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My Tattoo is Scabbing Underneath My Bandage. Is That Normal? What Should I Do?

First, determine whether the skin is scabbing or peeling. Sometimes, it can be tricky to tell the two apart but there are key differences. Tattoo scabs will look raised and heavy on the surface of the skin, while a peeling tattoo looks flaky. Not sure if your tattoo is peeling or scabbing? Check out our article on minimizing tattoo peeling to view reference photos and learn more. Some peeling is not uncommon during the tattoo healing process with Saniderm. However, it is not normal for a tattoo to be scabbing under the tattoo bandage.

Once again, we always advise users to change the first Saniderm bandage within the first 24 hours, take it off, and clean the tattoo like normal. Allow the area air dry for a few minutes before applying a second bandage, which can be left on for up to 7 days. To further prevent scabbing and peeling underneath your Saniderm bandage, you can apply a thin layer of tattoo aftercare such as Sanibalm before applying your second bandage. This step is especially helpful if your tattoo is dry or itchy. If your tattoo is still weeping, Sanibalm is not necessary.

If your tattoo IS scabbing underneath Saniderm, as long as there are no signs of infection or contamination, we recommend leaving the bandage on. Removing Saniderm from a scabbing tattoo may pull the scabs off prematurely, disturbing the ink and resulting in color and detail loss. If you need to remove the bandage from a scabbing tattoo, do so with caution and be sure to check out our guide on how to remove Saniderm. Speak to your tattoo artist for additional questions and concerns.

Looking for more information about proper Saniderm usage? Ask our extensive tattoo knowledge base or check out our entire guide to new tattoo care!

Updated on April 13, 2021

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  1. I’m on my 4th day with my saniderm on and my tattoo has scanned up pretty well as well as getting itchy due to said scabbing. Should I keep the saniderm on until the 7th day or remove it on the 5th day as my tattoo artist told me?

    1. Thanks for reaching out

      The recommended instructions are to apply at the finish of the tattoo and leave on for 24 hours. This will fill up with plasma. At the 24 hour mark, remove and wash the tattoo. Once dry, apply a second piece that will stay on for up to 6 days for a total healing time of 7 days. If the tattoo weeps into the second piece of film, follow the above instructions at the next 24 hour period and apply a 3rd piece. The third piece would then stay on for 5 days.

      If you haven’t changed it at the 24 hour mark then we recommend removing it and continuing with traditional aftercare procedures.

      Thank you,
      Saniderm Support

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