Getting a tattoo is the ultimate symbol of boldness. If you’re recently gotten yourself inked, welcome to the club! But before you flaunt numerous selfies of your tattoo on Instagram for friends and family to see, know that tattoo aftercare should be your main priority.
Don’t forget that your lovely tattoo is still just a thousand little punctured lesions filled with pigment on the skin. In short, it’s still a wound. And as you may know, wounds are a breeding ground for bacteria.
That’s why you must grab the best antibacterial soap for tattoos you can find. If you don’t care for your skin until the tattoo is completely healed, you run the risk of catching an infection.
Remember—your skin is in a sore, delicate state. Make sure you protect it at all costs, starting with a reliable soap to ward off germs. Check out this round-up of reviews for good antibacterial soap for tattoos, and take your pick!
- Best Antibacterial Soap for Tattoo Reviews
- 1. Tattoo Goo Deep Cleansing Soap
- 2. Dial Gold Antibacterial Bar Soap
- 3. Micro-Scientific Antimicrobial Liquid Soap
- 4. Dial Antibacterial Hand Soap
- 5. H2Ocean Blue Green Foam Soap
- 6. Nat-A-Tat2 Tattoo Foam Cleanser
- 7. Hibiclens Antiseptic Skin Cleanser
- 8. DermaKleen Antiseptic Lotion Soap
- 9. Dial Gold Antibacterial Hand Soap
- 10. Provon Antimicrobial Lotion Soap
- 11. Cosco Tincture Of Green Soap USP
- 12. Dragon Art Green Soap
- 13. Dr. Numb Disinfectant Foam Soap
- 14. Cetaphil Deep Cleansing Bar
- 15. Defense Original Daily Clean Soap
- What to Look for When Buying an Antibacterial Soap Specifically for Tattoos
- What is The Best Antibacterial Soap for Washing Tattoos
- Can You Use Antibacterial Soap on Tattoos
- Is Dial Antibacterial Soap Good for Tattoos
Best Antibacterial Soap for Tattoo Reviews
1. Tattoo Goo Deep Cleansing Soap
Tattoo Goo is a brand that has teamed up with tattoo artists and dermatologists to come up with the best antibacterial soap for tattoo aftercare. This liquid cleansing soap has a thoughtful combination of ingredients that give you fast-acting results.
The active ingredients of this soap are chloroxylenol and lauricidin. Chloroxylenol has antibacterial properties that can kill infection-causing germs and bacteria fast. Meanwhile, Lauricidin—derived from palm seed extract—has a molecular structure that can cleanse the skin at a deeper level. This makes sure your skin is clean not just on the surface, but deep under the tattoo too.
The soap is also infused with nourishing and revitalizing vitamin E. This repairing vitamin is known to speed up the healing process of the tattoo’s little punctures. It also moisturizes the skin without clogging the pores.
It has a gentle formula that doesn’t include harsh ingredients that could potentially irritate the skin. The deep cleanse this soap provides leaves the skin squeaky clean too, but without drying it out.
2. Dial Gold Antibacterial Bar Soap
It would be absurd to talk about tattoo aftercare without mentioning the cult classic Dial Gold antibacterial soap for tattoos. This soap is pretty much the gold standard—literally—of antibacterial cleansers for fresh ink.
This soap’s active ingredient is benzalkonium chloride, a powerful compound that kills germs and bacteria quickly and effectively. This Dial soap for tattoos is also created using antibacterial protection technology that makes its killing power extra strong.
Don’t be intimidated by that, though. One of the reasons why this soap is much-loved by those with tattoos is that it has a gentle formula. It’s non-drying as well and keeps the skin moisturized even after washing.
This soap was created to fend off body odor, so you can count on it to eliminate body odor throughout the day. It cares for your tattoo and keeps you fresh and clean from head to toe too.
This gold bar easily creates a beautifully rich, creamy lather in the shower, making for a more luxurious bath experience at an affordable price.
Speaking of affordability, it also provides terrific value for money. This set gets you eight bars of soap, so it’s perfect for stocking up for months—if not for any new tattoos, then for your regular baths.
3. Micro-Scientific Antimicrobial Liquid Soap
This antimicrobial soap by Micro-Scientific is a terrific one-and-done liquid soap with many possible ways to use in the shower.
This soap kills and eliminates germs and bacteria across a broad spectrum, so you can be safe from many types of infections. This is just what you need to make sure no type of bacteria can harbor near your tattoo.
It also contains emollient and softening ingredients to moisturize the skin. The non-drying formula cleanses thoroughly and leaves the skin supple and plump after the shower. This is an awesome option for those of you with dry skin.
It’s easy to like this product because it’s very versatile. It isn’t just a body wash—it can be used as hand soap and shampoo as well. Though you may purchase this for tattoo aftercare, it’s a great product to have in your bathroom in general because it’s multi-use.
A little goes a long way with this creamy soap. You only need a small amount to be able to create a lavish and satisfying lather that can clean the whole body.
4. Dial Antibacterial Hand Soap
A more convenient version of the popular Dial Gold is this liquid antibacterial hand soap. It’s perfect for tattoo care outside the shower, when you just want to wash up and be extra clean throughout the day.
This soap kills up to 99.9% of bacteria that can cause infections on the skin. This is exactly the strong and powerful kind of killing power you need for delicate and wounded skin, like a surface with a fresh tattoo.
The soap’s active ingredient, benzalkonium chloride, is a strong antibacterial agent that eliminates a broad range of bacteria and germs. It’s known to be very effective.
Because it’s in a liquid variant, it’s easier to use on your tattoo when you’re not planning on taking a shower. It can sit right at your sink and has a pump for easy dispensing of the soap.
The soap is mild and gentle enough to be used frequently throughout the day. Because it has a non-drying formula, you don’t have to worry about your skin getting dried out even if you use it multiple times in a short amount of time.
5. H2Ocean Blue Green Foam Soap
One soap that is specifically designed for tattoo and piercing aftercare is this foam soap from H2Ocean. You can tell by the black and blue packaging with a tattoo print that it can go perfectly with your fresh, new ink. But don’t let the tough design fool you—this antibacterial unscented soap for tattoos is very gentle.
This soap has antibacterial properties thanks to benzalkonium chloride, its active ingredient that has strong killing power for germs and bacteria. It’s a compound quite commonly found in tattoo aftercare products.
Because it was designed specifically for tattoos, it provides unique benefits for your new ink. It promotes faster healing, so it speeds up the time it takes to bring the skin from sore to smooth. It also enhances the vibrancy of the ink, leaving your tattoo bolder.
This foam is infused with aloe leaf juice to hydrate the skin, and to make sure no stinging or cracking occurs on the tattoo surface during and after cleansing.
This fragrance free antibacterial soap for tattoos is made with a gentle formula that is vegan-friendly. To make sure you don’t further irritate the lesions on the skin, it doesn’t contain any parabens and alcohol either.
6. Nat-A-Tat2 Tattoo Foam Cleanser
There are also some organic and vegan alternatives to the soaps already mentioned in this list—one of which is this foam cleanser by tattoo care brand Nat-A-Tat2.
What’s unique about this is that unlike many other tattoo soaps, this is made with organic and vegan ingredients, allowing you some guilt-free tattoo care.
It contains glycerin, a hydrating humectant that hydrates the skin in its deeper layers. It’s also formulated with sunflower and safflower oil, coconut, and rosemary extract. These lightly moisturize the skin without leaving that overly shiny and waxy residue on the skin.
The oils also aid in soothing the skin, especially when it’s red, raised, and puffed up. Through this, they create an optimal healing environment for the tattoo.
All these beautiful, natural ingredients help to fight and get rid of pathogens and bacteria that can cause infections on the skin.
The formula comes in a foam bottle with a cap on and is easy to bring around everywhere. This feature makes it perfect for those who want to bring an effective antibacterial soap wherever they go.
7. Hibiclens Antiseptic Skin Cleanser
Hibiclens’ skin cleanser has antiseptic properties that are so effective, it makes the soap suitable in a hospital and surgery setting.
This liquid soap kills and washes away any germs, bacteria, and even viruses from the skin. It can zap away a broad range of these nasties, for the ultimate protection.
It kills bacteria very persistently at up to six hours after first washing your skin. That means top-notch protection without having to do a tattoo rinse too many times in a day.
This soap is one of the most recommended antibacterial soaps by pharmacists according to the U.S. News & World Report and the Pharmacy Times. And rightly so, because it’s been trusted by professionals for over 40 years!
While the formula is strong enough to be used by doctors in the hospital, the formula itself is gentle enough for daily use. It won’t burn or irritate your skin, even if you use it frequently throughout the day. In fact, it leaves a protective layer on the tattoo after washing.
8. DermaKleen Antiseptic Lotion Soap
If your main concern is not drying out your skin so much post-tattoo appointment, then DermaKleen’s lotion soap may be the best antibacterial soap out there for you.
This soap does just what you need out of soap for tattoo aftercare. It is antimicrobial and antibacterial, allowing it to kill 99% of germs and bacteria that latch onto the skin and could cause infection.
While it’s an efficacious cleanser, it doesn’t have potentially harsh antibacterial agents, like triclosan. It also takes the precautionary measure to replace alcohol with chloroxylenol, an alternative that prevents the skin from drying out even after washing it with soap.
It’s also infused with vitamin E, which is known to soften and moisturize the skin. It also conditions the skin to hasten its reparation and healing process. Vitamin E is a great strengthening ingredient for skincare in general, so it’s awesome that DermaKleen has included it to aid in tattoo healing.
This mild, gentle, lotion-like formulation with nourishing ingredients is perfect not just for those with dry skin, but also sensitive, problematic skin. It’s a great option if you don’t want to risk going for more popular yet more potentially damaging soaps.
9. Dial Gold Antibacterial Hand Soap
We’ve already talked about the magic of Dial Gold for tattoo lovers. It’s a holy grail soap that comes in both bar and liquid forms, the latter being the favorite of many. And what’s better than one cult classic antibacterial liquid soaps? Two, of course!
In this set of two Dial Gold soap bottles, you get way more bang for your buck. You get two relatively generous bottles in a single purchase, which provides a lot of value for money.
It has all the goodness tattoo lovers and families alike have fallen in love with, starting with its strong antibacterial properties.
This soap promises to kill 99.9% of bacteria and germs that can cause skin infections. This is thanks to benzalkonium chloride, its new active ingredient that has strong kill power, which replaced triclosan- something that could potentially be harsh on the skin.
It has a mild and gentle formula that’s safe to use frequently. It even has antioxidants and other essential nutrients to replenish the skin with moisture to keep it soft and healthy.
10. Provon Antimicrobial Lotion Soap
Lotion soaps are great for adding some hydration to your tattooed skin without clogging it, and when it’s antibacterial, that makes it perfect for your ink. Provon’s lotion soap is both moisturizing and antimicrobial, so it’s perfect for tattoo aftercare.
This soap is medicated with chloroxylenol or PCMX, which kills a broad spectrum of germs and bacteria. It also reduces the spread of bacterial infection on the skin. It’s a great ingredient to have to make sure bacteria doesn’t harbor near your tatt.
It also contains some softening conditioners that make the skin supple and smooth without leaving a greasy film on top of it. It has aloe vera that can help hydrate the skin and soothe the sore tattoo wound. Meanwhile, vitamin E strengthens and conditions the skin, while providing extra softness.
You get quite a lot of product when you get this soap because it comes in a large bottle carrying 16oz of product. That means you can share this fabulous soap and its light, lively citrus scent with the whole family!
11. Cosco Tincture Of Green Soap USP
For a soap that goes a long way, I recommend this green soap by Cosco—a soap brand trusted by many since the 1960s. It’s formulated uniquely and thoughtfully so that you can maximize its volume and use it directly on your tattoo.
This soap is all-natural and made only with pure, top-quality vegetable oils and glycerin. These are very good products for hydration and moisture, which leaves the skin feeling soft and touchable.
It also contains 30% alcohol which is perfect for killing bacteria and disinfecting your new tattoo. It also keeps the product from feeling sticky because of the oils.
It’s easy to extend the yield of this product because a little goes a long way. It’s similar to castile soap in that you must dilute this liquid soap with water to thin it out and make it less harsh. Just with the dilution process, you can pretty much double the amount of soap you can work with.
It also comes with a free wash bottle, where you can place your soap and water mixture. It has a long delivery tube to help you conveniently and easily direct the product precisely where your tattoo is.
12. Dragon Art Green Soap
If you love the green soap idea we just tackled but are looking for a more soothing soap at the same time, then this one by Dragon Art would be perfect for you.
This soap is another one of those concentrated, potent liquid soaps that have to be diluted with water. The ratio should always be one part soap to nine parts water. It’s an innovative and ingenious way to make sure your bottle of soap goes a really long way.
This green soap is an effective cleaning agent for gently scrubbing away protein soils and dried blood that have built up after your tattooing session. This ensures that your tattoo is protected from bacteria that can cause it harm.
The formula for this contains peppermint plant extracts. Peppermint is a botanical known to soothe skin irritation, making it perfect for delicate and sometimes painful freshly tattooed skin. It provides a cooling, refreshing effect on the skin.
You can also use this as a pre-wash before getting your tattoo done. It makes sure your skin is squeaky clean and free from harmful germs. Because it comes with a free squeeze bottle, you can apply it directly onto your inked skin.
13. Dr. Numb Disinfectant Foam Soap
You can’t talk about tattoos without mentioning pain. It’s the one thing most people who get tattoos experience across the board, and it happens during the session and in the days after. Dr. Numb’s foam soap not only disinfects tattoos but also acts as an anesthetic for relief.
This soap has strong killing power and can destroy a broad spectrum of germs. It gets rid of 99.9% of fungi, bacteria, and viruses to keep you and your tattoo safe. It’s very persistent in its disinfecting too, continuing to kill bacteria up to 24 hours after your wash.
The unique benefit of this soap is that it has anesthetic properties, thanks to the active ingredient lidocaine. This numbs the skin, giving temporary relief from pain and stinging. It’s effective for wounds and cuts but is especially helpful for tattoos.
Despite having two active ingredients and more of a medical brand image, this soap doesn’t have a medicinal smell to it. Instead, the smell is mild and pleasant. It also creates a rich, generous lather for a satisfying cleanse.
14. Cetaphil Deep Cleansing Bar
So many of the brands we’ve talked about are soapmakers who design their soaps specifically for tattoo care. But what about the bigger, more established skincare brands, like Cetaphil? Is Cetaphil soap good for tattoos? This deep cleansing bar sure is.
This soap used to be named Cetaphil’s “Gentle Cleansing Anti-bacterial bar” but has gone through reformulation to give the same intense deep cleanse without harsh cleaning agents. The soap penetrates the skin to draw out gunk and impurities to leave your skin fresh without stripping its natural oils.
The formula includes several nourishing ingredients that can help soothe and calm newly tattooed skin that needs extra gentleness and softness. It’s a good soap to switch too when you feel like your current soap is drying your skin out.
The non-drying, non-comedogenic formula moisturizes the skin without clogging the pores and causing pimples and blemishes.
What’s great about this soap set, in particular, is that it provides terrific value for money. In buying this set, you get three Cetaphil bars at an affordable price. Because the soap isn’t designed only for tattoos, it’s a nice, mild soap to have around in the home for everyone to share.
15. Defense Original Daily Clean Soap
Yet another reliable brand when it comes to soaps with superior cleansing power is Defense, a popular soap brand for men and athletes. This soap is originally designed for athletes who need a deep cleanse after a workout or game, but because of its cleaning capabilities, it makes a great tattoo soap too.
This bar soap is most known for its tea tree and eucalyptus oils that give it a refreshing scent and are great at deodorizing the body. But another benefit they provide is soothing the skin, which is just what a fresh tattoo needs.
It has strong cleaning power and kills a broad spectrum of fungi and bacteria to keep your skin infection-free. It also cleans deeply to draw out impurities such as sweat and dirt and keep you feeling fresh and clean.
The soap has superior quality, having been milled three times to make sure it lasts longer without melting in your soapdish. It’s also very safe to use on the skin because it’s hypoallergenic. It doesn’t contain any potentially harsh ingredients, like synthetic fragrances, coloring, SLS, alcohol, and more.
What to Look for When Buying an Antibacterial Soap Specifically for Tattoos
The entire point of constantly washing your skin after you get a tattoo is to make sure bacteria do not harbor in the area. If they do, they might cause an infection that will harm not just your tattooed skin, but your health overall.
Take a look at the active ingredients of your soap to see if it has a good antibacterial agent to help you wash away those nasty germs and fungi. Some that you should be looking for include benzalkonium chloride and chloroxylenol. These two are very good cleaning agents that destroy bacteria in a jiff.
You should also look at the claims of the soap. One common claim that is a good sign is that the soap kills 99.9% of bacteria. Another is a label that says the soap can kill a broad spectrum of germs and bacteria.
Has no added fragrance and dye
If you have very sensitive skin and are prone to irritation because of the most mundane triggers, here’s another tip for you. Stay away from soaps with added fragrance and artificial coloring. A bar of soap may be very compelling because of its antibacterial properties, but if it has these synthetic ingredients, it may just irritate your skin.
Synthetic ingredients are technically unnecessary in skincare products and can cause irritation if you’re allergic to them or have problematic skin. If this sounds like you, do your sensitive, tattooed skin a favor and step away from the scented soaps and stick to fragrance-free.
Mild, gentle formulation
You can’t afford to irritate your skin with potentially harsh ingredients that may strip your skin of its natural oils or give you a burning sensation on your already delicate skin. Apart from its antibacterial properties, you should also look for a mild and gentle formulation for your new tattoos.
The main reason why you should opt for a gentle formulation is that you’ll be spending a lot of your time over the next few days washing your tattooed skin. If you choose a harsh soap, you put yourself at risk for extreme dryness and even peeling, and you never want that for your pretty tattoo.
Always go for a formula that is skin-safe and will be friendly to your skin condition. Mild and gentle is the way to go for tattoo care.
Comes from a trusted brand
If you’re a first-timer, it’s understandable that you’d want to buy your first tattoo soap from a reliable brand. And if you’re a tattoo veteran, you’ll know that the soaps from the most renowned and trusted brands are often the best in the business.
Make sure the soap you buy for tattoo care isn’t from a random brand that doesn’t have the cred to back up their quality and formulation. Instead, buy from a reputable brand, whether it’s a market leader that’s popular worldwide or a small business loved and trusted by their community.
Always look at how many reviews these brands have gotten for their soaps, and if they’re suitable for tattooed skin. Some really good, trusted brands include Dial, Cetaphil, Hibiclens, and Cosco.
Recommended by experts
Who knows tattoos better than tattoo artists and dermatologists? Always watch out for the antibacterial soaps recommended by tattoo experts, whether in the artistic sense or the medical.
Dermatologists know how to formulate high-quality soaps, while tattoo artists understand the pain points of getting inked and incorporate those into the design. The result is always magical—a gentle yet effective formula that answers issues like pain management, irritation, and more.
Look out for soaps made by these experts, like Tattoo Goo, H2Ocean, Nat-A-Tat2, Dr. Numb, and more. They carry soaps specifically designed for tattoos, so you’ll be in good hands.
What is The Best Antibacterial Soap for Washing Tattoos
What would constitute the best antibacterial soap will differ depending on what you’re looking for. The answer will probably be different for one who prioritizes moisture care and another who cares more about pain management.
If you’re looking for soaps that have immense killing power to kill a broad spectrum of bacteria and viruses, then the best will probably include the Dial Gold liquid antibacterial hand soap and the Micro-Scientific Opti-Scrub antimicrobial liquid soap. These both kill a broad spectrum of fungi and bacteria, with very persistent killing prowess that can last hours.
If you’re a first-timer and your main priority is feeling as little pain as humanly possible during your healing, then the best one for you might be the Dr. Numb topical anesthetic foam soap. This soap numbs the skin to provide temporary relief from sore, delicate skin after an intense tattoo session.
If it’s moisture care you’re looking for, you can opt for lotion soaps that kill microbes but still care for the skin with a non-drying formula. Some of the best antibacterial and moisturizing lotion soaps include the DermaKleen antiseptic lotion soap and the Provon Antimicrobial Lotion Soap.
Another route you can go for while looking for a gentle and moisturizing soap to care for your delicate, tattooed skin is by looking at soap brands that cater to sensitive skin.
As long as the soap gives a deep cleanse and has properties to get rid of bad germs, you can use it. That means that depending on the formulation, you can probably use CeraVe, Cetaphil, and even Dove soap for tattoos.
Can You Use Antibacterial Soap on Tattoos
It’s not that you “can” use an antibacterial soap on your tatt—it’s that you must. Ordinary soap won’t cut it for fresh ink. You always have to incorporate antibacterial soap tattoo aftercare, especially early on in the tattoo’s healing process.
Using an antibacterial soap is the only way you can keep your tattooed skin clean and free of all types of fungi, bacteria, and microbes that can cause a skin infection. Remember, when a tattoo is fresh, it’s pretty much just a wound with pigment in it, and bacteria harbors in wounds.
Many antibacterial soaps will also create a better healing environment for the tattoo, reducing the time it needs to heal completely. So if you want your tattooed skin to feel better fast, antibacterial soap is the way to go.
It’s important to take other precautionary measures as well to keep the area clean, like drying your tattoo after cleansing with paper towels instead of the towel you use for the rest of your body.
The goal is really to make sure your tattoo stays very clean and sterile, and antibacterial soap is going to be your best friend for that.
Is Dial Antibacterial Soap Good for Tattoos
Yes, Dial is actually one of the most popular brands tattoo lovers use for their antibacterial soap. You can even say it’s a cult classic now for tattoo aftercare. The holy grail Dial soap for tattoos is Dial Gold, which is considered, quite literally, the gold standard for gentle, non-drying antibacterial soaps.
Dial Gold is known to kill up to 99.9% of infection-causing bacteria, which is exactly the type of killing power you’re looking for when you have a wound you want to keep safe. It’s a great option for keeping your tattoo’s freshness, moisture, and cleanliness in check throughout the healing process.
What’s great about Dial is that their Gold soaps come in bar and liquid forms. That means you can have strong killing power in the shower and also while doing your rinses at the sink.
Tattoos are bold, beautiful, and just downright cool. But a lot of work is put into caring for it, especially when it’s fresh and still an open wound. Catching a bacterial infection not only potentially ruins your beloved tatt, but it puts you and your health in harm’s way too.
The number one rule for preventing infection early on in tattoo aftercare is staying clean and looking for the best antibacterial soap for tattoos to wash with. It’s pretty much your tattoo’s defense system against germs and bacteria. Tattoo aftercare takes a lot of effort, but we promise—it’ll be worth it.