How Long Does It Take a Tattoo to Fully Heal?

Tattoos can be healed over months. However, there are distinct stages of healing. The treatment recommended for your tattoo may differ between phases and could impact your recovery time.

  Once you decide to make tattoos, you’ll likely be excited to display them. However, it might take longer than you thought to heal fully.

The healing process is carried out in four phases, and the time needed for the injury to heal will vary based on the number of tattoos, the location of your body, and your routines.

This article will discuss the phases of healing, the length of time it takes, and the indications that indicate your tattoo isn’t getting the proper recovery.

How long will it take for the healing process of a tattoo?

After tattoos, the skin’s outer layer (the part you can see) will usually heal in two to three weeks. While it might look and feel like it has healed, and you might be tempted to cut back in the post-treatment, it can take up to six months to allow the area beneath the tattoo to heal completely.

The skin around larger tattoos takes longer to heal, and specific triggers, like picking at scabs or scabs not moisturizing, avoiding SPF, or applying a lotion that contains alcohol, can delay the healing process.

Stages of healing for tattoos

The general rule is that the phases of the healing process are divided into four distinct stages, and how you care for your tattoo may differ according to the stage.

Week 1

The initial stage begins on day one and ends around day 6. The newly-created tattoo is covered in bandages during the initial few hours, after which it’s considered an open wound. Your body will likely respond to the injury, and you might notice bleeding, redness, swelling, inflammation, or burning.

Week 2

At this point, it is possible to experience itchy or flaky skin. Itchy skin isn’t something to be worried about- it’s a natural reaction, and the ink is intact, even if it appears as if some of it is falling off.

Be careful not to scratch or pick at the scabs. A moisturizer suggested by an artist or a doctor will keep the skin around the tattoo moisturized and may help reduce itching.

Weeks 3 and 4

The tattoo might be drying out, and the itching will go away. If the swelling persists, this may indicate a damaged tattoo early. Your tattoo might look less vivid than you expected because an overcoat of dry skin has formed on top of it.

The skin will naturally exfoliate and reveal the vibrant tattoo. Avoid the temptation to scratch or pick at the tattoo to cause damage.

Months 2 to 6

Itching and redness should be reduced by now. The tattoo may appear healed entirely, but continuing the aftercare is advisable. A long-term treatment plan for tattoos includes drinking plenty of fluids, wearing SPF or sun-protective clothes, and keeping your tattoo spotless.

How can we speed up healing?

Everybody wants their tattoos to heal fast, but the truth is that, as with every wound, it requires time and attention. There are ways you can help speed your healing.

Cover tattoos that cover clothing.

The sun’s rays can cause your tattoo to fade the color of your tattoo, and new tattoos are more sensitive to sunlight. Cover the tattoo in loose clothing such as long sleeves or shorts when you’re in sunlight. Wait to apply sunscreen until your tattoo has completely healed.

Don’t bandage again after taking off the original dressing.

The tattoo must breathe, so when you’ve removed the original bandage — which will usually be covered with clear surgical wrap or plastic by the artist, it’s not recommended to wrap it in a protective cover. Wrapping it up can cause an increase in moisture and oxygen deficiency. This can result in scabbing and slow healing.

Clean daily

You should apply lukewarm, not too hot, as it could cause skin irritation and water Trusted Source that is sterile to wash your tattoo at a minimum of 2 to 3 times per day.

Before beginning you begin, ensure your hands are entirely cleansed with antibacterial soap. After that, you should splash water on the tattoo, then wash it off with alcohol-free and fragrance-free soap. Let the tattoo dry thoroughly, as well as gently dry the tattoo using the help of a clean towel.

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