You may have gotten a new tattoo recently and noticed that your tattoo artist wraps their gun, along with all the other equipment that was used, with a thin layer of plastic wrap. Why do tattoo artists wrap their machines?
Tattoo artists wrap their machines with plastic to keep them hygienic and avoid cross-contamination between their clients. They also wrap their equipment to protect themselves. Tattoo artists also wrap their tattoo machines with grip tape for optimal tattooing.
Tattoo artists always cover more than just their machines in plastic wrap, and this plastic is replaced after each client. Let’s take a closer look at what tattoo artists use to wrap their machines, why they use these materials, and why it makes all the difference in the tattooing experience!
Why Wrapping Tattoo Machines With Plastic Are Important
The tattoo artist covers their tattooing machines with plastic wrap and several other types of equipment. They wrap their bench where the client sits, as well as their tattoo workstation.
They also wrap the spray bottles that they use to disinfect and clean their equipment. Eventually, you, as the client’s freshly done tattoo, will be wrapped as well. Why is everything so wrapped up?
The tattoo artists wrap everything to make 100% sure that whatever you, as the client, come in contact with during the tattoo procedure is hygienic. This will also make sure that everything the tattoo artist touches is clean and does not contaminate anything with harmful bacteria.
Wrapping tattoo machines with plastic wrapping is also a crucial precautionary measure to prevent any cross-contamination of germs and disease between the tattoo artist and the customer and customer to customer.
Why Use Plastic To Wrap Tattoo Machines?
Plastic wrap is used for the tattooing process because it is easy to work with while sticking prominently to all surfaces that need protecting.
The fact that plastic wrap is so easy to use is also beneficial, as tattoo artists need to replace the plastic wrap after each client’s session, and they do not want the wrapping process to take long and the next client to wait.
Another reason for using plastic wrap is because it is also airtight. This will make sure that absolutely no bacteria and germs can get onto their equipment or their client’s skin through the plastic wrap.
This will allow the client to have complete peace of mind that they will not be exposed to any diseases or bacteria that could harm them and could be transferred to or from other clients. Wrapping newly done tattoos with plastic wrap is also a crucial part of safe tattooing because it allows the tattoo artist to be sure that the new tattoo will not get an infection.
New tattoos are prone to infections from bacteria while the tattoo is being applied on the client’s skin, as it could be seen as an open wound. Plastic wrap is especially vital on the artist’s tattoo machine, as their machine is the only piece of equipment that can directly contact each client’s skin.
The tattoo artists may also choose to rest the cord of their tattoo machine or a part of the gun itself on the client while the tattoo is done. Doing this should never transfer any bacteria to the client as long as the equipment is disinfected with either a disinfecting wipe or spray and thoroughly wrapped in plastic.
This makes sure that the client’s bodily fluids, such as their blood, from the freshly done tattoo, will not come into direct contact with the tattoo gun itself. The tattoo gun needs to be wrapped entirely in the same way with the plastic to remain hygienic enough to keep all the clients and the tattoo artists safe.
What Type Of Plastic Is Used To Wrap Tattoo Machines?
Do the plastic wrap artists use to wrap their machines look familiar to you? You’re going to be surprised to find out that there is a specific type of plastic wrap that needs to be used for wrapping their machines, and it makes all the difference!
The type of plastic wrap that artists use to wrap their machines, along with all their other crucial tattooing equipment, is called saran wrap. Saran wrap is not the same size nor has the same durability as the saran wrap that you would choose to use in your kitchen at home, but it sure looks very close to identical!
This saran wrap is made especially for wrapping tattoo machines, and it can only be bought from specialist tattoo supplier stores. This type of saran wrap is highly flexible as well as durable because it needs to stay intact on the tattoo machines for hours, depending on how long the client’s appointment is.
Depending on how long each tattoo piece takes to be finished will determine how long the specific piece of saran wrap will have to stay on each piece of tattooing equipment. The tattoo artists will constantly need to check on the saran wrap to ensure that there are no holes to keep the tattoo gun from being exposed to harmful bacteria and any possible cross-contamination.
One of the best things about saran plastic wrap is that it is entirely unable to absorb any bodily fluids that could come from a client’s freshly done tattoo.
Why Wrapping Tattoo Machines With Grip Tape Is Also Crucial
Apart from wrapping tattoo machines with plastic wrap for the reasons stated above. Artists also cover their machines with something called tattoo grip tape. This type of grip tape is an expanding, self-adhesive, comfortable cotton material type of wrap.
They provide some extra support and grip for the tattoo artist’s hands while they are doing the tattoo! Tattoo grip tape is specially designed to provide the tattoo artist with a more comfortable grip or bulk up an existing tube grip that may get uncomfortable or painful to hold for more extended periods.
This cohesive grip tape is usually wrapped around the handle grip part of the tattoo machine. It also helps to prevent the handle from slipping out of their hands. Wrapping tattoo machines with grip tape is also a crucial part of safe tattooing, as it grips well onto the saran plastic wrap and makes for very precise tattooing!
Whether your tattoo artist covers their tattoo machine with plastic wrap or a bandage, keeping the tattoo machine sterile is the main reason why every artist in the industry wraps their machine.
Grip tape is also an essential part of tattooing, as it allows the artist to grip their machine more tightly, giving you the best possible product. If you have any more questions, pop in at your local tattoo shop- tattoo artists love answering questions and concerns!
Some of my favorite designs, tattoo books, and aftercare products, selected for you
Thank you for reading my article, I hope that you have found it helpful. If you would have trouble finding ideas for your tattoo, wonder what is meaning of design that you have found or what to buy for aftercare, to make sure that your tattoo will be healing quickly and easily, here are some of my favorite products in one place, hope that this will also help.
Design and tattoo ideas
For some ideas you can have a look at those 3 books with hundreds of designs that I use with my clients, they are available on Amazon for Kindle or in classic, paper version (links below):
- Great Book of Tattoo Designs, Revised Edition: More than 500 Body Art Designs (Fox Chapel Publishing) Fantasy, Celtic, Floral, Wildlife, and Symbol Designs for the Skin by Lora Irish
- The Big Book of Small Tattoos – Vol.1: 400 small original tattoos for women and men by Roberto Gemori
- Tiny Tattoos: Over 1,000 Small Inspirational Artworks by Rebecca Vincent.
If you would like to read more about the meaning of different tattoo styles and designs before you will decide what you would like to have, I can recommend a book that was really useful for me when I was starting my tattoo adventure – it’s “Conscious Ink: The Hidden Meaning of Tattoos” by Lisa Barretta (through the link you can find it on Amazon for around $10).
The skin at the tattoo site often dries out. To prevent it and speed up healing for my clients, I usually recommend one of those tattoo aftercare balms (you can find them on Amazon):