Diving In: The Safe Timing for Swimming After a Tattoo

Getting a new tattoo is an exciting experience, but it's important to take proper care of it to ensure it heals well and looks great for years to come. One common question people have is when it's safe to go swimming after getting a tattoo. This comprehensive guide covers everything you need to know about the safest times to hit the water, from chlorine exposure in pools to the risks of saltwater. Plus, learn how Onyx Tattoo Supply’s aftercare products can help your tattoo heal in the best way possible.

Why Waiting to Swim is Important

A fresh tattoo is essentially an open wound. Exposing it to water, especially in public pools, oceans, or lakes, can increase the risk of infection and affect the healing process. Water can introduce bacteria to the tattoo site, potentially leading to complications that could damage the tattoo and your skin. Additionally, prolonged exposure to water can cause the tattoo to fade and lose its sharpness.

Recommended Waiting Periods

Chlorinated Pools: Chlorine is a chemical used to disinfect swimming pools, but it can be harsh on a healing tattoo. It can cause irritation, dryness, and even lead to fading of the tattoo ink. It's generally recommended to wait at least 2-3 weeks before swimming in a chlorinated pool.

Saltwater (Oceans): While saltwater is natural, it can still pose risks to a new tattoo. The salt can irritate the wound, causing discomfort and potentially slowing down the healing process. Wait at least 2-4 weeks before swimming in the ocean.

Freshwater (Lakes and Rivers): Natural bodies of water, like lakes and rivers, can harbor bacteria and microorganisms that might infect a fresh tattoo. It's best to avoid swimming in these waters for at least 2-4 weeks.

Signs Your Tattoo is Ready for Water

Before you dive in, make sure your tattoo is fully healed. Here are some signs to look for:

  • No Scabbing: The scabs have fallen off completely.
  • Smooth Skin: The tattooed area feels smooth to the touch and there are no raised or rough spots.
  • No Redness: There is no redness or swelling around the tattoo.
  • No Itching or Peeling: The skin is no longer itchy or peeling.

Onyx Tattoo Supply Aftercare Products

Proper aftercare is crucial for a smooth healing process. Onyx Tattoo Supply offers a range of aftercare products designed to nourish and protect your new tattoo. Here’s a closer look at our top products and how they can help:

Onyx Tattoo Aftercare Cream Our aftercare cream is formulated with natural ingredients that soothe and hydrate the skin. It helps reduce inflammation and promotes faster healing. Apply a thin layer of the cream to your tattooed area to keep it moisturized and protected from bacteria.

Onyx Tattoo Aftercare Foam Cleanser Keeping your tattoo clean is essential to prevent infection. Our foam cleanser is gentle yet effective, removing impurities without irritating the skin. Use it daily to wash your tattoo with lukewarm water and a soft cloth.

Onyx Tattoo Aftercare Butter Our butter is perfect for daily use once your tattoo has started to heal. It helps maintain the skin's moisture balance, keeping your tattoo vibrant and smooth. Apply it regularly to prevent dryness and flakiness.

Tips for Safe Swimming After Healing

Even after your tattoo has healed, it's important to take precautions to protect it from damage:

  • Apply Sunscreen: Use a tattoo-friendly sunscreen to protect your ink from UV rays.
  • Rinse Off: After swimming, rinse your tattoo with fresh water to remove any chlorine or salt.
  • Moisturize: Keep your tattoo hydrated by applying a moisturizer after swimming.


Taking the proper steps to care for your tattoo after getting inked is essential for ensuring it heals beautifully and lasts a lifetime. Waiting the recommended time before swimming and using high-quality aftercare products from Onyx Tattoo Supply can make a significant difference in the healing process. Our tattoo aftercare products are designed to nourish, protect, and enhance your tattoo, helping you maintain its beauty for years to come.

Remember, your tattoo is an investment in your personal expression and creativity. By following these guidelines and using Onyx Tattoo Supply’s aftercare products, you can enjoy your tattoo to the fullest while keeping it safe from potential risks. Dive in safely and confidently with Onyx Tattoo Supply!

Back to blog