Is it Safe to get a Tattoo When Pregnant or Breastfeeding?

Getting a tattoo when pregnant or breastfeeding – is it safe?

Whether you are a tattoo addict and get regular tattoos for fun or you’re wanting to get a new tattoo in honour of your newly born, it may be best to wait a while whilst you are pregnant or breastfeeding. There are a lot new rules to adjust to when pregnant or breastfeeding so we’ve put a guide together to help you decide whether it’s safe for you to get a tattoo- 

Although there are no regulations regarding getting a tattoo during this time, The Journal of Midwifery and Women’s Health advises against getting a tattoo when pregnant or breastfeeding.  This could lead to tattoo artists refusing to tattoo you if you are breastfeeding due to the presumed increased risks. 

The tattooing process in general comes with risks as it is. Due to your skin repeatedly getting poked with a needle and the ink being put onto the second layer of skin, tattoos could lead to allergic reactions or skin infections. After all, new tattoos are basically an open wound that can be more exposed to infection. These complications may not be suitable when you are expecting as you may need medications that are not approved when pregnant or breastfeeding. 

Although rare, if the needle is dirty you could catch a serious infection such as hepatitis B, hepatitis C or HIV that could be passed on to your child through breast milk. This is why if you do end up getting a tattoo during this time, it is vital to go with a qualified artist that properly sterilises all equipment. 

It is also not advised to get a tattoo whilst pregnant due to hormonal changes in your body. It is thought that women with a weak immune system are of higher risk of infection and  pregnancy can decrease the full functionality of your immune system. Also during pregnancy your skin can become more sensitive so it will be more painful to endure than normal. So if you’re already finding pregnancy uncomfortable, you might want to wait till you are feeling better. 

If you do end up getting a tattoo, you need to bear in mind that during pregnancy, your skin will stretch. So your tattoo may look different overtime. For example, being distorted or lopsided depending on where and when you get your new ink. We’d also advise checking with your ob-gyn and telling your tattoo artist before your appointment. This gives your artist the choice of whether they feel comfortable tattooing you or not.

Preparing for a new tattoo in the future 

When you do decide to get a tattoo following being pregnant or breastfeeding, you can numb the pain with Official TKTX numbing cream. The level of strength you choose for your cream depends on your skin type, the procedure, the length of the session and your own pain tolerance.

Our strongest deep numbing cream is the Yellow TKTX cream. With the ability to be effective in only 1.5-2 hours, this cream numbs your skin for 3-5 hours. This tattoo numbing cream penetrates deep into your skin to manipulate the nerve endings and blood vessels. 

Aftercare is important too to avoid any infections. It is vital that you keep your skin clean and to avoid itching or picking at the scabbing which usually occurs on fresh tattoos. The Inkin signature aftercare spray provides you with a layer to help your tattoo heal without any problems.