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QOW: Tattoo Healing Slowly, Color is Dull

By January 25, 2009

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Question: I got a butterfly tattoo set about two weeks ago, and now it is flaking and scabbing-it's also dull. I washed it, put ointment on it, and now cream (fragrance free), as well. There is still some redness, and of course it itches like mad! What I would like to know is, is it normal for a tattoo to take this long to heal? I hope the dullness clears; when I first got the tattoo it was so pretty!

Answer: Everyone heals at a different rate, so I wouldn't be too worried yet - if it appears that it IS healing (even if slowly) and there doesn't appear to be any severe redness or infection, then you're probably okay. Just give it a little more time and yes, once it is FULLY healed, the original color and brightness should come back. Looking dull is just part of the healing process. If you notice any dullness of color once it's fully healed, most artists offer a free touch-up within a certain amount of time from the original tattoo.

On a more personal note, I would suggest that maybe you see your doctor to see why your body is responding so slowly to heal. It could be an indication of a bigger problem, like Type 2 diabetes. Or it could simply mean that you're lacking some essential vitamins that keep your immune system healthy. Either way, this could be your body telling you that it needs something and this is a good opportunity to have it checked out.

Comments

January 25, 2009 at 4:36 pm
(1) Darren says:

Hello. Just like to say, great answer to a typical question. Great advice. Simple things like slow healing can show more serious, under lying ailments. Looking forward to the book Karen. Keep the ink flowing. Darren.

January 26, 2009 at 8:43 pm
(2) Mark says:

Its very comon for tattoos to take some time to heal. the itchyness is all part of it it means its getting beter, so dnt stress, if it starts to get sore and red its possible you have pikt up infection but until then just keep it clean, dont wipe it just dab it gently. Also its good to keep any tight or rought material fabric clothing of it.Keep it out of the sun and surf. Hope that helps and it turns out great for you…
Mark

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