Tattoos are beautiful pieces of artwork that have the honor of being displayed on your skin. However, if you or your tattoo artist does not take care of this "artwork" carefully, it can have some not-so-pretty consequences.
One of the main results of inadequate tattoo care is known as tattoo scarring.
So, what is the main difference between tattoo healing and tattoo scarring?
In the beginning, scarring and healing may be indistinguishable as they both can leave your skin inflamed for a couple of weeks. Although, if the tattoo is past the healing period, but your skin is still exhibiting a reddish color, then your tattoo may be scarred.
Dealing with tattoo scarring can be scary, especially if you do not know where you went wrong. So, to make this situation a little more comfortable, we have decided to provide you with a guide that will help you get back on track by keeping your tattoo healthy.
So, What Exactly is Tattoo Scarring?
Tattoo scarring is a condition in which your tattooed skin exhibits scars after healing.
When your tattoo has scarred, the skin on and surrounding your tattoo will be red and inflamed. The lines running through your tattoo and some shaded areas may seem swollen or puffy, and you even may see a little discoloration. Otherwise, if your ink is not swollen, it may appear sunken in.
What Causes Tattoo Scarring?
There are several practices by you or your tattoo artist that can lead to tattoo scarring:
One common cause of scarring occurs if your tattoo artist overworked your tattoo or has gone too deep into the epidermis.
When a deeper layer of your skin is damaged, this prevents your skin from healing normally instead, it heals as a scar.
- Peeling at Scabs
Tattoo scarring can also be the result of improper aftercare.
Scabbing after receiving a tattoo is normal, but if you continuously peel at this tattered skin, then this can cause substantial scarring. Also, beware of scratching as that could unconsciously peel away at your skin.
If you neglect the sanitation of this sensitive area, your tattoo will be susceptible to scarring. Bacterial infection can have unpredictable results, but one of its most eminent consequences is tattoo scarring.
- Skin That is Prone to Scarring
Everyone's skin adapts to tattoos differently; thus, some people have skin that is more susceptible to scarring than others.
If you know your skin has a hard time healing from wounds and blisters, then this may be something you need to consider before getting a tattoo.
These reasons stress the importance of going to a trusted tattoo artist, as well as being aware of the proper procedures you should take after obtaining a new tattoo.
Read also: Tattoo Aftercare Instructions
Can You Fix Tattoo Scarring?
Luckily, tattoo scarring is not the end of the world, as there are a plethora of different ways out there that you can use to fix or prevent this issue:
Using a moisturizer will not remove your scar completely, but it will do a substantial job in reducing redness and approving the overall appearance.
Most importantly, by using moisturizing products for tattoo healing you will reduce the risk of getting scar tissue.
- Tattoo Touch-up
If color distortion within your tattoo is extremely evident, then it might be best to get your tattoo touched up. However, if you have significantly raised tissue around and on your tattoo then this may not be an option that should be considered.
Does Tattooing Over Scars Hurt?
Unfortunately, yes, tattooing over scars will make the procedure more painful than usual. Since your skin is already damaged, it will be especially sensitive, consequently making things a lot more painful.
For that reason, It is essential that you wait until your scar is healed before deciding to get it redone. This may take anywhere from months to years, depending on how bad your tissue was damaged.
Additionally, if your scarred tissue is raised, it will be a lot more difficult to get it tattooed over; thus, it would be best to wait a bit longer to ensure it has completely healed.
As a rule of thumb, the longer you wait to get your ink redone the less pain you will experience.
What Does Tattoo Scarring Look Like?
Tattoo scarring has many distinct looks, but there are a few popular distinctions that you should be aware of to understand the difference between scarring and healing.
- Raised and Sunken Skin
A known reaction to tattoo scarring is the appearance of raised or sunken skin. This will occur in the areas of skin that have the most damaged tissue.
- Redness and Inflammation
If your tattoo still exhibits redness well after it is healed while appearing swollen, then the culprit is definitely tattoo scarring.
- Color Distortion
Lastly, there is color distortion, which makes the color of your tattoo seem faded and maybe even blurred.
Keep in mind that a tattoo is, after all, just a wound, so it needs to be taken care of accordingly. Always go to a trusted tattoo artist to avoid amateur mistakes that can damage the appearance of your tattoo.
Treasure your artwork, and remain educated on proper care, so you can happily show off your gorgeous new ink!