PLASTIC WRAP BANDAGE
(Quote from the Association of Professional Tattoo Artists)
"The use of plastic wrap to cover fresh tattoos may have gotten its start at biker events. It was first used in the '70s & '80s. Newly tattooed people were peeling off their bandages to show their bros their new ink, so untrained tattoo artists came up with the See Through idea of plastic wrap. No need to peel that bandage back anymore. Blood wasn't much of an issue in those days.
Unfortunately, some of our uneducated Artists today fail to see the dangers and continue this error-filled practice. It has even been seen as "recommended" in a supposedly comprehensive "how to tattoo" book that is far too widely distributed to contain this erroneous information.
The problem is that plastic wrap creates an occlusive seal, meaning that no air gets in or out. This keeps all the bodily fluids pooling on the skins surface. That surface builds up body temperatures to nearly 103 degrees, which is a perfect breeding ground for bacteria. Your new tattoo has just been turned into a petri dish for bacterial growth. NICE, huh????
Then also think about that buildup of bodily fluids; all liquids must go somewhere, and gravity takes them to the bottom of the plastic wrap. Bodily fluids leak out and run down and off the body where people will brush against other people or surfaces, thus creating a multi-contaminated field. And putting a piece of paper towel at the bottom does NOTHING to stop the oozing and temperature buildup.
Not only is the use of plastic wrap illegal in most regulated states, but it's also a CHEAP INSULT to a client who deserves a better start with their new tattoo. What price is proper bandaging? How do you put a dollar sign on contamination?
Use of plastic wrap is forbidden in many quality tattoo conventions. National Tattoo Association and the Alliance of Professional Tattooists have outlawed its use in their shows."
If an artist tells you that you won't be keeping it on the skin long enough for bacteria to start, Think Again! It only takes 5-8 minutes for the temperature to rise high enough for bacterial growth.