Vegan Tattoo Aftercare: 4 Benefits (2023)

by Bridget Reed

Tattoos are a popular form of self-expression, but getting a tattoo involves puncturing the skin, which leaves the body vulnerable to infection and other complications. Proper aftercare products and technique is crucial to ensure that the tattoo heals properly and looks its best for years to come.

For those who follow a vegan lifestyle, animal-derived products for tattoo aftercare may not align with their values. Fortunately, there are many vegan tattoo aftercare products available that offer numerous benefits.

In this article, we will discuss the benefits of using vegan tattoo aftercare and provide recommendations for the top products on the market.

What Is Vegan Tattoo Aftercare?

Vegan tattoo aftercare refers to using products free from animal-derived ingredients that have not been tested on animals. These products typically contain natural, plant-based ingredients that are gentle on the skin and support the healing process.

Vegan tattoo aftercare is becoming increasingly popular among those who follow a vegan lifestyle or are concerned about the ethical and environmental impact of their products.

Traditional tattoo aftercare products often contain animal-derived ingredients such as lanolin, beeswax, and collagen, which can cause skin irritation and may not align with vegan values. These ingredients are commonly found in tattoo aftercare products such as balms, lotions, and ointments.

Vegan tattoo aftercare products, like Mad Rabbit Tattoo Balm, use plant-based ingredients such as shea butter, coconut oil, and aloe vera to soothe and protect the skin after a tattoo. These products are often formulated without common allergens, artificial fragrances, and preservatives and are great for all skin types, especially sensitive skin.

Vegan tattoo aftercare products may come in the form of balms, creams, lotions, or sprays, and they are designed to help the tattoo heal properly, soothe discomfort, and support the body’s fight against infection.

Benefits of Vegan Tattoo Aftercare

1. Avoiding Allergic Reactions:

Vegan tattoo aftercare products are free from animal-based ingredients, including lanolin, beeswax, and shellac. These ingredients are common in non-vegan tattoo aftercare products and can cause allergic reactions in some people. Using vegan products can minimize the risk of an allergic reaction, making the healing process more comfortable.

2. Naturally Support Healing:

Vegan tattoo aftercare products often contain natural ingredients that can help support healing. For example, coconut oil has properties that can naturally support the body’s fight against infection, while aloe vera has soothing and moisturizing properties that can help soothe irritation and redness.

3. Supporting the Body’s Fight Against Infection:

Infection is a common risk associated with getting a tattoo; proper aftercare is essential. Vegan tattoo aftercare products are often formulated with natural ingredients that have properties that support the body’s response to infection, such as tea tree oil and lavender oil.

4. Sustainable and Ethical:

Vegan tattoo aftercare products are often more sustainable and ethical than non-vegan products. Many non-vegan products use animal-based ingredients obtained through animal testing or unethical farming practices. By choosing vegan products, you can ensure that your aftercare routine is aligned with your values and beliefs. Additionally, many vegan tattoo aftercare products are packaged in eco-friendly materials, reducing their environmental impact.

Comparison of Vegan and Non-Vegan Tattoo Aftercare

When it comes to tattoo aftercare, the products you use can make a significant difference in the healing process and the overall health of your skin. It's essential to consider the ingredients in your tattoo aftercare products and whether they align with your values.

Vegan tattoo aftercare products have gained popularity over the years due to their numerous benefits, including avoiding allergic reactions, supporting healing, protecting against environmental stressors, and being sustainable and ethical. Comparing vegan and non-vegan tattoo aftercare products can help you understand the differences in their ingredients, animal testing practices, and environmental impact.


Vegan tattoo aftercare products typically use natural ingredients, such as plant-based oils, vitamin E oil, butters, and essential oils, that are gentle on the skin and support healing. On the other hand, non-vegan tattoo aftercare products may contain animal-derived ingredients, such as lanolin, beeswax, or honey, which can cause allergic reactions or clog pores, delaying the healing process.

Animal testing

Vegan tattoo aftercare products are cruelty-free, meaning they are not tested on animals. Non-vegan tattoo aftercare products may contain animal-derived ingredients and may have been tested on animals, causing harm to animals and the environment.

Environmental impact

Vegan tattoo aftercare products have a lower environmental impact than their non-vegan counterparts. The production of animal-derived ingredients can contribute to deforestation, greenhouse gas emissions, and water pollution. Vegan tattoo aftercare products use plant-based ingredients that are sustainable and do not harm the environment.

How To Use Vegan Tattoo Aftercare Products

Proper use of tattoo aftercare products is crucial for optimal healing and maintenance of a tattoo. Here are some tips for using vegan tattoo aftercare products:

Follow the Instructions Carefully:
Each product will have its own set of instructions on how to use it, so it is important to read them carefully before applying. It is also important to follow the recommended frequency and duration of application.

Wash Your Hands:

Washing your hands is essential when caring for a fresh tattoo because it helps prevent the spread of bacteria and germs that can cause infection. Your hands come into contact with countless surfaces and objects throughout the day, many of which can harbor harmful bacteria. If you touch your tattoo with dirty hands, you risk transferring those bacteria to the wound, which can lead to an infection.

Gently Clean Your Tattoo:

Use a gentle soap or a specific tattoo-cleaning product to clean your tattoo two to three times a day. Do not use a washcloth or anything abrasive, as this can damage the tattoo.

Pat Dry:

After washing, gently pat the tattoo dry with a clean towel. Pat drying your new tattoo is important because it is a gentler method that does not irritate the skin or cause damage to the tattoo. Rubbing your tattoo dry with a towel can cause the ink to fade and irritate the skin and lead to scabbing or other complications.

Apply a Thin Layer of Aftercare Product:

Once the tattoo is clean and dry, apply a thin layer of vegan tattoo aftercare product. Overusing ointments and creams can cause the tattoo to become too moist, leading to the growth of bacteria and an increased risk of infection. Additionally, using too much product can suffocate the skin and prevent it from breathing, which is essential for the healing process.

Avoid Sun Exposure:

During the healing process, it is important to avoid direct sun exposure as this can cause the ink to fade, blur, or discolor, affecting the tattoo's appearance. Moreover, excessive sun exposure can cause skin damage, prolonging the healing process. It is best to avoid sun exposure during the first few weeks of the healing process. If you must go outside, it is essential to apply a high-SPF sunscreen to the tattooed area.

Be Patient:

Whether this is your first tattoo or your tenth, it is important to be patient with a new tattoo because everyone's skin heals differently. While some people may see their tattoo fully healed within a week or two, others may take several weeks or even months to fully heal.

Rushing the healing process can damage the tattoo, such as scabbing or peeling, which can affect the overall quality and appearance of the tattoo. It is also important to remember that everyone's skin reacts differently to the tattooing process, and some people may experience more swelling, redness, or discomfort than others. By being patient and allowing the tattoo to heal properly, you can ensure that it looks its best and lasts for years to come.

Tips for Optimal Healing

After getting a tattoo, it's crucial to take proper care of it to ensure optimal healing and prevent any potential infections or complications.

Here are some tips for optimal tattoo healing using vegan aftercare products:

Keep the Tattoo Clean:

Wash your tattoo with gentle vegan soap and lukewarm water to remove any excess blood, ink, or plasma. Avoid using hot water, harsh soaps, or scrubbing the tattoo, as it may irritate the skin.

Moisturize Regularly:

Hydration is critical when it comes to tattoo care. Apply a vegantattoo moisturizer or tattoo aftercare balm to keep the skin hydrated and prevent dryness or cracking. Avoid using petroleum-based body lotions, such as Aquaphor, as they can clog the pores and slow the healing process.

Avoid Direct Sunlight:

UV rays can damage the tattoo and cause fading or discoloration. It's essential to avoid exposing your tattoo to direct sunlight or tanning beds for at least two weeks after getting it done.

Avoid Tight Clothing:

Wearing tight or synthetic clothing can cause irritation or friction against the tattooed skin, leading to inflammation or infection. Opt for loose-fitting, breathable clothing during the healing process.

Don't Pick or Scratch the Tattoo:

It's common to experience itching or scabbing during the healing process, but it's essential to resist the urge to scratch or pick at the tattoo. This can cause damage to the tattooed area, slow down healing, and increase the risk of infection.

In Conclusion

Opting for vegan tattoo aftercare products offers numerous benefits not just for the environment but also for your skin's health. By using these products, you avoid the risk of allergic reactions and promote faster healing while reducing the risk of infection.

Plus, you can rest assured knowing that the ingredients used are sustainable and ethical. Remember to follow the instructions for optimal healing and always prioritize cleanliness and hygiene.

With patience and proper aftercare, your tattoo will heal beautifully, and you can enjoy your new ink for years to come.


Animal Ingredients |

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UV Radiation Safety | CDC

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Vegan Tattoo Aftercare: 4 Benefits? ›

Tattoo Aftercare (VEGAN) is rich in Vitamins A, D and E which support healthy skin. Apply to new tattoos to soothe, nourish, and soften the skin.

What are the benefits of tattoo aftercare? ›

Proper tattoo aftercare can reduce your risk of scarring or infection. Discover how long to keep your tattoo covered, ways to keep it from fading or drying out, and why you may want to avoid petroleum jelly.

Are vegan tattoos good? ›

Vegan tattoo ink is considered to be skin safe, and many people believe that it's less likely to cause an allergic reaction. Vegan tattoo ink is also more consistent in color and tend to last longer. Vegan tattoo ink is the way of modern culture.

What is the best vegan tattoo healing cream? ›

Hustle Butter Deluxe is a product that can be used before, during and after tattooing, and delivers on all these areas mentioned earlier. It's certified vegan and cruelty free, petroleum, paraben and phthalate free, all natural and fragrance free.

How do I keep my tattoo from fading? ›

7 Ways to Keep Your Tattoos from Fading
  1. Pick a quality tattoo artist. ...
  2. Start aftercare from day 1. ...
  3. Get a black or grey tattoo. ...
  4. Think about placement. ...
  5. Protect tattoos from the Sun. ...
  6. Maintain good skin health. ...
  7. Use tattoo Vibrancy Serum.
Jun 21, 2022

How should my tattoo look after 3 days? ›

Days 2 to 3

Over the next couple of days, you may notice that your tattoo looks dull and cloudy. No need to panic or start thinking about a touch-up. This happens as your skin heals and new skin starts to form. Excess ink and plasma may still ooze from your skin during this time.

Does being vegan help you heal faster? ›

In fact, Barnard argued, a plant-based diet may actually be optimal during the healing process, helping the body regulate levels of inflammation (characterized by the enlargement of blood vessels, the leaking of blood into tissues, and the release of antibodies that occur after injury).

Do vegans take longer to heal? ›

Recent scientific findings point to the fact that a plant-based diet and wound healing might not actually go hand-in-hand. If you eat a majority (or wholly) plant-food diet, and have found yourself struggling with slow wound healing, it's possible that your food could be the culprit.

Do vegan tattoos last longer? ›

Does vegan tattoo ink fade faster? Vegan tattoo ink does not fade any faster. Whether you are using vegan tattoo ink or not, what really matters when it comes to fading is the quality of the ingredients being used.

What makes tattoos vegan? ›

A vegan ink uses carbon or logwood to create a black color, and a vegetable-based glycerin, as well as witch hazel or ethanol. For inks other than black, one tattooer in the Ask a Professional Tattoo Artist group on Facebook, the differentiating factor is which carrier or liquid companies use to bind powder pigments.

Are people with tattoos healthier? ›

Research has proven that multiple tattoos boosts the immune system. When the tattoo ink enters the body, the immune system attacks the ink. Each time that person goes for a new tattoo, the more their body undergoes that same process again and again, improving the immune system each time.

What is vegan tattoo ink made from? ›

What is Vegan Tattoo Ink Made Out of? Vegan inks use plant-based glycerin, witch hazel or ethanol and carbon or logwood to achieve the black colour.

What is the number 1 tattoo ointment? ›

Badger Tattoo Balm

"It also contains tamanu oil and coconut oil that optimize healing." The New York-based derm is not the only fan — Amazon reviewers consider this the best of the best for tattoo aftercare products.

What is best for keeping tattoo moist? ›

Ensure your new tattoo heals properly with the right lotion
  • Mad Rabbit Replenish Tattoo Body Lotion.
  • Malibu Tan Hemp Enhancing Body Moisturizer.
  • Aveeno Skin Relief Moisturizing Lotion for Very Dry Skin.
May 13, 2023

What is the vegan ointment for tattoos? ›

INK-EEZE Vegan Tattoo Ointment is a All Natural based ointment infused with essential oils. The formula was specifically developed by tattooers and skin care specialists for use as a lubricant during the tattoo process and collectors to use as an aftercare.

What color tattoo ink lasts longest? ›

Generally, black ink takes the cake for lasting the longest. Black ink tends to outlast any other color because it is super pigmented. Other darker colors like dark blue, dark green, gray, and dark purple will have a similar lifespan to black ink.

Why is my tattoo fading after 2 weeks? ›

Sometime between two to four weeks after getting a new tattoo – when your tattoo scabs and/or peels - your new ink may appear more faded and duller than expected. Don't worry, this is completely natural.

Why is my tattoo fading after 3 days? ›

The reason being, is that a tattoo “fades” to the naked eye within days of application. This occurs because as the skin heals, the top layer dies and new skin forms to take its place. During this period the epidermis typically has a faded appearance.

How do I know if I'm over moisturizing my tattoo? ›

Signs of an over-moisturised tattoo include irritated, inflamed skin; scabs may appear on the tattoo, or the skin may look redder on and around the tattooed area. What's more, the ink could appear slightly blurred.

Can a tattoo fully heal in 3 weeks? ›

How long does it take for a tattoo to heal? After getting a tattoo, the outer layer of skin (the part you can see) will typically heal within 2 to 3 weeks. While it may look and feel healed, and you may be tempted to slow down on the aftercare, it can take as long as 6 months for the skin below a tattoo to truly heal.

How long till a tattoo is fully healed? ›

From 1 to 6 months. After a month, any itching and redness should have completely gone. In fact, your new tattoo may look fully healed! However, the skin under your tattoo can continue to repair itself for up to six months until it's considered healed.

Why do vegans age better? ›

Vegan diets are rich in fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Research shows that vegan diets may increase your lifespan by giving you more fiber, plant protein and antioxidants to eat. Eating vegan also reduces red meat intake which can decrease the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Why do some vegans age faster? ›

Now that we have gotten to the bottom of the rumor that vegans age faster, we can conclude that being a vegan does not mean you will age faster. That said, high blood sugar levels and unbalanced diets can indeed lead to aging. This is also true for non-vegans, so the key is to be very careful about how you eat.

What is vegan face? ›

Vegan skincare means using cosmetic products that do not contain ingredients derived from animals. It also means that those same ingredients have never been tested on an animal. Things like beeswax are substituted for ingredients that are usually plant based or synthetic instead.

Why do I feel better after going vegan? ›

“Gut bacteria depend on fiber, which is naturally found in whole plant foods only. This results in a plant-based vegan diet improving mental clarity and mood quickly as the body is able to produce mood-enhancing hormones more efficiently,” she elaborates.

What happens to your body when you go vegan for a month? ›

Eliminating animal products removes cholesterol from the diet, which could reduce your risk of heart disease. What's more, a vegan diet tends to be lower in sodium than some other types of diets because most fruits and vegetables are low in sodium.

Does going vegan reduce inflammation? ›

Any diet, including a vegan or vegetarian one, can reap the anti-inflammatory benefits of adding certain oils, says Larson. Extra virgin olive oil helps reduce inflammation and can have a similar effect of ibuprofen.

What is the longest tattoo healing process? ›

Most sources indicate that tattoos generally take about 2 weeks to heal. However, it may take up to 4 weeks for the skin to fully recover. Some complications may prolong the healing process.

Does vegan tattoo ink have heavy metals? ›

Manufacturers making vegan tattoo inks for the vegan market will usually replace animal by-products, such as animal glycerin, with a vegetable glycerin. While many of the toxins in organic inks may be missing, they can still contain heavy metals, such as titanium oxide.

What tattoo colors fade the most? ›

Pastel colors and white are the lightest tattoo colors; thus, they fade the quickest among all colors. They generally last for about five to eight years before fading. Moreover, pastel and white ink colors may look like scars if not done correctly.

What happens if you don't do tattoo aftercare? ›

Not taking extra care of your tattoo can lead to scabbing or scarring. And if you're concerned that dry healing won't work for you, feel free to use a safe, chemical-free moisturizer to prevent any reactions or interactions with your skin or the tattoo ink.

Do you need tattoo aftercare? ›

Be sure your artist covers your new tattoo in a thin layer of petroleum jelly and a bandage. Remove the bandage after 24 hours. Gently wash the tattoo with antimicrobial soap and water and be sure to pat dry. Apply a layer of antibacterial/Vaseline ointment twice a day, but don't put on another bandage.

Is tattoo aftercare cream necessary? ›

Next, you should use a tattoo-specific reparative cream 2 to 3 times per day, for a dozen or so days. This step is important for proper regeneration of the skin and to prevent any painful irritation or itchiness that may occur.

How long should tattoo aftercare last? ›

Your tattoo should be completely healed within 2-4 weeks.

They will fall off on their own, so DO NOT PICK OR SCRATCH AT YOUR TATTOO. Doing so can cause some of the pigment to disappear, and your tattoo may not heal properly. Keep it moisturized and the scabs will eventually dissipate.

Can too much aquaphor ruin a tattoo? ›

Aquaphor seals and suffocates the skin's surface due to the thick petrolatum and mineral ingredients. Suffocating your fresh tattoo impairs the tattoo recovery and skin healing process, by blocking the skin's natural respiration.

What happens if I don't put aquaphor on my tattoo? ›

Dryness will cause excessive scabbing and itchiness, which can damage your new ink. Tattoo artists often recommend Aquaphor for aftercare because it's so good at hydrating the skin — and that's important when you get a new tattoo.

How much do you tip a tattoo artist? ›

A general guideline is to tip between 15-20% of the total cost of your tattoo. However, you can adjust this amount based on your personal budget and level of satisfaction with the service. It is important to note that tattoo artists are not paid a regular salary.

Do you have to moisturize tattoos forever? ›

You should start moisturizing your new tattoo right away and not stop for some time. Love says there's an immediate need to keep a new tattoo moisturized: Moisturizing helps to prevent scabbing and promote healing. "During the healing process, you should moisturize your tattoo three to six times a day," Ladna says.

Can you sleep with a new tattoo uncovered? ›

You'll want to keep the tattoo wrapped for at least the first night because it will take a while for it to settle down and stop leaking. You don't want an open wound like that touching your bed sheets, getting blood everywhere, or dirt and dust getting into the wound itself.

What happens if I over moisturize my tattoo? ›

Over-moisturising can lead to inflamed tattoos and potentially infection. Excess moisture can clog your skin's pores which prevents it from breathing, something that's important for your skin to heal. This can lead to breakouts on the skin that can damage the tattoo.

Can a tattoo heal in a week? ›

The healing process is different for every person and tattoo. Most sources indicate that tattoos generally take about 2 weeks to heal. However, it may take up to 4 weeks for the skin to fully recover. Some complications may prolong the healing process.

How can I speed up the healing of my tattoo? ›

4 Brilliant Ways to Heal a Tattoo Faster
  1. Above all, make sure to follow your artist's instructions. ...
  2. Use aftercare products—they work and are worth any added expense. ...
  3. Avoid anything that could irritate or infect the wound including baths, the sun, and scratching.
Mar 29, 2019

How long till I can sleep on my tattoo? ›

One of the biggest questions is when can we go back to sleeping like normal. The average person who has followed their aftercare instructions can start sleeping on their tattoo between 4 to 7 days after getting it.

How often do you use Aquaphor on a new tattoo? ›

Make sure to wear dark colors in case you have any ink leaking out. You'll want to occasionally dab at the tattoo with a paper towel to keep it dry, and reapply Aquaphor once or twice throughout the day. Once you get home, wash/dry/Aquaphor it again and let it air out until bedtime.


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