How to Waterproof a Tattoo for Swimming?

So, here’s the situation: you just got a new tattoo, and with summer approaching, you may be wondering if you can truly go swimming. Your tattoo artist must have warned you against submerging your new tattoo in water. Now, you’re researching waterproofing a tattoo for swimming because, let’s be honest, we all can’t wait for summer to arrive so we can spend long, hot days at the beach taking refreshing dives in the ocean.

We’ve chosen to publish a brief tutorial on how to protect your tattoo from water, as well as some guidelines for new tattoos and swimming in general, because we fully appreciate your difficulties. So, without further ado, let’s immediately begin!

Why is Swimming Impossible With a Tattoo?

You should not swim immediately after getting a tattoo since it is effectively an open wound that could become infected. Bacteria are found in both chlorinated and unchlorinated water, and if they come into touch with an unhealed wound, infection can result.

This might cause permanent harm to the tattoo and major health consequences. A portion of my yellow and blue tattoo, for instance, bled and turned green. In addition, chlorine and saltwater can cause pain when they come into touch with an open wound, in addition to causing redness and itching.

How Long Will It Take You to Get Used to Your New Tattoo?

How long until you no longer have to worry about waterproofing a tattoo for swimming? Usually, the time required for a tattoo to heal is proportional to its complexity. In most cases, a tattoo must completely heal before it is safe to swim. It may take between two and four weeks for each individual, but many tattoo artists recommend two to four weeks.

When you have a tattoo, a bandage will be applied to cover it. The bandage should be removed after a few hours, and extra blood and ink can be simply cleaned away. After washing it with your hands, wash it with lukewarm water and antibacterial soap and allow it to air dry in a clean location. As the tattoo cures, both skin flakes and scabs will appear. When crusty scabs naturally come off, a fresh layer of skin will heal behind.

In addition to avoiding baths for the same reasons as throughout the healing period, you should continue to clean gently, allow the wound to air dry, and use the aftercare lotion.

How can I Waterproof a Tattoo for Swimming?

If you really must swim with a brand-new tattoo, you may wish to cover it with a waterproof dressing. There is no way to completely waterproof a tattoo, however swimmers have attempted waterproof bandages that can completely wrap and cover the tattoo, Vaseline, and even plastic press n’ seal wrap.

To swim with a new tattoo, cover it and waterproof it as much as possible before entering the water, remove the coverings afterward, and wash it gently with warm water and antibacterial soap, before allowing it to air dry and heal. Utilize the aftercare cream for the duration of the tattoo’s healing process.

How Do I shower with a new tattoo?

This is an excellent question. If your tattoo is wrapped in a waterproof bandage, you can take a shower approximately three to four hours after obtaining it. However, this depends on a number of variables. The best course of action is to heed the counsel of your tattoo artist. They will be able to advise you on how long you must keep the bandage on and when you may wash the affected region.

There are a few considerations to keep in mind about the shower. Never expose the fresh tattoo to running water or submerge it for an extended amount of time in water. A sponge or loofah should not be used to scrub the wound until it has totally healed. With fragrance-free, mild soap and cool or lukewarm water, you should clean the region.

Additionally, you must avoid cosmetics that include alcohol or other chemicals, as these might dry up the skin. After your shower, pat gently with a clean towel the region containing your new tattoo. Then, apply the aftercare cream provided by your tattoo artist and leave the area uncovered.

So, When can i go under water?

When it comes to diving underwater with a new tattoo, we must differentiate between a brief shower and a full-fledged swim. We must all shower, however it is recommended to wait a few days after getting a fresh tattoo before showering. We’ll discuss this in greater detail in the next paragraphs, but in general, you should never expose your tattoo to direct water pressure while showering, and it should always be protected.

It is preferable to wait until the tattoo has fully healed before swimming. When will that be, you might ask? Well, it could take up to two months for your tattoo to heal, depending on your immune system, tattoo aftercare routine, and overall skin health and resiliency. Once the tattoo is completely healed, closed, scab-free, and matte in appearance. This implies that you should avoid swimming for at least two to three weeks, just to be safe.

The ocean, rivers, and ponds may contain bacteria, and you may wish to prevent a bacterial infection of the tattoo. Therefore, by refraining from swimming for a few weeks, you are guaranteeing that the tattoo remains in good health. Therefore, be patient and wait; it will be worth it!

The Dangers of Swimming While Inked

Swimming In The Pool:

Swimming pools include chlorine to eradicate bacterial and algal growths.
However, chlorine is a chemical that can cause irritation to the skin around your tattoo. This might result in rashes, redness, and itching.
Additionally, remember that chlorine is used to erase stains.
Therefore, it is possible that the chlorine will harm the tattoo and make it appear dull or washed out.

To Swim In The Sea:

  • Since pools contain dangerous chemicals, you may believe that swimming in the ocean is healthier for your skin.
  • In the end, it’s natural, right? Wrong!
  • The sea or ocean water is not sterile.
  • It contains microorganisms that might cause your skin to become red and inflamed.
  • In addition, the salt in the water is an irritant and can cause skin irritation.


We recognize how tempting it is to immediately show off your new tattoo and go swimming. Having a little patience with something that has just been “carved” into your flesh and will last a lifetime, however, should be basic sense. Allow your tattoo to completely heal; nothing will ever be able to shield it from water like your own skin. Be patient and schedule your tattoos carefully; if you want to go swimming during the summer, try not to get your tattoo a couple of months before the holiday season; instead, get it done in the fall or winter so that it may fully heal in time for a refreshing swim.

Frequently Asked Question(FAQs) About How to Waterproof a Tattoo for Swimming

Is there a way to swim with a new tattoo?

To swim with a new tattoo, cover it and waterproof it as much as possible before entering the water, remove the coverings afterward, and wash it gently with warm water and antibacterial soap, before allowing it to air dry and heal. Utilize the aftercare cream for the duration of the tattoo’s healing process.

Can you put Vaseline on a new tattoo to go swimming?

Alcohol, Neosporin, Vaseline, and petroleum jelly SHOULD NOT be applied (they can trap dirt and germs and cause infection). NOT put a thick layer of lotion (remember the skin must breathe in order to heal). For two weeks, DO NOT expose your tattoo to direct sunlight, swim, sauna, steam, or tub.

Is it safe to swim with a tattoo a week old?

To allow your tattoo to cure without incident, you should avoid contact with water initially, whether in the ocean or the pool. Any prolonged contact with water should be avoided, as it risks displacing or altering the color of the tattoo’s ink.

What happens if you swim with a week old tattoo?

Why You Should Not Swim After Getting a New Tattoo. Your tattoo remains vulnerable until it has fully healed (i.e., until a new layer of protective skin has grown over it) (read: prone to infection). “Water from a pool, lake, or ocean is not sterile and may introduce microorganisms like germs to the skin.

Can I swim three weeks after getting a tattoo?

Before bathing or swimming in any type of water, tattoo aftercare should be undertaken for at least three weeks so the skin can recover and shut properly, protecting the tattoo/wound from chemical irritation, danger of infection, and the possibility of water saturation.

How can I safeguard my new tattoo at the beach?

Nexcare Sterile Waterproof Bandages Applying a bandage over your new tattoo before going to the beach is an excellent method to protect it from water, sand, and bacteria.

What should you not put on a fresh tattoo?

Never apply petroleum-based products to your tattoos, including A+D Ointment, Bepanthen, Aquaphor, Vaseline, Bacitracin, and Neosporin. These six items serve a purpose other than tattoo aftercare or healing.

What occurs when a tattoo becomes too wet?

Your tattoo is an open wound, and soaking it in water could raise the risk of infection by exposing it to microorganisms. Soaking can also dehydrate the skin, causing it to split and making it more vulnerable to infection and scarring.

What happens if you submerge a new tattoo in water?

While it is important to keep your tattoo clean, soaking it will cause the scab to disintegrate, fall off, and leave a scar.

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