Can You Get A Tattoo If You Have A Cold?

Tattoos are getting more popular day by day. Despite the painful procedure, people are not hesitant to tattoo their skin. But you must not put yourselves at risk while getting a tattoo with a runny nose or any other illness.

That is, you shouldn’t get a tattoo if you have a cold because tattoos are a wound. And like any other wound, if you are not at 100% to begin with, then the healing process will get lengthy. As such, you will be at risk of getting infections, let alone putting others at risk.

It is important that you understand all the consequences of getting a tattoo if you are sick to make the perfect decision.

Can You Get A Tattoo If You Have A Cold?

Can You Get A Tattoo If You Have A Cold?

No, you shouldn’t get a tattoo if you have a cold. Suffering from cold means you already have quite a poor immune system which is not the ideal scenario for getting yourself a tattoo. Getting a tattoo is like having a medical procedure. That is why you have to maintain certain things before getting a tattoo.

Here’s how a body with a poor immune system reacts after getting a tattoo.

Poor Immunity

You should have a solid immune system before having a tattoo to avoid a lengthy healing process. The chance of infection and consequent effects on the quality of a tattoo increases with the duration of the healing process.

Your immunity wasn’t as resilient as it could have been when you were subjected to the flu virus, which is how you got the common cold. However, a short-lived cold is not a sign of a weak immune system.

So if it starts to fade after around 72 hours, things are likely to get back to normal. But if you repeatedly catch colds throughout the season or if your cold seems to stay much longer than usual, your immunity may not be that strong (at the moment).

If you fall into the second category, talk to your doctor about your tattoo plans and find out why you can’t seem to get over the cold or flu this season. Additionally, think about visiting a nutritionist to naturally strengthen your immune system.

You can book your tattoo appointment once your immune system has stabilized.

What Happens If You Get a Tattoo While Sick?

What Happens If You Get a Tattoo While Sick - Tattoo Strategies

Even though you are not technically prohibited from starting with your tattoo session while you are ill it is not advised for a variety of reasons. So to find the answer to the question, can you get a tattoo while sick, you must understand the consequences.

Some of the consequences of having a tattoo while you are sick are discussed below:

You will feel awful.

A cold or other illness is a sign that your body is battling an undesirable microorganism swirling inside you. Your immune system is hyperactive, and symptoms, including a runny nose, headache, body aches, and more, are frequently present.

If you go to your tattoo session on your own, just think about the anxiety and discomfort of having many needles pierce your skin while you’re already in pain. Getting a tattoo is already highly painful and uncomfortable, so the agony and misery of a cold and its effects will worsen it.

Risk of Infection Is Higher

When you have a cold, your body is battling an invasive, harmful substance.

Your body’s white blood cells are being sent to different areas in response to your illnesses to combat and eradicate whatever is attempting to damage you.  In a nutshell, getting a tattoo causes an open wound on your skin that needs to be healed up. This implies that many of your white blood cell warriors will swarm to close and repair this open wound instead of continuing to fight the current fight against your sickness.

Thus you will be overextending your defenses, which raises the possibility of difficulties when your tattoo heals. 

There is a higher likelihood that bacteria or external irritants will get past your troops and infect you if your body cannot entirely focus on the tattoo or wound you recently received.

You Could Spread an Illness to Those Around You

Speaking of infections, getting a tattoo while unwell jeopardizes not just your own health but also the health of everyone else, notably the tattoo artist.

Going on with a tattoo session when you can’t be sure you’re not infectious, wouldn’t infect the other people in the room, and won’t also be transmitting your disease is selfish. A sneeze or cough can potentially contaminate an otherwise sanitary space.

Keep in mind that if you are exhibiting significant signs of illness, artists do have the authority to refuse your entry.

Medication and Side Effects

There may be some adverse effects whether you take over-the-counter (OTC) or prescribed drugs to treat your cold virus and the associated coughs and other illnesses.

It is advised to avoid taking the medications for a full 24 hours before getting inked if they cause adverse effects, including nausea, sleepiness, headaches, increased sensitivity to pain, elevated blood pressure, or general sensations of agitation, restlessness, irritability, and anxiety.

You must wait until the prescription is finished if your primary care doctor has prescribed these drugs for you. It’s also crucial to be aware of how drugs used to treat cold symptoms may affect bleeding.

Ibuprofen, aspirin, and naproxen, for instance, are frequently found in multidrug cold remedies and may react with other medications that alter bleeding. To ensure that your blood isn’t being thinned out if you’re taking or mixing medications, let your pharmacist know about your upcoming tattoo.

Related Article: Can you get a tattoo after surgery?


Do tattoos strengthen your immune system?

Yes. Getting a new tattoo is like having a health condition. And it triggers the immune system to send white blood cells and protect again infection. Multiple tattoos can actively reinforce immune responses and improve the body’s capacity to fend off common diseases like the common cold, according to new research from the University of Alabama (UA).

How much time does a typical cold last?

In general, a typical cold lasts around ten days. Colds can be brought on by more than 200 different viruses. Common cold has no known treatment. However, it usually passes after a week to 10 days.

Does your body reject the ink from tattoos?

When you receive a tattoo, a needle is used to inject the ink into the dermis (the second layer of skin). Your body responds to this ink as a foreign invader by triggering the immune system to locate and eliminate the foreign substance.


It’s not always a fun experience to get a tattoo. The results will probably be to your satisfaction, but the procedure itself can be difficult. When doing so, you’ll want to be in the best possible condition, especially if the task is considerable and time-consuming.

When you are ill or have a cold, your risk of infection increases, as does your risk of spreading your illness to others. Due to all of these factors, we advise holding off on getting your tattoo until you are feeling better.  However, if you are healthy and confident that you can handle the increased discomfort, get your tattoo.

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