Inside: Tattoo Scabbing Info + Tips.

Getting a new tattoo can be exciting, but it can easily lead to tears if the design scabs over. The process is made of three parts.

First, you get tattooed, allow it to heal for a few weeks and then admire the artwork. Tattoo scabbing is imminent if the first two steps are not done properly.

But not all scabs are the same.

Tattoo Scabbing Definition

What Normal Tattoo Scabbing Looks Like

Here’s the thing  – tattoos shouldn’t scab at all. Most people use the term interchangeably with skin flaking, which is part of the healing process. Scabs are protective tissue that covers damaged skin. If you have ever skinned your knees or hands, you should be familiar with it.

The hard, protective crust does a great job of shielding you from bacteria, but if it forms on a tattoo, that means the artist was careless and caused skin injuries.

Well-made tattoos always flake when they are healing. This happens 4 to 5 days after a session and is a good sign that the tattoo is healing nicely. The dead skin should shed on its own to make room for new skin that can form a shield around the fresh tattoo.

If you pick at that skin and don’t moisturize it, scabs will form, leaving a permanent scar behind. A healthy tattoo can also scab over if it comes in contact with chlorinated pool water, salty sea water or harsh sunlight.

What to Expect In the First Few Days after a New Tattoo

A couple of days after getting a tattoo, you will see some oozing plasma on the surface of the design. This will harden into scabs till the top layer of the skin is closed up completely. At this point, aftercare shouldn’t be ignored. Clean the area regularly to prevent bacteria from getting into the exposed skin.

Signs of a tattoo scab infection

Without proper aftercare, your tattoo can get infected. Here are the top signs you should look out for:

  • Red lesions around or in the tattooed area.
  • Swelling of the tattooed area.
  • High fever.
  • Hot or cold flashes.
  • Pus oozing from the tattooed area for several days.
  • Raised or hardened skin.

If you notice these symptoms, first talk to the tattoo artist. They will tell you what you can do and how to proceed. Chances are, you may need some medical attention.

These are uncommon issues that can be corrected with proper medical aid and by ensuring you remain vigilant with aftercare.

Tips for Tattoo Scabbing

What You Should Avoid If Your Tattoo Scabs Over

To ensure your tattoos heal nicely and flake rather than scab over, follow these tips:

Do Not Pick At Them!

If the scabs start to peel, do not try to pull them off! Allow it to shed on its own even if it is hanging loose. Otherwise, you may get a new scab underneath. Pulling may also pull out ink that has settled around it, thus ruining the design.

Avoid contact with water

A fresh tattoo should be kept clean and dry. No matter how clean the water is, your sensitive and exposed skin can soak up too much of it. This can create a prime breeding ground for bacteria, which can lead to an infection or make a scab or flaking skin fall off prematurely. Keep antiseptic wipes on you always, so you don’t have to use water to clean and disinfect the area.

Do Not Scratch the Scab

As your skin heals, the area around the scab will get itchy. That is normal but resist the urge to take your nails to it. Scratching can break the healing skin leading to more scabs. Germs from your fingernails can also get into your bloodstream leading to infection or diseases.

Tattoo Scabbing

Best Tattoo Ideas for Newbies

‘Think Positive’ Tattoos – If you are ready to start a new life or have just gotten over a traumatic event, remind yourself to make good choices with these ‘Think Positive’ tattoo ideas.

Zodiac Tattoos – You cannot go wrong with a star sign tattoo. Get big ones that cover your whole back or teensy ones that encircle an ankle or finger. Here are some great Zodiac tattoo ideas you can try.

Tattoo scabbing can be avoided with the tips mentioned above, but if it occurs, don’t worry. Follow the prescribed treatment your doctor gives, so it heals up, and make sure you choose an experienced tattoo artist next time.

More Tips for Taking Care of Your Tattoo

  • Single Needle Tattoo – In the mood for an old school style of tattooing? Well, these fine line tattoos or otherwise known as single needle tattoos, are cool and will give you a vintage look. Only using a single needle allows the tattoo artist to be detailed and can provide dainty works of art. Pretty sure you are going to enjoy these single needle tattoo design ideas!
  • Tattoo Peeling Tips – Tattoo peeling is one of the least fun parts about getting a new tattoo. Don’t worry though, it is a natural part of the healing process and will not have a negative effect on your tattoo long term. While uncomfortable and at times a bit alarming, peeling is no big deal. Read our expert advice on what to do with tattoo peel.
  • Pop Art Tattoo Definition – Pop art tattoos are bold, bright, fierce, and a blast to look at. There is no shortage of creativity in this list of awesome pop art tattoo designs. You’ll find lots of reds, blues, and yellow hues in these designs. So if you want your next tattoo to stand out, consider any one of these creative pop art tattoos.