How To Sleep With a New Tattoo

You will need as much sleep, as you can get after having a new tattoo for your body to mend and regenerate swiftly and effectively.

However, sleeping with a fresh tattoo can be difficult and painful, not to mention unsettling. Nobody likes to unintentionally smudge their fresh ink in the middle of the night.

Pre-Bed Routine

Cleaning your tattoo carefully but thoroughly before sleeping is essential to ensure that any leftover bacteria is eliminated. If you leave any bacteria surrounding the wound, they can grow and reproduce while you’re asleep for hours (in a warm, cosy environment, which they love).

When it comes to the initial wrap of your tattoo, you should carefully heed the advice of your tattoo artist. On your first night, some artists will urge you to take off your wrap before bed. While others will suggest you leave it on till the next morning.

It’s always vital to follow your tattoo artist’s directions because they are the ones who know your ink the best.

Tips For Sleeping With A Tattoo

 1. Use an extra clean sheet that you don’t

The use of a fresh, alternative bed sheet has a few benefits.

You should maintain your new tattoo as clean as you can to avoid any bacteria from infecting it because at the beginning of the healing process. It is essentially just a large open wound.

The night you return from the tattoo shop should always be spent in clean bedsheets, and throughout the following few weeks, until your tattoo has sufficiently healed. You should change the sheets as frequently as you can.

You won’t need to worry as much about the cleanliness of your bedsheets once your tattoo has done peeling because it will have grown a new skin layer over it to protect it from bacteria that might cause infections.

Second, your tattoo will undoubtedly leak a mixture of blood, ink, and plasma for a couple of nights. This mixture is notorious for seeping onto bedsheets, and after it dries, the colour pigments in the ink make it very difficult to remove.

Because of this, if you have a beloved set of sheets that you don’t want to spoil, you should absolutely use a spare (clean) sheet that you don’t mind getting stained with blood and ink.

One benefit of doing this on the first night is that you can make an effort to limit leakage and bedsheet sticking.

 2. Don’t put off getting a tattoo


This is the challenging part, especially if you have a tattoo that is in an odd location and always sleep in the same position.

The ideal situation is to avoid letting your tattoo come into contact with anything, and you definitely shouldn’t lie on top of it so that it presses up against your mattress.

In addition to making the tattoo stick to the sheets as you sleep, this could deprive the region of oxygen, which would slow the healing process. For your wound to breathe and regenerate properly, it needs clean, healthy air.

Lastly, if your tattoo is firmly pressed into your mattress throughout the night, it is likely to become heated and perspire, and this warm, muggy environment is ideal for this to happen.

 3. Don’t Rip Off Stuck Sheet

You could occasionally discover when you get up in the morning that the wound has been rubbing against the bedsheet and has dried against it (often after removing your tattoo wrap).

Pulling the sheet away from your skin in this situation is the worst thing you can do. The ink from your tattoo may be pulled out during this process, leaving you with blotchy, patchy colour and a longer healing time.

The best course of action is to carry the entire bedsheet into the bathroom and gently run the affected region under warm water until the sheet eventually separates from the skin.

Compared to simply trying to pull the sheet away, this approach is much gentler and less likely to harm your new tattoo.

4. Don’t let pets in the bedroom

Animals adore blood, and they also harbour a tonne of microorganisms, including dogs, cats, and other species.

Pets can have extraordinary senses of smell and can search out even the smallest bloody wounds from a distance of several metres. If they smell your new tattoo, they will spend the rest of the night trying to figure out how to get to it so they can lick it clean.

Keeping your pet outside of the bedroom is the only way to prevent them from jumping onto your bed while you’re sleeping, starting to lick, and spreading millions of horrifying germs onto your tattoo, regardless of how much you or they may not want to.

5. Get 8 hours

Sleep is when your body does the majority of its mending. Your tattoo’s healing process will be impacted and take significantly longer if you get only 5 to 6 hours of sleep each night.

It’s always best to try to get as much sleep as you can for the first week or so after getting a new tattoo to give it the best chance of healing quickly and effectively, even if you’re a natural night owl.

6. Elevate

Due to gravity, tattoos on your lower extremities (and occasionally your wrists and hands) are typically more likely to swell since blood and lymph will naturally flow and pool closer to the ground if it can.

Therefore, if it’s possible, try to elevate your tattoo while you sleep by placing a pillow or rolled-up towel underneath the area in order to prevent as much uncomfortable and painful swelling as possible.

7. Don’t Drink or Smoke

After a few drinks, you’ll not only be more prone to bump your tattoo against other things, but alcohol also significantly lowers the quality of your sleep. It’s important to abstain from alcohol for at least the first few days of your tattoo aftercare regimen in order to offer your body the best chance of healing.

In light of the foregoing, smoking restricts blood vessels and reduces the number of nutrients and oxygen that reach the area. Increasing the risk of infection and postponed healing. If you want amazing results, it’s best to give up smoking for a week before and a week after getting your tattoo.

8. Clean and Moisturize

When you roll around in bed and rub your fresh tattoo against the mattress and sheets while you sleep. The sheets may draw moisture from the area, possibly resulting in the tattoo becoming dry and damaged.


Apply an excellent unscented, skin-sensitive moisturising lotion or a specifically formulated tattooing lotion to the region after cleansing your new tattoo. As soon as you wake up to aid healing and prevent dryness and itching.

My personal favourite tattoo lotion is an aftercare item made of vegan ingredients called After Inked Tattoo Aftercare Lotion. In addition to keeping your tattoo incredibly well-hydrated during the healing period. This item also works wonders in relieving itching and irritation. This lotion will assist shorten tattoo healing timeframes and act to get rid of any leftover dryness and scabbing. If used right at the beginning of the healing process.


Although sleeping with a new tattoo can be uncomfortable, by following the above instructions, you’ll give yourself the best chance to ensure that your tattoo heals quickly and effectively while also enjoying a restful night’s sleep.



Read Also: How To Waterproof A Tattoo For Swimming


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