How Do I Look After a New Tattoo?

You’ve just got a new tattoo at Skins and Needles… now what?  

We get it, it’s pretty daunting to heal a new tattoo, especially if you’re healing your first tattoo.  

Our ultimate aftercare guide is here to make sure you have all of the knowledge you need to look after your new artwork, keep on reading to find out more!  


How Do I Wash/Clean A New Tattoo?

After your appointment, your artist will wrap your tattoo in cling film, this should be left on 2-3 hours at a maximum. You might notice blood/ink coming from the tattoo, this is totally normal and nothing to worry about!  


You will need the following to clean your tattoo:

  • Kitchen roll
  • Fragrance-free mild antibacterial soap
  • Palmers Fragrance Free Cocoa Butter or Butterluxe


Here’s a step-by-step guide to washing a new tattoo:

  • Wash your hands with fragrance-free mild antibacterial soap and hot water
  • Remove the dressing/cling film carefully and dispose of it into a bin (dressing must always be fresh and never reused) and wash your hands again
  • Wash the tattoo thoroughly with the fragrance-free mild antibacterial soap and lukewarm water, only wash your tattoo with your hands and never with sponges or other cleaning materials as these can hold bacteria
  • Pat dry using a clean kitchen roll


What Products Should I Put on a New Tattoo?

After you’ve cleaned your new tattoo, we’d recommend applying a thin layer of your selected aftercare (we only recommend Butterluxe or Palmers Fragrance Free Cocoa Butter). If you can no longer see the tattoo clearly, then too much product has been applied and this needs to be wiped off using clean kitchen roll only.

You should repeat this entire process 2-3 times a day for 2-3 weeks throughout the healing process.  


The Do’s and Do Not’s of a New Tattoo

Having a new tattoo can be pretty daunting, so we’ve made a simple list of everything you need to know!  


  • Protect your tattoo with a cover if you’re working in a dirty/greasy/dusty environment, but preferably this does need to be left to breathe so taking a few days off work would be best!
  • Wear loose clothing on the necessary area whilst healing, we recommend cotton clothing during this time as it is breathable
  • Allow your tattoo to be fully healed (typically 2-3 weeks) before getting tattooed again in that area
  • Keep your tattoo out of the sun until it is healed (no sunbathing or sunbeds)
  • Apply suncream to healed tattoos to prevent them from fading


Do Not

  • Pick or scratch your tattoo whilst it’s healing
  • Allow anyone to touch your tattoo
  • Touch your tattoo with dirty hands
  • Go in swimming pools, in the sea or apply products such as fake tan
  • Use sunbeds for up to 2 months after getting tattooed to prevent fading

All of our tattoo procedures are done with sterile and disposable equipment where possible. All needles and/or cartridges do not get removed from packaging until we begin the tattoo so you can witness that these needles are fresh and new. We are licensed with our local council as a collective, but also each artist has been registered on a one-on-one basis with environmental health to ensure all procedures are done safely and correctly (this includes our residents, as well as international guest artists).  

Freelance artists may provide other advice regarding your tattoo, your tattoo may also require specialist aftercare, please see them personally regarding an enquiries.  

Thinking of your next tattoo or even thinking about coming in for a FREE consultation? CLICK HERE to get in touch with us!

The Skins & Needles Team

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