Top tips for healthy tattooed skin

Healthy skin is vital to keeping your tattoos looking fresh for longer. Following these top tips will assist in skin health before, during healing and long after your tattoos have been completed. As the largest organ of the body it is primarily responsible for acting as a barrier against mechanical impacts, pressure, temperature, micro-organisms, radiation and chemicals. The skin also retains moisture and expels waste which needs to remain in good working order for a healthy body.

  1. Sun protection. Make sure you wear sunscreen everyday, even if it’s cloudy. Using an SPF no higher than *30 to keep your skin safe from harmful UVA and UVB rays. If you can remain in the shade this would be much better for your skin, and always wear protective clothing in bright sun.

*There are two types of sun protection, chemical and physical. Factor 50 is always chemical and up to factor 30 can be physical. Chemical sun block is absorbed into the skin, reaching into deeper layers and can actually affect your cells functioning normally. Physical block means it sits on the top layer of the skin physically blocking the sun. This is a much safer option to use long term and will protect both your skin and your tattoos from harmful UV and premature fade.

2. No smoking. Smoking causes wrinkles and sagging skin. It decreases the flow of blood making your skin look washed out and pale. It reduces the access of oxygen and nutrients to the skin cells, damaging collagen and elastin which, gives skin strength and elasticity. Premature age spots can develop giving uneven skin tone. Smokers have a greater risk of developing psoriasis. Because of the way smoking can restrict blood flow and oxygen movement, healing tends to be significantly slower in those who smoke compared to those who don’t. Scars can also be more pronounced, increasing the chances of developing stretch marks.

3. Be kind to yourself. Daily cleansing and shaving can be harsh to the skin. It is recommended to limit bath time as heat and continuous water submersion removes natural oils, preferably a warm bath rather than hot. Avoid strong scented soaps as these also strip natural oils, instead use a mild cleanser. Always pat the skin dry rather than scrub with your towel.

4. Eat healthily. The best skin foods contain essential fatty acids such as nuts and avocado, avoiding processed foods and refined carbohydrates. Eating plenty of vitamins such as vitamin A, C and E are excellent at maintaining skin health. Vitamin C can help regenerate skin cells from sun damage. Drink at least eight cups of water per day to flush everything through.

5. Manage stress. Stress can really take its toll on your skin, so finding ways to avoid stressful situations can do wonders. Being stressed can aggravate skin issues already present and cause a flare up of conditions such as psoriasis, rosacea and eczema. Pampering yourself can give your mental health a boost in the right direction.

6. Sleep well. Getting a good nights sleep gives your body the chance to regenerate and repair itself. Sleep deprivation can affect wound healing as well as collagen growth and skin hydration. Sleep induces the production of collagen so without it is when you start to see dark circles and a pallid complexion. It is important to remove all your make up when sleeping as it can block pores and cause breakouts.

7. Know your skin type. This can help you know what products you need for your skin and your tattoos. Read our handy guide to skin type and discover which care is best for you.

8. Moisturise day and night. Avoid heavy fragranced creams and lotions, it must be gentle enough to use everyday and not cause blocked pores. A higher SPF is recommended for during the day.

9. Central heating. Avoid being too close to heaters, radiators and spending a lot of time in central heated areas as this can cause dryness, itching, inflammation and collagen breakdown.

10. Exfoliate. Skin cells renew at a fast rate so exfoliating regularly keeps dead cells from clogging the skin and causing difficulties. Use ph neutral products so your skin doesn’t dry out during exfoliation. Make sure you use a natural exfoliate which isn’t too rough.

Implementing a daily skincare routine is beneficial for keeping your skin in good condition and avoiding problematic developments. Maintaining healthy skin means beautifully healing tattoos which look their best for longer. Tattoos need specific care all of their own as different areas of the body need particular nutrients depending on the varied skin types. If you need help finding the right tattoo care for your skin type, read our handy guide (link) or contact our specialist team to assist you on info@four-tattoo.care

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