Tattoo Aftercare Instructions

Josh Arment: Hey, I'm Josh Arment. Thank you for coming to The Aloha Monkey and getting your tattoo. I appreciate it. I might not be the person that tattooed you, but I'd just like to give you my two cents on how to take care of your tattoo. Attached to this email is going to be a PDF. It's going to spell it out all for you, but what I'm going to provide you right now is a little bit more in depth.

So basically your band is just going to come off in like three to four hours. You're going to take it off. You're going to wash it real good with soap and hot water. When you wash it, I just want you to use a skin to skin contact. I don't want you to use a wash cloth, no sponges, nothing abrasive, but just good skin to skin contact and don't feel like you have to ginger around with it. You can actually push on it and get the lymph off. The lymph is the white blood cells that are trying to create a scab. We don't want scabs here. Scabs equal bad healing tattoos.

So, you use the hot water. It's going to sting, It's going to be like sunburn. Soap; the soap, I would say, like a antibacterial soap, like a Dial, a Palmolive, some kind of dish soap is a really good soap. I like to use liquid soaps. So, you're going to wash it real good with soap and hot water. Press on it and then you're going to blot it dry. Something with a clean towel or paper towel, not something you've used in your house all week. You get a nice fresh hand towel out or a paper towel. You're going to blot it dry. You don't want to scrub it again; no abrasive contact with the tattoo.

Then what I want you to do is put a thin coat of Aquaphor or A&D ointment on it. Now what that's going to do, and when I say thin, I mean super thin, like you don't want to look like John Candy at the beach with a bunch of sunblock on the top. You want to have it rubbed into the skin. We're looking for a matte finish, not a gloss finish.

So when you rub that into the tattoo, I want you to make sure that it doesn't have a reflective nature or any kind of sheen to it. It's got to be worked into the skin and then what I would like you to do is, if you're going to be wearing clothing around this thing or sleeping on this thing, I personally, this won't be in the PDF, but I personally like to see somebody wash it, put the Aquaphor or the A&D on it, and then put Saran Wrap on it.

Now the Saran Wrap is kind of a situation that keeps it from sticking to your sheets, keeps it from sticking to your articles of clothing. You know, you're a business person, you're trying to go into the work the next day. So what I recommend is having a nice layer of Saran Wrap over that tattoo and just ignore it while you're at work. When you get home from work, then you're going to take the Saran Wrap off. You know, you've got like your evening time, you want to take the Saran Wrap off, wash it immediately with soap and hot water, and then just let it air dry throughout the evening. Maybe you're washing it like every two hours as you start to see it sweat almost like an upper eyebrow or like your upper lip sweats during exercise, when you see it to start sweat like that, I want you to wash it again; soap and hot water. That's the lymph coming to the top and that's what we don't want. We don't want the scab.

So you're going to kind of monitor it that way throughout the evening and then right before bed, you're going to wash it one last time with soap and hot water. Again, skin to skin contact, and then you're going to wrap it in Saran Wrap.

Now here's the deal about the Saran Wrap. If you just wrap it in Saran Wrap, you're creating a bacterial situation. It's like a hot bed for infection. You don't want that. What you do want is to wash it and then put the Saran Wrap on it. Then you're creating a clean environment where it's not going to stick to your clothing. It's not going to stick to your sheets. Another thing just to know about tattoos is that you don't want to touch something and then touch the tattoo. Most people are like trying to pull lint off of it. No, your hand is touched. Your belt is touched, your jeans, that's bacteria. You don't want to have that happen. So the only contact you make with it, touching the tattoo, is when you're washing it.

So in the morning, when you get up in the morning, after the Saran Wrap evening, you take the Saran Wrap off, you immediately wash it. It's going to have a bunch of ink in there. You're not losing your tattoo. It's going to be fine. The ink is just the excess that's coming out of you and let it go; like wash it off. It's going to look like a black mess, but wash that off. When you're washing it, the hot water opens the pores, so you don't want to use cold water. If it does feel swollen, it's around an elbow or something, you might ice it over the Saran Wrap, but you don't want to just make contact with it with any cold nature substance at all; no water, no ice, no nothing. Everything that you touch it with should be hot because that's going to open the pores up and create the ability to let it release.

After about three days of that, washing, Saran Wrap, washing, Saran Wrap, then you can just have your tattoo out and air-dry. Now most people are going to tell you to use like a Lubriderm substance or some kind of lotion. I personally don't believe in toxic lotions. I would use a coconut oil. Coconut oil is amazing because it's antibacterial and it absorbs into the skin. Most lotions sit on the surface of the skin and so I want you to use the coconut oil because it's going to go into your skin. It's going to draw the ink inward. You can use coconut oil through the duration of the tattoo, through two weeks of it, and it'll just be the the number one lubricant that you use.

We thank you again for coming to The Aloha Monkey. We hope you enjoyed your tattoo experience and we look forward to seeing you again. Thanks.