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So my soon to be husband has a tattoo appointment on Dec 29 but our honeymoon starts January 18th. He's only getting line work this first sit. Is that too soon to be swimming? He'll wear sunscreen and all that- we're not really sun bathers. But salty, wet, humid... is this bad? What's the risk? Infection, ruined work, or both?

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Generally speaking I think most artists recommend at LEAST a month before swimming or sun exposure, maybe it's a little shorter with just the linework. I would talk to your artist about the swimming and potential repercussions, but personally I would err on the side of caution and not do it. Touch ups are always an option but if you go against recommended aftercare you may really piss off the artist, and that's never a good thing.

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I would also recommend erring on the side of caution but of course I'm going to contradict myself here. Personally, I've had no problem with swimming at the week-and-a-half mark, after the tattoo has flaked and has that thin, shiny layer of healed skin. But it was only for a few mins. at a time, and I would've certainly waited longer had I not been in 100 degree heat and right next to a pool. And I only did it once and was really nervous about it.

The thing is, everyone's different, and and I would certainly be more cautious than not. If he's still healing/scabby/flaky I'd say avoid the water altogether. So uh... just go with what Wedge said.

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Id like to share a story here.

I had a healed tattoo of about 6 weeks before traveling to Oman where I'd be able to swim in the ocean and the gulf of Oman.

After swimming in the ocean, the very well healed tattoo became inflamed and looked moist, even when the skin was dry. The skin felt like it was on fire. I saw a tattoo-friendly doctor when I got home and she mentioned something worth thinking about: micro organisms in the ocean may have a chance of severely irritating a tattoo that was even 6 weeks old and fully healed. The skin is so new and susceptible to damage that it can surprise you.

Ive heard that tattooer in Australia along the golden coast (I think that's what it's called?) sometimes warn clients about staying out of the ocean or surfing for quite some time following the healing.

Anyway, just wanted to share a freak event with you guys. Might be worth the precaution if you normally have sensitive skin. It was incredibly painful and meant I couldn't expose my arm to sun unless I wanted to exacerbate the burning feelings...

Maybe it will never happen to anyone else, but Its good to know about stuff like this if you're concerned in general

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Hello I just wanted to put my two cents on the subject. Now about the sun, about 3-4 weeks is about the norm for keeping your new tattoo out of the sun. There is a sunblock from Neutrogena that is called Ultra Sheer dry-touch sunscreen. It has an SPF rating of 100. That is what I use on my tattoos when I go shirt-less during the summer. Everywhere else I use the same brand sunscreen with a SPF of 50 or 60. My wife and I went to Hawaii for our honeymoon, we went through about 2 and a half bottles of the stuff as we found the sun was really intense there. As for the seawater, I would say that as your tattoo scabs are off and its past the "shiny" stage you should be all good. On a side venture about water if you decide you would rather spend time in the hotel pool you might want to make sure you have some Vaseline to put on your tattoo or the Chlorine will chew at your ink and fade it out (sadly I am speaking out of experience) I hope this helps you out and I am not just telling you stuff you already know! Have an awesome trip!

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I've gone in a pool while my tattoo was still flaking/scabbing and I only have a very small amount of fallout but that was probably from horseplay more than anything else. Generally speaking I've found my freshies are done flaking completely at the one week mark but don't look completely normal and healed until the two week mark. I've never had a bad experience after that two week point. Then again everyone's body is different- his experience may differ.

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