• Your new tattoo is going to be tender in the first few days, much like a sunburn, and then it will flake and peel.
  • Swelling is normal and should go down significantly within the first two to three days. 
    • Depending on the location and complexity of the work, swelling may take up to five days to resolve completely.
  • As your tattoo heals it will become itchy but DO NOT pick or scratch!  Instead you can pat lightly and apply lotion, rubbing it in completely.
    • You risk loss of ink and scarring if you pick or scratch your healing tattoo.

what to watch out for

  • Remove bandage after two (2) hours; wash with warm water and gentle soap.
    • Do not use a washcloth, just use your bare, clean hands. A washcloth is too rough.
  • Massage lotion into the skin five (5) times a day.  Rub it in completely until there are no white streaks.
    • We recommend Curel or Lubriderm lotion for sensitive skin, low alcohol content is key.
  • Absolutely NO SOAKING, SUNNING, OR SWIMMING for at least ten (10) days.
    • Showers are fine, just nothing where you are soaking your new tattoo. 
  • For the first three (3) nights, cover the tattoo with Saran Wrap (clear plastic wrap).
    • Saran Wrap doesn't stick to you, so it will protect you from sticking to your sheets or pillowcases and traumatizing your tattoo.
    • It will be goopy, gross, and nasty looking when you wake up, DON'T freak out!  That is the plasma and sweat, stained by excess ink that would have stuck you to the sheets. 
  • Try not to wear any clothing that will irritate the tattoo while healing.
    • Pay attention to hems on sleeves or pant/short legs as well as bra straps. 
  • Redness that extends outside the tattoo area for more than a couple of days after your appointment, continues to expand further, or goes away and then comes back.
  • Redness and swelling that is hot to the touch.
  • Bleeding, oozing, or colored discharge that continues past the second or third day.
  • Extreme hard scabbing that can’t be resolved with hot compresses.​

if trouble arises

reasons for concern

  • Absolutely NO drugs or alcohol prior to your appointment.
  • Make sure you eat a good meal and stay hydrated prior to and during your session.  Water is available at the shop, but it is key to stay hydrated prior to your appointment.
  • ​​​Known health issues can be disclosed on the customer information sheet.  This allows the artist to take additional precautions if necessary, rest assured personal information is always kept confidential.
  • Proper care is taken to sanitize all workstations and equipment before and after every tattoo session.  Safety and cleanliness are of utmost importance for our artists and our customers.  Special care is given to ensure a sanitary environment is maintained at all times.
  • Following the tattoo session, you will be advised on how to care for your new tattoo to ensure proper healing.  Aftercare products are available for sale to ease the healing process and preserve the quality of the artwork provided.

what to expect


  • You have an open abrasion, avoid introducing bacteria into your healing process by being cognizant of pet dander; clean clothing, sheets, and towels; dust; grease; oil; perfumes; scented lotions; etc. 
  • Excessive sweating can significantly dry out your new tattoo, so keep it clean and moisturize as instructed.
  • Constant friction or rubbing against your clothing can cause irritation, delay healing, and encourage scarring.
  • Over moisturizing can attract dirt and debris, creating an environment for bacteria growth and prevents the skin from breathing, discouraging your body’s natural healing process.
  • Exfoliating soap or creams, Loofahs, will create irreparable damage the tattoo, skin, and create scarring.
  • The first step is ALWAYS CALL YOUR ARTIST, 480.599.0584, or stop by the shop to speak to another artist.
  • We are not medical professionals, but as a result of our combined 50 years experience in the tattoo industry, we do have simple procedures we can share in the event of a"hard heal", and industry products we can recommend.
  • Reactions, allergies, and infection are very rare, but do occur.  When in doubt, call, e-mail, or message, your tattoo artist.
    • ​Your artist may ask you to send pics or stop by the shop to see how you are healing. 
    • Tattoo artists are not medical professionals, but they are happy answer questions or make recommendations to help you facilitate a positive healing experience!
  • CAUTION:  Call your artist before taking advice from family, friends, neighbors, or the internet! 
    • ​Common skin remedies can be counterproductive when healing tattoos.  Well-meaning friends and family may offer advice that will compromise your new artwork, for example:
      • Neosporin or similar antibiotic ointments are designed to remove impurities from the skin.  This is great for minor scrapes and cuts but will potentially fade your tattoo or create spots of missing color.
      • Vaseline is a petroleum jelly barrier that prevents the skin from breathing and potentially trapping bacteria against your new tattoo, discouraging the natural healing process, which may cause your tattoo to heal poorly and push out ink.
      • Alcohol excessively dries the skin and enflames the abrasion; hydrogen peroxide dries, enflames and bleaches out the ink. 

Preparing for your tattoo