Aftercare Instructions in the Tattoo Community: An Opportunity to Educate on Sun Protection and Increase Skin Cancer Awareness

Skin Cancer

J Clin Aesthet Dermatol. 2020 Jun;13(6):22-23. Epub 2020 Jun 1.


Tattoo studios provide a unique venue for primary and secondary skin cancer prevention. Most tattoo artists promote sun protection for new tattoos in the form of aftercare instructions. Unfortunately, most tattoo artists are not well-informed on comprehensive sun safety recommendations, such as applying sunscreen prior to sun exposure with a sun protective factor (SPF) of 30 or higher, reapplying sunscreen when outdoors for more than two hours, using clothing that physically blocks ultraviolet

rays, wearing wide-brimmed hats that shade the head, or seeking shade when available. However, recent evidence suggests that tattoo artists are open to learning about comprehensive sun safety recommendations and secondary skin cancer prevention methods. Tattoo studios also offer an opportunity to reach younger adults who may not be exposed to public health information or have access to health care. In addition to providing aftercare instructions to their clients, tattoo artists can disseminate sun safety information through social media and tattoo studio websites. Tattoo studios might serve as a an effective intervention environment to provide comprehensive full-body skin cancer prevention recommendations. Current recommendations to protect new tattoos from the sun should be compatible with the current sun safety guidelines from the American Academy of Dermatology.