There are a few rules of the universe that are simply true, and one cannot fight the reality of. Gravity pulls, log fires are hot, water is wet. Not on that list? Tattoos have to end up looking terrible as you get older. And there is a reason it doesn’t make the cut. Though tattoos can, no doubt, have degradation over time, that’s not 100% guaranteed to happen. There are things you can do long after you got your tattoo that can keep it healthy as time goes on.
The first thing to remember is that your tattoo is on skin, so anything that is good for your skin is likely to be good for your tattoo. First, there are a lot of things one can do to avoid getting wrinkles. Staying hydrated is actually extremely great for your skin. By staying hydrated you help your entire body, allowing your body’s organs to function in harmony without putting stress on any particular organ like the skin. Another thing essential to skin health is avoiding getting burned or over-exposed to the sun. This means ALWAYS using sunscreen, even if you have a darker complexion or it’s cloudy outside. The sun doesn’t care.
Another thing is keeping your skin moisturized, just like you should do in the short term. But in the long-term, you don’t necessarily need to apply lotion 5 times a day. 1-2 times a day using a non-scented lotion can do wonders for keeping skin youthful. As dead skin cells get trapped underneath your skin, rubbing in lotion can make sure you are removing the dead cells and letting new healthy skin take it’s place.
Avoid Weight Gain or Loss
Another cause of skin degradation is of course size fluctuation(both muscle and fat). Gaining a significant amount of body mass, whether it’s fat or muscle, puts a great deal of stress on your skin—stress that becomes apparent if that mass is lost and you’re left with stretched, damaged skin. Waiting until you are at a point you won’t change size too much or picking a good spot is great, but for some people, it may be too late for that. If you already have one, do what you can to maintain a healthy diet, and do mainly toning exercises if at all possible.
You will also want to make sure that you avoid your skin getting infected or pores getting blocked. The simplest way to do this is to always wash your hands with simple, unscented soap. And when you do touch your tattoo, don’t rub it and be gentle. Doing this will stop any bacteria from causing infections. Another thing you can do to keep clean is to make sure you replace your bed sheets and pillow sheets regularly.
Wear the Right Clothing
As abrasion in general is a big no-no, avoiding tight clothing can be very helpful. But it doesn’t end there; there are also certain materials like wool that are very itchy and can cause damage to the tattoo even when loose. This is especially true for newer tattoos, and becomes less of an issue as the tattoo ages. But clothes don’t have to hurt the tattoo—In fact, proper fitting to loose clothing actually serves as a barrier to the sun, meaning you can minimize the damage done to the skin.
All of these together should go a long way towards making sure that your tattoo will be the envy of everyone at your retirement home!