How Long Does It Take For A Tattoo To Heal?

It is quite difficult to estimate the exact time or how long a tattoo will take to heal. Fortunately, there are various ways that can help to facilitate faster healing of the tattoo.

In the article, we have outlined various methods that will help to shorten the healing time of the tattoo. We have also outlined how long does it take for a tattoo to heal and other factors that determine the healing process.

I have once been in your shoe and I know a lot of questions will bombard your mind at this time especially if you have a brand new tattoo.

How Long Does It Take For a Tattoo To Heal?

Healing tattoos usually take about two to three weeks and during this time you are not allowed to take a long bath or take long in a hot tub. Swimming is also prohibited during the healing process.

The aftercare routine will also determine the healing time for your brand new tattoo. Therefore, you are expected to maintain a high level of hygiene around the tattooed skin until it is completely healed.

However, complete healing of tattoo usually takes about four months and after this period you can resume your normal routine of relaxing the hot tub for long.

Between the period of two to three weeks, the tattoo will appear completely heal although it will have a light shiny and scaly outlook.

The general appearance between 2 to 3 weeks usually indicates that it is progressively showing positive healing process and in case there are no infections then healing will take short time.

The skin below the tattoo usually takes longer to heal as compared to other parts. This is the reason why it takes four months to completely get healed.

Note: Taking another tattoo on the same spot of the skin can be very painful and it is the reason why it is recommended to let enough time to elapse before redoing.

How long does a tattoo take to heal? Well, it is a very tricky question to answer but it is good to say the truth. There are several factors that define the healing process of tattoos.

Our genetic composition differs and so is the healing process. Every person has unique skin properties and the immune system also is different.

All these properties are the main determinant of the healing process of the tattoo. There are other variables that determine to heal and it is the reason why it is difficult to pinpoint the exact answer.

You can continue reading the post in order to discover some of the tips and methods that can help to boost the healing process of the tattoos.

How to Reduce Tattoo Healing Times

The tattoo healing process is defined by many factors. These factors determine the period at which the tattoo will be completely healed.

You can take the following determinants into consideration and get an opportunity to shorten the healing process of your tattoos.


Different type of infections can cause a delay in the healing process of your tattoos. Therefore, you are supposed to ensure the tattooed area remain in good condition free from infections.

In case of any symptoms of infections, you should visit your dermatologists for immediate medical care in order to avoid further complications.

Aftercare Routine

Good aftercare routine usually shorten the healing period of tattoos. Therefore, you can apply petroleum ointment in order to suffocate the tattoo.

Apply a thin layer of the ointment-based jelly so as to reduce the healing time. Allows ensuring the tattoo is always covered in order to prevent entry of germs but not for long hours.

Working Out and Physical Jobs

Brand new tattoos do not require an individual to undertake vigorous activities or go to the gym. You will be required to wait for a couple of days before resuming your normal work out routines.

Vigorous activities and frequent work out usually lower the immune system when it is overdone. This is the reason why you will experience delay the healing process.

Cover your tattoo in case the place of work has a lot of dust and dirt. This will minimize the chances of infection. Always clean your tattoo after work thoroughly.

Friction from the clothes while weight lighting and cardio exercise are likely to also cause a delay in the healing process of the tattoos. Therefore, watch out when getting involved in this activity.

Whether Tattoo Needs a Touchup

Although the rare, healing process of tattoo can go worse to some extent. This would be due to infection, allergic reaction to the tattoo ink and even due to the poor immune system.

These factors are likely to result in the possibility of going for touchup in the tattoo studio. It will be so painful but it will help to foster faster healing.

You should watch out from any symptoms of infections or delayed healing then consult your dermatologists to check any form of complication.

The Color of the Tattoo

Generally, colored tattoos usually take longer to heal due to the components found in the tattoo ink. Most of these tattoo colored ink contains a small number of metals that causes a delay in the healing process of fresh tattoos.

However, there are some group of people who react to the content of the ink differently. The ink may result in an allergic reaction causing swellings around the tattoo hence increasing healing time.

The reaction may also prompt touchup of the tattoo and this process will also distract the healing process. In the long run, also increases the healing time.

Note: Avoid using red ink for a tattoo since it has some adverse effect as compared to B & G colors. This is because it contains a large number of metals that slows down the healing process.

Health and Immune System

Tattoos have become very popular in recent days but you should note that they usually result in an open wound. The trauma on the skin can take a long period of time before healing.

Just like any other wound on the skin, the tattoo will undergo several stages of the healing process. When you are mentally and physically relaxed, the healing will take a short period of time.

You will be expected to increase intake of fruits and vegetables in order to improve the immune system. When the body is endowed with required vitamins, it helps to boost the healing process.

My favorite multivitamin is Nature’s Way Alive and it provides the body with the required amount of multivitamin that will boost the healing process.

It is advisable not to undertake a tattoo when you are currently sick since the immune system is usually low. This may make the healing time for the brand new tattoo to take long.

Therefore, you will be expected to postpone the appointment until your health status is improved. Never, shall you go for a tattoo in case you have a serious or chronic health condition.

Location of Tattoo and Skin Rubbing

Avoid direct contact of your tattoo with clothing since the rubbing may distract the healing process of your tattoo.

Tattoos located around the inner thighs, underarms, and fingers are susceptible to rubbing. These parts of the body are naturally prone to skin rubbing.

I am not insinuating that you walk like a duck simply because you have a tattoo on the inner thigh but it is to prepare you psychologically that it will take longer to heal.

Tattoos around the joints are a nuisance since they take longer to heal. It happens this way because the regions are in a constant movement throughout. This makes it hard for the region to scab and grow new skin.

Prematurely Pulling of Scabs and Skin

Picking tattoos scabs is not recommended during the healing process. The skin peeling habit may lengthen the healing process of the tattoos.

Heavy scabs usually imply that the tattoo is not yet healing and pulling the scabs prematurely will cause the ink to draw out causing a lot of pain.

When the ink is drawn out, it will increase the possibility of touchup and afterward increase the healing time.

Note: Having large scabs covering a bigger area around the tattoo is not normal. You should consider consulting a dermatologist.

The healing stages of a tattoo are usually uncomfortable and it is usually accompanied with slight itching that is normal.

You can read my guide on how to stop tattoo itching in case the itching sensation has become more extreme.

Applying Aftercare Products

Reputable and recommended aftercare lotions can help to speed up the healing process of new tattoos on any part of the body.

It is advisable to apply a thin layer and avoid overdoing. Apply the lotion about 2 to 3 days after washing the region thoroughly.

A thin layer of the lotion gives the tattoo an opportunity to breathe and heal faster. Thick layer results in delay healing and it can cause the tattoo to bubble up.

Submerge the Tattoo in Water

This is the worst thing you can do to a new tattoo. During the initial weeks, you should not submerge the new tattoo is water.

Avoid the area with a tattoo to come into direct contact with hot water from the shower while taking bath since it can also worsen the state.

You can read my post how to clean tattoo like a pro in order to minimize the chance of increasing the healing time of a new tattoo.

You will also be expected to pause a swimming routine and taking long in the hot tub for some couples of days. This is the only way to foster the faster healing process of your tattoos.

Going Out in the Sun

Basking out in the sun is a much killer condition on a new tattoo. If you have fresh tattoos, try to stay away from the sun or fire since they are known to worsen the condition.

Tattooed skin highly sensitive to UV rays and direct exposure would increase the healing time. You should try as much as possible to avoid direct sun for a couple of days.

Trust me, severe sunburn on new tattoos is a worse experience. This may also increase the healing process.

Wrap Up

How long does it take for a tattoo to heal? This is a tough question indeed to answer. I hope this post has created good insight for you.

Here are some healing checklist for new tattoos:

  • Every person heal differently
  • Tattoos will appear healed between 2 to 3 weeks
  • The skin below the tattoo takes about four months to heal completely
  • Avoid swimming and relaxing in a hot tub with new tattoos
  • Restrain from the habit of picking scabs
  • Seek medical condition in case of infection
  • Apply petroleum-based ointments
  • Infections will cause a delay in the healing process
  • Check your immune system and general health before going for tattoos
  • Colored tattoos take long to heal and red ink being the worse