How to prepare for a tattoo session

Whether it’s your first tattoo session or the last one, you can always do some things to prepare for that session. We have gathered these tips on how to prepare for a tattoo session to make it as comfortable as possible.

Looking at your tattoo session you should

Hydrate you

Maintain hydration levels in your body for the tattoo session. While, in general, it is advisable to stay hydrated at all times in order to maintain proper body function and good health, it is especially important to do it when you get a tattoo.

Staying well hydrated makes the skin more resistant, allowing longer tattoo sessions and the skin to heal faster after the session.

Moisturize the skin

Just as you should hydrate your skin from the inside by drinking water, you should also hydrate it from the outside with a moisturizer.

Put on cream or lotion on the skin once or twice a day for a week before the tattoo session.

Keeping the skin hydrated is one of the most important measures to take, since it makes everything easier for you and the tattoo artist. Please, do not hydrate your skin just before your session, as it could affect the operation of tattoo machines.


Shave the area where the tattoo will be to create the smoothest possible surface to work on. If you are not used to shaving, ask someone you know to shave regularly. A cut or perforation in the skin, no matter how insignificant, could make it impossible for you to tattoo on time. So pay special attention not to damage the skin during shaving.

A small amount of light body hair or fluff is acceptable, but for ideal results it is better not to have traces of hair. If you opt for waxing, be sure to do it a few days before the tattoo so that the skin is not irritated, but not long before the hair does not have time to grow back. Your skin needs time to heal after a wax before you can get a tattoo.
Remember, after shaving it is important to moisten the skin to keep it healthy and ready for a tattoo session. Avoid using an aftershave lotion that contains alcohol, as it will dry the skin.

You should shave the area one to three times a week during the weeks before your tattoo session, especially if you have a lot of body hair. In addition to facilitating the work of the tattoo artist, removing the hair will help the moisturizing lotion enter your skin and prepare it for the tattoo.

If you experience redness when shaving, stop shaving and allow at least a week for the skin to heal before going to the tattoo session.

Exfoliates the skin

Removing impurities from the pores of the skin is another way to make the procedure more comfortable for you and easier for your tattoo artist. Gently exfoliate the skin without irritating it using a vegetable sponge or a gentle scrub. The scrub will help the moisturizer do its job.

Rest well

Sleep well the night before your tattoo session. Go to bed early and do not drink alcohol or drugs the night before. You will want to rest well before having a piece of body art permanently on your skin .


Be sure to eat a healthy and balanced meal before going to your tattoo session. It is nothing strange that people lose their appetite due to nerves and end up fainting from fatigue in the tattoo chair. Although it seems that your body remains inactive while you get a tattoo, it is actually generating a lot of energy during the process.

Also, when you are hungry, controlling pain becomes more difficult , which makes the tattoo process more unpleasant for all the people involved. You will have to eat well, especially before a long tattoo session.

Take snacks (for long sessions)

If you are going to tattoo a large piece and have programmed it in a longer session, be sure to take a light snack at least. A snack is useful if you are hungry or want to be distracted during a particularly awkward part of the tattoo process. Choose a snack that does not go everywhere and can be eaten with one hand.

Depending on where you get tattooed, you may need to take a short break during longer tattoo sessions. These breaks are usually not long enough for you to have time to go out to eat. Anyway, you should not leave the room during a tattoo session to avoid contamination.

Don’t go get your tattoo if you’re hurt

If you suffer an injury before your tattoo session, call your tattoo establishment immediately and tell your artist the seriousness of your injury. Your artist may recommend that you reschedule an appointment so that your body has time to heal from the existing injury before getting under the tattoo machine.

What not to do before a tattoo session

Tattoos will not heal well on newly damaged skin, so you should avoid anything that causes damage to the skin. This includes tanning, an artificial tan, a sunburn, a chemical peel or any cut or scratch.

Weightlifting and strenuous exercise should also be avoided for at least 2 days before the tattoo session. Putting strain on the muscles can cause swelling and pain that can exacerbate the tattoo sensation and cause an impact on healing time. It can also cause your skin to stretch slightly, which can cause distortion of the tattoo when the skin returns to normal.

The day of your tattoo session you must

Go alone

While most tattoo establishments will allow you to take a friend or partner to share the great moment, it is generally not recommended to take people who are not going to tattoo. Viewers get bored and can even interfere with the artist’s work. If you have to take someone, warn that person that they will have to stay in the designated waiting area, unless the tattoo artist invites them to sit by the chair.

In general, children and babies are not allowed to enter tattoo establishments, as they can cause distractions, damage to equipment or interrupt artists trying to concentrate.

Dress appropriately

Dress comfortably and properly. Prepare for a long session and dress accordingly. Avoid tight or too tight clothes. Pay attention to the area where you want to get the tattoo and make sure that the clothes you wear do not prevent easy access to that area.

Bring something comfortable to rest

Take a pillow with you if you want to lie down a little or need to lie down for a long time while getting a tattoo.

Bring something to entertain you

Getting a tattoo is exciting, but getting tattooed can be boring. Bringing something to entertain that does not disturb the tattoo artist is a great way to spend time and get distracted from pain. It is acceptable to take portable entertainment such as an mp3 player, tablet or laptop for passive entertainment. Movies, music and television are fine, but nothing that requires movement, such as playing video games, is allowed, so leave portable games at home.

Not hurry

When you come to get a tattoo, relax and let the artist take his time. Do not schedule commitments immediately after your tattoo session. If you are in a hurry, you will create a sense of urgency and your tattoo artist’s work may be affected.

Be sober

Do not use any anesthetic balm or topical creams in the area to be tattooed the day you get the tattoo. While it is acceptable to take over-the-counter pain relievers during the tattoo session, never use drugs or alcohol to numb the pain, as they can cause various complications and compromise your safety and tattoo quality.

Don’t touch your tattoo

Never touch the affected area or let someone other than the tattoo artist do it. Your tattoo artist will be wearing sterile gloves and equipment. Therefore, any other contact can end in an infection.
Do not touch any tattoo apparatus and its parts

Leave the team to the professionals. Not only will you contaminate everything you touch, but you will anger the artist, to put it mildly.

Do not move

You can talk during the tattoo session as long as you do not accompany your talk with gestures of your hands or body. By doing that you will distract the artist and may end up having unwanted consequences. Stay still and be patient.


Follow these tips and your tattoo session will be something very simple. The tips described above aim to guarantee your safety and help your tattoo artist create the best possible body art piece, a piece that you will love to admire every time you see it.

Combine the tips detailed here with our prescribed post-treatment tips and your new ink will heal and be ready to be admired immediately.