The Consequences of Poor Tattoo Aftercare


A brand-new tattoo may look precisely how you want it to—but it won’t stay that way if you neglect to care for it. Even with the help of the best tattoo artists in Buffalo, part of proper tattoo aftercare is moisturizing, moisturizing, and moisturizing. A tattoo is essentially an open wound. After your session, the skin will attempt to rejuvenate and recover—a process that you can speed up with the right regimen.

What Happens to a Dry-Healing Tattoo?

Some tattoo enthusiasts will argue that moisturizing your tattoo can trap bacteria in the surrounding area and choose to dry-heal instead. However, dry-healing can cause:

  • Itching: If you aren’t moisturizing your tattoo, your skin is more likely to dehydrate and dry out, making it extremely itchy. Refrain from scratching or picking at the area—this will only cause scarring and impact the appearance of your design. Not to mention, your fingernails are often rife with bacteria that you risk transferring to your fresh piece.
  • Tight scabs: Failing to moisturize your tattoo can cause it to crack and form painful scabs. The longer you leave them to flake, the worse your ink fades or falls. Scabs can potentially distort how your piece looks over time.
  • Bacterial infections: When it comes to ink, the most commonly associated infections are staphylococcus and streptococcus. To prevent them from occurring, use a balm moisturizer as recommended by your doctor or artist. If you’re experiencing a fever, rashes, purulent drainage, or pain, consult with your healthcare provider immediately.

How to Practice Proper Tattoo Aftercare

Contrary to popular belief, the lengthiest part of a tattoo session is picking a design. After that, achieving the perfect piece is entirely up to how dedicated you are to your aftercare routine.

Always pay attention to your artist’s advice. Anyway, they’re the experts. After completing your piece, they’ll wrap your ink in a bandage or clear wrap, which you can remove in 24 hours. Then, wash the area with mild antibacterial soap, making sure to do so twice a day to avoid infection.

When out and about, keep a high-factor sunscreen handy. Overexposing your piece to the sun can cause the design to fade or dry out. To preserve the look, cover up your piece as much as possible within the first month.

Some artists will recommend a particular tattoo cream or balm. Others will leave you with a little bit more wiggle room. Depending on your ink’s size and placement, you can opt for a cream, lotion, or ointment.

If you’re using an ointment, apply them in small quantities to prevent your tattoo from peeling prematurely. Always purchase unscented lotions and creams for sensitive skin. If possible, pick out something organic—you don’t want any added chemicals altering the look of your tattoo.


Beyond preventing skin irritations and nasty infections, moisturizing your tattoo keeps it vibrant and bold for years. Don’t jeopardize your piece’s quality by doing without a care regimen—always ask your artist for aftercare advice.

At Lucky Deville Tattoo Co, quality is never an issue. Our award-winning artists are Buffalo’s best—you’ll walk out of our tattoo shop looking as fly as ever.