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Saniderm Ruined My Tattoo (Solved!)

Saniderm Ruined My Tattoo

You just got a new tattoo and you’re so excited to show it off. But when you finally remove the sidearm bandage covering your tattoo, you notice that the skin around your tattoo is red and peeling, wrinkled, or maybe the ink has faded. 

Chances are, saniderm ruined your tattoo. But should you be blaming saniderm for it and is it entirely its fault?

No, Saniderm is a medical-grade adhesive that is used to cover tattoos. It is applied directly to the skin and is supposed to protect the tattoo and help it heal and it’s safe. 

However, Saniderm can mess up a tattoo IF YOU DON’T follow the instructions properly. 

In this post, I’ll discuss the different reasons why a sidearm would ruin a tattoo and what you did wrong. I’ll also go through what you should do if a sidearm ruined your tattoo. 

Table of Contents

Is Saniderm Good For Tattoos?

Saniderm is a bandage made of medical adhesive and plastic film. It’s been used to heal all sorts of wounds, including tattoos. It’s breathable, waterproof, and wear-resistant.

In short, Saniderm is good for tattoos. It’s a safe and effective way to protect your new tattoo from infections and it can help speed up the healing process. 

Can Saniderm Ruin A Tattoo

But you need to know exactly how long to leave the sidearm on the tattoo, if not sidearm could harm your tattoo.

Can Saniderm Ruin A Tattoo?

Saniderm might have saved your tattoo from infection, but that doesn’t mean it’s without its risks.

Here’s the deal: Saniderm is not a bad product by any means. It serves a very important purpose—it protects your new tattoo from bacteria and other contaminants. 

But the problem occurs when people keep it on for too long if they remove it early or if they don’t remove it properly.

Let’s take a look at some of the scenarios where sidearm can ruin a tattoo:

Saniderm Stuck To Tattoo

One of the ways sidearm could ruin your tattoo is if the sticky residue doesn’t go away and you start scrubbing it.

 Do NOT scrub it!!

If the sidearm residue just won’t come off, even when you peel away the sidearm while taking a warm shower, you could try using a good amount of coconut oil with a damp cloth and wiping the tattoo. 

Removing Saniderm Too Early

If you remove the saniderm too early it could cause more scabing than usual.  Plus, it’s going to be bad if these scabs start to come off prematurely.

Removing Saniderm Too Early

But it’s also important to keep in mind that sidearm is just for protecting the tattoo and not for healing. If this happens, you can start your aftercare routine and it shouldn’t cause a big issue. 

Leaving Saniderm On Too Long

If you leave Saniderm on for too long, it can ruin your new tattoo. Leaving it after you see blood and plasma underneath will block your pores from breathing and the tattoo will start to weep. 

Plus, the saniderm loses its effectiveness and your tattoo will be irritated and red. 

We covered this in greater detail in another post on Saniderm, please have a look. 


Saniderm is a popular choice for tattoo aftercare, but it’s not always safe for everyone.

If you are allergic to saniderm you will experience a reaction to the bandage that was used to protect your tattoo. 

It will cause the tattoo and the skin around it to become irritated, itchy, and red and all the other allergy symptoms thus opening up a good chance to ruin your new tattoo. 

Other Wounds Near The Tattoo

If there are any other wounds or scrapes near the tattooed area, wrapping the tattoo with them can ruin your tattoo.

These wounds could have microbes and they will get trapped inside by the saniderm and it will spread to your tattoo which will cause infections.

Other Wounds Near The Tattoo

So avoid wrapping other wounds with a sidearm along with the tattoo.

Too Much Sun Exposure

It’s important to know that Saniderm will not protect your tattoo from the sun. 

Also read: How to waterproof a tattoo

So if you’re going to be spending a lot of time outdoors, it will fade and ruin your tattoo. So you’ll need to take other precautions to protect your ink.

Have A History Of Keloid Scarring

If you are prone to keloid scarring, you should avoid using Saniderm without consulting a dermatologist or a doctor.

Using a sidearm could cause the keloid scars to grow larger.

What Should I Do if Saniderm Ruined My Tattoo?

If the sidearm has already ruined your tattoo, the only thing you can do is get a touch-up done after the tattoo is fully healed.

However if your tattoo artist comes to know that you didn’t follow his instructions, they might refuse to offer a touch-up.

Saniderm is a great product when it’s used properly, but if it’s not, then it can do more harm than good. So be sure to listen to your artist and do as he says at all times. And maybe do some research. 

Can You Put Saniderm On A Peeling Tattoo? 

The short answer is yes, it is safe to use Saniderm on a peeling tattoo for up to 24 hours. Saniderm can help to protect your new ink while it heals.

But there are a few things to keep in mind. First, make sure that your tattoo is ready for Saniderm. If the skin is oozing, then it’s not ready yet. 

Read more about tattoo peeling here.

Second, make sure to clean the area by dabbing it with a wet paper towel after peeling off the Saniderm. Do not wipe as it will pull out ink and ruin the tattoo. 


How to Get Saniderm Residue Off?

To remove Saniderm residue, it is important to approach the task gently to protect your skin and any underlying tattoo.

First, wash your hands thoroughly to prevent introducing any bacteria to the area. Then, lightly moisten the skin with warm water; the warmth can help loosen the adhesive.

Proceed by applying a small amount of oil-based products such as baby oil or coconut oil onto the residue.

Oils tend to break down the adhesive properties, making it easier to wipe away without harsh scrubbing that can irritate the skin or damage the tattoo.

After letting the oil sit for a few minutes, you can gently peel or rub off the residue with a soft cloth, moving in a direction that is comfortable for your skin.

Can Saniderm Remove Ink?

Saniderm is a medical-grade adhesive bandage that acts as a barrier to protect new tattoos during the initial healing stage.

It is designed to lock in the body’s natural moisture and healing enzymes, which is beneficial for the tattoo’s healing process. However, it is not intended to remove ink from the skin.

In the case of a fresh tattoo, it’s normal for some excess ink to be released from the skin. When Saniderm is applied, this excess ink may collect in the bandage, which might lead someone to mistakenly think that Saniderm removes ink from the tattoo itself.

Is Saniderm Bad for Tattoos?

No, Saniderm is not bad for tattoos; in fact, it can be quite beneficial. Saniderm is a medical-grade, breathable adhesive bandage that is designed to protect new tattoos during the initial healing phase.

It acts as a barrier, shielding the fresh tattoo from bacteria and other contaminants that could lead to infection or negatively impact the healing process.

Furthermore, Saniderm helps to keep the tattoo slightly moist, which can prevent scabbing and preserve the quality of the ink as the tattoo heals.


Saniderm is a great product for protecting tattoos, but it’s not 100% foolproof. If it’s not taken off or applied correctly, or if there’s a lot of moisture present, the sidearm can mess up the tattoo.

So if you’re thinking about using Saniderm, make sure you listen to the directions carefully and remove it as soon as instructed.

And if you’re ever worried that your Saniderm is causing problems with your tattoo, take it off and consult with a professional tattoo artist.


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