This is a commonly asked question that we assume most people understand, but alas, as industry experts we’re too close to these topics and expect too much. We have to remember that the general public is not versed in such things. Plus, we have pledged to use this blog to answer any and every query about getting tattooed, so let’s keep doing so with the answer you’re looking for.
What You Need to Know About Shaving Your Hair Before (and After) Getting a Tattoo
Yes, You Must Shave Before Getting a Tattoo
That’s the skinny, and there’s no way around it. Even peach fuzz has got to go. Hair prevents the needle from properly penetrating the required layers of your skin. If you don’t shave the area, the tattoo may not take. And if hair is thick, the design will be compromised. However, don’t shave until after you’ve had your initial consultation with your tattooist. They will recommend when this should be done. In most cases they will ask you to do it the day before, but in other cases they may do it the day of your tattoo appointment. The tattooist will also identify if you have any skin conditions that may be aggravated by shaving on your own, at which point they will advise/plan accordingly.
Shaving While it’s Healing
Some of you shave a given area anyways, be it the legs, arms, or whatchamacallits. At this point, you’re wondering when you can shave again. You must wait until the surface layer of your tattooed skin has healed, which is about 3 to 4 weeks. Even then, shave very lightly so as to not exfoliate the skin. Even then, we recommend shaving with with hair clippers that do not “scrape” the top layer of your skin. When can you start going to town with your Gillette Mach 5? That will have to wait for about three months, to err on the side of caution. But don’t worry, your fresh tattoo will hide the unsightly (as you see it) hair anyways.
The last consideration about whether not you should shave after getting a tattoo speaks to aesthetics. There’s no bones about it – tattoos always look better on shaved skin. You may have felt weird about shaving your body for the first time to get the tattoo, but you’ll find that once you have, you’ll more than likely keep doing it.
Remember, don’t shave a thing until you’ve had your first consultation. If in the Greater Vancouver BC or Toronto ON area, contact Adrenaline Tattoos to book an appointment.