Tattoos have been around for thousands of years, back then it was a symbol to represent themselves or where they’re from and what occupation did they carry. Now tattoos are still occasionally use to symbolize something but mostly is an act of self-expression or what represents them – a message. They are for sure permanent and it is going be there till death so proceed with caution and think thoroughly.
It used to be a definitely straight cut ‘No!’ if you were a model with tattoo(s). But times have changed, now the answer to that is ‘depends’. It truly depends on the size and where your tattoo is at. If it’s large and obvious to the eye then definitely is a ‘no’ to designers and photographers. If it’s small, it can be covered up with make-up. The reason being why models are not allowed to have big tattoos because clients do not want it to distract viewers’ attention. They want all attention on the product itself. Of course occasionally some brands do want inked models to show of some ‘grungy’, ‘street’ look that the brand is going for.
Models who have large tattoos on their back, neck, arms, legs, honestly don’t get many jobs compared to those aren’t inked or inked at concealed places that’s not obvious to the eyes of the public. Clients don’t need the model to contend with their item. The model is a prop, the item is the star of the shoot. Creators, producers and different clients need a model to wear their garments/embellishments and not meddle. So if you are a fresh model who’s just starting to enter the industry but have been longing for a tattoo, kindly do think of these 3 consequences:
How big is your tattoo? Where do you want it to be?
Again, if you want a tattoo and still be able to book jobs and shows. Make sure is small or hidden. If it’s small, the make-up artist can easily cover it or photographers can quickly remove it with the power of Photoshop. To top onto that, small and hidden tattoos definitely won’t tick agencies off because the chances of them detecting it is so slim.
What product or services will you be modeling?
You can’t be modeling for a skin care product or service if you have tattoos on your neck and limbs. It’s almost illogical to do so. In short, it really depends on what you’re modeling for as well, if it’s apparels you better hope that your tattoo are hidden beneath the shirt and not showing or their brand is open to the concept of tattoos.
Who’s your client?
A brand’s marketing and advertising plans are crucial to the brand’s image. Their advertisements define the brand and its target audience – what message do they want to send out to their audience via the advertising efforts. Hence, does your client’s target audience include tattooed people? If it is, you’d probably be able to get the job. If not, you won’t be landing yourself a spot. Brands that involve cosmetics, family, medical, government interest or food, rest assure that they won’t want someone who has tattoos to represent their brand. Your only hope is apparels and bikes.
Some of you would say ‘Hey Cara Delevingne have tattoos, why is she still able to book so many shows?’ You just said her name, Cara Delevigne. Once a model becomes a supermodel, the rules do not really apply to them anymore. But I can bet that all current supermodels that we know and have heard do not have a single ink on them when they first started. It was only later on during their career where they decided to get ink.
If you’re an aspiring model and a ‘freshie’ to the industry, how do you want your client to see you? What sort of message do you want to send out? Are you ready to face the consequences of a inked model at the start of your journey? Think wisely before you get yourself into a responsibility that last a lifetime.