Tattoo and Piercing Laws **All US States** Protect Yourself

by Body Candy
182 Comments

How old you do have to be to get pierced? Can minors get piercings? Body piercing and tattoos are awesome, but having them done requires following certain laws. We've put together an updated list for 2017, state-by-state, of the laws and regulations surrounding body piercing and tattooing.

The best way to know if you can get a piercing or tattoo?

Call a shop and ask them. Professional piercers and tattoo artists will follow all state guidelines and provide you with well informed, educated answers to your questions. We (BodyCandy.com) are not professional piercers. We're here to guide you in the right direction towards making informed decisions about your body piercing journey.

Always, always, ALWAYS have your tattoos and piercings done by a professional. If someone is willing to bend the law to perform a tattoo or piercing, they are putting themselves and YOU at risk. 

To see a list of APP (Association of Professional Piercers) approved artists in your area, please visit: 
https://www.safepiercing.org/get-involved/locate-a-member/

 body piercing laws and age limits

* By definition, a minor is anyone under the age of 18 in the US.

* These are laws put in place by the state. Each tattoo/piercing shop reserves the right to enforce their own guidelines, including refusal to tattoo or pierce minors under a certain age, even with parental or legal guardian consent.

* Legal guardianship MUST be documented and proven. For emancipated minors, legal documentation of emancipated status is required.

* Notarized consent means your parent or legal guardian MUST be able to provide proof of signature to give their consent. (ie. Coming to the shop and signing, NO FORGERY.) 

 piercing and tattoo laws by state

Alabama

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing and tattoos.

Alaska

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing, PLUS a parent or legal guardian must be present during the procedure.

- NO TATTOOS FOR MINORS.

Arizona

- Parent or legal guardian must be present for body piercing and tattoos.

Arkansas

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing and tattoos, PLUS a parent or legal guardian must be present during the procedure.

California

- Written/notarized from parent or legal guardian for body piercing, OR a parent or legal guardian must be present during the procedure.

- NO TATTOOS FOR MINORS.

Colorado

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing and tattoos.

Connecticut

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for tattoos.

- No known laws for body piercing. (Please let us know if you have legal information to prove otherwise.)

Delaware

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing and tattoos.

Florida

- Written/notarized consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing and tattoos.

Georgia

- Written/notarized consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing.

- NO TATTOOS FOR MINORS.

Hawaii

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for tattoos.

- No known laws for body piercing. (Please let us know if you have legal information to prove otherwise.)

Idaho

- Minors aged 14-18: Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing, PLUS a parent or legal guardian must be present during the procedure.

- NO TATTOOS OR BODY PIERCING FOR MINORS UNDER 14.

Illinois

- Parent or legal guardian must be present with minors when in a tattoo/piercing shop AT ALL TIMES.

- NO TATTOOS FOR MINORS.

Indiana

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing and tattoos, PLUS a parent or legal guardian must be present during the procedure.

Iowa

- NO TATTOOS FOR MINORS.

- No known laws for body piercing. (Please let us know if you have legal information to prove otherwise.)

Kansas

- Written/notarized consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing and tattoos, PLUS a parent or legal guardian must be present during the procedure.

Kentucky

- Written/notarized consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing and tattoos.

Louisiana

- Parent or legal guardian must be present for body piercing and tattoos.

Maine

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing.

- NO TATTOOS FOR MINORS.

Maryland

- No known laws for body piercing or tattoos. (Please let us know if you have legal information to prove otherwise.)

Massachusetts

- Parent or legal guardian must be present for body piercing.

- No known tattoo laws for minors. (Please let us know if you have legal information to prove otherwise.)

Michigan

- Written/notarized consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing, PLUS a parent or legal guardian must be present during the procedure.

- No known laws for tattoos. (Please let us know if you have legal information to prove otherwise.)

Minnesota

- Written/notarized consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing MUST be witnessed by the piercer. (That means your parent or legal guardian has to be in the shop while signing.) No genital or nipple piercings, branding, scarification, suspension, subdermal implantation, microdermal, or tongue bifurcation is allowed on minors.

- NO TATTOOS FOR MINORS.

Mississippi

- NO TATTOOS OR BODY PIERCING FOR MINORS.

Missouri

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing or tattoos MUST be witnessed by the piercer. (That means your parent or legal guardian has to be in the shop while signing.)

Montana

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing or tattoos MUST be witnessed by the piercer. (That means your parent or legal guardian has to be in the shop while signing.)

Nebraska

- Written/notarized consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing and tattoos, PLUS a parent or legal guardian must be present during the procedure.

Nevada

- No known laws for body piercing or tattoos. State does not regulate tattoo/piercing shops.

New Hampshire

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing, PLUS a parent or legal guardian must be present during the procedure.

- NO TATTOOS FOR MINORS.

New Jersey

- No known laws for body piercing. (Please let us know if you have legal information to prove otherwise.)

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for tattoos.

New Mexico

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing and tattoos, PLUS a parent or legal guardian must be present during the procedure.

New York

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing.

- NO TATTOOS FOR MINORS.

North Carolina

- Parent or legal guardian must be present to give consent for body piercing.

- NO TATTOOS FOR MINORS.

North Dakota

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing and tattoos, PLUS a parent or legal guardian must be present during the procedure.

Ohio

- Parent or legal guardian must be present and sign a consent form for body piercing and tattoos.

Oklahoma

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing, PLUS a parent or legal guardian must be present during the procedure.

- NO TATTOOS FOR MINORS.

Oregon

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing, PLUS present proof of identity to the piercer.

- NO TATTOOS FOR MINORS.

Pennsylvania

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing and tattoos, PLUS a parent or legal guardian must be present during the procedure.

Rhode Island

- Parent or legal guardian must be present to give consent for body piercing.

- NO TATTOOS FOR MINORS.

South Carolina

- Written/notarized consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing, OR a parent or legal guardian must be present during the procedure.

- NO TATTOOS FOR MINORS.

South Dakota

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing and tattoos.

Tennessee

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing, OR a parent or legal guardian must be present during the procedure.

- Minors over the age of 16 may get a tattoo ONLY to cover up an existing tattoo with parent or legal guardian present, PLUS present proof of their identity to the piercer.

Texas

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing, OR a parent or legal guardian must be present during the procedure.

- NO TATTOOS FOR MINORS.

Utah

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing and tattoos.

Vermont

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing and tattoos.

Virginia

- Parent or legal guardian must be present to give consent for body piercing and tattoos.

Washington

- No known laws for body piercing. (Please let us know if you have legal information to prove otherwise.)

- NO TATTOOS FOR MINORS.

West Virginia

- No known laws for body piercing. (Please let us know if you have legal information to prove otherwise.)

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for tattoos.

Wisconsin

- Written consent from parent or legal guardian for body piercing. Parent or legal guardian must be present with minors when in a tattoo/piercing shop AT ALL TIMES.

- NO TATTOOS FOR MINORS.

Wyoming

- Parent or legal guardian must be present to give consent for body piercing and tattoos.

by Body Candy

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    Comments

  • A

    ALLEY (BODY CANDY TEAM)

    Hi Katherine!

    Looks like in Oregon, you’ll need your parent/guardian’s written approval, plus proof of identity to get a piercing.

    Every shop has their own set of rules, so if you’re confused about any other details, find a local piercing parlor and ask them over the phone – they will tell you everything you need to know!

  • K

    Katherine

    Can I get a belly button piercing when I turn 13 in USA Oregon because I’m confused because Google tells me you can get a belly button piercing when you are 13 but than it tells you have to be 14 to get one. im just confused.

  • A

    Alley (Body Candy Team)

    Hi Kelsea!

    Getting a piercing is a personal choice – it’s typically up to the wearer to determine if getting pierced is “alright” for them :)… But because you’re a minor, in this case, it all depends on what state you live in and/or what your parents or guardians say!

  • K

    Kelsea

    Hi ummm I was wondering if 14 was an alright age to get your tognue pierced?

  • A

    Alley (Body Candy Team)

    Hi Emma,

    There may not necessarily be a “minimum” age to get a piercing in Wisconsin. Instead, you will need to have parental permission AND your parent/guardian will have to accompany you to the shop and be present at all times.

    Keep in mind each professional piercing shop has their own standards and guidelines – find a shop you like and give them a call, we’re sure they’ll be happy to help.

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