Tips For Your Tattoo Day

Welcome to Overground Tattoo! We are excited and grateful you have chosen us for your body art. Below you will find tips and tricks to ensure your tattoo experience is maximized to the fullest.

At this point in your process of getting a tattoo, you have already secured your appointment with a deposit. Here at Overground Tattoo we implement a Deposit Policy to ensure your time as well as the artists time is utilized efficiently.

Deposit Policy: You must place a deposit at the time of booking to ensure you have secured that date and time. The deposit will be applied towards the total amount of your tattoo. If you need to cancel or reschedule, we require a 24 hour notice in order for your deposit to be refunded. If you cancel the day of or no show your deposit will be NON-REFUNDABLE.

1. Do not come to your appointment drunk or hungover. Alcohol thins blood. This makes it more likely that you can bleed more during the process as well and more bruising and delayed healing.

2. Do not come in with a sunburn. When your skin is sunburnt, blood rushes to the surface of the effected area in order to heal it. Tattooing over sunburnt with likely cause more bleeding than usual while being tattooed. This can also result in scarring.

3. Prepare your skin. It is a good idea to moisturize regularly for at least a week prior to your appointment. This will allow your skin to tolerate the session better, and help speed up the healing process.

4. Get a good night of rest before your appointment

5. Eat and Hydrate before you come. Your body needs a lot of fuel before a tattoo session. Stay hydrated with plenty of water. Boost your energy levels with peanut butter. Foods high in Vitamin C such as citrus fruits, broccoli and kale also help with wound healing.

6. Shower before your appointment. Avoid lotion or perfume on the area in which you are getting tattooed.

7. Dress comfortable and appropriately to allow access to the area being tattooed. We recommend bringing a sweater as well. Bacteria breeds in warm climates so we tend to keep the shop on the cooler side.

8. Bring a drink and snacks. While we do take short breaks here and there, its a good idea to have something that is easily accessible with one hand during your session. Drinks like juice, sports drinks or soda are recommended since they contain sugar. This helps to help maintain your bodies blood sugar level during your session.

**If during your session you experience feeling shaky, excessive sweating, headache, are lightheaded, turn pale, blurred vision or heart rate increase please tell your artist immediately as you are experiencing the effects of low blood sugar. A little break and some proper snacks will have you feeling better in no time.**

9. While you may bring 1-2 people with you, we ask that you don’t bring a group with you as there is limited seating, tends to get boring for those waiting and is more distracting which can make your tattoo take longer.

10. For safety reasons, we ask that you not bring children. We understand this accommodation can be difficult and urge you to talk to your artist who will be happy to reschedule you.

11. Feel free to bring some sort of entertainment or distraction. Phone, iPad, etc along with headphones are a great way to pass the time.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much do tattoos cost?

The cost varies depending on size, detail and placement. Our shop minimum is $60 and goes up from there. Each artist has their individual hourly rate.

Do tattoos hurt?

The quick answer is yes, but not that bad. The process is the application of pigment deposited into the second layer of skin known as the Dermis. However, the pain is relative and each individual has a different tolerance for pain. If tattoos were really that painful people wouldn’t continue to come back for more and more.

Are tattoos safe/sterile?

If you go to a professional tattoo shop where the proper materials are used and state sanitation standards are met, getting a tattoo is very safe. Here at Overground Tattoo we use only single use materials for each client and follow sanitation protocol before and after each appointment.

Should I tip my artist?

Although tipping your artist is not required, it is greatly appreciated. It shows your appreciation to the art and effort put into your design. Something is always better than nothing. Another good way to show your appreciation is through referrals. Word of mouth is always great!

Can I get tattooed while pregnant?

No. There are too many different things that can happen that we do not take that risk.

What time of year is the best to get a tattoo?

Despite what many people think, Winter and Fall are the best times to get tattooed. This is mainly because your skin is generally protected by more clothing from the elements. The less exposure your skin gets, the better your tattoo with heal.

Can I tan with tattoos?

Never expose an unhealed tattoo to natural or artificial UV light.

The sun is a tattoos worst enemy! After a tattoo has healed, always protect it from natural and artificial UV light.

*Spray tanning is fine as long as the tattoo is FULLY healed.

At What age can I get tattoo?

It is ILLEGAL in California to tattoo a minor. You must be 18 years of age.

How long does it take?

This all depends on the size or your tattoo. Typically, a tattoo takes an hour and up.

How long does a tattoo take to heal?

On average, a tattoo will look completely healed within 4-6 weeks. The skin below however, can take anywhere from 2-4 months to completely heal. Following a proper aftercare routine from the start with help speed up the healing process.

When should I NOT get tattooed?

  • Drunk
  • High
  • Pregnant
  • Pre-Surgery
  • Post-Surgery
  • Contraindication Health Issues
  • You are legally old enough
  • You don’t know what you want
  • You don’t have enough money
  • When you are sunburned
  • When you haven’t showered
  • When you have your kids with you
  • If you don’t have an ID
  • If you are being pressured into it

Are children allowed?

While there is no rule or law stating you can not bring them, but we do not recommend it.

How should I prepare for my appointment?

*Please refer to our How To Prepare page*

What should I wear for my tattoo session?

It’s very important to be comfortable during your session. Looser is better than tighter, and keep in mind you want to be able to cover up certain places that might show, depending on where you’re getting your tattoo.

Can you tattoo over a scar?

Yes, you can tattoo over a scar. Actually, tattoos over scars are a great way to conceal them. Consult with your tattoo artist before hand so a good game plan can be discussed and put into action.

Tattoo Aftercare

Suggested Aftercare For Tattoos
1. Remove bandage in a CLEAN bathroom 3-6 hours after the tattoo is completed. Bandage may be left on overnight if it feels comfortable and secure. If the bandage is removed on the first night, your tattoo may stick to and stain your bed sheets. Wash your bedding throughout the healing process (about 2 weeks).
2. After removing bandage, wash the tattoo immediately with warm water and soap. We recommend Dr. Bronner’s unscented baby soap, or plain orange Dial soap out of a pump bottle. No soap with fragrance, and no bar soap.
•Carefully remove bandage and tape (in some cases we use a breathable adhesive called Saniderm….please read above for Saniderm instructions)
•Make a lather in your hand with soap and warm water
•Gently clean your tattoo using a circular motion, until all ointment, blood, and plasma is removed
•Rinse the tattoo until the skin is clean and not slimy
•a hair dryer on the ‘cool’ setting may be used; a clean paper towel or clean towel/wash cloth may also be used to dab the tattoo dry
3. Only use CLEAN HANDS to wash your tattoo. NO dirty washcloths, dirty bath towels, bath sponges or loofahs on a fresh tattoo.
4. Once the tattoo starts to dry apply recommended healing ointment (this can take 2-6 days depending on the person, or if your artist used Saniderm on your tattoo). Apply a thin layer of ointment and rub it in, then dab excess off with a clean paper towel. Use the ointment only when the tattoo feels or looks dry (1-2 times a day max) remember thin coats are the key here…LESS IS MORE
5. Fresh tattoos sometimes “weep” during the first couple of days, meaning that plasma and ink form a thin moist coating on the skin. This can be DABBED with a clean paper towel. Press the paper towel to the skin and remove. Do not wipe your tattoo or be rough with it. Do not panic when you see the colors of the tattoo on the paper towel, or on your hands as you clean it. This is simply excess ink being sloughed from the surface or the skin.
6. Once a day, in the shower (with your recommenced soap), is usually enough cleaning for any new tattoo. Consult your artist if you plan to do any strenuous activity within the first ten days after your tattoo.
7. Wear loose, preferably cotton clothing over the fresh tattoo. The tattoo does not need to be rebandaged except in certain, rare instances. A bra strap, tight waistband, sweaty gym shoe or itchy cotton sweater can potentially create healing problems. Consult your tattoo artist for advice on what clothing to wear/avoid. If you choose to re-bandage your tattoo after washing be sure that only sterile bandages are used and be sure to consult with your artist first because airflow is extremely important for your tattoo to heal properly.
8. After a few days, the tattoo will begin to form flaky scabs that will fall off on their own. DO NOT PICK OR SCRATCH AT YOUR TATTOO. Keep it moisturized and the scabs will flake off eventually. Once again, they will be the color of the tattoo. It normally takes 2-4 weeks to heal and then you’re good to go about your daily routine. It can take a tattoo up to 3 months to fully heal as each thin layer of skin forms over your tattoo little by little; This is good to know incase any parts of your tattoo appear shiny, it is completely normal and the shine will dull out as your skin continues to build over your tattoo. If you have ANY questions about your healing, please contact one of our artists at (619)663-6355. Please do not consult your friends about healing issues, as everyone’s experience is unique. Our artists are more than happy to help with any concerns you might have.

Saniderm Aftercare

*Saniderm minimizes the risk of infection by protecting your tattoo so it can heal through its own natural methods.

*When applying a moisturizer to the tattoo, you create a tacky surface for these elements to stick to. Obviously, this heightens the risk of infection. For this reason, many people turn to a tattoo bandage to help cover the skin and limit the risk of contamination.

*By design, Saniderm’s tattoo bandage is permeable enough for oxygen and water vapor to pass through. This is important, as it allows the wounded area to maintain optimal levels of breath-ability.

*Regardless of how much fluid build up you experience, you should always make your best effort to change the initial film at the 24-hour mark to clean the area and replace the bandage. After you apply the first Saniderm bandage, the second bandages can be worn for 3 to 5 days.

*The best way to remove Saniderm is to find an edge of the bandage, and then to pull it back over itself in the direction of hair growth.

*Try removing the Saniderm in a warm shower. The warmth will loosen the adhesive, and make it easier to remove.

*If you get your Saniderm wet, it’s no big deal!

*My Tattoo Is Weeping Fluid Out Of The Bandage
Certain tattoos weep more or less, depending on a lot of different factors. Your body excreting plasma and “weeping” is a completely normal beginning to the tattoo healing process. However, excessive weeping may negatively affect the adhesion of the bandage. If you are experiencing excessive weeping, you will simply need to clean the tattooed area more often than normal.

Tips for cleaning and reapplication of Saniderm

1. Do not use a washcloth, loofah, or sponge to clean your tattoo. These can be painful to clean a new tattoo with, and may harbor bacteria.

2. Do not hold your tattoo directly under the water. Wash it indirectly by splashing the water over the tattoo with your hands. The stream of water from the faucet may be too harsh on your new tattoo. If your new tattoo is covering a large area of skin, it may be easiest to wash the tattoo in the shower.

3. Once you have thoroughly washed the tattoo, gently pat it dry with a little paper towel. Do not rub the tattoo, as this may cause irritation. Leave the tattoo uncovered for 15-20 minutes before reapplying another Saniderm tattoo bandage. This will allow any excess moisture in the tattoo to evaporate.

4. The best way to remove Saniderm is to find an edge of the bandage, and then to pull it back over itself in the direction of hair growth. Pulling upward on the Saniderm can be painful, so we don’t recommend it. In some rare cases, certain people will “stick” to the Saniderm bandage more than others, which can make it more difficult than normal to remove. In cases like this, try removing the Saniderm in a warm shower. The warmth will loosen the adhesive, and make it easier to remove.

5. OPTIONAL STEP: Apply an extremely thin layer of an aftercare ointment or lotion (our favorite is Sanibalm) to the tattooed area before reapplying your Saniderm.

6. Make sure that you properly apply the Saniderm bandage and leave at least 1 inch of buffer area around the tattoo. Doing this will play a large role in preventing fluids from building up too much and spilling out.

*Can I use Saniderm more than 24 hours after getting a tattoo?  The answer is, “yes.”  As long as you are within the first 48 hours of your tattoo you can still apply the bandage. Even without scabbing, we still recommend using a thin layer of aftercare ointment before applying the Saniderm bandage.

*Air Bubbles

A: Simply make a small cut, let the air bubble out, and apply an additional small piece of Saniderm over the newly exposed area. This is the option we generally recommend, just because it’s fast and easy. Be cautious when making the incision, however, as you don’t want to harm the tattoo below. Don’t apply too much pressure and try to make the smallest slit possible—just enough to release the air trapped inside.

B: Or, perhaps you don’t have any more Saniderm on hand. If this is the case, gently attempt to push the air bubble out by hand. Take caution during this process — go slowly and be attentive.

*Exercising and working out while wearing Saniderm is fine.

*Since its beginning, Saniderm has always been a 100% vegan product, and will continue to remain so.

*Saniderm is latex free, so allergic reactions are very rare. However, some individuals have extremely sensitive skin or allergies to adhesives. If you do experience a rash, abnormal skin irritation, or other symptoms of an allergic reaction, discontinue use and wash with mild soap.