An important step in the tattooing process is the healing of the tattoo. To ensure that your tattoo heals properly looks vivid, and endures for years to come, proper aftercare is crucial. There are general recommendations and actions you can take to support optimal healing, even if the healing process may vary slightly from person to person. If you want to know how long does it take for a tattoo to heal, this write-up will clear your doubts.
Tattoo healing timeline
The size and complexity of the tattoo, where it is placed on the body, the person’s general health, and how well they adhere to the aftercare recommendations given by the tattoo artist can all affect how long it takes for a tattoo to heal. Below is the timeline of the healing of a tattoo-
Immediately after a few days
The tattoo artist will clean and bandage the area right away to shield it from bacteria and avoid infection. To promote appropriate recovery, it’s imperative to strictly adhere to the aftercare guidelines. The first few days are typically critical for tattoo healing since the body starts to develop a scab and provides protection during this time.
So how long does it take for a tattoo to heal after a few days? The tattooed area may feel painful, bloated, and red throughout the first week. Additionally, plasma, a transparent fluid that aids in the healing process, may leak from the tattoo. Follow the tattoo artist’s instructions for washing and applying an ointment or lotion to keep the tattoo clean and moisturized during this period. Avoid scratching the tattoo or picking at scabs.
Two to three weeks
Usually, the initial healing phase is finished in two to three weeks. The tattoo will now be visible beneath the healed scab, which will have peeled off by this time. The mending process is still not fully complete. Due to the creation of a fresh layer of skin, the tattoo may still seem a little dull, elevated, or bumpy.
After a month or two
If you want to find out how long it takes for a tattoo to heal, you must know that the tattoo will continue to settle and completely heal over the coming weeks to months. The skin will gradually resume its usual texture and look throughout this period. The tattoo must be shielded from direct sunlight as much as possible as UV rays can fade the colors and harm the skin.
How to be on the safer side
Now that you know how long it takes for a tattoo to heal, you should also know how to be safe. There are a few things that you need to follow to make the healing process safe. They are as follows-
Immediate Aftercare (Days 1-3)
Your tattoo will normally be covered with a sterile bandage or wrap right after it is completed. This initial layer guard against microorganisms and lowers the possibility of infection. Keep the bandage on usually for two to four hours. Once the bandage has been taken off, proceed as follows:
- Use antibacterial soap to give your hands a thorough wash.
- Remove the bandage gently, being careful not to tug or hurt the tattooed region.
- Use warm water to rinse the tattoo to get rid of any extra ink, blood, or plasma.
- Gently wash the tattoo with a tiny amount of fragrance-free, mild cleanser using your fingertips, being careful not to scrape too vigorously. Try to stay away from harsh soaps and exfoliating treatments.
- Rinse the tattoo once more with warm water, then dry it with a soft, clean cloth. You should never scratch or rub it.
People who are interested in knowing how long it take for a tattoo to heal should be aware of the fact that dryness can make the skin look bad. In order to avoid dryness, itching, and scabbing during the first few days of healing, you must moisturize your tattoo. To properly moisturize your tattoo, take the following actions:
- Apply a light coating of the gentle moisturizer or tattoo-specific ointment that your tattoo artist has prescribed. Use only products devoid of alcohol, lanolin, and petroleum.
- Using clean hands, gently massage the moisturizer into the tattooed region. Avoid pulling or exerting excessive pressure on the skin.
- To maintain the tattoo sufficiently moisturized, repeat this procedure two to three times daily, or as instructed by your tattoo artist.
The tattoo will begin to scab and peel at this time while it heals (Days 4–14). It is imperative to avoid the urge to pick or scrape at the scabs because doing so could result in scarring or a loss of color. To aid in the healing process, take the following actions:
- Keep using a mild cleanser without fragrance twice a day to gently wash your tattoo.
- After cleaning, blot the tattoo dry with a fresh towel and give it some time to air dry.
- To keep the tattoo moisturized, use a thin layer of tattoo-specific ointment or a mild moisturizer without fragrance. Avoid over-applying the product to avoid suffocating the tattoo and delaying healing.
- To speed up the healing process and reduce the danger of infection, stay out of the sun, hot tubs, and saunas.
Post-Healing Care (After Day 14)
Your tattoo may still look a little dull or fuzzy after the initial healing phase. This is typical and will get better with time. Take the following actions to keep your tattoo vibrant and long-lasting:
- Keep applying moisturizer to your tattoo on a regular basis. a mild moisturizer without scents or a tattoo-specific aftercare item.
- Whenever your tattoo will be exposed to the sun, use sunscreen with a high SPF to prevent persistent UV damage. While you are on finding out how long it take for a tattoo to heal, never forget to use sunscreen before going out in the sun.
- Refrain from using abrasive or irritating products on your tattoo, such as abrasive soaps, scrubs, or chemicals.