Thursday, May 30, 2024

Tattoos give employers wrong impression

You might think that getting a tattoo is the coolest thing you can do in your life, but before you get all inked up, think of the consequences.

According to a Huffington Post article, about 23 percent of Americans have tattoos. Andrew Timming of St. Andrew’s University School of Management in Scotland interviewed hiring managers and recruiters from 14 different organizations, all of whom said that visible tattoos remain a stigma.

“Respondents expressed concern that visibly tattooed workers may be perceived by customers to be ‘abhorrent’, ‘repugnant’, ‘unsavoury’ and ‘untidy’,” Timming said in the article.

For most employers, people who walk into an interview with tattoos up and down their arms don’t make a good first impression.  The interviewer might not think you are professional enough for the job because of the half-sleeve you have. Size matters, though. Having a little, concealable tattoo is much better than one that can’t be hidden. Places on the body ideal for hiding tattoos from employers are areas such as the back, ribs or thighs.

Not only do tattoos have a bad image in the workplace, but in the Jewish religion it says that you aren’t allowed to be buried in a Jewish cemetery if you have markings on your body.  I believe that if a person can get an ear piercing, a person can get a tattoo and be buried in a Jewish cemetery.

Tattoos don’t always have consequences in the work place. It all depends on where you apply for a job.

According to an article on, a blog about tattoos, some workplaces are more lenient about employees having tattoos. Of course, the shops that allow employees to have tattoos are tattoo parlors and other body modification establishments, but other establishments that will hire employees with tattoos are indie shops, music stores and trendy retail stores like Hot Topic and Journeys.  These companies actually encourage tattoos as a form of expression.

People who get tattoos can have them for many different reasons, including a tribute tattoo in remembrance of a loved one, expressing themselves in a way that is different than others and get matching tattoos with a best friend.

If a person has a good enough reason, like the loss of a loved one or a significant symbol that means a lot to the person, then people have a solid reason to get a tattoo.

When it comes to the job search, people who have tattoos should find a way to hide them in case the company isn’t tattoo-friendly.  It also depends on the type of work you are applying to. If the company is more causal, then it would be more comfortable not having to always hide your tattoo.

A person’s qualifications should be plenty for a company to decide what type of person you are. Don’t let an employer make an inaccurate assumption about who you are just because you have a story to tell on your body.

Email Paige Passman at

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