Tattoos are an investment, that becomes part of our unique identity, representing part of we are. Our inked body art becomes a storyboard; a visual reminder of different chapters in our lives. And neglecting our skin increases the fading of these storyboard memories, and become a wasted investment.
"Tattoos are only as healthy as the skin they are on."
There are many things you can do to help prevent tattoo fading. But first, let me share something important with you. Did you know that your tattoo ink does not actually fade? That is correct. The tattoo ink is deep within the dermis layer of your skin and remains bright and bold.
However, as we age, the outer skin layer (epidermis) slowly breaks down after being exposed to the elements. And when this happens, our tattoos start to look faded and washed out.
Too many people take it for granted that their cherished tattoos will look good forever. However, this could not be further from the truth. You need to treat our skin to maintain the boldness and vibrancy of our tattoos as we age.
There’s no doubt, that faded tattoos lose their appeal, especially the washed-out ones that look like they were done with a crayon or a sharpie marker. For some people, their faded tattoos were so embarrassing, that they chose such drastic measures as painful laser tattoo removal or expensive cover-ups.
And so for that reason, here are five simple steps to help reduce tattoo fading:
1. Tattoo and Skin Aging
Healthy, hydrated, and moisturized skin keeps tattoos looking vibrant. Make the following tips a daily ritual to protect your ink from fading:
Choose healthy eating, avoid sugars, and processed foods.
Stay hydrated with plenty of water and fluids.
Be active, exercise daily with fun activities.
Keep your skin hydrated and moisturized, with a daily skincare ritual.
Protected your tattoos from excessive sun exposure.
2. Tattoo Healing
Proper healing is significant when it comes to tattoo fading, as they can sometimes peel, itch, or scab if not correctly treated. This can be avoided if you follow these tattoo healing tips:
Keep your tattoo clean. Use a mild antibacterial soap, avoid excessive water exposure from bathing, showering, or swimming for the first four weeks.
Hydrate and moisturize your tattoo 4-6 times daily with a high-quality tattoo care product to prevent peeling, itching, and scabbing.
Never over saturating your tattoo with any tattoo care products. Some products contain greasy oils that can plug your pores and suffocate your skin.
Never scratch your tattoo or pull any peeling skin or scabs off your tattoo. This can cause scars or fading. Premium tattoo care products can prevent this.
Always cover fresh tattoos from direct sun with light clothing.
Sun is the most damaging thing for tattoos as it accelerates skin aging, and even tanning beds are damaging to your skin. Follow these tips to protect your ink from the sun:
ALWAYS keep fresh tattoos covered from direct sunlight for the first 6-8 weeks.
Even if it’s cloudy keep fresh tattoos covered while outside, as the UV rays from the sun are still damaging even if it is cloudy.
Once your tattoos are healed, always use a minimum of SPF 30 or stronger sunscreen if outdoors for more than 15 minutes.
Reapply sunscreen several times a day especially if you're swimming.
Or simply keep your tattoos covered.
Cover your tattoos if going in a tanning bed.
After a long day at the beach or pool, make sure you hydrate and moisturize your tattoos before bed.
4. Tattoo Placement
Consider tattoo placement for when choosing your new tattoo. As we age, our skin stretches faster in certain areas of our body, which can affect how fast your tattoos will start fading. Here are some tattoo placement tips:
Fingers, feet, and joints are most affected by skin rubbing on clothing and can cause super fast tattoo fading.
Abdominals, thighs, and upper arms are most affected by skin stretching from weight gain or loss. This can be a sure-fire way to destroy an awesome tattoo.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not suggesting to avoid getting inked in these areas, but if you do, make sure you take extra care to protect your ink.
5. Tattoo Ink
Tattoo ink is essential for the longevity and lifespan of your tattoo. Low-quality or over diluted ink may ruin the look and longevity a tattoo. Be aware that lighter color inks will fade faster than darker inks. Here are some tips on tattoo inks before you get your new tattoo:
Before getting tattooed, you may want to ask the artist what ink they use. Just to ensure their ink meets the quality you want.
Excellent ink brands are Millennium Moms, Intenze, External, Kuro Sumi, Starbright, Skincandy, Dragonhawk, and Dynamic.
Consider the color choice of darker inks over lighter for your tattoo and placement. Remember lighter inks fade faster, so sun exposure could be an issue.
Your tattoos should look cool and sexy for as long as you live. Be the hero of your story and protect your inked investment.
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