As a precaution, be sure not to drink alcohol or take aspirin before you get your tattoo, as they can act like blood thinners which may cause more bleeding during the process.3
Also, take note of any pus. If it’s clear, everything is good. On the other hand, green and yellow pus indicate infection, which means you’ll need to see a doctor.3
The most common way an infection can occur is if you don’t take proper care of the tattoo. Aside from not keeping the tattooed skin clean, other risks for infection include using an uncertified tattoo artist, unsterilized equipment, and bacteria in the air.
Do expose the tattoo to fresh air. Don't allow your clothes to rub against it. If your tattoo appears infected, consult a doctor as soon as you can.6
This can all sound tedious. But once you get into the routine, caring for your tattoo becomes natural and isn’t bothersome at all. So be sure to do your research! Find a tattoo parlor that is clean, and that also makes you feel comfortable.
Ink is forever, so it makes sense that it takes some effort.
Reviewed November 14, 2016
by Michele Blacksberg RN
Edited by Jody Smith
1) 9 Essential Tips for Tattoo Aftercare. Inked. Retrieved November 10, 2016.
2) How to Care for a Tattoo. Ink Done Right. Retrieved November 10, 2016.
3) Behind the Ink: Common tattoo beliefs debunked. Retrieved November 10, 2016.
4) Is Tattoo scabbing Normal? What NOT to Do When Your Tattoo Scabs. Authority Tattoo. Retrieved November 10, 2016.
5) The Very Best Tattoo Sunscreen Products. Ink Done Right. Retrieved November 10, 2016.
6) Tattoo Infection. MDDK. Retrieved November 11, 2016.