Best Lotions for Old Tattoos: Reviews & Buying Guide

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How do you keep your tattoos looking new?

Simple, just use one of the best lotions for old tattoos.

You’d be surprised at how moisturizing your old ink from time to time makes a noticeable difference in how it looks.

We have to note that there’s a caveat. This is because the lotion that you pick specifically for old tattoos might be a bit different than you think.

Also, because there are so many different products on the market it can be hard to find one that lives up to its claims.

That’s where we aim to help out. Just pick from our reviews below to get a top-quality product. We chose our favorites based on their ingredient profile, price, and customer feedback.

25 Best Lotions for Old Tattoos (2021 Update)

CeraVe SA Lotion for Rough & Bumpy Skin

CeraVe formulated their SA Lotion to treat keratosis pilaris and psoriasis. It has salicylic and lactic acid, which are two excellent exfoliants.

It also uses hyaluronic acid and ceramides for intense moisturization and Vitamin D to help the healing process.

Since it doesn’t contain artificial fragrances and dyes and is non-comedogenic, the lotion is great for sensitive skin.

Alpha Skin Care – Renewal Body Lotion, 12% Glycolic AHA

Alpha Skin Care uses glycolic acid in a weaker concentration. Start with this one if you’re a beginner with exfoliating lotions.

The fragrance-free formula has a pH of 4.0 that is easy on the skin. It’s acidic, similar to your body, to prevent irritation.

Not only will it help with excessive dryness, but it also boosts collagen production to firm up your skin.

Glytone Exfoliating Body Lotion with Glycolic Acid

Glytone uses a generous concentration of glycolic acid, another natural exfoliant.

Besides helping with dehydrated skin, the lotion can also help to heal cracked elbows, knuckles, and heels.

To avoid any skin irritation, don’t use this product on your face and don’t use it right after hair removal.

Adamia Therapeutic Repair Lotion

Adamia’s therapeutic lotion heals damaged skin using macadamia oil. It absorbs fast and doesn’t leave behind a residue.

The ingredients are non-GMO. This means no parabens, no petroleum, no phthalates, and no artificial fragrance.

Not only is this one of the best lotions for old tattoos, but it’s also ok to use for treating new tattoos.

Gold Bond Ultimate Radiance Renewal

Moving on from the lotions that exfoliate, let’s take a look at another inexpensive and effective option.

This lotion uses cocoa butter, coconut oil, along with shea butter. These emollients rejuvenate ashy skin to make it much softer.

As a result of this,  your tattoo will look much crisper.

Alba Botanica Very Emollient Daily Shade SPF 15

Alba Botanica’s lotion also provides good protection from the sun.

It has lots of botanical ingredients and emollients. Soothing chamomile and green tea firm your skin, while lavender helps to reduce inflammation.

As a bonus, it’s free of parabens, artificial fragrances, and phthalates and is 100% vegetarian.

Eucerin Daily Hydration Body Cream with SPF 30

Eucerin makes getting ready in the morning easy by combining body cream and sunscreen.

We’d recommend this lotion as one of the best lotions for old ink because it softens your skin while protecting you from UV rays.

Using this cream will help keep your tattoo crisper for longer.

The hydration effects last for up to 24 hours after you apply it. Moreover, it doesn’t have any artificial fragrances or dyes.

Curél Fragrance-Free Comforting Body Lotion for Dry, Sensitive Skin

Curél’s Comforting Lotion is suitable for both old and new tattoos. It moisturizes the skin for up to 24 hours using time-released ingredients.

It uses a ceramide complex. Ceramides help restore the skin’s natural barrier which prevents moisture loss and infection.

The formula is non-greasy and made for both face and body.

Vanicream Moisturizing Skin Cream

If you have sensitive skin or allergies, you’ll want to check out this lotion by Vanicream. The rich texture doesn’t contain any parabens, fragrances, dyes, lanolin, or formaldehyde releasers.

It’s so mild and hydrating that it won the Seal of Acceptance from the National Eczema Association.

Feel free to use it on your face and body as it won’t cause breakouts or blackheads.

NIVEA Men Maximum Hydration 3-in-1 Nourishing Lotion

Nivea’s lotion for men is a favorite among many guys. It provides intense hydration for rough spots like hands, knees, and elbows. But it’s also mild enough to use on the face and rest of the body.

Although it absorbs pretty fast, the effects last for 24 hours or longer.

Lubriderm Tattoo Daily Care Water-Based Lotion

Lubriderm makes a special lotion specifically for old tattoos. It’s excellent for maintaining your ink and keeping it looking vibrant.

It has a lightweight texture that absorbs fast. But it’s also moisturizing at the same time. It features soybean seed extract, glycerin, and Vitamin B5.

Everyone 3-in-1 Lotion for Hands/Face/Body

Everyone’s Lotion doesn’t use any of the no-nos like gluten, artificial fragrances, parabens, dyes, and GMO ingredients.

It uses lots of vegetable glycerin, sesame and coconut oils, and vitamins B5 and E to restore your skin’s health. It also contains aloe, calendula, chamomile, and white tea to keep your body young and firm.

Hempz Natural Triple Moisture Herbal Whipped Body Creme

Hempz produces a variety of vegan lotions that have different fragrances. This one in particular smells like peach and grapefruit.

It has a whipped, airy texture that smooths onto the skin fast. With hemp seed oil and Yangu, it’s a great moisturizer with potent anti-aging benefits.

After application, it protects your skin for 24 hours.

Tattoo Goo Original Aftercare Lotion

Tattoo Goo is a popular choice among people with sensitive skin. It doesn’t use petroleum, mineral oil, lanolin, or artificial fragrances.

Instead of this, it has vitamins A and D that promote healing. Plus, if you use it on new tattoos, it prevents them from scabbing which is problematic.

Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Body Lotion

Yes, you can use Aveeno lotion for old tattoos. It revives old tats and protects new ones while they go through the healing process.

The fragrance-free formula won’t clog your pores, and it absorbs fast without leaving behind a residue.

The secret weapon in this lotion is colloidal oatmeal. It’s very soothing for the skin as it relieves dryness and itching.

Ink By Ed Hardy Tattoo & Color Fade Moisturizer

If you like to tan, then Ink By Ed Hardy might be the one for you. It’s a moisturizer that can extend the life of your tan to keep you bronzed longer. More importantly, it makes old tattoos pop.

It’s loaded with shea butter and antioxidants which both repair damage to your skin done by harmful UV rays. Also, it uses the company’s own Tattoo and Color Fade Protector to keep your tattoo looking bright.

Just bear in mind that it does not contain sunscreen.

Once you try it, you might get hooked. It never has a greasy feel, and it’s a pleasure to use.

INK Tattoo Sunscreen SPF 50+ Stick

Sure, this isn’t a lotion, but we’re including this product all the same. After all, it still moisturizes the skin while protecting it against sun damage.

This convenient little stick ensures that UV radiation doesn’t damage your tattoo.

JWOWW Natural Black Bronzer with Ink Guard

This JWOWW lotion defends your tattoo using shea butter and vitamins to stop it from fading while you tan.

This is not a sunscreen, but rather an indoor tanning lotion that has instant bronzers.

As a nice side effect, it makes the skin soft and smooth.

After Inked Tattoo Moisturizer & Aftercare Lotion

After Inked lotion was designed and used by well-known tattoo artists. It was even featured on Ink Master.

This vegan moisturizer contains grapeseed oil that helps keep the skin young. It doesn’t contain parabens, petroleum, artificial fragrances, or gluten.

If you’ve done permanent makeup procedures for tattoo removal, it’s mild enough to use on the skin there, as well.

Hustle Butter Deluxe

We like Hustle Butter because it’s natural and all-round useful.

You can use it during the tattoo process, plus it helps to heal new tattoos.

Later on, you’ll find that Hustle Butter makes your old tattoo look vibrant once again.

Some of the top ingredients include shea and mango butter, coconut and sunflower oil, rosemary, green tea, and mint.


Here’s another tattoo lotion that’s good for reviving old ink.

You can use it as a spot treatment on faded tattoos to brighten them up.

It’s formulated with raw shea butter and essential oils of tea tree, lavender, and rosemary.

Ora’s Amazing Herbal Tattoo Salve

Give your tattoos a boost with this salve. It uses grape seed oil that’s infused with organic herbs and essential oils. It features calendula, comfrey, burdock, tea tree, rosemary, and more.

It’s made fresh in the USA and is free of artificial ingredients.

Tattoo Aftercare Oil by Urban Nomads

Urban Nomads created this tattoo aftercare oil to double as beard balm and deodorant. It can also help to repair split ends.

It might be worth it to consider packing this one on your next trip.

It’s handmade in Barcelona using argan, almond, and sunflower oils, along with hints of bergamot, lemon, and rosemary. As you can imagine, it smells amazing.

Billy Jealousy Marked IV Life Tattoo Care Kit

Billy Jealousy wants to give you everything you need to maintain your tattoos in their best condition.

This kit features tattoo wash, lotion, and salve.

The wash exfoliates dead skin using glycolic acid and papaya extract.

Then, the lotion moisturizes with cucumber and shea butter to keep your ink looking as fresh as the day it was done. Use it twice a day for the best results.

Also, the salve is loaded with vitamin E and lavender oil to speed up the healing process. Apply it to your new tattoo three times a day.

What Makes Tattoos Fade?

There are three major reasons why tattoos fade over time.

  1. If your skin is dry it can cause your tattoo to look hazy.
  2. Sunlight damages the pigment.
  3. The tattoo may spread as your skin gets old. Your body will continually try to break down the pigment.

How Does Lotion Make Tattoos Vibrant?

If you moisturize your old tattoos, you’ll notice they look brighter.

But it’s not just the hydration that matters.

Most lotions have ingredients that rejuvenate dry, unhealthy skin.

When your skin is healthy, your tattoo will appear sharp and clear.

What Else Helps Revive Old Tattoos?

As long as you exfoliate regularly, you’ll discover that it helps to revive older tattoos.

You don’t need to worry about scrubbing off your tattoo because it is found in the dermis layer of the skin. This is the level underneath the outer layer of your skin.

Exfoliating only removes the top layer of dead skin cells. This is like cleaning the dirt from a window so you can see out more clearly.

Therefore, we recommend using a loofah in the shower a couple of times a week. Or you can use an exfoliating lotion, as well.

The only negative thing is that moisturizing won’t fix everything. At some point in time, you may notice that your tattoo looks a little blurry and dull which is inevitable.

The goal is to extend the life of the tattoo. Exfoliating and moisturizing will keep your skin in top shape for a longer period of time. Wearing sunscreen is critical as well.

If you are not pleased with the way it looks, you have options.

You don’t necessarily have to remove it. Instead, talk to an artist about re-working it or using the old art into a new design.

Which Type of Tattoos Last the Longest?

Any tattoo will look good if you take care of your skin.

Tats on the flat areas of your body that experience less friction will look sharper for longer. For example, ink on your forearm, your upper arms, shoulders, and back will usually last the longest.

Also, grayscale art and black ink in bold designs will fight the sunlight and aging better than colored ink and fine details.


We hope you discovered the best lotion to revive your old tattoo today.

If you take good care of your skin, your tattoos will remain beautiful for longer.