How the Tatted Up Folks Sleep With Fresh Ink

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There’s a lot to ponder while you get your tattoo, and even more, if that happens to be your first ever. 

However, no matter what, it’s what crops up at the end of that day that carries the most crucial question.

How on earth am I going to hit the bed with fresh ink?

Before you dive into the tips, here’s one thing I would like to say – as much as it’s essential to follow the best practices, don’t overthink this. 

Your tattoo is most definitely not a watercolor painting. It’s a design etched onto your skin – made to last and sturdy – in every way possible. 

Now, let’s get started. 

Keep it wrapped: Avoid skin infections – at all costs!

Many of you might be confused about an essential thing regarding when it comes to taking care of your newly etched design. Nope, it isn’t about getting scratches or preventing bumps on your skin.

There’s only one essential, and that’s to avoid infections. Your newly inked tattoo is primarily an open wound – my sincere apologies for the phrasing. 

No matter how eerie it might sound, I would want you to transform into a germaphobe for the next few nights after getting inked. My advice, keep it wrapped at all times as your tattoo artist left it. The protection the wrap has to offer is your best line of defense against any infections (or even accidental scratches and bumps).

It’s a smart idea to sanitize and rewrap the tattoo for at least the first four nights, ideally up to the initial six until your peeling stage is finished. 

(Never) sleep on it  

It’s a bad idea to sleep on your tattoo, but how do you stop yourself from messing with those parts in your sleep?

Fortunately, there are a few good ways,

  • Think and figure out which sleeping position works the best for you and helps you avoid the tattoo getting damaged at the same time.  
  • Then, try practicing your newly discovered sleeping position during the day. Lie down in the same place, close your eyes, and then get up after a few minutes. It might sound silly, but this is a surefire way to reinforce your sleeping position in your subconscious. 

Keep the tatted-up area elevated.

This revolves around two facts, 

  • You do have a lot of blood inside your body. 
  • Then, you have another thing called gravity.  

And combine these two, and you get blood pooling, which can further cause swelling. That’s far ideal from what you might want, considering a tattoo machine has just hammered you.

So, try sleeping with the tattoo area well elevated. Higher than your heart, and you’re good to go!

Untangle with lukewarm water

Your bedsheet sticking to your tattoo is a standard. Do not panic if that happens, and don’t rip your sheets off when that happens. Make a note to stay patient. Unstick them with some warm water, and let them fall off on their own. 

Stay miles away from the good stuff.

Gin and Tonic. Bourbon. Beer. Wine. Any alcohol can help you pave the way to massive troubles,

  • It messes up with your sleep cycle.
  • It slows down the healing process.
  • You are bound to get carried away and ditch those protective wraps. 

Kick out your pets (even your partner)

Your bed needs to transform into a no-pet zone, even during the day. As desperately as you might want to snuggle with your fur-riends, they need to be out of your sleeping area simply because they carry a lot of germs. 

If your partner moves a lot as they sleep or worse, snore, and eventually disturb your sleep. It would be a good reason to kick them out too!

Moisturize and Ointment-ize

Keeping your tattoo moisturized at all times is the best way to aid your healing and get rid of the itchiness as you sleep. Additionally, do not forget to alternate with an ointment as it acts as the first wall of defense against germs.

So, keeping up with these should be on your priority list, and keep in mind to keep reapplying it whenever you unwrap your tattoo.

I genuinely hope these few pointers have provided you with a few ideas on how to sleep with fresh ink. 

Keep your tattoo clean and do as much as you possibly can, but relax, too. The craziest part’s over – you have a new tattoo. Now, just stay patient till you can fully get rid of those protective wraps, and remember, if this piece of art is going to last a lifetime, it does deserve your protection for at least a few nights!

And if you are a tattoo artist or a tattoo studio owner, you are now prepared to educate these basics to your clients with fresh ink. If required, get busy with a tattoo studio software for management to shoot some mailers about your newly gained skill, get your tattoo consent forms organized, and help tattoo lovers get well acquainted with some tricky questions such as these? 

A guest post by Ashley Johnson, who drives content strategy at, a cutting-edge cloud-based software solution for tattoo studios. She’s inspired by the hustle of the artists to create more.

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