Tattoo blowouts, while not super common with advancements in tattooing practices and equipment, can occur to any tattoo design. A blowout is the result of the tattoo ink spreading beyond the lines of the design, often creating a distorted image.


How does a tattoo blowout happen?

Before we jump in, it’s important to first understand the anatomy of our skin. Human skin has three layers: a top layer, the epidermis; a second layer, the dermis; and a bottom layer, the hypodermis. When tattooing, in order to encourage the ink to remain permanently on your body, the ink should be pressed into the middle layer, the dermis.


So what causes a tattoo to blowout?

Tattoo blowouts, for the most part, occur when the tattoo artist penetrates their needle too deep into the skin that it spreads into the bottom layer, the hypodermis. As the hypodermis layer is made of fat tissue, the ink spreads out easier, creating those unwanted blurred lines in your design. Tattoo blowouts tend to appear a few days after the tattooing session as the ink seeps through the wound, becoming fully noticeable in a matter of weeks.


Other factors in tattoo blowout

Your tattoo artist’s level of expertise is the main reason for a tattoo blowout. However, other factors can impact the delicate process of tattooing. If you get uncomfortable during your appointment and move excessively throughout the tattooing process, the needle has more chances to deviate and create ink blowouts. Another cause of a tattoo blowout could be the general thinness of your skin, or the particular thinness of the location you chose for your tattoo. Skin density, or a lack there of, makes it tricky for the artist to push the needle into the right layer of the skin. As such, it’s usually in the tighter areas of your skin where a blowout is more likely to occur. In addition, not taking good care of your tattoo in the healing process can encourage a tattoo blowout. Not following aftercare cleaning recommendations or stretching, scratching, and pulling your skin will promote infections and the risk of spreading your tattoo’s ink beyond its lines.


Can you fix a tattoo blowout

It can be quite jarring to realize your new design is headed towards a blowout, however, there’s always a solution. Before thinking about doing anything to fix the blowout, your skin needs to heal first. Healing a tattoo blowout is the same as healing a regular tattoo. You will need to follow the steps advised by your tattoo artist, and you can check out our aftercare tips to help encourage a quick and efficient recovery for your skin. Once your skin is all healed, two options lay in front of you to fix the tattoo blowout. You could cover the ink blowout with a tattoo cover up. But beware that if a serious blowout occurred, this option means not only changing your original tattoo design, but also its size and color. Another option is laser correction, which removes excess ink coming from the blowout by sending energy beams into all layers of the skin. This is the most efficient option to fix the blowout and leave you with the closest version of your original tattoo. However, laser correction is costly and can takes several sessions to completely correct the blowout.


How to prevent tattoo blowout

Do your research before choosing a tattoo artist! This is the most important preventative measure you can take to reduce your chance of a tattoo blowout. Look for reviews on the artist and check the studio’s reputation. Tattoo studios combining technical expertise and hygiene are a must to avoid poor needlework and any risk of infection, both factors causing ink blowouts. Choose your tattoo location wisely. If you are worried about tattoo blowouts, avoid areas where the skin is particularly thin – such as the wrist or the top of your foot. And go for a tattoo location with thicker skin – like the upper thighs or the calves. Finally, be sure to continue a thorough aftercare routine. By keeping the area clean and protected against infections and possible stretching, you can avoid unwanted ink spreads. In that matter, our antibacterial Remedy Cream can help you make sure your tattoos are nourished from day one!