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cgrave

Advice Needed

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I am not new to the forum per se. Have been lurking around for a bit after I decided I would finally start getting those tattoos I have always wanted since I was a clueless teen. That was last year. And being in my late-30s, I am fairly late to the game.

I have a ton of allergies, sensitive skin and am prone to eczema hence instead of going big, I started with a small tattoo just to make sure I don't end up being allergic to either tattoo ink or the process.

A few days ago, I had the last of 4 sessions for my upper arm half-sleeve. I have stuck with the same artist throughout and have healed almost uneventfully for an earlier piece and my other sessions.

For some reason, this last session did not go as smoothly as any of the earlier sessions. It got rescheduled; there was a long break (more than 1 hour) during the session; at the end of the session, after nearly 5 hours of tattooing (not my longest), my arm was swollen (the first time that happened).

And to top it off, 3 days into the healing process, I noticed "holes or divots" where there used to be shading. These holes look like open wounds and I am understandably concerned.

I have always gone to great pains to take care of my tattoos during the healing process. I wash them with antibacterial soap twice a day, air dry, then put a thin layer of Tattoo Goo on it. That is the only time I would touch the new tattoo. I have not scratched it, rubbed it, slept on it, or caused any trauma to it. I have always followed the same aftercare routine for all my tattoos and nothing stands out as a possible cause for what is happening right now.

My tattoo artist is as puzzled as I am. She has asked me to put some antiseptic cream on it and I intend to follow her instructions to a T.

But I would like to see if anyone has had similar experiences or know what could be causing these "holes".

Infection doesn't seem likely since they don't hurt nor are they warm to the touch. They are just a tad red.

Any advice would be highly appreciated.

Thank you in advance.

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Edited by cgrave
grammar

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If it’s just those little areas I wouldn’t worry too much about it. The tattoo is still very new. If it’s obviously not infected I don’t see the reason for putting antiseptic on an already irritated section of skin. If it were me, I’d leave it be and let it heal and settle then see about touching the spot up if some of the ink fell out.


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1 hour ago, snyderju89 said:

If it’s just those little areas I wouldn’t worry too much about it. The tattoo is still very new. If it’s obviously not infected I don’t see the reason for putting antiseptic on an already irritated section of skin. If it were me, I’d leave it be and let it heal and settle then see about touching the spot up if some of the ink fell out.


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54 minutes ago, oboogie said:

Just let it heal. Don't futz around with it.

I initially thought it might be the placement (middle of the bicep where the muscle usually contracts) combined with the post tattoo swelling that lasted 2 days. But the little holes were confined to 2 or 3 spots and all of them were on the chain, which was completed prior to the 1 hour break we had.

So I thought I'd just check in with my tattoo artist and pick her brain in case there was something I needed to take note of or perhaps change my aftercare in case putting aftercare lotion might make it worse. Was planning on continuing with the usual and seeing how it turns out but my tattoo artist nixed that idea and told me to get some antiseptic on it in case it gets infected.

And hence the whole reason I ended up finally posting on this forum.

Thanks for the advice though.

Edited by cgrave
grammar

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3 hours ago, cgrave said:

I am not new to the forum per se. Have been lurking around for a bit after I decided I would finally start getting those tattoos I have always wanted since I was a clueless teen. That was last year. And being in my late-30s, I am fairly late to the game.

I have a ton of allergies, sensitive skin and am prone to eczema hence instead of going big, I started with a small tattoo just to make sure I don't end up being allergic to either tattoo ink or the process.

A few days ago, I had the last of 4 sessions for my upper arm half-sleeve. I have stuck with the same artist throughout and have healed almost uneventfully for an earlier piece and my other sessions.

For some reason, this last session did not go as smoothly as any of the earlier sessions. It got rescheduled; there was a long break (more than 1 hour) during the session; at the end of the session, after nearly 5 hours of tattooing (not my longest), my arm was swollen (the first time that happened).

And to top it off, 3 days into the healing process, I noticed "holes or divots" where there used to be shading. These holes look like open wounds and I am understandably concerned.

I have always gone to great pains to take care of my tattoos during the healing process. I wash them with antibacterial soap twice a day, air dry, then put a thin layer of Tattoo Goo on it. That is the only time I would touch the new tattoo. I have not scratched it, rubbed it, slept on it, or caused any trauma to it. I have always followed the same aftercare routine for all my tattoos and nothing stands out as a possible cause for what is happening right now.

My tattoo artist is as puzzled as I am. She has asked me to put some antiseptic cream on it and I intend to follow her instructions to a T.

But I would like to see if anyone has had similar experiences or know what could be causing these "holes".

Infection doesn't seem likely since they don't hurt nor are they warm to the touch. They are just a tad red.

Any advice would be highly appreciated.

Thank you in advance.

 

 

 

Hi and welcome,

don't look at your tattoos with a microscope,

and trust me, late thirties is not late to the game, I am 60 and still getting and rockin'  tattoos.

also, swelling is normal,

and our skin differs a lot from area to area, so different parts of our bodies heal and react differently to tattoos.

Edited by Dan

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2 hours ago, cgrave said:

 

I initially thought it might be the placement (middle of the bicep where the muscle usually contracts) combined with the post tattoo swelling that lasted 2 days. But the little holes were confined to 2 or 3 spots and all of them were on the chain, which was completed prior to the 1 hour break we had.

So I thought I'd just check in with my tattoo artist and pick her brain in case there was something I needed to take note of or perhaps change my aftercare in case putting aftercare lotion might make it worse. Was planning on continuing with the usual and seeing how it turns out but my tattoo artist nixed that idea and told me to get some antiseptic on it in case it gets infected.

And hence the whole reason I ended up finally posting on this forum.

Thanks for the advice though.

If you aren't going to listen, why come here? Just stop messing with it. Keep it clean and let it heal. It will be fine.

I've had an infected tattoo. That is not infected.

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oof 1 hour long break ... that would just drain whatever gas I had in the tank. long breaks like that deplete the momentum of a session. doesn't look like the tattooist was even hitting you that hard with the machine. idk the body is weird. dry heal it out and leave it alone.

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20 hours ago, Dan said:

Hi and welcome,

don't look at your tattoos with a microscope,

and trust me, late thirties is not late to the game, I am 60 and still getting and rockin'  tattoos.

also, swelling is normal,

and our skin differs a lot from area to area, so different parts of our bodies heal and react differently to tattoos.

Thanks for the welcome @Dan. You're probably right and I'm just overthinking things but I like understanding why these things happen so I can be better prepared. Same as reading up on what to do here on this forum before I took the plunge to even get a tattoo. But yeah, I hope I'd still be up for getting tattoos by the time I hit 60.

19 hours ago, oboogie said:

If you aren't going to listen, why come here? Just stop messing with it. Keep it clean and let it heal. It will be fine.

I've had an infected tattoo. That is not infected.

Probably cos, as mentioned in my first post, my tattoo artist ain't a got clue and I was hoping someone here would have had some experience with something similar?

I don't see why being curious about something I have never encountered before qualifies as any of those things you mentioned.

I never said it was infected. My tattoo artist is just being cautious.

14 hours ago, bongsau said:

oof 1 hour long break ... that would just drain whatever gas I had in the tank. long breaks like that deplete the momentum of a session. doesn't look like the tattooist was even hitting you that hard with the machine. idk the body is weird. dry heal it out and leave it alone.

That long break really took a lot outta me. I have always kept breaks to 20 minutes or less but my tattoo artist wanted to get some work done before freehanding the rest. Hence the long break.

Aye, my tattoo artist has a fairly light touch. Which is why the "holes" just caught us both by surprise.

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51 minutes ago, cgrave said:

Thanks for the welcome @Dan. You're probably right and I'm just overthinking things but I like understanding why these things happen so I can be better prepared. Same as reading up on what to do here on this forum before I took the plunge to even get a tattoo. But yeah, I hope I'd still be up for getting tattoos by the time I hit 60.

Probably cos, as mentioned in my first post, my tattoo artist ain't a got clue and I was hoping someone here would have had some experience with something similar?

I don't see why being curious about something I have never encountered before qualifies as any of those things you mentioned.

I never said it was infected. My tattoo artist is just being cautious.

That long break really took a lot outta me. I have always kept breaks to 20 minutes or less but my tattoo artist wanted to get some work done before freehanding the rest. Hence the long break.

Aye, my tattoo artist has a fairly light touch. Which is why the "holes" just caught us both by surprise.

Fair enough. I really advise you just leave it alone. It will be fine. Even if you have to get a touchup. 👍

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