10 commandments for getting of tattoo
Thou shalt detail your tattoo project to your tattoo artist (size, location, style).
Thou shalt pay a deposit so that your appointment can be confirmed and the drawing made.
Thou shalt not ask your tattoo artist to reproduce an existing design identically.
Thou shalt not use drugs, alcohol or aspirin before your session.
Thou shalt not apply an anaesthetic cream to your skin.
Thou shalt tame the sensation of pain
Thou shalt scrupulously follow the advice of your tattoo artist.
Thou shalt protect your tattoo from sunburn for the rest of your life.
Thou shalt immediately consult your tattoo artist and your doctor if you have any problems with the healing process.
A good healing
The skin is an organ that protects you from bacteria and viruses. The practice of tattooing is done by skin break-in, this barrier is weakened as long as it has not closed.
A well cared for skin goes into rapid healing, without blisters or other complications. So, the care that you will bring to your tattoo is just as important as the care that I bring during its realization.
Long version: The body is wonderful for self-defense and self-repair. The healing process starts automatically, as soon as there is a skin break-in (about 2mm deep in the case of a tattoo).
Coagulation is then triggered, forming a crust and protecting the skin surface. Then inflammation, which activates white blood cells that will clean and repair the skin more deeply.
During this process, if you over-irritate your skin (too many showers, rubbing, contact, sun, pool, spanking, carpet burns... I'm not judging, eh...) it will double its efforts and over-heal. This may result in a blister, and/or a larger crust, which when falling down will take too much ink with it.
Short version: Poor healing is usually due to over or under care.
Two weeks before
Hydrate your skin daily, especially if you tend to have dry skin.
Limit the risks of irritation : sun exposure, repeated shaving, your adorable cat if the area to be tattooed is accessible to its cute little claws ... sharp as razors…
The day before
Don't skimp on your sleep the night before your appointment.
Avoid alcohol as much as possible as it thins blood, causing some ink to seep out. Do not take drugs either. For many reasons that I will not develop. In short, the day before one puts oneself in slipper mode, not party mode.
A small headache or stomach ache?
Turn to paracetamol and not aspirin which, like alcohol, makes the blood thinner.
Do not drink alcohol or take drugs.
Fasting at your tattoo appointment is risking vascular collapse, so... eat something. A complete meal if possible, without excess sugar (it also makes blood thinner, the trickster). If you are really not hungry, eat at least one small snack before the session. You can bring something for snacking during the break(s).
Wear loose-fitting clothes that you are comfortable in and don't mind staining.
That's it !
You're fit and relaxed, you can take your place on the tattoo table. You'll see, it hurts, but it's quite bearable. Some even become addicted.
Here are a few tips to help you not focus on the pain. Because when it hurts, you get tensed and when you're tense you're more sensitive to the pain so...
- If the area to be tattooed is not contraindicative to wearing earphones or headphones, listen to your favorite music during the session.
- Always if there is no contraindication, we can chat together about subjects completely outside of tattoo.
- Practice breathing/meditation exercises.
- Escape inwardly to a place that is dear to you and where you feel good.
- Close this website with pictures of failed tattoos.
At last you can rest assured. By I don't know what trick of the universe, time seems to go by faster when you get a tattooed (yes it does, I swear).
Is your tattoo session over?
Congratulations! The worst is behind you, however there are a few simple and essential tips to apply, to promote good healing.
One to three hours after your tattoo session
Wash your hands (never touch your tattoo without washing your hands). Remove the plastic film that I will have applied on your tattoo, then wet your tattoo with cool to lukewarm water. (Put down this hydroalcoholic gel and the bottle of 90° alcohol immediately).
Lather between your hands a mild soap, or a washing oil without alcohol or perfume and apply this clean lather to your tattooed skin. Massage gently with your fingerstips, without scratching or rubbing.
Rinse with clear water and dry your skin by dabbing it gently with a single-use paper towel or tissue. (Avoid absorbent cotton, make-up remover discs... anything that frays).
Wash your tattoo this way morning and evening, until all the scabs (small scabs and dead skin) have fallen off, which usually takes 4 to 8 days.
Day to day
Leave your tattoo in the open air as much as possible.
When this is not possible, you can apply non-woven sterile compress, which will protect it from rubbing, while letting your skin breathe. If the tattoo is too big for the compresses, wear clean clothes in soft and natural fabrics (cotton, linen) that do not make lint.
Your tattoo will shed ink for the first few days. This is completely normal. However, be careful not to wear clothes you care about, as they may be damaged. At night, limit the positions that will compress your tattoo.
If your tattoo is stuck to your clothing or to the compress, wet them with clear water and delicately remove them, so as to not hurt yourself or damage your tattoo.
Hygiene of life
The quality of sleep, alcohol and drug consumption are factors that influence the healing process.
So take care of yourself, your tattoo artist will be grateful t ;-)
Depending on the size and location of the tattoo and for comfort, you can apply a healing cream/oil, always in a thin layer, once or twice daily.
I recommend La Roche Posay's Cicaplast cream for 4 to 8 days, then for the following 15 days organic shea butter alone, or mixed with organic coconut oil. I also have had good customer feedback on the Cicaplast B5 balm and the Cicabiaphine.
By experience, I advise against too greasy creams such as Bepanthen and Cicalfate.
The first two days
Apart from the ink, your tattoo will also reject ink from the lymph, especially at night. Let this process occur by itself, it is useless and even counterproductive to continually wipe away the lymph that flows. As the lymph dries, it forms scabs that help protect the surface of your skin while it rebuilds itself from the inside out.
As a reminder, poor healing is generally due to over or under care (see long version, above).
Scabs form. Do not scratch or pick them off. Yes I know, we want to. They will fall off by themselves with time and usually when you shower.
By the way, as soon as they appear, I recommend that you apply your healing cream by tapping gently on the skin and not by massaging it.
This in order not to precipitate the fall of the scabs. Yes, I know, we always want to.
Avoid sports for the first two weeks
Toxins and bacteria contained in perspiration may over-irritate your tattoo and can sometimes cause a small infection. In addition, repeated movements, pulls and contractions of the muscles may cause the ink to spread under your skin without having had time to set. The aesthetic of your tattoo will suffer.
Avoid sun for a month
Skin that is in the process of healing and exposed to UV rays risks over-healing as a defense. It would make scar tissue and your tattoo would end up irrevocably puffy.
Also, avoid swimming (bath, sea, pool) for one month.
Even if your skin closes after 4 to 8 days and prevents bacteria from entering again, the epidermis remains fragile. Prolonged immersion in chlorinated water, even before a month, could irritate your skin and thus damage the result of the tattoo. For this last reason also avoid sauna and hammam for a month.
Please send me one or more photos of your tattoo one month after your session, so that we can determine together if it needs retouching.
Tattoo touch up
Retouching is free, as long as you have taken good care of your tattoo.
They are usually done 2 to 6 months after the tattoo.