Choosing The Right Dressing For Your Tattoo

502480967aa70.image_After getting a tattoo there are two main kinds of dressings that an artist will offer you. The first and more common is a cotton dressing while used less often is a plastic wrap. Sometimes an artist will give you the choice to select which wrap you would like while others may simply use what they prefer. Nonetheless, it is your job to be educated about the positives and negatives of each type of dressing to ensure that your tattoo is properly cared for.


The cotton dressing is commonly associated with the tattoo as it is the most feasible means to dress the new art. The main advantage of cotton is that it can be sterilised and will absorb most of the bodily fluid or ‘plasma’ that leaks out of your new tattoo. This can be very useful as it saves the patron the trouble of having to constantly wipe the tattoo every few minutes.

However, this dressing equally has some negatives. Because the cotton dressing absorbs bodily fluids, it can easily become saturated and actually may lead to an infection if not changed roughly every two hours. If bodily fluid collects in too great a quantity on your tattoo, it will leave a nasty scab.

If you do get a cotton dressing, you MUST make sure you periodically change the dressing!


Less commonly used but still around is the plastic see through wrap. This is probably more aesthetically pleasing to the patron as they can see their tattoo, yet less protective against infection. With a plastic dressing, plasma often leaks out and forces the patron to constantly be wiping it away.

However, the positive thing about the plastic dressing is that you don’t have to change it as often – perhaps every 4 hours or so.

If you do have a plastic dressing, you MUST keep plenty of towels nearby to wipe away any plasma that leaks out!


Essentially, the cotton dressing is probably more protective against infection, but the plastic dressing is more pleasing as you can see your tattoo. If you ask us, be patient, let your tattoo heal under a cotton dressing, and then you can look at it for the rest of your life!

IN addition to taking care of your dressing, make sure you also supplement your tattoo aftercare needs using our aftercare lotion!