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3 Post-Tattoo Moisturizers That Won’t Irritate Skin

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I love tattoos. Sorry, I do. I’m knocking on forty, I’m the mom of a first-grader, and I’m addicted to getting tiny, meaningless tattoos that I sort of regret shortly thereafter (never stops me from getting another one, though). As a person with very few vices—a good girl, in general—it’s a way for me to toy with being “naughty” for 45 minutes. Why I never consider that I’ll be 80-years-old with a tattoo of a dove in a purple satin Prince trench with his 1984-era curls is another story.

I have a problem.

In any event, I’ve gotten enough tats to know that, as they heal, the inked skin becomes crazy-dry, parched, and scaly. It’s totally unsightly. And it’s not a great idea to use lotions with fancy scents and ingredients, because anything that isn’t super-gentle and relatively straightforward can infect the area—and possibly ruin your art. A &D Ointment is always recommended, but it just isn’t sexy enough for me. (It makes me think of diaper rash, as that’s what it’s designed for.) So, I rotate these three other hypoallergenic, fresh-tat-safe moisturizers, instead. Check them out!

1: Ink Fixx Tattoo Aftercare Ointment | $5.99

Ink Fixx is chock full of all the essential vitamins you need to help heal newly inked skin cells—with nothing extra (no petroleum, scents, or dyes). Plus, it’s not greasy! I love this one, because it was actually created by tattoo artists for the industry.

2: H2Ocean Aqua Tat | $11

A lot of petroleum-laced moisturizers can make healing skin break out in tiny pimples. This one is gentle enough for the most sensitive skin, plus it helps protect the delicate area from the sun. Also, it’s totally unscented and not messy.

3: After Ink Tattoo Moisturizer | $13.99

A totally natural, vegan, grapeseed oil-based lotion, After Ink not only keeps the area moisturized until it’s fully healed (and after), but you can also use it as a brow gel, lip balm, or cuticle cream. Double-duty beauty always wins.

Tia Williams has been a beauty editor for 15 years, at publications like ElleGlamourLucky, and Essence.com. Back in 2005, Tia created one of the first beauty blogs, Shake Your Beauty, where she wove her love of products through hilarious vignettes from her life as a beauty expert and mom living in Brooklyn. She’s also written several books, including the best-selling novel The Accidental Diva and supermodel Iman’s The Beauty of Color. Follow Tia on Twitter @shakeyourbeauty.