Why Is My Tattoo Bubbling? How to Fix It?

Tattooing is a 3-step process; you get inked first, let it heal, and the tattoo finally forms. But sometimes, it might go wrong in the healing process. You get yourself a tattoo, but after some time, it starts to bubble. You may ask around- why is my tattoo bubbling?

Tattoo bubbling happens when the scabs become too wet. If you don’t dry off your tattoo after showering, the scabs can become saturated with water. Also, if lotion or ointment is applied over wet skin, the water will be trapped inside the scabs causing the skin to bubble.

One of the most common issues the tattooer faces is tattoo bubbling. You’ll notice that the scabs on your healing tattoo swell up and turn squishy and sticky when tattoo bubbling happens.

Tattoo Bubbling

Why Is My Tattoo Bubbling?

Why Is My Tattoo Bubbling - Tattoo Strategies

When the healing process of your tattoo is ongoing, the tattooed area may go through a scabbing process. Scabbing is a normal procedure; when you get a tattoo, the tattooed area goes through this scabbing process. Scabbing is normal, but bubbling is not.

After tattooing, you may ask around – what is tattoo bubbling?

To put it simply, tattoo bubbling happens when the tattooed area is exposed to too much moisture. One of the common reasons for it is going swimming immediately after tattooing, using too much moisturizer or products on the tattooed area, or not drying the tattoo properly.

You can identify tattoo bubbling very easily. When your tattooed area starts to bubble, the tattoo will look gooey, wet, and over-saturated.

My Tattoo Is Bubbling; Will It Ruin the Tattoo?

My Tattoo Is Bubbling Will It Ruin the Tattoo - Tattoo Strategies

If you can dry off the bubbling before mistakenly rubbing off the scabs, the tattoo won’t be ruined.

If you’re not careful with tattoo bubbling and your scabs and ink are peeled off your skin, you might easily destroy your tattoo. Additionally, if an infection results from tattoo bubbling, you risk damaging your tattoo.

Avoid wearing or using accessories that can rub against your tattoo if you suffer tattoo bubbling. Also, wait until your tattoo has dried before touching or cleaning it. Doing this will decrease the chance of removing any scabs and damaging your tattoo.

Tattoo Bubbling- How to Fix It?

Tattoo Bubbling How to Fix It - Tattoo Strategies

Tattoo bubbling can happen to any tattooer. So, all tattoo fans and tattoo artists should know the ways to fix tattoo bubbling. If your tattoo starts to bubble, don’t panic, it is quite a common issue. To make things easier for you, we will talk about how to fix a bubbling tattoo.

First off, it’s always a good idea to contact your tattoo artist if you have any problems with your ink. It’s crucial to send your artist a short email to let them know if you have redness or discomfort, for instance. It might assist in reassuring you and making sure that you get the most acceptable counsel available.

In general, it’s important to follow as strictly as possible the tattoo aftercare guidelines provided to you by your tattoo studio. Although aftercare guidelines differ from studio to studio and artist to artist, they must always be followed.

Moving on, avoiding over-saturating a tattoo is one of the most effective techniques to treat a bubble tattoo. This is particularly important for recent tattoos. Stay away from taking long baths or swimming in the water.

Use aftercare products sparingly and by your artist’s recommendations; blot excess product if necessary. Other than that, you should:

  • Try to take shorter showers and immediately dry off your tattooed area.
  • You should expose your tattoo to fresh air and let it breathe so it can adequately dry off.
  • It is recommended not to use moisturizer until you notice the tattoo bubble beginning to fade. If using lotion is necessary, apply a dime-sized quantity and make sure your skin absorbs it immediately. If you accidentally apply too much moisturizer, blot the extra with a paper towel.
  • Never apply moisturizer on a wet tattoo.

It’s vital to remember that if your tattoo is bubbling, you need to keep an eye on it. Make a note of your aftercare regimen and change it as soon as you experience any problems. Although it is pretty standard and will eventually heal, tattoo bubbling can be uncomfortable.

Finally, be careful to visit a doctor immediately if you think your tattooed area is infected.

Although having a tattoo bubbling, it does not always indicate you have an infection in the area. If you also have other symptoms like itching rashes, discomfort, or a fever, you should seek medical attention immediately.

Aftercare Tips For Tattoo Bubbling

Aftercare Tips For Tattoo Bubbling - Tattoo Strategies

For aftercare of your tattoo, you should seek your tattoo artist’s advice. Because a tattoo artist knows properly which kind of aftercare is suitable for your skin. Some of the aftercare routines would be:

  • After you have tattooed your skin, you should wrap the bandage around your tattooed area immediately
  • You need to wash your tattoo three to four times every day. This should go on for about 3-4 days. Also, use unscented soup on your tattooed area.
  • You must follow the washing routine for at least two to three weeks. Also, replacing the ointment with unscented ointment is a must.

There wouldn’t be any tattoo bubbling if you could’ve prevented it in the first step. 

To prevent bubbling a tattoo, you should

To prevent bubbling a tattoo you should - Tattoo Strategies
  • When taking a shower or washing your tattoo, avoid getting waterlogged.
  • When washing your entire body in the shower, ensure your tattoo is away from the water.
  • For a few weeks, soaking in water.
  • Before using lotion or ointment, be sure your tattoo is completely dry.
  • Don’t use too much lotion or ointment.
  • If you accidentally apply too much lotion or ointment, remove any extra with a fresh paper towel before it bubbles.

When to see a doctor

If you think your skin is infected, you should not wait. Asap contact a doctor. Tattoo infections can be severe at any time. Infections can ruin your tattoo completely. 

How Long Does It Take to Tattoo Bubbling Go Away?

How Long Does It Take to Tattoo Bubbling Go Away - Tattoo Strategies

It usually depends on the severity of tattoo bubbling. If your tattoo is bubbling, you should let it dry for a few hours. When you leave the area to dry, the scabs will dry off, too, and that will make the bubbling better. Overall, dryness prevents tattoo bubbling.


Can a tattoo bubble years after getting your tattoo?

There hasn’t been a case where tattoo bubbling happened years after getting a tattoo. Tattoo bubbling usually occurs when your tattoo is going through healing stages. When your tattoo fully dries off, there is no way tattoo bubbling will happen to your skin.

Does going to the sun causes tattoo bubbling?

No, going to the sun does not cause tattoo bubbling. Tattoo bubbling happens because of soaking your newly tattooed skin in water. If you expose your new tattoo to the sun, it may cause blistering.


Did you find your answer to the questions you had in mind?

To make things easier for you, we have tried to answer why your tattoo might be bubbling and the ways to fix that. Usually, soaking too much after getting your tattoo may result in tattoo bubbling. 

Tattoo bubbling is normal for new tattooers, so you should not worry much. Follow the aftercare routine we have provided, and your tattoo will heal quickly.

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