Getting a new tattoo is pretty exciting, but equally worrisome if you have some doubts and questions about the actual tattoo aftercare. Now, chances are your tattoo artists have explained pretty much everything, but if you missed some information, you’re at the right place. In the following paragraphs we’ll discuss the most common questions of them all; how long should I leave Saniderm on my new tattoo?
It may seem like a trivial question that almost every tattoo enthusiast knows the answer to, but being properly educated on the correct aftercare routine is essential for the overall healing process. So, we’ve decided to provide you with the answer and insight into the Saniderm journey, so make sure to keep reading! Let’s get right into it!
How Long Should I Leave On My New Tattoo?
What Is Saniderm?
Before we get into the main topic of this article, we find it highly important that people actually learn about Saniderm and what it does.
So, Saniderm is a tattoo bandage designed to protect a new tattoo, also referred to as an open wound, until it starts to close and heal. The open wound stage of a tattoo is the most critical one and requires the most aftercare and attention.
You may have noticed that your tattoo is still bleeding and oozing blood, plasma, and even excess ink in the first 24h to 48h. This is a normal occurrence that is a part of the initial healing stages. Under normal circumstances, your tattoo will stop oozing and bleeding in the first day or two, it will start to dry out, close, create scabs, and eventually heal fully.
However, without any initial protection, a new tattoo, which is an open wound, can get infected pretty easily. Without any protection, the ‘wound’ is exposed to different kinds of germs, irritants, dirt, pet dander, and friction. However, by using a Saniderm bandage, the tattoo is protected from the potential germ buildup and infection. The bandage traps essential healing and ensures no water comes through, but because it is breathable and permeable, allows the oxygen to dry out the tattoo and ensures proper healing.
How Does It Work?
As we mentioned, the Saniderm bandage works in such a way that protects the tattoo from external infection-inducing particles but allows the tattoo to heal. Because the bandage is breathable and permeable, the tattoo starts to dry out and go through its initial healing stage with minimized infection potential.
Saniderm works by locking the tattoo in its natural environment, and your body’s own, natural healing fluids. Because of this, the bandage actually helps minimize any potential scabbing and scarring in the following days of healing, which could mess up the tattoo design otherwise. And, of course, the most important notion about this bandage is that it allows oxygen to enter the restricted tattoo area, which is essential for the tattoo to heal perfectly.
It also prevents you from wetting the tattoo while showering or sweating, which could otherwise introduce unwanted germs to the tattoo and cause an infection. While using Saniderm, there is no need for the use of antibacterial ointments and different products (which shouldn’t be applied to a new tattoo in the first place).
Also Read: Saniderm Ruined My Tattoo: What Should I Do?
So, How Long Should I leave It On?
According to the Saniderm’s website instructions, here’s everything you need to know about leaving the bandage on your new tattoo;
- After applying the first Saniderm bandage, you should leave it on your new tattoo anywhere between 8 and 24 hours. This is generally when your tattoo will stop oozing and bleeding, and start healing. Everyone’s healing time is different, which means that the so-called weeping stage of the tattoo will vary in duration.
- You should definitely remove your Saniderm bandage when the adhesion of the bandage starts to weaken. This is a bad sign, which means dirt, germs, water, and all the other infection-causing particles can enter the tattoo area and potentially cause an infection – if the adhesion is weakened, your tattoo is no longer protected.
- You should remove or change your Saniderm bandage if you notice your tattoo bleeds or oozes more than expected (regardless of the time the bandage has been on). This generally occurs in tattoos with colorwork and heavy saturation, since there’s more damage to the skin and more excess ink the tattoo is getting rid of in the first few hours.
- Regardless of the fluid buildup, you should NOT leave your Saniderm bandage on for more than 24 hours. After the first 24 hours, you need to clean the tattooed area, and only can you actually replace the bandage, using a new one obviously.
- It is recommended to apply s thin layer of aftercare product or moisturizer between the bandages just to keep the tattoo hydrated and moisturized. This is especially recommended to people living in low humidity climates, or those who have dry skin. Now, we are not sure about this Saniderm recommendation, since it is generally recommended not to apply any ointment onto a new tattoo, so make sure to consult your tattoo artist about this one.
- Now, the second bandage can be worn for up to 6 days, according to Saniderm instructions. They still recommend you change the bandage if you notice a tattoo leaking. In that case, you should clean the tattoo again, and apply a third bandage. Make sure to leave the third bandage on for approximately 5 days.
- Saniderm bandage should not be worn for more than 7 days total, according to Saniderm website instructions.
- Once you’ve removed your final Saniderm bandage, make sure to clean the tattoo area using lukewarm water and antibacterial soap. Then, tap-dry it using a clean paper towel and leave it to air-dry as well. At this point, you should be fine using thin layers of tattoo lotions to keep the tattoo hydrated. But, do NOT overdo the moisturization, since you can cause moisture buildup, prolonged healing, and infection of the tattoo.
Post-Saniderm Tattoo Care
So, you’ve removed your final Saniderm bandage and cleaned/dried your tattoo. Now what? Well, your post-Saniderm tattoo care should be the regular tattoo aftercare routine. You should regularly clean your tattoo as well as moisturize it.
It is essential not to overdo the cleaning and moisturizing, because extra moisture can prolong the healing process and make your tattoo more susceptible to inflammation and infection. Once or twice a day should be enough to clean and moisturize your tattoo. Here are some other tips and recommendations for a proper tattoo aftercare routine;
- First of all, you have to be patient with your tattoo; it might take the tattoo anywhere between 4 and 8 weeks to fully heal.
- Do NOT touch, pick, scratch, or peel your tattoo, otherwise, you might introduce bacteria and cause an infection as well as scarring and design issues.
- Do NOT submerge your new tattoo underwater and avoid swimming until the tattoo is fully healed; exposure to water can cause moisture buildup, and prolong the healing process, which can make the tattoo a perfect place for bacteria buildup and infection development.
- Make sure to wear loose-fitting, cotton clothes while your tattoo is healing. It is best to avoid covering the tattooed area overall, but that depends on the location of the tattoo. So, if the tattoo is somewhere that requires covering, make sure you’re wearing your loosest clothes possible. This way you’ll avoid friction, potential sticking of the fabric, and potential exposure to bacteria and germs.
- While your tattoo is healing, do NOT expose it to the sun; this includes sunbathing and tanning as well. Your tattooed skin is highly sensitive, so exposing it to the sun can cause further irritation, prolonged healing, and other issues. Once healed, make sure to always apply sunscreen, a minimum of 30 SPF, to protect the tattoo from fading.
- It is strongly advised not to drink alcohol or take antibiotics while your tattoo is healing. This could compromise the tattoo healing process since both dilute blood and make it harder for the tattoo to close and heal. When it comes to both alcohol and antibiotics, it is also recommended not to take them prior to the tattooing as well. You should not drink alcohol at least for a few days before the tattoo appointment, and you should not take antibiotics at least 30 days before and after the appointment.
The Saniderm bandage is one of the best options for tattoo protection. In its initial stage, the tattoo is an open wound and is most susceptible to inflammation and infection. As such, it requires significant protection, which the Saniderm bandage provides. However, in order for the tattoo to heal, it needs to dry out and close, which the bandage allows fully. So, if you were wondering what Saniderm does and how it helps your tattoo heal, now you know. For more information check the Saniderm official website or talk to your tattoo artist.