You might already be prepared that tattoos on the ribs can be painful, as the skin tends to be thin and there’s not always much padding in the way of muscle of fat to save from the ouch of needles, but should you be doing anything extra to care for a tattoo in that part of the body?
The answer is that you need to look after tattoos on the ribcage as carefully, if not more carefully, as anywhere else! Follow these steps and all should be well!
- Follow your tattoo artist’s instructions to the letter! They know what they’re doing.
- Don’t let it soak; avoid baths, long hot showers, saunas or swimming for two weeks afterwards
- Do keep it clean! Use a small amount of a gentle, unperfumed, sulfate-free wash (such as Balmonds Natural Shampoo & Body Wash) and pat dry with kitchen roll/paper towels rather than rubbing dry with a cotton towel
- Apply a fine layer of protective, unfragranced, nourishing balm like Skin Salvation after washing, and again last thing at night, which should help protect the tattoo while you sleep.
- If your tattoo is on one side of your ribs only, sleep on the other side!
- Wear loose, breathable (not polyester) clothing on your top half! You don’t want anything rubbing against your new tattoo, and you don’t want to sweat excessively either!
- If you wear a bra, make sure it doesn’t rub over the tattoo; consider not wearing one if your tattoo is under your bra band.
- Avoid perfumes or body spray while it’s healing
- Avoid touching the tattoo!
- Don’t do hot, sweaty, vigorous workouts for the first couple of weeks! Stick to gentle exercise.
- And lastly… DON’T ITCH OR SCRATCH OR PICK THE SCABS!
If you have any worries, contact your tattoo artist and ask their advice: it’s what they’re there for.
Recommended tattoo aftercare products:
Balmonds Skin Salvation balm with hemp and beeswax (from £7.99 for 30ml)
Balmonds Natural Shampoo & Body Wash with calendula & nettle (£19 for 200ml)Balmonds Daily Moisturising Cream with chamomile and shea butter (from £13.99 for 100ml)
If you require medical advice we recommend you always contact your healthcare professional.
If you or someone you are caring for seems very unwell, is getting worse or you think there's something seriously wrong, call for emergency services straight away. For general medical advice, please contact your healthcare professional, this article does not contain or replace medical advice.
Do not delay getting help if you're worried. Trust your instincts.