5 Careers in which tattoos are not done

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The amount of tattoo parlors has grown exponentially in the last decade. Research indicates that tattoos are more and more accepted in society. However, there are still certain professions in which having a tattoo is not appreciated or even banned. What jobs are we talking about? And in what part of the Netherlands are tattoos banned in most workplaces? It’s all been researched…  

5 Careers in which tattoos are not done
Photo: Pixabay

No tattoos, please

To answer above questions, career platform Joblift thoroughly checked 2.4 million online vacancies, advertised in the Netherlands in the past 3 years. This resulted in a total of 2355 vacancies specifically stating tattoos were not allowed. The following professions were the most common:

  1. Security guard
  2. Waiter/waitress
  3. Host/hostess
  4. Cleaners/Housekeeping
  5. Traffic controller

It stands out that tattoos are least accepted in professions requiring a lower (or“morepractical” as we say nowadays) education level. Most of the vacancies in this category were advertised to fill jobs in North-Holland (24.1%) and South-Holland (23.4%). But these districts make up for 37.3% of the total amount of published vacancies.

Apart from these no-tattoo-vacancies, researchers found a few other criteria. For example, piercings were not allowed in 1120 published job. Also golden teeth (83%) and fake nails (14%) were mentioned.



When I look at the list of professions, I don’t always understand the ban on tattoos. Why would someone controlling the traffic not be allowed to have one? You usually see this person in the distance and only for practical reasons. And for a very short time.

As for the rest of the list, I can imagine that the policy strongly depends on the type of company advertising the job. Obviously, a host or waitress is considered to be the face of a company. The company could decide whether tattoos are a part of that face or not. Cleaners and housekeepers are also present and visible, but more in the background. Especially in case of cleaning staff, as these people usually don’t work during office hours.

I personally expect that the number of companies banning tattoos will drop. Nowadays, you see more and more tattoos and they have not been associated with aggression for a while now. But it is surely something that is noticeable when you meet someone. Like with corporate attire, the employer holds the right to determine whether or not a tattoo is part of the company’s image or not.  




15 reacties

  1. I think a ban on tattoos anywhere is a violation of our freedom of expression. Personally I don’t have any and I don’t hate them but I think they just look messy but I have always said when asked about my daughters tattoos I don’t care for them but I love her so I don’t say anything. Tattoos are very popular with the current generation. It used to be only sailors or military had them but now young people use the open canvas of their bodies to tell their stories, I think that is pretty awesome

    • I think a ban is acceptable if you are the face of the company employing you and you have visible tattoos which cannot be hidden by clothing deemed acceptable by that same firm. I think getting a tattoo is something that should be thought very hard about as it will, like it or not, have repercussions. You are asking for comment by displaying them, in my humble opinion.

  2. Interesting. My experience in the US is that while tattoos aren’t necessarily taboo, both in government and healthcare the presence of “visible” tattoos is often prohibited. Perhaps those are the last vestiges where you’re like to encounter “old school” mindsets (from both the service provider and customer aides) that might be easily offended, where cultural differences are more likely to be magnified? Certainly, I think it depends on an organization’s customer demographic how strict their anti-tattoo policy.

    • I agree, in the US, government, healthcare, and I’d add the finance industry as three that seem to be the most restrictive about appearance.

  3. I’ve personally always agreed with the US Army’s policies on ink. As long as it cannot be seen in the dress uniform, it’s good to go. I’m no longer in the military, but even as a personal trainer, most of my colleagues have tattoos that are visible in workout attire. It really does depend on who’s making the policy.

  4. I think tattoos are bad. Tattoos are permanent fixtures on your body. Tattoos are signs of low self esteem and/or in a gang culture. On tattoos’ popularity, western civilization is going down the tubes due to secularism, liberalism, and turning away from God and his commandments. Western Europe, unfortunately, will fall to evil Islam. Ironically, Muslims also dissaprove of tattoos.

    • I hope this is a joke. I have several tattoos and have no gang affiliation or self-esteem issues. I manage an Investment Services program for a credit union spanning across 11 branches over the state of Michigan. My tattoos do not effect my job. If anything it is a talking point. Just because I, or any other person has tattoos, does not allow you to assume anything about that persons state of mind or anything else for that matter. Please correct yourself when making such terrible accusations.

  5. Tattoos on arms look terrible on weedy men with thin arms or overweight women with fat arms.
    Why attract attention to your least attractive parts.
    That’s my opinion.
    Also I don’t expect to see them on professional people who I need to trust with my health, finance or piloting my passenger jet.
    Also I would have a different opinion of politicians with love and hate tattoos across there fingers. I might not vote for them.

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