Tattoo Aftercare Instructions


The aftercare process for your tattoo starts as soon as your tattoo artist is finished working on the piece. The initial healing process lasts about a month, but it can take several months for the deeper layers of skin to heal.

The following tattoo aftercare instructions are to help you care for your tattoo during the initial days after it’s been worked, but some steps should be repeated regularly for ongoing protection and care.

Keep Your Tattoo Covered

When your tattoo artist is done tattooing you, they will cover the tattoo with a thin layer of petroleum jelly and a wrap to protect the freshly wounded skin. Keep this covering on your tattoo for at least two hours to prevent contact with airborne bacteria.

We recommend keeping the tattoo wrap on overnight as well. This will prevent tattoo ink from staining your bedsheets, and it can also decrease your chances of scabbing as your tattoo weeps, or oozes clear blood plasma.

Wash Your Tattoo As Directed

Keep the tattoo dressing on for up to 20 hours. Before removing the wrap, wash your hands thoroughly, then carefully remove the bandages or wrap that’s covering your tattoo. Use warm water — but not hot — to gently wash your tattoo with fragrance-free soap. Aftershock Skin Care offers Foam Soap that’s formulated with natural ingredients so it won’t irritate your skin. You’ll notice the clear blood plasma and some extra ink oozing from your tattoo during the initial wash. Your skin may also be warm to the touch. Continue to wash and rinse your tattoo until your skin feels smooth but not slimy.

You’ll continue to wash your tattoo a couple of times a day for the next few months to keep the skin clean and help it heal.
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Keep Your Skin Hydrated

Another important part of tattoo aftercare is keeping your freshly tattooed skin hydrated. You’ll do this shortly after you wash your tattoo and throughout the day to ensure that your skin doesn’t dry out.

After washing your tattoo, gently pat it dry and give it between 10 to 15 minutes to breathe, calm any discomfort, and dry completely. Next, apply a thin layer of Aftershock Skin Care’s Body Balm. If the balm starts to run, you’ve used too much. If your skin isn’t shiny after application, you should apply more.

Don’t forget to carry your All-Natural Body Balm with you throughout the day. Reapply when you notice that your tattoo is drying out and no longer shiny.
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Relieve the Itch, But Don’t Pick

You’ll notice in the first couple of days after being tattooed that your skin begins to peel and scab. Your skin will also feel itchy during this shedding process. While applying your Body Balm helps, continuously touching your tattooed skin will irritate it.

Instead, Aftershock Skin Care has created a product that allows you to relieve the itch without scratching at or touching your tattoo. For this step in your tattoo aftercare instructions, keep a bottle of Hydrating Spray with Pro-Vitamin B5 on you at all times. The gentle spray hydrates your skin without irritating it, and the Pro-Vitamin B5 works to soothe any itching, irritation, and swelling to make the healing process more comfortable and go by more quickly.
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Things You May Notice

Throughout the healing process, you’ll notice the appearance of your skin changing from one day to the next. As we mentioned, your skin will peel and even scab. You may also notice that your tattoo is blurry. This is completely normal. When the deeper layers of your skin begin to heal, your tattoo will start to appear more crisp and defined.

You’ll also notice that your skin is tender and sensitive to light and touch. It’s important to keep your tattoo covered with loose clothing whenever you’re in direct sunlight. Your freshly tattooed skin will be tender and warm to the touch initially, but it shouldn’t stay this way. If you notice your skin is red, warm, and painful to the touch, you should contact your tattoo artist because you might have an infection.

Things to Avoid

Along with the “dos” of tattoo aftercare instructions, we thought it was important to include the “don’ts” so you can avoid irritating your skin, scarring, and even ruining your tattoo.


Use sunscreen on your tattoo until it’s completely healed.

Scratch or pick at any peeling skin or scabs on your tattoo.

Wear tight clothing that will rub against your skin.

Immerse your skin in water. This includes swimming and bathing.

Use the Best for Your Skin

When it comes to tattoo aftercare instructions, your tattoo artist will probably make some suggestions on what products you can or should use. If you’re looking for the best tattoo aftercare products that include natural, safe ingredients, you can purchase the Aftershock Value Box that includes our Foam Soap, Body Balm, and Hydrating Spray to keep your skin clean, protected, and moisturized for the duration of the healing process.

Aftershock Skin Care products were developed by medical and scientific professionals who wanted to offer their tattoo-clad loved ones with the best and latest in tattoo aftercare products. Experience tattoo aftercare products that not only heal your skin, but soothe and nurture it as well.
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