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Too Tatted for Work

As much as judgment toward appearance is frowned upon, it is still in effect in the work place. Although, it is hard to find anyone during this era without a tattoo or piercing.

“In a professional world, where interviews and such are conducted. Judge me on my performance, not my image,” Sophomore Amie Wall said.
According to Pew Research Center, 40 percent of people between the ages of 18 and 29 have at least one tattoo. Society has accepted the fact that everybody is getting “tatted.” It may seem fashionable and artistic, but it can affect a student’s chance at getting a job. Though, this does depend on the profession that is desired, because some jobs do not have as strict requirements.

Tattooed workers by industry
Tattooed workers by industry

First impressions are everything when it comes to an interview. Normally, the first rule of thumb is to dress professionally, which can be effortless unless there are tattoos to be covered up. Visible tattoos would determine what to wear: For example, a girl could wear slacks instead of a skirt if she has a leg tattoo. Piercings should be taken out before the interview. If the student’s tattoos or piercings are showing during the interview, it may negatively affect their interview.

“I know that professionally wise, I didn’t want to have tattoos that were seen because it is still not acceptable in the work place and so I choose to get tattoos that are hidden.” The Coordinator of Student Life, Caitlin Mullen said. “You can get judged during an interview because they are just seeing a tattoo, they don’t 

know who you are.”

To those who may find tattoos as a way to express themselves, this concept may seem unfair or rude to judge. Most businesses make these strict requirements to uphold their image as a whole. Employers require that their employees look presentable to their customers.

Studies show that 76 percent of respondents to surveys feel tattoos and piercings hurt an applicant’s chances of being hired during a job interview.

During interviews, having tattoos might affect student’s credibility and experience that they can offer to the business. In many cases, the most qualified candidate has the most visible tattoo and may get overlooked.

“I would be very irritated if a corporation judged me on my tattoos and piercings. Especially if I was more than qualified for the job. I think it’s ignorant for people to judge others based on that,” Wall said.

Even though the odds are against those who have visible tattoos, they can still get the job. When given the job, they are most likely told to make sure their tattoos are not seen by the managers, co-workers or the customers. With this rule, they are put at a high expectation that they must keep. 

They say that “it’s easy to make it to the top but harder to stay there.” So, the “tatted” workers need to keep that in mind.

Although society and the media is pushing the idea of expressing themselves though body art and piercings, the business world has decided to keep things professional. So, students may want to think twice about what they want on their bodies and what the consequences and repercussions of getting tattoos are in the long run.

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