You just got your ink done or your back and you’re excited about it.
Naturally going days without playing makes you experience significant withdrawal, and you’re wondering how long you should wait until you pick up the sticks again?
Maybe you shouldn’t wait.
Can You Golf After Getting A Tattoo?
Yes, but only if you take certain precautions. The idea of golfing with a tattoo – whether freshly drawn or old – sounds wrong by the sheer mention of it. The first and obvious reason is the sunlight. Golfers spend a big part of their time in the course under a searing sun, hitting tee shots and navigating the GPS. Unfortunately, Tattoos and sunlight don’t get along. Playing under the sun for a long time could mean damage to your newly acquired drawing.
Of course, you’ll be out of harm’s way if you take certain precautions, but first, let’s take a glance at the risks that comes with staying under the sun with a tattoo:
1. UV light fades the ink
UV light present in sunlight is one of the top destroyers of tattoos, especially freshly drawn ones.
The skin readily absorbs UV rays which end up breaking up the particulate pigments in your tattoo.
If you don’t take good care of your art, it will start to fade and potentially leave behind a barely recognizable mess.
That’s why those who get the ink are often advised to wear sunscreens during the initial healing period and proceed to care for them appropriately.
Maybe you should take precautions before hitting the golf course.
If you got a new tattoo just recently, it would be great if you stayed out of the sun for the next 3 – 4 weeks. This healing period is meant to heal the skin and stick the stick.
Laser tattoo remover employs the same technique used by UV sunlight, except that the former is faster and well-intentioned.
2. Sun Induced Discoloration
Color tattoos don’t fare well under the extreme sun either.
If you expose a newly inked piece to sunlight during one of your golfing sessions, it may change the color and even worse depending on the length of exposure.
Discolored tattoos don’t just turn into an unrecognizable mess once damaged, they may leak the cocktail of colors into the skin as well.
The sun, again, is the culprit.
Colored tattoos, very much like regular all-black tattoos, are embedded over two layers of skin.
Exposure to sunlight for a long time darkens the darkest colors and lightens the lighter ones. Darkening creates an effect akin to tanning. This causes the colors to change from the exterior.
While such damages tend to be more extensive and dangerous for freshly applied ink, old tattoos aren’t any better.
3. Cracking Or Splitting
During the early setting stages of your new tattoo, the skin typically forms scars on the edges.
While this is a perfectly natural thing, things can take an unexpected turn if you spend a significant amount of time in the sun, uncovered.
Sunlight causes the skin to lose moisture depending on the amount of time you spend outside, but it can get extremely dry.
Unfortunately, having dry skin is one of the worst things you could do to a fresh tattoo that’s supposed to healing in mild conditions.
While cracks and splits are perfectly OK, dry skin is known to worsen it – we’re talking about extensive cracks that get ridiculously deep and wide with the day.
Three Tips For Tattooed Golfers
We said it’s generally OK to play a round of golf with a tattoo, you just need to certain precautions.
Here are those precautions:
1. Cover your Tattoos with Clothing
Avoid short-sleeved tops and shorts that expose your skin to the sun.
This is especially necessary if your tattoos are on the arms or legs.
If they are elsewhere on the body, cotton outfits are recommended. Cotton blocks UV rays better than most other clothing materials.
You can protect your tattoos further by wearing a broad brim hat, especially if you have tattoos on the neck, face, and upper chest area.
2. Take Plenty Of Fluids
Staying in the sun for extended periods can lead to dehydration, resulting in dry skin.
That’s bad for your tattoos.
You can avoid this by drinking plenty of fluids to replenish your body with the water it deserves.
Bring a flowy smooth with you.
Green tea can be a great alternative.
You will need to pump about 30oz of water back into the body the whole day you may spend in the golf course.
Certain fruits can supply a percentage of the water you need as well.
Eat plenty of watermelons, avocados, and cucumbers before leaving for the course.
3. Carry An Umbrella
One of the surest ways to protect yourself from the searing sun is carrying a sizeable umbrella.
Not only are umbrellas perfect for protection from sunlight, but will also ensure you keep playing when it drizzles or rains.
Most of the golf bags sold nowadays have a pouch for your umbrella.
Note that water can be hazardous to a healing tattoo as well.
Wait A Minute! Can you Even Have Tattoos On The Golf Course?
Generally, yes, so don’t fret.
There are no existing stipulations in the officially recognized rules of golf prohibiting tattoos in general.
That’s because “attire” isn’t limited to clothes but every other accessory and wardrobe embellishment you could wear.
Another point worth mentioning involves the kind of tattoo you have on your body.
It is very unlikely that a simple cute tattoo of the word “mother” or the italicized name of your lover (Ahem! we’ll talk about this another day) on your arm will raise eyebrows on the golf course.
That’s different from a tattoo depicting skulls and dragons breathing fire.
Also, a whole sleeve of tattoos descending to the wrist or soaring to your face tattoo – doesn’t matter if it depicts a bible verse – is likely to arrest negative attention from the people in the course.
Here’s the bottom line – the decision whether a player can have a tattoo, and of which kind if they are, is in the hands of the management at your golf course.
As long as your dressing style is in line with their rules and don’t display any outsize or straight offensive tattoos to everyone, you should be good to play undisturbed.
Can you golf after getting a tattoo? Yes, but only if you take certain precautions.
The idea of golfing with a tattoo – whether freshly drawn or old – sounds wrong by the sheer mention of it. The first and obvious reason is the sunlight.
Golfers spend a big part of their time on the course under a searing sun, hitting tee shots and navigating the GPS.
Unfortunately, Tattoos and sunlight don’t get along.
Playing under the sun for a long time could mean damage to your newly acquired drawing.
There’s very little to worry about if you take good care of your ink while golfing.