Why You Should Avoid Using Scented Lotions On A New Tattoo

There is something so exciting about seeing your first tattoo once it's complete. While it can be a pain to get, the worst part is over. According to Medical News Today, the healing process only takes four weeks and then you have an art piece on your body for the rest of your life. An important part of caring for your new tattoo is picking a great moisturizer and using it frequently. "During the healing process, you should moisturize your tattoo three to six times a day," tattoo artist Koral Ladna told Byrdie. "Keeping your tattoo hydrated during the initial days is especially critical. If your tattoo becomes too dry, the healing may actually take longer, and you may risk losing color saturation."


However, when you are moisturizing your tattoo, it's important to remember that your new ink is essentially an open wound. According to Makeup Muddle, it's best to use fragrance-free lotion to avoid irritation. Adding scented moisturizer can possibly do more damage than good. 

The dangers of scented lotion

While scented lotions are great, they are not the best options for people with fresh tattoos. According to Makeup Muddle, fragranced lotions tend to have drying ingredients like alcohol that can harm the skin barrier. Your skin after a tattoo is already dryer than normal, so the excessive dryness could cause deep scabbing and cracking, which can alter how your tattoo looks in the long run. A fragranced lotion also opens people up to an increased risk of infection and general discomfort when applied to the skin. 


This does not mean you have to throw out your favorite lotion. Instead, put it away for a few weeks. After the tattoo is completely healed, you can go back to wearing the products you like best. However, it's important to note that scented soaps are also off-limits for the time being. Scented soaps, like lotions, can cause infection and long-term damage that is never worth it.

The right products to look for

The right moisturizer will have your tattoo looking amazing for a long time. David C. Wallin, owner of Eight of Swords tattoo shop in Brooklyn, explained to Elle that thicker moisturizers are the best. Options like oils, petroleum, and waxes are said to be able to "trap in moisture and protect the tattoo while the skin is forming a seal over the wound. When the tattoo is close to finished healing (most tattoos take 10 to 14 days to heal), body lotion will allow the area to breathe while keeping it hydrated and supple."


After you apply the moisturizer, it's important to add sunscreen to your skincare routine. Even if you don't live in a super hot climate, Medical News Today encourages people to use SPF (which is something everyone should do anyway, tattoo or not) because the sunlight can fade the ink much faster than you want.