Second Skin Method
At the time of your appointment your artist will place a piece of second skin on your tattoo. In many cases it is necessary to change the second skin bandage within 24-48 hours. We will let you know if your tattoo may require this at your appointment and give you enough to change at home. Second Skin products can be purchased at many pharmacies and most medical supply stores. We offer bandage changes in studio; cost varies based on size of rewrap.
Fluid build up under the dressing is normal and to be expected, it will not damage your tattoo. If you notice air bubbles do not pop or try to remove. Some tattoos will weep more than others based on varying factors.
If you develop a reaction contact your artist. You may need to remove the film to prevent further irritation and continue the remainder of your heal with the manual method. It is normal for healing tattoos to have redness, swelling, minor irritation and itching as the healing progresses. Removing film will not reduce these symptoms. An ice pack used in short intervals or applying pressure may relieve discomfort.
Avoid hot showers, extended exposure to heat from clothing or exercise. Heat may weaken the adhesive and cause premature lifting, as well as, a potential heat rash if continually affected.
Removing Second Skin
To remove your second skin it can be helpful to loosen adhesive with a steamy shower. Ensure your hands are washed before removing dressing. When removing hold your skin taught and pull back small areas at a time. Once removed, use lukewarm water to rinse your tattoo and lather with soap. Wash and rinse your tattoo 2 - 3 times in order to remove all residue. Allow to air dry completely or pat dry with paper towel. Do not use a towel or cloth.
Re-applying Second Skin
With clean hands or gloves, ensure area is completely soap free and dry. Do not apply lotion or ointment. Apply second skin bandage by removing white backing, once applied you can remove the clear backing. If using multiple pieces overlap by at least 1-2cm and that you haven't missed any areas of the tattoo.
After Second Skin
If you find your tattoo is sticky it may have some adhesive left on it. Gently massage coconut oil onto affected area and allow to sit 5-10 minutes before washing again. Repeat if necessary. Do not use this step if you are applying another dressing.
If you are not re-applying second skin and take it off sooner than 4 days check out our manual aftercare method on how to complete your healing process.
At this point your tattoo is either beginning to peel or it already has during the second skin removal. It shouldn't have any scabs or be weeping any more. You will only need to wash twice per day and apply light amounts of moisturizer as it becomes itchy. The flaky ink coloured skin will come off during each wash; remember not to pick. Your skin will appear tight and shiny. Your tattoo may appear to be healed on the outside but its still vulnerable to damage for the first 6 weeks.
Sunlight, chlorine and saltwater can still negatively affect your tattoo PERMANENTLY for the first 6-8 weeks before your skin undergoes a full regeneration cycle in order to effectively protect your tattoo. Saline is a form of tattoo removal by osmosis and in extreme cases your tattoo could be significantly altered.
After your tattoo is finished peeling you are able to apply sunscreen for prolonged exposure to sunlight. Refer to our recommended aftercare products for more information.
Contact your artist via email with any questions.
Pay careful attention to the edges; if you notice edges lifting that have NOT exposed the tattoo you can carefully trim the edges with sharp clean scissors. You may also do this to alleviate tension on the edge of the film that may present as redness only on the edge of the bandage in high mobility areas.
If your tattoo becomes exposed or would require to be drained best practice is to completely change the dressing (not recommended after 48 hours) or remove all together and continue with manual aftercare method.