Tattoos are becoming increasingly popular especially in the mainstream where it is almost more common to have a tattoo than not! Estimates show that 1 in 5 people in the UK have a tattoo, and that number rises to 1 in 3 among younger people as well. Despite their popularity, getting a tattoo isn’t always an easy process, and the tattoo healing process can involve itchiness, scabbing, weeping and ink loss in the area as the body tries to heal around the “injury” of getting a tattoo. Hemp oil and CBD oil are both excellent moisturisers and anti-inflammatories, both of which are excellent properties for tattoo healing. CBD oil also has the added benefit of having relaxing and pain-relieving properties for some people, so can be a great product for tattoo aftercare. However, for every tattoo artist, there is a different preferred treatment for tattoo aftercare, and hemp oil is simply another option for those of us wanting an effective way to promote tattoo healing and aftercare. Especially if you’re having your first tattoo, talk to your tattoo artist about what they recommend for effective tattoo aftercare to see if hemp oil and CBD oil are right for you!
How Does The Tattoo Healing Process Work?
Generally, the tattoo healing process occurs in around three stages:
From almost straight away after the tattoo is finished, and up to around a week after your tattoo, oozing, swelling and redness are common symptoms that should start to improve over the course of a few days, until the area has dried and scabbed over. Oozing is very common, and is a result of the plasma in the body rushing to the area to begin the wound healing process. Most tattoos are wrapped by the tattoo artist before you leave the parlour, so seeing moisture (the plasma) under the wrap is perfectly normal. Seeing a little blood under the wrap is also common, and not something to worry about. The area of the tattoo will also be red, hot to the touch, swollen and inflamed, this is also very common. Towards the end of this stage, the skin will start to scab and become dry and flaky.
At this point in the process, it is important to keep the area clean and dry, using antibacterial soap and warm water to clean the area. Dry very gently, using a patting motion, rather than a rubbing motion to prevent further irritation. At this stage, you can apply a moisturiser or tattoo aftercare balm to the area sparingly, though you should try and keep the area covered as much as possible. At this stage, CBD oil can be beneficial as it is an effective anti-inflammatory, and is intensely moisturising without blocking the pores of the skin. The high levels of vitamin E in hemp oil and CBD oil are excellent for intensely moisturising the skin at this stage, without triggering irritation.
Once the skin has stopped oozing or weeping completely (generally around a week after getting your tattoo), the tattoo area may become dry, cracked, scabbed over or itchy, and skin flaking may occur until this layer has fallen off completely. At this point, if you’re using CBD or hemp oil to care for your tattoo, the moisturising properties of the oil can be very beneficial. As hemp oil and CBD oil don’t clog the pores of the skin, the chance of infection in this area is lowered, and the light, easily absorbed formula can help to relieve itching in the area. It is important not to pick at the scabs or flakes, as this can be painful, raise your risk of infection and damage the appearance of your tattoo. The moisturising effect of carefully applying CBD oil a few times a day at this stage can improve your comfort, reduce dry flakes and inflammation and speed up the healing process.
At this stage of the tattoo aftercare process, the skin will be fully healed. From around two weeks to a month after getting your tattoo, while the skin will be fully healed at the top layer, the tattoo will look a little cloudy or smudged. This is because the skin at the lower layers is still healing, so you should continue to care for it even when the top layers appear to be fully healed.
The vitamins present in CBD and hemp oil make them ideal for continued aftercare. Vitamin E, for example, can help to reduce scarring and protect the skin cells even after the strain of a tattoo. The high concentration of Vitamin A in CBD oil and hemp oil also helps to protect from sun damage, which is one of the most common reasons that tattoos become discoloured, faded or otherwise damaged. Regularly applying hemp oil or CBD oil to tattoos that are frequently exposed, such as on the hands or arms, even after they have healed, can help them remain bright and vibrant for years to come.
CBD Oil Before Tattooing
You can also apply CBD oil before tattooing, as some people and initial studies show that it can help to relax the body and mind, and reduce pain in a natural and holistic way. For this reason, some people prefer to apply CBD oil to the tattoo area both before and after tattooing. Applying CBD oil beforehand can be a way to moisturise the skin and relax the body in the area, which may lead to less discomfort during the tattooing process. Talk to your tattoo artist about this - they might be able to recommend the best way to take CBD, whether it’s in an oil, taken orally or applied topically to the area.
At CBVIT, we offer a variety of products which can be used in tattoo aftercare. Our CBD oils can be used topically or taken sublingually, and we also offer a CBD ointment to help intensely moisturise the skin, and a body butter designed to moisturise the thicker skin of the body, which is ideal for the second part of the process where the skin begins to crust and dry, so needs extra hydration.