Hello I just stumbled across this website via Google and I figured there’s no harm in asking the internet. So I got my first tattoo last Saturday (Feb 18/2012). Everything was perfect for the first 2 days. I kept it clean and lightly moisturized. The 3rd night though it completely scabbed over. Not thick, but definitely scabs. I started worrying after this, as my artist told me to expect a “peeling” like a sunburn rather than scabs. I used a little less moisturizer to try and keep it from absorbing too much and making the scabs thicker. But after showering a few times the scabs started coming off (I have NOT been picking at them) and a few parts bled (blood) a little. I would say about half of the tattoo still has scabs and half doesn’t. It has been 7 whole days now which I know may not have been long enough for the tattoo to heal. So I guess what I’m trying to ask is how I should continue to care for my tattoo. I have still been cleaning it once daily with a little soap and warm water and using a VERY light layer of moisturizer 4-5 times a day, but I am very worried that more water/lotion = more scabs falling off early.

I added some pictures to show you what it looks like currently. Again this is after only 1 week. Some of the areas appear to be faded already but I’m not sure (could be the “silver-skin” stage?)

TL;DR – My main concerns are on the “aw” and “ak” where you can see the spots where it bled (looking a little yellowish).



If it were my tattoo I would STOP using any moisturizer as that will moisten the scab and have them fall off prematurely pulling out more of the color. The moisturizer is primarily used for your comfort your tattoo doesn’t really care if it gets it or not.
Good luck


Try and avoid wearing anything to tight around it that can rub and catch. What you are going through is quite normal. If there is a little bit that gets damaged it can be touched up. It will be more difficult to touch up a large area, so take it easy and you will be fine. Try and keep it dry (shower) and absolutely no baths.


sounds like you didnt over moisturize, if not that would lead us to believe it was just worked too hard for your sensitive skin,
I would second the motion to just leave it be for now, let it dry out completely, let all scabs fall off on their own and see where you are
Hopefully it is not too bad, most of the tattoo looks like it will be there,
give your skin a good long break, I recoomend longer than others (you usually only get one change to fix it) and wait 2 months before trying for a touch up, ask friends for a more light handed artist


scabbing is more than normal

try not to pick the scabs

Moisturizer no more than twice a day once in the morning once in the evening is fine

I have had tattoos heal in less than a week but on average takes me a full two weeks for it to heal

you’ll be fine – just don’t pick at it

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