You have just received your tattoo

You have just received your tattoo... what do I do now?

Step One: Go to the drug store or supermarket. Buy vitamin E oil. The easiest way to get it is to buy a jar of vitamin E gel tabs. They are an amber color coating, with a liquid center. Buy a natural soap and some skin lotions, such as cocoa butter cream, or Lubriderm lotion.

Step Two: Your bandage should be removed after a couple of hours. You will see there is a layer of ointment making your tattoo shiny. Wash it off. Using a natural soap will benefit you more than a soap with chemicals, such as deodorants, perfumes, and colors. Use only your fingers to massage the soap into the tattoo. Using something abrasive such as a wash cloth could damage your tattoo. Rinse the soap well, HINT - using a liquid soap as opposed to bar soap, reduces the amount of residue left behind. Pat your tattoo dry with a towel. Keep in mind that you have an open wound, and anything that you touch to the wound can invite infection. So it is important that you scrub your hands down before washing your tattoo, and use a clean towel to pat dry.

Step Three: Moisture your tattoo with the vitamin E oil. It is important that you keep your tattoo at a constant level of moisture. Reapplying the ointment every hour or so, is to be expected. Do not over moisturize as it will take longer for your tattoo to heal. And keeping it too dry will produce scabs that my pull color out.

Step Four: Your tattoo will go through a peeling phase. It will look like flakes of color are falling off. Do not get alarmed. This is natural. Once your tattoo has flaked, you do not need to wash it on a regular basis. It is not fully healed yet, but risk of infection is gone. Your tattoo is still delicate during this phase, so, pleas be careful. You may opt to use the skin lotion as your moisturizer.

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It's Breast Cancer Awareness Month and one Huntsville tattoo shop is pink-inking for the cause.
"Regina is one of the strongest women I've ever met. She's got a heart of gold," said Jason Pauls, owner of Hot Rod Tattoos.

But not enough of the kind of gold that pays for her breast cancer treatments. That's why an old friend, Jason Pauls, is raising money at his shop, Hot Rod Tattoos.

"I knew that they were in a hard situation, and I guess it's really touching when someone close to you has breast cancer," he said.

So Pauls is offering pink ribbon tattoos, with all proceeds going to help pay for his friend, Regina Matlock's battle with cancer.

Pauls said he's pink-inked about 15 people so far. That includes Marianne Gatlin, whose grandmother died of breast cancer six years ago.

"She would probably be like, I can't believe you did that. But I think she'd be proud," said Gatlin.

It takes just 15 minutes and a $25 donation to make a difference that lasts forever.

"Now I've helped somebody, I've spread awareness about breast cancer, and I have a symbol for my grandmother on my body. It's amazing," she said.
A symbol she said is well worth the discomfort of getting a tattoo.

"Considering the pain that Regina's going through is something that I could never imagine, the pain of a tattoo is nothing," said Gatlin.

"I told her it's just the beginning. I'll do this as long as you're going through therapy," said Pauls. Pauls said he has already raised about $600. He plans to get the pink ribbon tattoo as well.

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