the design is not the only one that matters.


What are the cares with the tattoo on the first day?

The first few days after getting a tattoo are the most important for a healthy recovery of the dermis.

This is because a tattoo is basically a bruise on the skin. Thus, it is necessary to take some precautions so that there is no inflammation at the site and other complications, such as the appearance of keloids, for example.

Read more: Keloid: what are the best ointment options?

Some of the main precautions are:

No sun

After getting a tattoo, the skin is sensitized. Therefore, it is important not to allow the place to be exposed to the sun, as it can cause burns and injuries.

In addition, the sun’s rays can hinder the fixation of the ink in the dermis. Thus, during the first days, it is important to cover and protect the region when going out in the sun, however, without wearing too tight clothes.

The use of sunscreens should be done only after complete healing, that is, after about 30 days. Until this period, the ideal is to cover the region whenever you have contact with the sun.

In the bath

During the bath, hygiene must be done properly, to avoid the proliferation of bacteria and, consequently, infections.

Cleaning should be carried out with running water and neutral soap, without rubbing or using sponges in the region. The best thing is to gently run your fingers over the skin.

The temperature of the water used must be warm or cold (never hot), so as not to irritate the place.

When drying, the best thing is to use paper instead of a fabric towel, tapping the tattoo lightly to remove moisture.

Use of plastic

The plastic film is, in general, applied over the tattoo by the tattoo artist himself after the drawing is finished. It is indicated to protect the skin from external friction, since the region will be sensitized.

It is important to always follow the guidelines of the professional on the period of use and frequency of change, since each design has its particularities.


The use of healing ointments – used to accelerate the healing process -, already in the early days, is important for a good healing of the tattoo.

This, because they help in the recovery of the skin and in the better fixation of the ink in the region.

The time of use varies according to the design and location of the tattoo. Thus, it is important to follow the guidelines of the tattoo artist.

Contact with the tattoo

Both in the first days and in the ones that follow, being careful when touching or cleaning the tattoo is important for a healthy recovery.

It is recommended, for example, to always wash your hands before cleaning the place and changing the film paper. This helps to reduce the risk of contamination and inflammation.

Furthermore, just as in a bruise, after a few days, the dermis will usually form a kind of scale under the tattoo, popularly called “cone”.

It is very important not to remove it, as it is the body’s response to tattooing and is part of the healing process.

It is not recommended to scratch or scrub the area with sponges, but rather wait for the skin to come off naturally.

If it is removed before, there is the possibility of the ink being removed together, leaving the design faded.

In general, after it forms, the peel disappears in approximately 1 week.

How long do you have to use plastic after getting a tattoo?

It depends . There is no consensus among tattoo artists on the use of plastic or the length of time that it should remain on the tattoo.

This can vary according to the size of the design, style, ink used and the professional.

In general, in some cases it may be indicated to use only for the first few hours and, in others, for up to 3 days.

It is important to always follow the guidelines of the professional, who will indicate the best way to care for the tattoo, according to the work done.

How many days do you need to use cream or ointment for tattooing?

It depends . The period of use of healing ointments may vary according to the design, size, body location and ointment used.

They speed up the healing process, promoting healthy recovery of the dermis. In general, the indication of use can be from 7 days to 1 month.

What are the best tattoo creams or ointments?

There are different varieties of tattoo ointments available on the market. Some options are:

  • Cicaplast Baume B5 ;
  • Bepantol Derma ;
  • Nebacetin ;
  • Dermal Restorer Reilly Tatto.

In general, they are ointments that contain healing properties in their composition and, in addition to promoting a moisturizing action, they relieve skin irritation.

What are the cares with tattoos in the summer?

If in other seasons of the year it is necessary to be cautious when dealing with the tattoo, in the summer, care must be redoubled.

This is because, in general, during the summer there is a greater chance of exposure to the sun’s rays and the use of clothes that show the skin. In addition, many people often go to beaches and pools in this season.

These circumstances can affect the health of the skin. See some of the necessary care at this time of year:

Be careful with the sun

Over time, exposure to the sun can cause fading, loss of sharpness or even a change in the color of the tattoo.

This is because the sun’s rays can attack the pigments in the drawing.

Thus, it is important not to be exposed to the sun for a long time, in addition to always using sunscreen in the tattooed region.

However, it is worth remembering that the use of sunscreen should be done only after the complete healing of the tattoo, which usually occurs after 30 to 40 days.

Before this period, it is important to protect the tattooed area using clothes (not very tight) that cover the region, for example.

Beach and pool

During the summer, in general, it is common for people to frequent beaches and swimming pools more often.

However, when the tattoo is not yet fully healed, it is necessary to exercise caution in relation to these locations.

In general, the tattoo is a wound on the skin. If it is not healed, it means that the wound is still exposed.

It turns out that both seawater and pool water have bacteria that can cause infections in the area.

Therefore, it is important to wait a period of approximately 1 month, or until the drawing is completely healed, to frequent these places.

Food: what can’t you eat after getting a tattoo?

Care with post-tattoo feeding, in general, is not a consensus among tattoo artists.

Although there are professionals and even doctors (a) who say that food does not interfere with the healing of the drawing, there are tattoo artists (as) who indicate that the food consumed can, yes, harm the final result of the tattoo.

This is because some foods have an inflammatory potential, which can affect the healing of the drawing.

In general, it is recommended to avoid excessive consumption of very fatty foods such as chocolate, pork and fried foods.

It is important to always follow the guidelines of those who get your tattoo, which will recommend the best way to care for the design.

Tips: how to take care of the skin before getting a tattoo?

Just like post-procedure care, skin preparation before getting a tattoo is important.

If the skin is healthy and soft, the application of the ink will be facilitated and the drawing, in general, will be even clearer.

Some tips to use before getting a tattoo are:


Skin hydration makes a big difference when tattooing. In addition to keeping the skin soft, it allows the ink to penetrate the region more easily.

In general, it is recommended to use moisturizer at least 10 days before the session.

Despite this, on the day of the tattoo, it is recommended to keep the skin clean, without using any type of product under the area to be tattooed.

Avoid consumption of alcoholic beverages

The consumption of alcoholic beverages on the day of the tattoo or even the day before is not recommended.

This is because it can change the consistency of the blood – popularly called “fine-tune the blood” – and favor greater flow during the drawing.

Thus, with a greater circulation of blood, the substance can mix with the ink and hinder the tattoo artist in the execution of the line.

Remove hair

Depending on where the tattoo will be done, hair may be present. In general, they must be removed with a blade so that the tattoo artist can work.

However, it is important to contact the chosen professional, who will indicate whether the withdrawal should be made previously by the client or will be carried out at the time of the session.

If the removal is done previously through waxing, it is important to perform it about 2 weeks in advance, so that the skin can recover from the post-waxing process.

Getting a tattoo can be an important step in the lives of some people.

Whether done in a planned way or in a moment of courage, care after its completion is extremely important for the health of the dermis.

Want to know more about how to maintain good skin health ? The Healthy Minute has other complete content for you! Read more and stay informed!