1. After 3 hours, gently remove the bandage and wash with warm water and mild soap. DO NOT REBANDAGE.
2. Apply a thin layer of A&D ointment 3 times a day for the next 2 days. After 2 days, use an unscented, dye-free lotion ( Eucerin, Curel, Aquaphor, Ink Protector or Tattoo Goo) until skin returns to its pre-tattoo condition.
3. Stay out of direct sunlight and tanning booths until tattoo is healed; at least 14 days.
4. Do not soak tattoo in tub, sauna, Jacuzzi,or go swimming while your new tattoo is healing; you may shower.
5. Do not rub or pick the treated area while it is healing; loss of color and/or infection could occur.
6. Extreme sun exposure over the years can and will fade your tattoo; this can be minimized by using a string sunscreen, at least SPF25.
7. Your tattoo could take up to 2 months to heal completely.
What is normal?
-Initially some bleeding, localized swelling, tenderness and bruising.
'-During healing: Some discoloration, itching, secretion of a whitish-yellow fluid(not pus) that will form crust on the jewelry.
-Once healed: The jewelry may not move freely in the piercing; DO NOT force it. If you fail to include cleaning your piercing as part of your daily hygiene routine, normal but smelly bodily secretions may accumulate.
-A piercing may seem healed before healing is complete; this is because piercings heal from the outside in and although it feels healed, the tissue remains fragile on the inside. BE PATIENT, and keep cleaning throughout the entire healing period.
What to do
-Wash your hands prior to touching the piercing; leave it alone except when cleaning. It is not necesary to rotate your jewelry while healing except possibly during cleaning.
-Make sure that your jewelry and skin is free from any discharge before you attempt to move the jewelry. Irritation can occur when crusty matter is accidentally forced into the piercing.
-Make sure your bedding is kept clean and changed regularly. Wear clean, comfortable, breathable clothing that protects your piercing while sleeping.
-Showering is safer than taking a bath, because bath tubs tend to harbor bacteria. If you would like to take a bath, clean the tub well before each use.
Use either one or all of the following solutions for cleaning body piercings:
H2Ocean: The combination of sea salt and lysozyme in H2Ocean creates the optimal solution to reduce the healing time and help eliminate adverse issues that commonly arise when dealing with a new piercing.
-Packaged sterile saline solution with no additives(read the label) or non-iodized sea salt mixture: Dissolve 1/8- 1/4 teaspoon of non-iodized(iodine-free) sea salt into one cup (8oz) of warm distilled or bottled water. A stronger mixture is NOT better! Saline solution that is too strong can irritate the piercing.
-Liquid anti-microbial or germicidal soap.
What to avoid
-Avoid undue trauma such as friction from clothing, excessive motion of the area, playing with the jewelry and vigorous cleaning. These activities can cause the formation of unsightly and uncomfortable scar tissue, migration, prolonged healing and other complications.
-Avoid the use of alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, Betadine, Hibiclens or ointment.
-Avoid all oral contact, rough play, and contact with other's bodily fluids on or near your piercing during healing.
-Avoid stress and recreational drug use including excessive caffeine, nicotine and alcohol.
-Avoid submerging the piercing in bodies of water such as lakes, pools, Jacuzzis, etc. . Or, if these situations cannot be avoided, protect your piercing using a special water-proof bandage such as Tegaderm, which is available at drug stores.
-Avoid all beauty and personal care products on or around the piercing including cosmetics, lotions, sprays, etc.
-Don't hang charms or any other object from your jewelry until the piercing is fully healed.
Hints and Tips for Jewelry
-Unless there is a problem with the size, style, or material of the initial jewelry, leave it in place for the entire healing period. A qualified piercer should perform any necessary jewelry change that occurs during healing.
-Contact your piercer if your jewelry must be temporarily removed (such as for a medical procedure). There are non-metallic jewelry alternatives.
-Leave jewelry in at all times. Even old, well healed piercings can shrink and close in minutes after having been there for years! If removed, re-insertion can be difficult or impossible.
-With clean hands or paper product, be sure to regularly check the threaded ends on your jewelry for tightness. (Righty-tighty, lefty loosey).
-Should you decide you no longer want the piercing, seek professional help in the removal of the jewelry and continue cleaning the piercing until the hole closes. In most cases only a small indentation will remain.