What to use for tattoo aftercare?

If you're the type to get dry skin easily, you've probably experienced the wonders of petroleum jelly. Also known as petrolatum, it's become a trusty item for many situations. Whether it's for moisturising skin, healing scrapes and burns, or soothing your chapped lips, it definitely helps to have it in your bag of everyday essentials.

But does this convenience apply to taking care of your tattoos? Many people in the tattoo industry will tell you that questions like “Is petrolatum safe for tattoos?” or “Is petroleum what I should use for tattoo aftercare?” come about more every day. However, the answer is no.

Petrolatum is definitely bad news for tattoos. You absolutely should not be using petrolatum as a tattoo aftercare solution. Here's why.


Why is petrolatum bad for tattoos?

As we said earlier, petroleum jelly is good for moisturising your skin and your lips. This is because it traps the moisture into the skin, which is good if you're experiencing extreme dryness especially due to the weather.

The reason it's bad news for tattos, though, is because those same properties actually prevent your tattoo from healing properly by blocking air exposure. Because your tattoo is essentially an open wound, it needs dryness and air in order to heal the way a wound would. Besides that, it might also trap bacteria and germs in, causing tattoo infections and the nasty signs that come along with it like swelling and pus. These infections can ruin your new tattoo and even be detrimental to your health if left untreated.

Lastly, the American Academy of Dermatology states that petroleum-based products can cause the ink to fade. After all the pain and hard work you had to endure to get that beautiful new piece, surely you're not too keen on it just fading from something as simple as petroleum jelly, would you?

You can still use it once your tattoo has healed completely, and only on the dry skin around the piece. But if you're asking if petrolatum is safe for tattoos, the answer is a clear and resounding NO.

What to use for tattoo aftercare

So now that petroleum's a no-go, you're probably wondering what to use for your tattoo's aftercare regimen. A good product can do wonders to your tattoo aftercare routine, allowing your piece to heal properly without much fuss.

We recommend using a safe remedy cream to apply to the tattooed area once you've moved past having to keep it wrapped. An effective cream will allow your tattoo to breathe and heal. Once it starts to flake, that same product should help in softening the flakes so they can fall off naturally. And even after it heals, continuing to use the cream will help the tattoo settle on your skin, making your piece look its best for all to see.

So the next time you're getting a new tattoo, try out safer alternatives to petroleum like the Ink Nurse remedy cream so your tattoo can heal in no time and come out looking its best to show off to your mates.