OK. So you've just finished an awesome piece of work and are ready to collect payment and send your customer on their merry way. But first you must complete the final step of the process which is to bandage the tattoo. Tattooing is a painful art form as it causes some bleeding and swelling in the part of skin that is tattooed. Although the end product is a very beautiful piece of art some precautions need to be taken to protect your customer and the tattoo itself. Bandaging a tattoo is the last step of the tattoo making process.
The main aim of bandaging a tattoo is to protect the clothes from getting stained with blood or ink from the freshly complete tattoo. The other intention is to protect the area of skin from possible bacterial and other infectious agents in the surrounding. Although a fresh tattoo should get as much fresh air as possible but you do not want to risk the vulnerable part of your skin.
There are two types of bandages used by tattoo artists to cover a fresh tattoo. One is a paper towel bandage or gauze bandage and the other is the non-stick plastic bandage. Different tattoo artists prefer using one or the other of these two bandage types. A tattoo is like a fresh wound into your skin. So it needs to be covered to remain protected from the infection causing microorganisms in the surrounding as well as it needs to heal simultaneously.
This article primarily talks about how to bandage a tattoo after it is complete. The main thing that needs to be understood that when you bandage a tattoo after it is complete, one cannot leave the bandage on the skin for too long. As the healing and blood clotting process progresses, the clot tends to stick firmly to anything it gets in contact with, be it cloth or a bandage.
So whether you are using a gauze bandage or a non-stick plastic bandage, one has to be cautious enough to place the bandage on the area of the skin having the tattoo. Now once placed, the person who has received the tattoo needs to stay with the bandage on their skin until the bleeding from the tattoo area has stopped. Once the tattoo stops bleeding carefully remove the bandage.
The drawback of using a gauze bandage is that you might lose some skin tissue when removing it. There are certain advantages of using a non-stick plastic bandage, like first you can see the tattoo without touching it. The plastic is non-porous so the blood that comes out of the tattoo will remain inside and away from your clothes. Lastly, the size of the standard non-stick plastic bandage is large enough to cover any size tattoo area. But this bandage seems to trap the body heat that can lead to excessive sweating beneath the bandage. A generalized time for keeping a bandage wrapped on the tattoo is of 2 hours as mostly all people stop oozing blood from their tattoo within that much time.
Once the bandage has been removed it will take a couple of weeks for the tattoo to completely heal. Using a coating of ointment such as non-scented lotion will keep the skin from drying and itching, and will also help the healing process of the tattoo so that is does not scar.
For someone who is getting their first tattoo or who does not know how to care for one, it is important for them to understand that they should not go in a pool or stay submerged in water for several weeks until the tattoo is completely healed. Allowing the skin to stay in water too long could ruin the tattoo and also cause the ink to leak from the skin. After getting a new tattoo, the person can shower and clean the area, but should refrain from long exposures to water while the tattoo is healing.
Another important tip for someone with a new tattoo is not to scratch the tattoo. The spot of the tattoo can get very itchy, especially when the healing process starts, and the urge to scratch the tattoo to stop the itching can be strong. Scratching the skin that has been tattooed before it is healed can cause scabs and bleeding and can also remove the fresh ink. It is best to resist scratching the area, but if the itching gets out of control a better alternative to scratching would be to slap the area of skin and that will often provide much needed relief.