From my many years (OK seven) of getting tattooed I have been through the healing many, many times. From this post you can see I have a tried and tested process for healing my tattoos.
However, I’m also quite happy to try new techniques if advised by a knowledgeable person i.e. a tattooist.
After my recent tattoo at Brighton Tattoo Convention, Jenna Kerr recommended using Palmer’s Cocoa Butter (fragrance free) to heal colour tattoos. I decided to give it a try, and I’m really pleased I did.
Normally I would go with the highly recommended Bepanthen and cling film combo, which does give the desired outcome, but there were some big differences between Bepanthen and Palmers Cocoa Butter.
1. The price
There is a pretty big price difference.
Bepanthen is a good quality nappy rash cream, loved by mums and tattoo fans, but it comes with a price tag to match. For a 100g tube of Bepanthen from Tesco, you’re looking at £6.99, compared to Palmers from Tesco, which for a 250ml bottle is £2.25/£3.00. I think the price difference speaks for itself.
Bepanthen is a thick cream which is pretty sticky. Of course it is designed to moisturise sore baby bums, so you don’t necessarily want it to be absorbed too quickly into the skin. But for tattoos it brings with it a mix of problems, including stained and greasy clothes, and a slimey consistency.
Palmer’s is a much smoother cream, which glides on much easier. You need a much smaller amount of cream to cover a tattoo. For my thigh tattoo, a ball around the size of two peas would cover the tattoo sufficiently.
As mentioned before, Bepanthen is sticky. It needs to be wrapped in cling film to stop it sticking to clothes, which not only ruins the clothing, but also runs the risk of ripping any dry skin on your tattoo off, which could affect the colour and finish.
Palmer’s isn’t sticky. It absorbs into the skin quite quickly making the tattoo moisturised fast. I haven’t had to use cling film at all whilst usimg it.
4. The itch
Anyone with extensive tattoos will know about the tattoo itch. I would say 90% of my tattoos have experienced the itch whilst healing. But using the Palmer’s the tattoo hasn’t itched once. I also asked Dann, who has been trialling the technique with me and he agrees. No itch.
When using Bepanthen I always find I get the horrible slimey, ink/blood/Bepanthen mix which has to be cleaned which to be honest can be quite gross, and smells pretty awful. Using Palmer’s, meant no cling film, which avoided this. Thus I believe it aids with keeping the colour in the design.
I’ve honestly no idea on the science, but I do think the colour pigment is better with the new cream.
All in all, I am super impressed with Palmer’s Cocoa Butter (fragrance free – this is pretty important) and will 100% be using it on future tattoos.
DISCLAIMER: I’m no expert in tattoo aftercare – I’m purely just sharing my impressions and experiences. If you are unsure at any time about the healing of your tattoo please consult your tattooist or GP. Tattoo infections can be very serious, though uncommon if you see a reputable studio and ensure clean and hygienic aftercare.
What do you use to heal your tattoos?
Will you be trying Palmer’s Cocoa Butter?