How to Protect Henna in the Shower

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A complex henna tattoo can take hours, cost a lot, and requires sitting still for a while. This is why so many people take great pride in their design once it is complete (not to mention the fact that they are typically very beautiful).

Naturally, this makes henna tattoos very precious! And most of us want to preserve them for as long as possible. What do you do with them in the shower?

In this article, we’re going to tell you everything you need to know about how to protect henna in the shower.

  • Henna tattoos require at least a full day before they can safely be exposed to water.
  • If you need to shower, you can use a few methods to cover your henna tattoo
  • There are a variety of aftercare methods to ensure their longevity.

In this article, you will learn how to protect your henna tattoo in the shower and how best to care for it to ensure it lasts as long as possible.


Can You Shower With Henna?

As mentioned, henna tattoos can last several weeks with the proper maintenance routine. However, they are quite fragile and need to be treated with the utmost care at all times.

Naturally, you may be wondering whether or not it is safe to shower with your henna tattoo. Rest assured that, after at least 24 hours, you should be able to shower without worrying about your henna design fading away safely.

After at least 24 hours, you should be able to shower without worrying about your henna design fading away safely.

However, there are still a few other precautions you should take when it comes to showering with a henna tattoo.

Can You Take a Bath With Henna?

Henna Black Ink on Leg

While there are ways to prevent your henna tattoo from fading or smudging while showering, the same cannot be said for bathing. You should not take a bath if you’ve got a henna tattoo!

It may not be painful to get a henna tattoo, but it will be painful if it washes away in the bath!

It may not be painful to get a henna tattoo, but it will be painful if it washes away in the bath!

Henna is extremely sensitive to water by nature.

Despite any precautions you may have taken, your beautiful henna tattoo is likely to fade away if it is exposed to too much water for too long.

How Do You Shower With Henna?

Showering with a henna tattoo can seem quite stressful from the outset. But with a little bit of care and planning, it should not pose too much of an issue.

Of course, try to avoid getting water on your henna tattoo. But if you get a little on, these techniques will keep it looking good.

Showering with a henna tattoo can seem quite stressful. But with a little bit of care and planning, it should not pose an issue.

Cover With a Barrier Oil

Before showering, it is a good idea to cover your henna tattoo in either coconut oil or olive oil. In a pinch, some cocoa butter should do the trick as well. Either way, this will create a temporary barrier between the tattoo and the water, allowing you to shower in peace. 

You can wrap it with plastic wrap after you have covered it in oil as an extra precaution.

Cover With Toilet Paper and Plastic Wrap

If you don’t have an oil you trust, you can use toilet paper, and cover it with plastic wrap, secured with elastic bands. The toilet paper should not get wet if you wrap it correctly.

Don’t Scrub!

While showering, you can safely scrub the rest of your body clean, but a gentle rubbing without soap should keep the tattoo in good condition when it comes to the tattooed area.

What Is the Best Way to Protect Henna After Receiving a Tattoo?

Protecting your henna tattoo requires a fair amount of maintenance. Rather than simply hoping for the best, there are a few “best practices” that you can employ which should guarantee that your design lasts as long as possible.

1. Let the Henna Paste Dry

Immediately after receiving your henna tattoo, the henna paste will begin to dry. The flakes it leaves behind may prove to be a nuisance, but you should not attempt to scrape the flakes off until at least half an hour has passed since your tattoo was completed. 

Additionally, it would be best if you did not allow your henna tattoo to come into contact with anything else while the paste is still drying. 

2. Leave the Paste on Your Skin for as Long as Possible

Most henna specialists will recommend that you receive your design sometime during the evening. This is because – in order to leave the darkest stain possible – henna paste requires plenty of time to dry, which can go by quickly with a good night’s sleep.

Although the paste may feel completely dry after a couple of hours, you should give it at least six hours before you begin picking away at the flakes.

3. Coat the Paste in Sugar and Lemon Juice

A common henna-maintenance solution is a mixture of sugar and lemon juice. This concoction allows the henna to stay moist for longer, which in turn causes the design to stick much better. Additionally, the acidity of the lemon can deepen the colors of your design.

To create this mixture, simply add some lemon juice and sugar into a small bowl, then mix them together until the solution is slick and syrupy. Lightly dab two fingers into the mixture and apply a thin layer to the design. 

Finally, be sure to let the paste dry once more. If you plan on sleeping the time away, cover the design with plastic in order to prevent it from smudging.

4. Keep Yourself Warm and Your Skin Moist

Warmth and moisture allow the henna design to stain much deeper, thus increasing its longevity. Enjoy hot beverages in order to keep your body’s temperature up, and hold the tattooed area over the steam from a boiling pot or kettle in order to keep it moist.

5. Keep the Design Wrapped

Keeping your tattoo covered prevents heat and moisture from escaping and further ensures that it lasts longer. Furthermore, this also prevents the flakes from falling everywhere.

You can cover your design with a few sheets of toilet paper, some plastic, and an elastic band. Gently place the toilet paper over your design, then place plastic on top of that. Finally, add an elastic band to ensure they stay put.

6. Wash off the Flakes

Finally, after all of this is done, you can get rid of the flakes by using some tepid water and soap. Gently rub the flakes away, and, voila, your henna tattoo is all set to last you as long as possible.

Quick Tips for Protecting Henna Tattoos

Before you click off of this article, here are four key tips to ensure that your henna designs do not fade away after a day or two.

  • Avoid water.
  • Keep warm and moist.
  • Avoid bathing.
  • Enhance with lemon and sugar.


Henna tattoos are often beautiful works of body art, and are to be treasured. However, it is important to remember that – no matter what you do – it will not last forever.

But now at least you know how to shower with a henna tattoo.

With these handy tips, you should be able to guarantee that yours lasts multiple weeks, at least!

Written by Kayla Young

Kayla is the founder of LuxeLuminous. She has worked professionally in the tanning industry for years. She has been interested in esthetics since childhood, and has tried every hair, skin, and makeup product ever produced (more or less).