Medically the evaluation by Dominique Fontaine, BSN, RN, HNB-BC, HWNC-BC — written by Adrienne Santos-Longhurst on February 25, 2021

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Forget those city myths about what happens when you shower head after acquiring a tattoo, since they’re wrong. Really, it won’t to wash off. Showering with a brand-new tattoo is entirely fine as lengthy as you take it a couple of basic precautions.

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If you’ve got brand-new ink, here’s just how to attend to shower time.

This counts on the type of covering the artist provides on your tattoo and also how long they recommend keeping it on.

If the tat is wrapped in plastic or a item of regular bandage, you’ll should wait till it’s turn off to shower. This deserve to be all over from 1 to 24 hours, depending on the location and also size of her ink.

If her artist supplies a medical-grade, waterproof bandage, like Saniderm, you deserve to shower anytime — as long as you save the bandage on because that the length of time the artist told you to.


It’s good if her tattoo gets a little wet, yet it do not do it be submerged in water or left under running water for long periods of time.

Keep time in the shower to a minimum, and also be gentle to stop irritating your newly tattooed skin.

This way skipping the loofah or washcloth — at the very least over the inked area, anyway. Gaining your rub-a-dub on in other places is entirely fine. In addition to gift abrasive on fresh inked skin, loofahs, sponges, and washcloths can harbor bacteria and increase your possibility of one infection.

Wash the area tenderness using only a mild, fragrance-free soap. Commodities with alcohol and details chemicals can irritate and dry the end the skin. This can lead come scarring and also slower healing.

If friend have strong water pressure, try not to focus the spray straight on the inked area. Stand under a shower and letting the water run over you or using your clean hands to wash the tattoo is fine as long as you don’t linger much longer than you require to.

What around afterward?

Again, harsh touch and also products v harsh chemicals space bad. Gentle touch and also gentle products are good.

Softly beat the area dry with a clean towel or record towel, and also apply a thin layer of unscented moisturizing ointment, choose Aquaphor or A&D ointment, over the area. This helps avoid drying when also adding a safety layer over the skin.

Once her tattoo begins to heal, hydrating and also moisturizing your tattoo will take priority over protecting it, and also you’ll be able to switch native ointment to lotion instead. Moisturizing helps store your skin from obtaining dry and also itchy.

When picking a lotion, you will do it still want to stick come unscented lotion the doesn’t save alcohol.

Can i take a bath?


Your tattoo is an open up wound, and also soaking in water could expose it to bacteria and increase the danger of infection. Soaking can likewise dry the end the skin, causing cracking and also making it much more susceptible to infection and also scarring.

You must avoid submerging your tattoo in water or maintaining it wet for a prolonged period that time.

This way no swimming or sit in bathtub tubs, hot tubs, pools, or open up water because that at the very least 2 main (or as lengthy as your tattoo artist recommends).

How carry out I understand when mine tattoo is fully healed?

Your tattoo artist will tell you exactly how long the healing step takes and what friend should and also shouldn’t do throughout that time.

The outer layer that the skin generally heals in ~ 2–3 weeks, leaving the area looking and feeling choose it’s healed.

But don’t obtain out your bath salt or swimsuit just yet — tattoos walk deeper 보다 the top layer the skin. Some can take as lengthy as 6 months to heal.

How lengthy your tattoo take away to fully heal counts on the size of the tattoo, the location, your way of life habits, and also your aftercare.

The much better you room at adhering to the aftercare instructions she given, the much faster it have to heal.

How carry out I understand if something’s wrong?

It’s not unexplained for tattooed skin come look and also feel a tiny gnarly immediately after your tattoo appointment. Some redness, crusting, and clear oozing are usual in the first pair of days.

After 2 or 3 days, you will do it probably notification some peeling, specifically in the shower. This is totally normal. However don’t try to help it follow me by choose or skin the skin, or you’ll operation the hazard of scarring or discoloration.

Bubbling is a possibility if your tattoo stays wet for also long. This is why it’s necessary to limit exactly how long you spend in the shower and also pat your skin totally dry ~ washing.

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Any other transforms to your skin might be indicators that her tattoo isn’t healing properly, the infected, or you’re experiencing an allergic reaction.

view your tattoo artist if you notice any of these red flags:

prolonged rednesspuffy or puffy skinoozing fluid or pusbleedingsevere itchiness or hivesdiscoloration

See a a healthcare expert if friend develop any kind of signs that infection, including:

feverchillsincreased or too much painskin that’s warm to the touchincreased or serious redness or redness that extends past the tattooopen sores ~ above the tattoo