Anyone who wishes to carry on the practice of ear piercing, cosmetic piercing, semi-permanent skin-colouring, electrolysis or tattooing must be registered with us if the business is located in our area (unless they are a registered medical doctor or under the supervision of such a person).
The purpose of registration is to ensure that essential health and hygiene standards are maintained in any premises where these activities are carried out. It is compulsory to register both the premises and the operator under the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982.
Applicants will be required to complete a skin piercing application form [pdf] 166KB and pay a fee, which covers the cost of administration and inspection of the premises on a periodic basis. These checks will ensure compliance with the skin piercing byelaws [pdf] 201KB.
If at a later stage you wish to register additional practitioners, you will be required to complete a skin piercing application form - additional practitioner [pdf] 163KB and pay a further fee.
Skin piercing byelaws
Comprehensive hygiene rules are enforced by us to ensure businesses carrying out the practice of skin piercing operate safely.
These byelaws [pdf] 201KB set hygiene standards relevant to cleanliness and hygiene of premises, staff and equipment. They aim to increase health protection and reduce the risk of transmission of infections such as Hepatitis. The Secretary of State has confirmed the bylaws which came into force on 1 April 2010.
- Read more about electrolysis, piercing, tattooing and micropigmentation [pdf] 135KB
- Download infection control guidelines [pdf] 259KB
- Download tattooing guidance [pdf] 1MB
- Visit the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH) website
- Visit the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) website
- Download the Kent code of practice for hygienic skin piercing [pdf] 4MB
- Download body piercing guidance [pdf] 1MB
- Download micropigmentation guidance [pdf] 957KB
- Visit the British Acupuncture Council website
Tattoo Hygiene Rating Scheme (THRS)
For further information please visit our Tattoo Hygiene Rating Scheme page.