Tattoos and itching. For some, an itchy tattoo is a nightmare, while others are not bothered by it. Why is your tattoo itchy? Read here why tattoos itch and what you can do about it.
In this blog about itching and tattoos:
Why do tattoos itch?
If your tattoo starts to itch, it means your tattoo is healing. Your tattoo heals just like a normal wound. First, the bleeding stops, and a scab develops. After about five days, your body is ready to repair your skin, and the itching nerves are activated.
Because nerve branches are created in the skin again, signals are sent to the brain. And that gives the feeling of itching. So itching is a good sign. Your tattoo is just healing.
So itching is entirely normal. That can only be intense for some and not so bad for others.
How long will your tattoo stay itchy?
How long your tattoo itches depends entirely on the healing process. The faster your tattoo heals, the less itching you experience. Usually, itching starts after five days and lasts about a week. You help your tattoo heal quickly with the correct aftercare and especially not to scratch it.
Not everyone suffers from itching, or rather from a lot of itching. Everybody heals differently, and not every new tattoo is the same. Read more about this in our article on how tattoo healing works.
Read more about: how to relieve an itchy tattoo
What else makes your tattoo itchy?
Besides the fact that your brain sends out itching signals that your new tattoo is healing, other causes can make you itch. For example:
- Your tattoo is too dry
- Scabs on your tattoo
- A tattoo that will peel off
- Hairs that grow back after tattooing
- An allergic reaction
Didn’t rub your tattoo enough
Never let your tattoo dry out! A tattoo that is too dry is not suitable for the healing process, but if you don’t take good care of it, it can also cause a lot of itching.
Your tattoo artist will not be happy with you if you let your tattoo dry out. Tattoos don’t get any better than that.
Using an aftercare cream regularly will help you take care of your tattoo. As a result, your tattoo will not itch.
Scabs on your tattoo
Scabs also cause itching in tattoos. That is why you must ensure you get as few scabs as possible.
All tattoos get a scab—one more than the other. There is a great deal of control you have over that.
How to take care of your tattoo?
You clean your tattoo regularly the first days after putting it on.
Make sure you let your tattoo’s blood, ink, and wound fluid dry as little as possible. This is what causes the ugly thick crusts.
If you regularly clean your tattoo with a soap that also takes good care of your skin, you prevent the exudate, blood, or ink that still comes from drying. Those are the crusts.
Example of light crusting
Your tattoo is going to peel off.
It will be no surprise that your tattoo will itch when it starts to peel. If your tattoo starts to peel, it can become quite itchy. Please stay away from it!
TIP! You also prevent as much crusting as possible by covering yourself with a self-adhesive tattoo foil for the first few days. The Tattoo foil from TattooMed is thin and can be left on for 3-5 days. If you leave the tattoo foil on long enough, you will hardly get any scabs, and your tattoo will immediately start to peel. Ideal!
Your hair grows back.
Before getting your tattoo done, your tattoo artist will usually shave the area they are going to tattoo. They naturally grow back after putting them on, which can also cause itching or, in some cases, cause a rash on bumps on your tattoo. Be calm; it will pass.
Allergic reaction to the ink or aftercare
Your skin may react to the ink or the chosen tattoo aftercare after tattooing. This can cause pimples, bumps, or itching on or around your tattoo.
An allergic reaction to the ink can also occur after getting your tattoo. This can be on all colors of ink, but often it is because of red tattoo ink.
You have to imagine it so that your body wants to defend itself with all its might against the intruder that is being pumped into the skin. This can manifest in redness, thickening, bumps, or, for example, itching on your tattoo.
The unique tattoo clinic in Amsterdam has all the experience with this. And also indicates that an allergy does not have to occur immediately but can occur even years later.
And the same reaction can arise from the tattoo aftercare you use. The immune system is unpredictable. It may even be that you have already had a few tattoos and used a specific tattoo ointment. And suddenly gets an allergic reaction to the last new tattoo.
Listen carefully to your body, and always contact your tattoo artist or doctor.
Now we come to the best part… the tips against itching on your tattoo. For some tattoo addicts itching is a drama. With the proper tattoo care, you soften the itching enormously.
Tips for itching your tattoo
What can you do about an itchy tattoo?
First, you must ensure your tattoo heals as quickly as possible. The first days are critical. Your tattoo will last longer if you take good care of it. The faster your tattoo heals.
If you suffer from crusting, then the most critical advice we can give you is: STAY AWAY FROM IT!
We know that’s easier said than done. But if you start scratching your scabs, you run the risk that your scabs will come off and your tattoo will bleed. Not only can this damage your tattoo, but you also risk igniting it if you sit on it with dirty nails.
So what can you do about itchy tattoos?
- You can put a clean cloth over it and then gently tap it. That may sound a bit weird, but it helps!
- An Ice pack on your tattoo helps a lot. Placing an Ice pack on a clean cloth also helps a lot against the itching of your tattoo.
- If your tattoo starts to peel, we recommend that you wash your tattoo regularly with the tattoo soap. Then choose a tattoo soap that does not dry out your skin. Let it foam very well, and then wash your tattoo. Then you remove quite a few sheets. Be careful, and don’t try to pull the sheets off with all your strength because you risk damaging the tattoo.
- Keep greasing your tattoo regularly, but don’t be tempted to apply it thickly if it itches!
- The most important tip we can give you is to stay away from your tattoo and think about it as little as possible.
- Try not to pick on your scabs or pull on your skins.
Can an old tattoo continue to itch?
The fact that you should not let your tattoo dry out does not only apply to new tattoos but also to tattoos you have had for a while. If your skin becomes too dry, it will itch. Lubricate your tattoo daily with a nourishing cream, which that against fading.