Emla Cream people

Thinking of
getting ink?

Try Emla numbing cream

Why Emla & tattoos?

Sometimes we all need a little extra help. Emla numbing cream is a trusted brand that can help you through your tattoo appointment. Emla can also be used to numb the skin before laser tattoo removal.

As a trusted numbing cream, Emla has been helping to reduce the pain of needle and laser procedures in the UK for more than 20 years. Emla is available to buy from your local pharmacy or UK-registered online pharmacies without prescription.

Did you know, unlike Emla, not all numbing creams that you find online are licensed for sale in the UK? Unlicensed or fake medicines may not have been manufactured safely and may contain ineffective or dangerous contents.

Buy Emla before your next tattoo

Emla Packshot 5pc tube and dressing

Buy Emla before your next tattoo

Ready to try Emla numbing cream? Always make sure that you buy a numbing cream that is licensed for sale in the UK. You can buy Emla without prescription from your local pharmacy or UK-registered online pharmacies here.

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How to apply Emla for tattoos

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Before applying Emla

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  • Step 1 (of 4)

    Select the right Emla pack depending on the size of your planned tattoo. Emla cream comes in two tube sizes: 5g or 30g.

  • Step 2 (of 4)

    A 5g tube of Emla is enough for smaller tattoos, while the 30g tube is suitable for larger tattoos.

  • Step 3 (of 4)

    Never use more than than 60g (or two 30g tubes) for one session. Check where to apply Emla with your tattooist or practitioner.

  • Step 4 (of 4)

    Emla cream needs adequate time to numb the skin, so make sure you leave yourself enough time to apply Emla ahead of your appointment. Emla usually takes about 1 hour to get to work, but it may be quicker (approx. 30-60 mins) on the face.

When applying Emla

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  • Step 1 (of 3)

    Make sure area of the skin to be numbed is clean and dry. Shave the area prior to application if necessary.

  • Step 2 (of 3)

    Squeeze the Emla cream onto the right area. Don’t rub in the cream, as you will need a thick layer to help Emla’s numbing effect. Never use more than 60g (or two 30g tubes) for one session.

  • Step 3 (of 3)

    Cover the Emla cream with a suitable air-tight, water-tight dressing (known as an “occlusive” dressing), so the active ingredients absorb into the skin and do not get wiped off. If the area to be numbed is too large for a dressing, some people cover the skin with cling film.

After applying Emla

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  • Step 1 (of 2)

    Just before your appointment, you or your tattooist can remove the dressing and wipe off the excess cream.

  • Step 2 (of 2)

    After Emla cream is removed, its numbing effect usually lasts at least 2 hours, so bear this in mind if you are planning a large/intricate tattoo or have a longer tattoo appointment.

Document Download

Patient information leaflet

For more information on how to apply Emla, download the full patient information leaflet.

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Get answers to the most common questions about Emla numbing cream.

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how to apply

Emla & cosmetic procedures

Thinking about booking a cosmetic procedure? Emla can make your treatment more comfortable.

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