The Big Tattoo Guide: What To Know Before, During, And After Getting A New Tattoo

The Big Tattoo Guide: What To Know Before, During, And After Getting A New Tattoo

In this comprehensive guide, we'll walk you through everything you need to know before, during, and after getting a tattoo. Whether you're contemplating your first piece or looking to enhance your tattoo experience, this guide is packed with essential tips and insider knowledge from industry experts.

Our journey starts with the crucial steps and preparations before getting a tattoo. You’ll learn what to do and what not to do to ensure your tattoo process is as smooth and pain-free as possible.

We’ll cover how to prepare for tattoo pain, what to consider before stepping into the studio, and share insights that many first-timers wish they knew beforehand. Let’s dive into the first part of your tattoo journey, ensuring you're fully prepared before the tattoo needle touches your skin.

Welcome to our Tattoo Guide brought to you by Onyx Tattoo Supply, your trusted provider of high-quality tattoo equipment since 2014.

Before Getting a Tattoo

We are specialist in taking of tattoos once they are made. We often experience a lot of things our customers and clients whish they new before getting their first tattoo. Thus we made this guide of what to do, and of course not to do before getting a tattoo.

What Not to Do Before Having a Tattoo

Before you get inked, there are several important precautions to ensure your skin is in the best condition for tattooing:

  • Avoid Alcohol and Caffeine: Stay away from alcohol and caffeine at least 24 hours before your session as they can increase bleeding and sensitivity.
  • Skip Sunbathing: Don’t tan or sunbathe prior to your tattoo appointment. Sunburned skin is not ideal for tattooing.
  • Hold Off on Blood Thinners: Avoid taking aspirin or other medications that thin your blood, unless prescribed by a doctor, as they can lead to excessive bleeding during the tattoo process.
  • Don't Shave Yourself: While it might be tempting, leave the shaving to your tattoo artist to avoid any nicks or irritation that might affect the tattoo.

What to Do Prior to Getting a Tattoo

Preparing for a tattoo goes beyond just showing up at the studio. Here’s how to ensure you’re ready:

  • Hydrate and Moisturize: Keep your skin hydrated by drinking plenty of water and moisturizing the area to be tattooed for several days leading up to your appointment.
  • Eat a Healthy Meal: Have a substantial meal before your appointment to stabilize your blood sugar levels. This can help you handle the pain better and prevent dizziness.
  • Wear Comfortable Clothing: Choose clothing that will give easy access to the area being tattooed and that you won’t mind getting ink on.

How to Prepare for Tattoo Pain

Tattoo pain is inevitable, but managing it can make your experience much more comfortable:

  • Consider Pain Relief Options: Talk to your tattoo artist about using a numbing cream if you're particularly concerned about the pain.
  • Practice Deep Breathing: Learning deep breathing techniques can help control pain perception and calm your nerves.
  • Stay Distracted: Bring headphones to listen to music or watch a movie during the session to keep your mind off the pain.

What I Wish I Knew Before Getting My First Tattoo

Here are some insights that many wish they had before getting their first tattoo:

  • Research is Key: Spend ample time choosing the right artist and style. Look through portfolios and read reviews to ensure they match your aesthetic and quality expectations.
  • Aftercare Matters: Proper tattoo aftercare is crucial for the healing of your tattoo. Familiarize yourself with the aftercare instructions and follow them meticulously.
  • It’s a Commitment: Remember, a tattoo is for life. Be absolutely sure about your design choice, its placement, and its meaning to you.

As you prepare for your tattoo, remember that Onyx Tattoo Supply is here to support both tattoo artists and clients with equipment that meets the highest standards of quality at an affordable price.

Now that you know how to prepare before getting a tattoo, you're ready to move forward confidently with your decision. Stay tuned for the next sections of our guide, where we'll cover what to expect during and after your tattoo session.

Tattoo Inspiration

Finding the right tattoo inspiration can be an exciting yet daunting task, especially with the endless possibilities available. Whether you're seeking your first tattoo or looking to add to your collection, the key is to find a design that resonates with you personally.
Here are some effective ways to gather inspiration and choose a tattoo that you'll love for years to come:

#1 Explore Tattoo Styles

Understanding different tattoo styles can help narrow down your preferences. Some popular styles include:

  • Traditional: Features bold lines and bright colors, often depicting roses, skulls, and nautical motifs.
  • Realism: Focuses on lifelike imagery, capturing everything from portraits to landscapes.
  • Watercolor: Uses vibrant colors and blending techniques to mimic the brush strokes of watercolor paintings.
  • Tribal: Characterized by black lines and geometric patterns, often inspired by indigenous cultures.
  • Japanese: Rich in history and symbolism, featuring koi fish, dragons, and cherry blossoms.
  • Minimalist: Simple and understated designs using clean lines and minimal color.

#2 Draw from Personal Experiences

Tattoos are deeply personal, and reflecting on your own experiences, interests, and passions can lead to meaningful designs:

  • Life Milestones: Celebrate significant events like graduations, weddings, or personal achievements.
  • Memorials: Honor loved ones or pets who have passed away.
  • Favorite Artworks or Quotes: Incorporate elements from a piece of art you love or a quote that inspires you.
  • Cultural Heritage: Pay homage to your cultural background or ancestry through symbols and patterns.

#3 Browse Social Media and Tattoo Portfolios

Platforms like Instagram and Pinterest are goldmines for tattoo inspiration. Follow popular tattoo artists and studios to see a variety of designs and techniques. Additionally, visiting artists’ websites and looking through their portfolios can give you an idea of their style and the kind of work they excel in.

#4 Use Nature and the World Around You

The natural world offers an abundance of ideas:

  • Flora and Fauna: From delicate flowers to majestic animals, nature-inspired tattoos are timeless.
  • Celestial Bodies: Stars, moons, and planets make for stunning designs with universal appeal.
  • Landscapes and Seascapes: Mountain ranges, ocean waves, and forest scenes can be transformative pieces.

#5 Consider Symbolism and Meaning

Many opt for symbols that hold specific meanings or convey messages about their beliefs and values:

  • Spiritual Symbols: Crosses, om symbols, mandalas, or other spiritual icons.
  • Powerful Concepts: Freedom, peace, love, or resilience symbols like feathers, peace signs, or hearts.
  • Mythology and Folklore: Creatures and tales from various mythologies can inspire unique tattoos.

#6 Sketch Your Ideas

Even if you're not an artist, sketching out ideas can help your tattoo artist understand what you’re looking for and refine the design to suit your vision.

#7 Consult with a Tattoo Artist

Once you have a concept or some ideas, consulting with a professional tattoo artist can help solidify your vision. They can offer suggestions and create a custom design that perfectly matches your expectations.

By exploring these sources of inspiration and carefully considering what each tattoo might mean to you, you're more likely to end up with a tattoo that not only looks great but also holds significant personal value. Remember, a tattoo is a form of self-expression that remains with you, so it’s worth taking the time to ensure it’s something you’ll cherish permanently.

During Your Tattoo Session: What to Do?

Getting tattooed involves more than just sitting through the pain; it's about effectively collaborating with your tattoo artist to ensure the best results. Here’s a brief guide on what to do during your tattoo session, with answers to some common questions. Take a look on how Anastasija Pudikova works in her own little private studio “Dark River” which is located in heart of Tirol, Austria.



What should I do during a tattoo?

Remain as relaxed as possible and follow your artist's instructions. Keeping calm helps both you and the artist focus on creating the best artwork.

How to stay still during a tattoo?

Find a comfortable position that you can hold for extended periods. Practice deep breathing or meditation techniques to help control your movements and keep yourself calm.

Do you talk during a tattoo?

Yes, you can talk during a tattoo. Conversations can be a great way to distract yourself from the pain. However, be mindful of not moving too much, especially if the tattoo is in a spot that requires you to hold still.

Always follow the cues of your tattoo artist; if they need you to be quiet and still for intricate parts, they’ll let you know.

Can you go on your phone during a tattoo?

While it's generally okay to use your phone, it’s important to keep movement to a minimum. Using your phone can be a good distraction during less sensitive parts of the tattooing process, but make sure it does not affect your ability to stay still.

Always check with your artist first, as some may prefer you not use your phone during the session to ensure their work is as precise as possible.

During your tattoo session, the key is to maintain a balance between being relaxed and being cooperative with the tattoo artist. Your comfort and the quality of the tattoo are paramount, so anything that can help you achieve both without interfering with the artist's work is beneficial.

After Getting a Tattoo: Essential Care Tips from Onyx Tattoo Supply

Proper aftercare is crucial to ensure your tattoo heals beautifully and maintains its vibrancy. Here's what you need to do after getting a tattoo to ensure optimal healing and care:

1. Follow Your Tattoo Artist's Aftercare Instructions

Each tattoo artist may have slightly different recommendations based on their style and the specifics of your tattoo. Always follow the tattoo aftercare instructions provided by your artist.

These typically include how to clean your tattoo, what products to use, and how to protect the tattoo in the coming weeks.

2. Keep the Tattoo Clean

Gently wash your tattoo a few times a day with lukewarm water and mild, fragrance-free soap. Pat it dry with a clean, soft towel. Avoid using a cloth that could irritate the skin or leave residues.

3. Moisturize Regularly

Apply a thin layer of a fragrance-free moisturizer or a specific tattoo-healing ointment as recommended by your tattoo artist. This helps to keep the skin hydrated and promotes healing. Do not over-moisturize, as this can lead to issues such as ink loss or infections.

Read our guide ➡️ How Long Does It Take For A Tattoo To Heal?

4. Avoid Sun Exposure

Keep your new tattoo out of direct sunlight. Sun exposure can fade your tattoo and delay healing. Once healed, always use a high-SPF sunscreen to protect the tattoo from UV rays.

5. Do Not Pick or Scratch

As your tattoo heals, it will begin to peel and may itch. It’s important not to pick at the scabs or scratch the area. Doing so can damage the tattoo and lead to infections or scarring.

6. Wear Loose Clothing

Cover your tattoo with loose, soft clothing to avoid irritation. Tight clothing can rub against the tattoo, irritate the skin, and even pull off scabs prematurely.

7. Stay Hydrated and Eat Healthy

Keeping your body hydrated helps your skin heal faster and stay healthy. Eating a balanced diet rich in vitamins and minerals supports skin health and overall recovery.

8. Avoid Water Activities

Stay out of pools, hot tubs, and natural bodies of water until your tattoo has fully healed. Chlorine, bacteria, and other irritants found in water can cause infections and affect the quality of your tattoo.

9. Watch for Signs of Infection

Keep an eye on your tattoo for signs of infection, which include excessive redness, swelling, foul odor, or pus. If you experience any of these symptoms, contact your tattoo artist or seek medical advice promptly.

10. Schedule a Touch-Up if Needed

After your tattoo has healed, inspect it for any areas that may need a touch-up. Some fading or ink loss can occur, especially in tattoos with lots of color or detail. Most tattoo artists offer touch-up sessions to ensure your tattoo looks its best.

Following these aftercare steps carefully will help ensure that your tattoo heals properly and stays vibrant and beautiful for years to come. Remember, a tattoo is not just an art investment; it's a lifelong commitment to your skin's health and appearance.

Get more information about Tattoo Aftercare Products and more

For more information on our products or to inquire about private labeling options, contact us at +45 31 17 33 38 or send an email to We help you on your tattoo healing journey with confidence with the best tattoo supply and let us help you keep your art timeless. Don't hesitate to contact our dedicated and experienced staff, if you have any doubt in your mind.

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