Procedure Type: TATTOO
Approximate Healing Time: Two to four (2-4) weeks or longer.
Supplies Needed: Fragrance Free and Dye Free Mild Soap(not DIAL brand) + mild skin lotion or ointment.
Keep your new tattoo bandaged for approximately two (2) hours. 12-48 hours if using a transparent film style bandage. Then carefully remove bandage and wash entire area with mild soap and cool water. Allow soap lather to sit on site for 2-3 minutes. Rinse then dry the area, once dry apply a thin layer of mild skin lotion/ointment as needed. Use only a very thin coating and continue to re-apply it two-four (2-4) times daily for at least three (3) days. Wash tattoo before applying new lotion/ointment. Do not re-bandage the tattoo, as it could stick to the bandage and damage or loss of color can occur.
Wash your hands often and before cleaning your tattoo. Avoid sunburn(wrap tattoo area loosely with a bandanna or similar fabric to protect it from the sun), salt or chlorine water, beaches or hot tubs until your tattoo is completely healed. In the event of mild scabs occur, do not pick at or attempt to “wash off” the scab. Allow it to heal by itself. You may apply a mild skin lotion to keep “flaking/peeling” to a minimum. If your tattoo is in a high movement area you may use a Sterile Non-Stick Bandage and medical tape to protect the tattoo during high risk times (workplaces, hospitals, etc). Avoid using products with high petroleum levels such as Vitamin A&D Ointment, Neosporin, Vaseline or ANY product not specifically designed to heal tattoos. Always clean and change your bedding daily. Do not wrap your tattoo with Saran Wrap or any other food preserving products.
Procedure Type: BODY PIERCING
Approximate Healing Times:
Lip/Labret: Two to three (2-3) months
Tongue: One to two (1-2) months
Nostril or eyebrow: Two to three (2-3) months
Ear cartilage: Two to four (2-4) months
Earlobe: Four to six (4-6) weeks
Dermals: Two to Three (2-3) Months
Genital: Varies from one to twelve (1-12) months
Other piercings: Up to six (6) months
Mild liquid fragrance free and dye free soap(not DIAL brand). For lip/labret or tongue piercings, an alcohol free mouthwash or salt solution (mix 1/8 teaspoon of non-iodized Sea salt with 8 ounces of warm water) is also needed. Do NOT use Alcohol or Hydrogen Peroxide or ointments to clean a piercing.
Wash your hands. Using warm water and a cotton swab, carefully remove any matter that may have dried on the jewelry and around the openings of the piercing.
Next, pour the cleansing agent on the jewelry and piercing, lather it up. Leave the cleaning agent in contact with the piercing approximately one (1) minute. Finally rinse the soap agent off very thoroughly under running water. Any cleaning agent left on the skin or in the piercing can cause irritations.
For lip/labret or tongue piercings, you should rinse your mouth with alcohol free mouthwash or a sea salt solution for 30-60 seconds. Continue the rinses at least four to six (4-6) times a day for six to eight (6-8) weeks.
Most piercings usually heal without difficulty, but problems arise from not following the “Aftercare Instructions” or becoming too rough, too soon with the piercing. Always wash your hands before touching the new piercing. Every night, remove any crusty/matter with cotton swabs and use a Sea salt solution to soak the piercing for ten (10) minutes. Make no oral contact with your new piercing without an appropriate barrier for at least three (3) months. The use of gloves for touching, condoms for intercourse, and the appropriate barriers for oral sex are highly recommended.
If you have any questions or concerns, contact the body art facility where your Tattoo/Piercing was performed. In addition, you should seek medical attention if the piercing site becomes infected or painful, or if you develop a fever shortly after being pierced/tattooed. Examples of signs/symptoms of infection may include: excessive or prolonged swelling, redness, or warming of the tattoo/piercing site; discharge from site becomes yellow/green or has a foul odor; red streaks from site; fever or swollen glands.
Disclosure Statement /Notice for Filing Complaints
Public Act 375, which was enacted in December of 2010, indicates that individuals shall not tattoo, brand, or perform body piercing on another individual unless the tattooing, branding, or body piercing occurs at a body art facility licensed by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. Body art facilities are required to be in compliance with the “Requirements for Body Art Facilities,” which provide guidelines for safe and sanitary body art administration.
As with any invasive procedure, body art may involve possible health risks. These risks may include, but are not limited to: transmissions of blood borne diseases such as HIV and viral hepatitis, skin disorders, skin infections, and allergic reactions.
In addition, persons with certain conditions including, but not limited to, diabetes, hemophilia or epilepsy, are at a higher risk for complications and should consult a physician before undergoing a body art procedure.
If you wish to file a complaint against a body art facility related to compliance with PA 375 or have concerns about potential health risks, please visit
Body Piercing Troubleshooting:
Have you ever gotten a piercing only to find a week later that a small bump has appeared right next to the piercing? More than likely you have a keloid! Don’t worry. We know all about those pesky little guys! Find out what they really are, what causes them and, of course, how to get rid of them right here.
What is a keloid?
Keloids are those little bumps that occur around the site of a piercing - usually on the entrance or exit of a piercing. Essentially this is a build up of scar tissue.
What’s the difference between a keloid and hypertrophic scar tissue?
Absolutely nothing. Keloid is the slang term more commonly used, while hypertrophic scar tissue is the more technical term.
Which piercings are prone to keloids?
Keloids can occur with any kind of piercing, they occur after an abrasion in the skin. But they are more common in some kinds of piercings. These include nostril piercings, cartilage piercings and industrial piercings.
What causes a keloid to form?
Each piercing has a healing period. During this healing period, there is a scab on the inside of the piercing. When healing a piercing you should always try your best to leave this scab intact in order for the piercing to heal properly.
If you do play with your piercing, consistently change out your jewelry and anything else that puts pressure on your healing piercing this scab will keep being torn over and over again. When repeatedly breaking down the scab, your body will start to form scar tissue which can continue to build up and bubble out of the top and bottom of the piercing. That’s what a keloid is!
How do I avoid keloids?
In the last question we spoke a little about how keloids form. It’s important not to consistently play with, twist or change a piercing in order to allow to piercing to properly heal. But that isn’t all there is to keloids.
They can also be brought on by using harsh cleansers like alcohol and hydrogen peroxide. These guys will eat away at the scab and lead to scar tissue eventually forming. Always stick to salt water soaks when healing a piercing only!
Trauma to the piercing site can also cause keloids. This goes along with constantly rotating the piercing. It only takes a couple times of getting your piercing caught on a towel or a piece of clothing to start forming a keloid. Don’t forget sleeping on a piercing can cause just as much trauma as well!
The angle of the piercing and a low grade of metal in your piercing jewelry can cause keloids.
How to get rid of a keloid?
Sea salt soaks!
We can’t suggest sea salt soaks enough. They’re the best solution for almost any piercing problem and are so important in general healing. Once you have this process down you won’t need anything else! Find out how to do a proper sea salt soak by clicking the link above.
Cautiously applying tea tree oil can be great for sucking the moisture out of the bump. Apply this to the bump and try to leave contact between the piercing and tea tree oil to a minimum.
Here’s how to do it:
Before bed, apply a thin layer of tea tree oil to the bump only. Sleep on it and by the time you wake up there should be a thin layer of skin left on top. Peal this off and re-apply immediately. Over time enough of these tiny layers should peel away to nothing!