Take the bandage off your tattoo about 4 to 6 hours after the procedure is finished. If you need to go to sleep leave the bandage on overnight. What you want to look for is the tattoo to look blurry and slimy. This is just your immune system working for you. If it doesn't look like that within 6 hours just take it off anyway. The slime doesn't always form on everyone. By leaving the bandage on for this long instead of taking it off right away it allows your pores to close up better, causes less seepage, keeps infection out, keeps moisture in, and promotes better healing.
Wash the tattoo with lukewarm water and a mild antibacterial soap with your fingers only. Do not use a washcloth, sponge, or paper towels. Nothing but your fingers! Wash it very gently, remember that it is an open wound so treat it as such. The initial wash is by far the most important. You should wash it for at least a half hour. Every wash after this will only take about 5 minutes. Make sure that when you're done it feels like normal skin. No slime, soap ,or blood is left. This is really crucial because that left over slime will more than likely turn into a scab. Sometimes you are not able to get all the slime, which is not ideal, but it is better to leave a little behind than to scrub it until it's raw.
After you're done washing it, pat it dry. Try to stay away from using toilet paper or cheap paper towels. They sometimes stick to your tattoo and you end up spending 10 minutes picking little pieces out of your tattoo. After you're done patting it dry, let it air dry for at least 10 minutes or until it's completely dry.
After it's all dry feel it with a clean hand and see if it feels "dry" or about "normal skin dry". If it feels a little dry, put some ointment on. Just enough to make it feel like normal skin, do not over lube it. If it doesn't feel dry don't do anything to it. Never put ointment on right after you wash it, if it's still wet this will trap the moisture in and waterlog your tattoo. Sometimes you won't even need to put any ointment on for the first day or so. You can put a number of different ointments on, such as; A&D ointment, non-scented lotion, and specially formulated tattoo ointments. The specially formulated tattoo ointments usually work the best, that's what they are made for. They are usually more expensive than the other two, but it's well worth it to ensure a proper heal. A&D works well but it's very thick and very easy to over do it. Non-scented lotions work well but they will sting a tattoo the first few days and you will have to apply it more often.
You will want to wash your tattoo and lube it(if needed) about 3 or 4 times a day for about two weeks or until all the peel is gone. You may need to wash it more often if your tattoo is seeping or you see red around the tattoo and it's very sore. The redness is the start of an infection. Continue moistening it for about a month after it's healed. Tattoos will look a little dull for a while until all the dead skin has come off. Some areas which are very dry can take a few months to brighten up again.
If you get a tattoo in a place where your clothes will rub, just wear looser clothing. Especially for hip tattoos and feet. No tight jeans and no shoes, flip-flops are ok. If you get a tattoo in a place where it moves a lot, just try not to move it too much. This will work the ink out. In places like wrists, hands, and elbows this happens a lot and are prone to touch-ups. Baths, swimming, long showers, excessive sweating, and such are all out for at least three weeks. These will all soak your tattoo causing your ink to fall out. The sun is definitely out. Ideally 3 months, but if you must go in the sun wear a high SPF sunblock. Absolutely no sun for the first month. The longer you stay out of the sun the longer your tattoo will look new for. Remember that your body will naturally heal itself. Give it a little help but don't mess with it too much. You can overcare for a tattoo. If anything happens in the healing process and it needs a touch-up, just remember that they are always free and we're more than happy to do them. We guarantee our work and your satisfaction. Thank you for choosing Heaven or Hell Tattoos & Body Piercings.