Why Do Tattoos Bubble Up and How Do You Stop It?

Getting a tattoo is one of the best and exciting experiences you will ever have. Some problems can occur during or after the tattooing process. But if you take care of your tattoo properly, these are still avoidable. Many people avoid getting tattoos due to pain and aftercare complications. You may have got a tattoo and wonder why your tattoo seems dried off, itchy or bubbled up.

A bubbled up tattoo may scare you at first, but this condition is quite common, especially when you don’t take care of your tattoo. Bubbling in tattoos occurs during the healing stage when water gets trapped in the scabs. Scabbing is a good sign that your tattoo is almost through the healing stage. But it does get a bit uncomfortable, especially when the feeling of itchiness becomes irresistible.

There are a few reasons why tattoo bubbling might occur, but you can prevent it by following a few tips. So if you find yourself in a similar situation and are not sure what to do, you have come to the right place. Read this article as it will guide you on how to prevent tattoo bubbling and why it happens.

The Reason behind Tattoo Bubbling

As mentioned earlier, tattoo bubbling occurs during your tattoo’s healing stages, which is more important than choosing a design or placement for your new tattoo. During the healing phase, your tattoo will begin to scab, which is a good sign that your tattoo is on its way to recovery. However, scabbing causes itchiness, and sometimes the itchiness gets bad. You tend to scratch it too hard and pick on it.

It is advisable to avoid this at all costs if you don’t want to ruin your tattoo. To avoid redness and itchiness, you have to keep moisturizing and clean the area with soap and water. If you don’t dry off your tattoo after cleaning and showering, the water gets trapped in the scabs, which then forms bubbles. The same happens when you use an excessive amount of moisturizer and don’t clean it. The bigger your tattoo, the more bubbled up it gets. Tattoo bubbling is one reason why you must give much importance to tattoo aftercare.

When does Tattoo Bubbling go away?

The duration of tattoo bubbling usually depends on how severe the bubbling is. After you witness tattoo bubbling, you must let it dry without putting anything on it. This will take more than a few hours. Once you leave it to dry, the scabs will start to fall off, and the bubbling may get better. But, leaving it dry is also a good way to prevent further tattoo bubbling.

Bubbling tends to go away once you continue with your normal tattoo aftercare steps. But make sure you keep your tattoo dry at all times, especially after showering. Plus, do not apply too much lotion. If you’re using a lotion, only apply it 24 hours after the bubbling takes place.

If you want it to go away faster, expose it to air, as this fastens the drying process. Avoid wearing tight clothes as that will block the air from getting to your tattoo. Dry-healing is also a good way to prevent the possibility of developing a tattoo infection or bacteria.

What Happens if You Don’t Immediately Care for It?

As soon as you notice your tattoo bubbling up, you must immediately take action and leave it to dry, and follow your tattoo aftercare steps. If you don’t act promptly and generally avoid proper aftercare, you become vulnerable to tattoo bubbling. It might get worse, forming red ulcers with lymph fluid. You also become more susceptible to getting a skin infection. If the ulcers worsen and the skin gets more inflamed, you may have to seek medical help, leading to pain and expensive treatments.

So, if you don’t want to go through this discomfort, you must always care for your tattoo no matter how many times you get it. Make your tattoo experience more enjoyable than regretful.

How Can You Prevent It?

Tattoo bubbling is part of the tattoo healing process, but you can avoid this by carefully doing a few things during the aftercare of your tattoo. Tattoo aftercare is easy, but sometimes it can get a bit overwhelming for you, especially if it’s your first tattoo. You want everything to go perfectly and want your tattoo to look in its best shape. This is one of the reasons why many people tend to become too concerned about their aftercare and start doing more than required.

Overdoing your tattoo aftercare may sometimes slow down the healing process and cause different issues. One of the main reasons for tattoo bubbling is the excessive use of a moisturizer. Moisturizing is an important step when it comes to tattoo aftercare.

But, applying an excessive amount of lotion to your tattoo may lead to water particles getting trapped inside the scabs, which then form into bubbles. When applying your moisturizer or ointment, make sure your tattoo is fully dry as you don’t want to apply moisturizer on damp skin. It would just make the bubbling and scabbing worse.

The other way you can prevent tattoo bubbling is by drying your tattoo as soon as you get out of the shower. Not drying your tattoo area properly will cause the water to get clogged in the scabs, leading to a bubbled tattoo. Water remains one of the main reasons for a bubbled tattoo; hence, you must properly clean and dry the areas whenever you contact water.

Plus, whenever you shower with a fresh tattoo on, don’t expose your full body underwater. Try keeping your tattoo away from the water, as this will prevent the tattoo from getting soaked in water and reduce the chances of tattoo bubbles. If you notice tattoo bubbling, it’s best to avoid taking a shower for a few days. Even if you take a shower, don’t stand underneath it for hours. It’s best to limit your water exposure as much as possible during your new tat’s healing period.

Scabbing causes severe itchiness, and, at times, it gets so bad that it’s hard to resist. You may scratch a bit slightly if you want to, but that will eventually lead to more excessive itching and picking. The more you do this, the more you ruin your tattoo’s outlook and invite the formation of a bubbled tattoo. Even if you slightly pick it, the gooey scabs will come off, which will lead to even a bigger mess.

Can it Happen Years after Getting Your Tattoo?

There is no evidence to suggest tattoo bubbling can take place years after getting your tattoo. Usually, tattoo bubbling happens during your tattoo’s healing stages, especially when your tattoo begins to scab. Once your tattoo completely dries off, there’s no chance of tattoo bubbling to happen again or at all. However, your tattoo can get infected, causing different illnesses.

Tattoo bubbling makes you prone to different infections, as, during the bubbling, the scabs also get bubbled and fall off once they dry up. These scabs help protect your tattoo from catching bacteria, so without the scabs, you became prone to an infection that may appear a bit later. Few common symptoms may be a sign of a skin infection. These signs are fever, chills, redness around the tattoo, rash and itchiness on the tattoo, pus coming out from your tat, open sores, and pain around the tattoo area.

Does your Tattoo Get Ruined with Bubbling?

You can easily get through tattoo bubbling without your tattoo outlook getting ruined only if you continue to practice tattoo aftercare effectively. If you manage to get rid of the bubbling by keeping it dry before you scratch or rub the scabs off, there is a higher chance that your tattoo will remain in top-notch condition.

Sometimes the scabs get really gooey containing tattoo ink and tend to stick on your clothes or different surfaces. Even the slightest touch or itch on the bubble will cause the ink to explode, ruining your tattoo. So, whenever you lift the area where your tattoo appears, the tattoo ink sticks to the surfaces or your clothes, causing a slight peel off and ruining your tattoo’s whole outlook. To prevent this from happening, you should avoid wearing thick clothing or accessories that may rub off against your tattoo.

Bottom Line

Tattooing is one of the most eventful experiences you will go through; even though you may feel slight pain, but you will achieve some stunning art on your body. So why ruin the experience by being a bit laid-back in the aftercare? Carrying out proper tattoo aftercare will surely prevent you from experiencing issues such as tattoo bubbles. Even if you end up getting them, you must effectively take action and save your tattoo before it gets too late and causes more complications. Just follow the aftercare tips and avoid the causes that lead to the formation of tattoo bubbles. Happy tattooing!

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