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Skin piercing and tattooing

The Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982 (Licensing of Skin Piercing and Tattooing) Order 2006 legislation came into force on 1 April 2006, which requires all skin piercing activities to be licensed.

Skin piercing activities includes any of the following:

  • Acupuncture
  • Cosmetic body piercing
  • Electrolysis
  • Tattooing

Businesses will require to be licensed before carrying out skin piercing and/or tattooing.


Download a Skin piercing and tattooing application form.

If no application is received for relevant skin piercing activities enforcement action may be taken.

If the activities carried out on your premises come into the above criteria, you will require to meet certain conditions as indicated by the above legislation.


skin piecing fees
Personal Licence
(For a peripatetic worker who works from various commercial premises which meet the standard for skin piercing and tattooing)
Premises Licence
(For a premises carrying out skin piercing and tattooing this licence fee covers all persons employed and working on the premises)
Change Licence
(If you wish to add a person to a premises licence or add a premises licence to a personal licence)
Material change to Licence
(If there is a material change to a licence such as a new address for the licensed premise or if you wish to transfer the licence to a new licensee within the 3 year period)

Once the application is processed the fees are non-refundable.

For further information please contact Environmental Health.

Standards for skin piercing and tattooing

View the Standards for skin piercing and tattooing

Licensed establishments

View a list of Licensed establishments for skin piercing and tattooing