Getting a tattoo can be a really hard decision to make, nearly as hard as picking what tattoo you want to get. One thing that should not be as hard to make a decision about is what numbing spray you should use for your tattoo.
While some people might feel that they can rough it and do without any numbing agent at all, it is still a good thing to have just in case you find that you actually can’t handle the pain. However, if you look you will find that there are a number of different options available when it comes to numbing sprays.
The fact is that some numbing sprays work better than others, and there is also some difference in how long it takes for each spray before it really starts working. These and other things are vital for you to know in order to help you decide which numbing spray is the best one for you.
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Numbing Sprays Vs. Creams Or Gels
Numbing sprays are not very expensive, especially not when they are compared to how expensive creams and gels can be. This is only one of the things that are in favor of sprays over every other kind of numbing agent that you can get.
One of the main advantages of sprays though is how easy it is to use this option. Literally all you have to do is to spray it on. This is opposed to a gel or cream which often requires you to use your fingers to rub it in, let it set, then rinse it off.
All of that is not to mention the fact that you will be wasting some of it on your fingers or the fact that you also have to cover it up for a certain amount of time with something that will keep in the heat. Those things add up to extra trouble that you do not even have to think about with most numbing sprays, though some do work the same way.
When it comes to pain relief a numbing spray can be just as effective as either of the other options. It is the active ingredients that matter most, and these are the same for all three different numbing products.
How To Choose Your Numbing Spray
Each numbing spray is different, some being widely different from other sprays. Each of these differences makes for different pros and cons to each as well. It is therefore important to know what some of these are so that you can look for them and so that you know what to expect.
One of the things that you should definitely look at is how long the numbing spray takes before you start feeling the effects. This is something that can range from as little as 5 minutes to as much as half of an hour. If you need to apply it before you head to the tattoo shop then you need to know this information.
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This is one of the most well-known options when it comes to numbing sprays. It is made in the U.S. who has been developing anesthetic sprays that are approved by the FDA since all the way back in 2004. Numb-ify Numbing Spray is one of their numbing options that are completely FDA approved.
All that you need to do in order to use it is to spray it on, leave it on for about a minute and a half, and then wipe off any excess moisture with a napkin or anything else that you might have on hand. The tip of the spray bottle should be about 3 inches or so away from your skin, and don’t forget it will take about 5 minutes to kick in fully.
To reapply the spray you have to go through that same process. Depending on how pain tolerant you are you may start to feel a little bit of the pain after a half of an hour or so, but applying it every half an hour is perfectly acceptable in most cases and by doing so you can often keep going for those long sessions that last for hours so you can get that big tattoo you have been looking at done all at once.
It comes in a 4-ounce spray bottle that makes it very easy to use without wasting any of it. What’s more than that is the fact that it is a formula that features 5% of lidocaine, which is well known to be the best numbing ingredient that there is. This makes it really good at numbing the area you spray it on.
It is part of this that allows it to take effect in as little as 5 minutes, and this makes it one of the fastest-acting numbing sprays that you will come across. In addition to that, the other ingredients in it also help to reduce the bleeding while you are being worked on and the swelling afterward.
While there are a lot of advantages to using this numbing spray, you should know that it is not perfect. As a disadvantage, you need to be aware of the fact that this spray does not really work until the skin is broken at least a little bit first.
This usually takes doing the outline of your tattoo first and means that you will undoubtedly feel the pain when the tattoo artist starts to work on you. However, once the outline of your tattoo is done and your skin is effectively broken enough then you can reapply as often as you want to in order to completely numb the area so that you don’t feel a thing.
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This numbing spray is made by the TAT Balm company, founded by body art enthusiasts out in Salem Oregon and, this being the case, it can truly be considered as being by body artists for body artists. Like the other great numbing agents, this one features lidocaine as its numbing ingredient, but the other ingredients are just as good.
In fact, this numbing agent is even scented with a fragrance to help you relax. Though this smell is not for everyone, it is nonetheless a great feature and many people enjoy the smell. Since you do not want to tense up when you are being worked on, anything that might help you to relax is a definite plus.
This spray is even formulated to be a three in one. The three different things that it does are: it numbs the area while you are getting your tattoo, has an antiseptic agent to help you heal without getting infected, and it also works as a painkiller after you have gotten your tattoo.
Other than the lidocaine, this numbing agent is made using only natural ingredients. This is good not only for the environment, but it also means that if your skin is sensitive to chemicals then this is a great option for you.
While most natural products are expensive because of that fact, this one actually is on the fairly inexpensive side compared to other numbing sprays. This means that it is great for your pocket as well as your skin.
The fact that it is a three in one is also definitely a plus, and it also has ingredients that help prevent bleeding and shorten the healing time of your tattoo. All these things put together can even help to stiffen your skin some, making it easier to work on.
All in all, this is a pretty great option, however not everyone likes the fragrance of this numbing spray at all. When you are stuck in a chair and trying to focus on anything but where the artist is working on your skin, having a smell that you don’t like is far from something you would want.
Also, this option takes 10 minutes before it takes effect. This is twice as long as the first option on this list and 10 minutes can sometimes seem like a very long time. Fortunately, it will likely not need to be reapplied very often.
#3. HUSH Anesthetic
The HUSH brand has been making numbing agents for tattooing since around 2008 and it is another company that is based in America. They have a range of anesthetic products, but this one is perhaps their best numbing spray for tattoos.
This one is not only FDA approved, but like the company’s other products it is never tested on animals. It is fairly natural, though not as much as the previous option, so it is still easy on your skin. It is eve 100% vegan, so if this is something that is important to you this is a great option to look at.
Once applied, this numbing spray starts taking effect almost immediately and it lasts for a fairly long time. This means that it won’t need to be reapplied very often and you can get comfortable for a long-haul.
One of the ingredients is aloe, and this does a great job of soothing your skin and speeding up your healing process. In particular, this and the chamomile work together as an anti-irritant, which is a good thing considering that needling inking your skin can be quite irritating to some people’s skin more than others.
While it does start taking effect immediately, it can take up to an hour before you start feeling the full effects of it. This means that you may want to apply it around a half an hour ahead of time in order for the area to be really numb.
You should also know that you won’t get the full effect until your skin is broken, so this means after your outline is mostly done. Until then you will have to bear some of the pain which, unfortunately, will not be as thoroughly numbed as some of the other options can as it is only 4% lidocaine and not 5%.
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The Gigi company has been around a long time, since 1972 in fact. They are based in the U.S. and they started working on numbing sprays originally to numb women’s legs before waxing so that they wouldn’t hurt as much.
Eventually they branched out a little to make numbing sprays for tattooing as well, this specific numbing spray being made expressly for tattoos. This specialty is nice, but enough of the ingredients are the same so that if you have any left over from getting your tattoo you can safely use what is left for waxing.
Part of what makes this numbing spray particularly for tattoos is the fact that Gigi specifically designed this numbing spray so that it will never interfere with the color or design of your ink. This is something that not all numbing sprays can guarantee but it is definitely something that you want to look for.
It is also made with sensitive skin in mind, and it absorbs nicely into the skin so that you are less likely to have to wipe any excess off. It takes effect fairly quickly, no longer or shorter than other numbing sprays that are used for tattoos, and it also has a comparable time that it lasts for.
Since it is another numbing spray that is only 4% lidocaine instead of 5% lidocaine, you will not have as strong of an effect as you would with a stronger solution. This means that for a longer tattoo session you will need to have touchups.
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This numbing agent is made by ATS Laboratories and it comes in a 1-ounce bottle so that you should have just the right amount for your tattoo without having too much left that you don’t know what to do with.
Along with the lidocaine for numbing, this agent also has yarrow root and yucca root in it. These are Native American plants that are used medicinally in order to both sterilize and help heal your skin. This is in addition to aloe and other natural healing ingredients.
This option is a very fast-acting numbing spray, and it starts to work in just a couple of minutes, making it possibly one of the fastest to numb your skin. The fact that it has so many natural ingredients is also a great plus.
Since it is made with tattoos in mind, there is no need to worry that it will affect the color of your tattoo. You can use this numbing spray with perfect peace of mind that it will do what you need it to. The natural ingredients in this case are the icing on the cake to give your skin some added help.
This is yet another option that requires your skin to be broken, so you can expect a bit of pain at first. While it does not take long to work, it does not last very long either. You will have to apply it fairly often in order to avoid the pain.
In order to get the best results out of this product, which is only 4% lidocaine, you should apply it well in advance and wrap it up. This is not something that you want to take time doing, but it will work well enough without this just not as well as it could.
While numbing sprays are a great option, these can accidentally get into your eyes at times if you are not careful. This is, of course, something that you should really try to avoid, but if this does happen you should immediately start rinsing your eye out and have someone else look at the back to see if there is anything else that the makers recommend for you to do.
If you can’t decide what numbing spray is best for you, the best thing that you can do is to ask your tattoo artist. This is for two main reasons. First, they have seen the different numbing sprays in action and are going to have a much better idea of how efficiently they numb the area and if it is the right choice for you.
Second, numbing sprays can make your skin a little oily and this can affect the artist’s ability to do the tattoo on you. Some artists do not like working with numbing agents, for this reason, sometimes refusing to work with it at all.
Most will allow the use of numbing agents if you tell them in advance, but these artists do tend to have their preferences of numbing agents they are willing to tattoo on and ones they are not. For this reason, if for no other, you should always talk to your artist before you show up with a numbing agent already in place and expect them to do a tattoo on you.