When you come to the MachineSoul studio for your preliminary meeting, we will give you detailed instructions on what to do and what not to do before and after getting a tattoo. On this page, we will just briefly describe what to pay attention to before getting tattooed and explain the proper skincare afterwards.
Before You Get a Tattoo
If you are sick or tired – or both – wait until you fully recover.
Do not take medications like Ibuprofen, Aspirin, blood thinners, etc.
Get good sleep and eat. It would be good if you brought water and some snacks with you, in case you get hungry.
If you are pregnant, wait until you’re not. If you are breastfeeding, wait until it’s over.
Do not put any creams on your skin. It is enough just to show up clean.
If you suffer from any medical condition, do not forget to tell your tattooist about it BEFORE getting a tattoo.
If you are a blood donor, you should know that after getting a tattoo, you won’t be allowed to donate blood for a year. This is a little known fact, but that’s the general rule everywhere in the civilized world.
Bring your personal ID document with you.
If you’re underage, bring a parent.
Do not take alcohol and/or drugs.
Do not expose your skin to sun before tattooing.
If you have had laser treatments of your skin, you will have to wait at least a month before you get a tattoo.
Ask all the questions you can think of. Even better, make a list of questions you want to ask.
Caring for Your New Tattoo
When the tattoo process is finished, we will apply some antibiotic cream on the tattoo. We will then put a sterile bandage over your tattoo. Even though you will probably be very impatient, do not touch the bandage for half an hour. After that time, gently soak the compress with cold water (it doesn’t have to be freezing cold. Just don’t wash the tattoo with hot water). Do not pull the bandage. It will probably stick to your skin a little, but do not pull it. Add more water and take it off carefully. Do not leave the bandage for too long, because it can result in irritation or rash. Wash your tattoo with pH neutral non-perfumed, alcohol-free antibacterial soap, but do not overdo it! It is enough to wash the tattoo once a day. During this period, water is not your best friend. Do not rub the tattoo. Dry it with gentle tapping, using a clean paper towel. Do not take long baths. It is best not to lie in your bathtub – during the first two weeks take quick showers instead. When taking a shower, do not point the shower directly towards the tattooed skin. Set the shower to low pressure mode.
Don’t put any creams on the tattoo during the first 48 hours**. That is the time needed for the scab to form. When it forms, (48 hours after getting a tattoo) use Pantenol cream. Do not put the cream on the surrounding skin, but only on the tattooed part. Don’t put a thick layer of cream on the tattoo!
*** How to put cream on the tattoo
If your tattoo is small and/or non-filled/non-colored, you can start applying cream 48 hours after getting a tattoo. If your tattoo is big and colored/filled with pigment, wait 72 hours before you start applying cream.
Wash the tattoo once a day, with warm but not hot water and antibacterial soap that does not contain alcohol and perfumes. Washing should be short.
When you dry the tattoo, put some Pantenol cream and then take a clean paper towel, press it against the tattoo to pick up the excessive cream. Do this once or twice a day (to prevent it from drying out). You must not put a thick layer of cream on the tattoo.
Right after getting a tattoo, you might start feeling like you have mild fever. This is normal and it will go away in short time. If it becomes severe, contact your doctor immediately. Although such cases are extremely rare, it shouldn’t go without mentioning.
Do not try to remove the lymph layer off the tattoo. Wear clean cotton clothes to prevent skin irritation. Depending on which part of your body has been tattooed, wear clothes that do not interact with your skin too much. Avoid tight clothes and do not put any materials over the tattoo, especially not plastic wrap.
When the scab starts falling off, it will seem as if the tattoo is “wearing off”. Do not touch anything! Let the scab fall off on its own. When this process is over, keep using Pantenol cream, and after some time, you can start using some body milk that you normally use to nourish your skin. Do not expose your skin to direct sun and do not use tanning beds for at least two months. Even if you’re in shade, use sunblock. During the first month, don’t shave or wax the tattooed spot.
Keep in mind that different people have different skin types. Some skin types are simply less sensitive than others. If you follow the instructions we give you, there shouldn’t be any problems. Even if you see mild redness or swelling of the tattooed skin, do not worry – it will subside on its own. Still, if the skin irritation develops, come to our studio, just in case. In case of more serious skin irritation, we will give you further instructions, but that doesn’t mean we can replace your dermatologist.
You should come back a month after the tattooing. After that time, it will be clear whether the tattoo needs to be touched up or not. If you properly care for your tattoo, that won’t be necessary. So far, there have been very few cases when a tattoo needed a touch up. However, even if that happens, it will be just a minor correction that we do not charge for if it’s done at the regular one month check-up.
And just one more thing: do not forget that after you leave any tattoo studio, you will be responsible for your body and your tattoo. That is why it is very important to stick to the aftercare instructions. In the meantime, if there is anything else you want to know, call us and ask all the questions you have. Remember, we’re with you every step of the way during the tattoo process and we will help you heal properly. You will get all the details on this when you come to the preliminary meeting.