On September 17th, my husband and I decided to go out and get our first tattoos! We’ve both been wanting one for a long time but never knew what we wanted to permanently place on our bodies. Tattoos are forever people! Finally we decided to go with a tattoo to symbolize our marriage and religion, all in one. Along with our love for a band that brought us together as husband and wife. Our anniversary was in October (Halloween to be exact) and he had a huge thing of change saved up ($500) and decided the tattoos would be our anniversary gift to each other. We got them in September that way they would be healed by the time Halloween/Stuannaween came around. While researching and watching videos on tattoos and healing processes, I noticed I couldn’t find any videos or articles showing pictures of every healing stage of a tattoo. So I thought I would document my tattoo healing process for those of you getting your first tattoo too. I know every tattoo artist/shop has their own healing directions, but this is just what my artist told me to do.
I apologize for any possible gross descriptions and pictures, this is the body doing what it does!
What does your tattoo mean?
Let’s start with the symbol, it’s an upside down broken pentagram from a band called Oh, Sleeper who me and my husband enjoy very much. The broken pentagram symbolizes the cutting off of the devils horns and the line tattooed above “… I am Forever” is from the song called ‘The Finisher’ where the band says ‘I’ll cut off your horns’. My husband has ‘I am the Finisher’ tattooed on his chest, so I got the ‘I am Forever’ on my tattoo. As for the Eph 5:14, that’s the bible passage the band got their name from! If you choose to know the passage, you can view it here. Arise Oh, Sleeper was also a hymn that was sang at our wedding! The whole tattoo ties together and is everything I wanted. The font was chosen from dafont.com that seems to be the choice site for tattoo artists.
What did the tattoo feel like? Was it painful?
This was the question I asked everyone I knew that had a tattoo before I went under the needle. What does a tattoo feel like? Well, I wish I could give you an answer but the pain varied from where she was on my thigh. Everyone told me it felt like either someone snapping a rubber band on you or cat scratches. In my personal experience, it felt more like someone pinching me with their fingernails and pulling the skin.
Getting the tattoo wasn’t as painful as I thought it would be. But remember, everyone’s pain tolerance is different and it depends on where you get the tattoo on your body. Since mine was on my thigh, there was a ton of meat and less bone so the pain was easily bearable. There were a few moments that I gritted my teeth and squeezed my eyes shut but for the most part it wasn’t too bad.
Would you get tattooed again?
Short answer: Yes!
Right when it was over, I honestly could have gone out for lunch and came back for another tattoo. Sadly, I’m poor and can’t spend all my money putting beautiful art on my body. I do have a few ideas for smaller tattoos that I want but I’m going to hold off for a year before jumping in again. I eventually want to get a quote in typewriter font, possibly a book related tattoo and in a few years, I plan on getting the Seal of Luther on my other thigh in color. I can see how tattoos become addicting…
Products I used to heal my tattoo along with the tattoo shops recommended healing process:
The Healing Process
Day 1: The tattoo wasn’t too painful since it’s on my thigh, but there were some spots that hurt really bad! Towards my inner thigh and the bottom of the tattoo where she got closer to bone and my skin pulled more. A clear wrap was placed over it and I was told to wear it for two days to keep all the blood and other bodily fluids in. I compared what it looked like to a package of ground beef with the blood at the bottom (gross I know!)
Night 1: More blood filled the surrounding area. Not too much but just enough. The next morning I actually changed the bandage because there was too much fluid in it. The tattoo artist recommends doing that in the shower but I recommend starting to pull the bandage off out of the shower. I personally got a bit woozy and had to sit down. Ripping a bandage off hurts! Possibly more than the tattoo!
Night 3: I took my second bandage off and this is the picture after washing it in the shower. No unscented lotion yet. Tattoo area was very tender but there wasn’t any more bodily fluid coming out.
Day 5: A bit of redness, pain is very minimal. Color is starting to be lighter due to the healing process. I started using lotion the morning of day four and it eases the itch a little bit. I’ve been wearing dresses/skirts all week to work in order to not agitate the tattoo. Making sure to protect it at home when I’m around my cats! A slight scab is starting, so I’m assuming my body is trying to heal. The skin under the tattoo is (as best as I can describe it) perked up in that area.
Minimal peeling began in the afternoon so I rubbed more lotion on it. You can see some of the little black flakes. They came off once I washed it that night.
My tattoo began to itch a ton so I just started putting lotion on it whenever it was
unbearable. When washed in the shower, more of the scab fell off until there were just a few pieces left. The tattoo had some grey on the side, but brightened up once the lotion was applied.
No more scabs! The tattoo is pretty much healed but I’ll be staying away from swimming and soaking it for a few more weeks just to be safe. I love my tattoo! There’s still comes flaking around the tattoo, so I just apply more lotion to it.