What To Eat Before Getting a Tattoo?

If you are about to get your first tattoo, we’re pretty sure a lot is going on in your mind. Will it be painful? How long will it take to heal? What if the colors don’t bring off the results you had intended? Feeling nervous about your first tattoo session is pretty normal, but you should not worry too much and remain stress-free before the procedure.

That said, you should prepare yourself properly for a successful tattoo session. It might come off as a surprise, but your eating habits can significantly impact the quality of the tattoo. Can you eat before getting a tattoo? If you need to have a pre-tattoo meal, what to eat before a long tattoo session?

Stay with us to find out.

What To Eat Before Getting a Tattoo?

Should You Eat Before Getting A Tattoo?

Should You Eat Before Getting A Tattoo - Tattoo Strategies
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Yes, you should eat before getting a tattoo. Practitioners ask their clients to have a meal one or two hours before undergoing the procedure. If you walk in with an empty stomach, you might experience a terrible tattooing session. There’s a high chance of feeling nauseous and dizzy if you go under the needles without eating.

What Happens If You Don’t Eat Before A Tattoo?

What Happens If You Dont Eat Before A Tattoo - Tattoo Strategies
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When the artist draws a tattoo on your skin, it puts your body under a lot of stress. The end product is something beautiful, but to survive the bumpy ride to get there, your body needs a fair amount of ammunition. As the tattoo machine leaves behind a trail of hundreds of incisions, your body will use up the stored sugar and fat to cope with the pain.

Eating a healthy dinner the night before the appointment and a slow-release breakfast is vital so that when your body exhausts all of its calories, it may binge on the extra calories from your previous meal. Without these extra calories, you risk feeling lightheaded, and, in the worst scenario, you might lose consciousness in the tattoo chair.

Does getting tattooed burn calories?

What To Eat Before A Tattoo Appointment?


Getting a protein-heavy meal before a tattoo appointment is a good idea. Have you been thinking about hitting a grill house or throwing a backyard barbecue party? The night before you go to the tattoo parlor would be the perfect time for those activities. Also, don’t miss out on your favorite bacon and eggs at breakfast.

Bacon and Eggs - Tattoo Strategies

Your body heals better with protein. That extra serving of beans or chicken will aid your muscles and skin, so eat it before getting your tattoo and in the days that follow to help your body recover. Even if your fresh tattoo doesn’t hurt much, it’s a trauma to your skin. Thus it’s critical to nourish the body so that it can eventually heal.

Proteins are a type of body-building nutrient that helps your muscles and skin grow and heal. All body parts, including the skin, require proteins for development and regeneration. Protein also gives you more energy, making it easier for your body to cope with intense stress levels like tattooing.

Vitamin C

Before and after getting a tattoo, it’s helpful to eat foods that are high in vitamin C. Citrus fruits like orange, grapefruit, and lemon are the best sources of vitamin C. Drink a glass of orange, grapefruit, or lemon juice before going in. Avoid packaged juice; take a blender and make some juice on your own. You will also get vitamin C from broccoli, potatoes, kale, and peppers.

Vitamin C Rich Foods

On top of that, Vitamin C can improve skin firmness and has remarkable antioxidant properties. Therefore, vitamin C foods such as kale., spinach, broccoli, and citrus fruits should be a part of your diet before and after the visit to the tattoo parlor. You can also take vitamin C supplements.


Zinc is another helpful nutrient that you would want to include in your diet. It helps with skin swelling and infection. You would mostly cover it by eating proteins since poultry and seafood offer high amounts of zinc. Nuts and whole-grain foods are also great sources of zinc. And, of course, you can also opt for supplemental pills.

Zinc rich foods

Should You Drink Water Before A Tattoo?

Should You Drink Water Before A Tattoo - Tattoo Strategies
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Experts recommend drinking plenty of water before having a tattoo. You can also take a bottle of water with you to stay hydrated while you get inked. When you’re dehydrated, your skin gets thinner, so try to drink one or two extra glasses of water the day before your appointment. This will make your skin more tattoo-friendly.

You’re going to bleed to some extent during your tattoo session, but staying hydrated can help the procedure go more smoothly by reducing the amount of bleeding. Drink a lot of fluids before, during, and after getting inked. Drink water, fresh fruit juice, lime water, or lemonade to stay hydrated.

What to eat after getting a tattoo?

What Foods And Drinks To Avoid Before A Tattoo?

What Foods And Drinks To Avoid Before A Tattoo - Tattoo Strategies
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Energy Drinks, Coffee & Alcohol

Avoid taking a sip out of a Red Bull can or a coffee mug before the day of your tattoo appointment. Resist the temptation of drinking alcohol, even at moderate levels. All these are known blood thinners, so if you consume coffee, alcohol, or energy drinks before the procedure, your risk of excessive bleeding will be high.

Processed Food

Fruit juices and sodas that are sold pre-made have very high sugar content. Foods that have been processed, like canned products, smoked sausage, quick noodles, and fried meat, are high in salt and fat. It is known that skin inflammations brought on by sugar, salt, and oil slow the skin’s ability to recover.


Unless you are lactose intolerant, you probably love cheese. But refrain from eating it or other dairy items before your tattoo session. Despite their heavenly good taste, dairy products can make you burp. The artist might accidentally distort the tattoo if you do that during the procedure.

Final Thoughts

Don’t show up in the tattoo parlor without eating anything, even if you don’t feel hungry. Give your body the necessary means to fight off the stress and help it recover better once the process is done. Maintain a balanced diet that boosts your skin’s tenderness and regeneration ability.

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