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Finding a Job When You Have Tattoos, Piercings, and/or Body Modifications


Group of office workers (focus on woman in centre) portrait
David Lees/The Image Bank/Getty Images
The dogmas of the quiet past are inadequate to the stormy present. The occasion is piled high with difficulty, and we must rise with the occasion. As our case is new, so we must think anew and act anew.– Abraham Lincoln

The current economic situation of the world can very well be called a “stormy present.” Unemployment and poverty are at an all-time high, and even those who are fortunate enough to still have a job are feeling the sting of reduced wages. The amount of available jobs versus the amount of people desperately seeking work is a staggering ratio of unbalanced proportion.

Pride vs. Practicality
Unfortunately, that often means that people with body art who seek work often find their applications and resumes at the bottom of an employer’s pile. It’s still considered an undesirable trait in most industries and professions, and prejudicial stereotyping abounds. If you have tattoos, piercings, or any other visible modifications, you’ve got an automatic strike against you when it comes to impressing a potential future employer. As much as it pains me to say this, we have reached the point of the proverbial “desperate times” that call for “desperate measures.” This series of articles are designed to help you seek and find a job, but I’ll warn you right now that you’re not going to like some of it.

I applaud anyone who stands up and says, “I don’t care. I’m not covering my body art for anyone.” Well, I applaud them as long as they can pay their bills and take care of their families. However, if pride and stubbornness are preventing you from being able to do those things, then your priorities need to be examined. The fact of the matter is this: you need money to survive, and you need work to have money. If that means going against your natural inclinations and shunning your rebellious side for a few hours a day, so be it. It’s time to “think anew and act anew.”

But there’s more to finding a job than just covering up your body art. In this job seeking series, I’m going to do my best to show you what your options are and how to make the most of them.

Body Art Friendly Employers

The good news is that more and more companies are shedding the old perceptions about body art and are changing their policies to at least allow some visible tattoos and/or piercings as long as they meet a certain criteria. As long as you’re not looking for a corporate position, you may be able to find a part or full-time job at one of these companies. So, the first thing you need to know is what career fields and companies are body art friendly. (Next Page)

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