Okay, so we all know tattoos aren’t cheap. They’re not like that old DVD you picked up out of the $3 bargain bin at Wal-Mart—you’re going to want to care for them PROPERLY.
Most respectable artists will go over the aftercare procedure with you before you leave the shop. They’re even likely to give you an aftercare sheet with step by step directions on how to care for your new ink, complete with a do and don’t list, to take home with you in case you forget.
But, let’s get real. Most people are so excited about their kick ass tattoo that they don’t pay attention when the artist is giving them the run down. They’re too busy admiring their latest body art. Artists know this, which is why you get the take-home sheet. Think of it as a cheat sheet to help you pass the next stage of the tattoo process. But, of course, there are people who lose this or stuff it in a drawer never to look at it again.
This is how great tattoos turn bad.
Regardless of how amazing your artist is or how killer your piece is when you walk out of the shop, the end result of the tattoo process is on you. You are responsible for the caring and adequate healing of your tattoo. The artist doesn’t go home with you (unless you’re like me, in which case you live with your artist...and then you get constant reminders of aftercare). He or she won’t be there to tell you that you can or cannot do that activity or remind you every time your new ink needs washing.
So, as a quick reminder, here are five ways that you could potentially be ruining your new tattoo without even realizing it.