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How old do you have to be to get a tattoo in the world

One of the questions repeated is:

What is the legal age for being tattooed?

The question is not easy to answer, so I have decided to write this post for you.

I want to show you all the information I could collect for the legal tattoo age all over the world: In the US, rest of America, Europe, Africa, and Asia.

After this, I want to share with you some peculiarities with tattoos in different countries.

how-old-do-you-have-to-be-to-get-a-tattoo

About tattoo legal age around the world

If you want to have the global picture of tattooing all over the world, it is easy:

If you are an adult, you can tattoo. If you are a minor, it depends (a lot).

The usual age for being adult is 18, but:

For minors, there are three different options:

Tattoo legal age in the US

Legally speaking, the US is a complicated country.

Usually each state has its own law for tattoos and, moreover, one state (Nevada) has no regulation at all, and it depends on its different regions (fantastic).

In the US usually the adult age is 16, because is the age when you can have a contract with someone, but there are a lot of “buts” on this concept because, when it’s specified, the age for tattooing is usually 18, not 16.

Moreover, some states need parental consent for minors, others need the presence of the adults/guardians too and, on other ones, it is just not legal to tattoo minors.

Here is a table with all the legislation from each state:

StateAgeComment
AlabamaNo SpecifiedParnetal consent in presence of the artist. Cannot tattoo and intoxicated person.
Alaska18Parental consent for both parents, written and be present during the procedure
ArizonaNo SpecifiedParent must be present for minors
Arkansas18Unlawful under 18.
California18Parent must be present for minors
Colorado18Parent must be present for minors
ConnecticutNo SpecifiedPermission of parents of guardian for minors
District of Columbia18
Delaware18
Florida16Parnetal consent for minors. Two parents and the minor must present ID.
Georgia18You cannot be tattooed withing an inch of your eye socket
HawaiiMinors: Written consent for parents
Idaho14Minors: Written consent for parents on their presence
Illinois18Minors cannot be on a tattoo studio withour their parents or guardian
IndianaNo SpecifiedMinors: Written consent and parent or guardian must be present
Iowa18Minors cannot be tattooed
Kansas16Minors: Written consent from parents or guardian
Kentucky16Minors: Written consent from parents or guardian
Louisiana16Minors: Written consent and parent or guardian must be present
Maine18
MarylandNo SpecifiedWritten consent retained for 3 years
Massachusetts18
MichiganNo SpecifiedMinors: Written consent and parent or guardian must be present
Minnesota18Minors cannot be tattooed
Mississippi18Misors cannot be tattooed
MissouriNo SpecifiedMinors: Written consent and parent or guardian must be present
MontanaNo SpecifiedMinors: Written consent and parent or guardian must be present
NebraskaNo SpecifiedMinors: Written consent and parent or guardian must be present
NevadaNo SpecifiedDon't have state legislation
New Hampshire18Minors cannot be tattooed
New Jersey16Minors: Written consent from parent or guardian.
New MexicoNo SpecifiedMinors: Written consent and parent or guardian must be present
New York18Minors: Written consent and parent or guardian must be present
North Carolina18Minors cannot be tattooed
North DakotaNo SpecifiedMinors: Written consent from parents or guardian
OhioNo SpecifiedMinors: Written consent and parent or guardian must be present
Oklahoma18Minors cannot be tattooed
Oregon18Minors only can be tattooed with the authorization of a physician.
PennsylvaniaNo SpecifiedMinors: Written consent and parent or guardian must be present
Rhode Island18Minors cannot be tattooed
South Carolina18Minors cannot be tattooed
South DakotaNo SpecifiedMinors: Written consent from parents or guardian
Tennessee18Minors only can be tattoed to cover up an existing tattoo
Texas18Minors only can be tattoed to cover up an existing tattoo
UtahNo SpecifiedMinors: Written consent and parent or guardian must be present and provide proof of identity
VermontNo SpecifiedNo legislation
VirginiaNo SpecifiedMinors: Written consent from parents or guardian
Washington18
West VirginiaNo SpecifiedMinors: Written consent from parents or guardian
Wisconsin18Minors cannot be tattooed
WyomingNo SpecifiedMinors: verbal consent during the procedure

Tattoo legal age in Europe

how-old-do-you-have-to-be-to-get-a-tattoo-in-the-us

In Europe, the situation it is nearly the same:

A lot of countries have a lot of different laws, but the spirit is the same.

On the next table, I write first the countries on the European Union, and there, the others.

There are weird things too like, for example, Monaco started the legislation back in 2012 (late!), Spain has different laws depending on the region (17 for 1 single country), or Armenia, who culturally revile tattoo because it seems it was satanic.

The complete table, here:

CountryAgeComment
Austria18With parental consent from 16 to 18.
Belgium18With parental consent from 16 to 18.
Bulgaria18No legislation.
Croatia18With parental consent from 16 to 18. Parents may be present.
Some studios don't tattoo minors.
Cyprus18Just in case someone ask you for your ID...
Czech Republic18No legislation.
Denmark18Is not legal -18 years or tattooing head, neck or hands.
Estonia18No legislation.
Finland18Parental consent under 18.
France16You cannot tattoo fascist stuff.
Germany18With parental consent from 16 to 18. You cannot tattoo fascist stuff.
Greece18With parental consent or being parents present from 16 to 18. Or due medical reasons.
Hungary18No legislation.
Ireland16No legislation, but the facto age is 16. In some cases, it's possible with 14 with parent consent.
Italy18No legislation.
Latvia18No legislation.
Lithuania18No legislation.
Luxembourg18No legislation.
Malta18No legislation.
Netherlands16Legal age is 16, minors with parent consent.
Poland16No legislation.
Portugal16
Romania18
Slovakia16No legislation.
Slovenia18No legislation.
Spain14-16Depends on the region.
Sweden18
United Kingdom18Is not legal tattooing minors except for medical reasons.
Albania18Cannot find anything.
Andorra18Cannot find anything.
Armenia18No legislation, this country is not much tattoo-friendly.
Azerbaiyan18Cannot find anything.
Belarus18Cannot find anything.
Bosnia & Herzegovina18Cannot find anything.
Georgia18Cannot find anything.
Iceland18Parental consent from 16 to 18.
Liechtenstein18Cannot find anything.
North Macedonia18Cannot find anything.
Moldova18Cannot find anything.
Monaco18The legislation is from 2012!
Montenegro18Cannot find anything.
Norway18Parental consent from 16 to 18.
Russia18Legal age, 18. You cannot show extremist tattoos in public.
San Marino18Cannot find anything.
Serbia18Cannot find anything.
Switzerland18
Ukraine18Cannot find anything.

Tattoo legal age in the rest of America

If we saw all America except the US, the picture is almost the same.

I only can find legislation for 13 countries and, if some cases, these laws are tricky.

Weird things, of course. In Costa Rica you can do a tattoo being 12 years old, in Cuba tattoo is practically “not legal” or in El Salvador, there is not a legal prohibition for minors.

Party hard, dude.

CountryAgeComment
Canada16Minors: Parental consent needed.
Brazil18
Mexico18Minors: Parental consent needed.
Argentina18Minors: Parental consent needed.
Peru16Minors: Parental consent needed.
Venezuela
Chile18Exceptions for minors.
Ecuador18Exceptions for minors.
CubaTricky laws. In the practice, tattoos are nearly banned.
El Salvador18No legal forbid for minors.
Costa Rica18Between 12 and 18, parental consent needed.
Puerto Rico18
Uruguay18Between 15 and 17, parental consent needed.

Tattoo legal age in Africa

If Europe or North America is kind of a mess speaking about laws, Africa is on an early stage.

So much that I do not have a table for Africa. 

I am sorry about that, but there is no information about the entire continent.

And this is a real pity.

South Africa is the only country with something written, and -16 years old are rejected by tattoo studios. Usually, but not always.

Islamic countries have a hard relation with tattoos. In some countries they are forbidden because of Sharia, in others, the youth people are starting to break the taboo, but they are only in the early beginning.

Some weird facts about tattoos all over the world

Finally, these are a lot of weird and funny facts about tattoo in the world:

If you have some information about tattoo legislation all around the world, please let me know, I want to complete that list!

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