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Can You Get A Tattoo At 16?

Can You Get A Tattoo At 16

If you’re thinking about getting a tattoo at 16, you might be wondering if it’s even possible. We got some good news for you!

You can absolutely get a tattoo at 16! 

However there are a couple of steps involved. First, you’ll need to find a reputable tattoo artist who is willing to work with someone under the age of 18. And second, you’ll need parental consent and a parent or guardian should be present during the tattoo process. 

So if you’re serious about getting inked up at 16, this post is for you! We’ll go through everything you need to know.

Let’s get started!

Can A 16 Year Old Get A Tattoo?

Generally, you need to be at least 18 years old to get a tattoo. However, most states allow minors as young as 16 to get tattoos with parental consent,  there are also a few states that has 16 as the legal age limit for getting tattoos.

Also read: Do Tattoos Make Your Arms Look Bigger?

16 year old get tattoo

How does parental consent work? In most cases, you will need to have your parent or guardian sign a consent form before you can get the tattoo. The artist might also ask to see your ID to confirm your age.

Unfortunately there are some states in the US that don’t allow minors to get tattoos even with consent, so if you live in one of these states, you will not be able to get inked until you are 18. 

These states include: Alaska, California, D.C, Iowa, Maine, Mississippi, New York, South Carolina, North Carolina, Texas, Washington.

On the plus side, in states like Florida and Louisiana, the minimum age limit is 16! Whereas in some like Nevada, tattooing is not regulated by the state law however some regional health districts might have restrictions.

How Can I Get A Tattoo At 16 Legally?

There are a couple of ways that you can get a tattoo at 16 legally. 

The most common way is with parental consent which means that you will need to have your parent or guardian sign a consent form giving you permission to get a tattoo. In some cases, you may also need to have your parent or guardian present when you get the tattoo. 

The other way to get a tattoo at 16 legally is by getting a medical exemption. This means that you will need to have a doctor sign a medical exemption form stating that you need the tattoo for medical reasons. (good luck getting that LOL)

What States Can You Get a Tattoo at 16?

In the United States, tattoos are regulated by state laws. And most states allow people under the age of 18 to get tattoos with parental consent. 

What States to Get a Tattoo at 16

Below is a list of states that allow getting tattoos at 16 years. Some of these require approval from a physician as well and some even require them to be present, you can read the full details here.

DelawareFloridaGeorgia Hawaii      Idaho
IllinoisIndiana Kansas Kentucky Louisiana 
MarylandMassachusetts MichiganMinnesota Missouri 
Montana  NebraskaNevada   New Hampshire New Jersey 
New Mexico Ohio    Oklahoma Oregon  South Dakota      
North Dakota      Pennsylvania      Rhode Island      Tennessee Utah    
Vermont Virginia West Virginia      Wisconsin Wyoming 

It’s important to remember that there are a few states that make an exception to the general rule and don’t allow minors to get tattoos even with parental supervision which we discussed earlier. 

It is always advisable to check with your local laws and regulations before getting a tattoo.

What Countries Can A 16 Year Old Get A Tattoo?

There are a number of countries that allow 16 year olds to get tattoos, some without parental consent and some with. And there’s a number of countries where tattoos are not regulated by laws.

Here are a list of countries where 16 years olds could get tattooed:

GermanyCosta RicaPeruSwedenPortugal
Czech RepublicAustriaCroatiaItalyFinland

Almost all Asian and African countries don’t have any laws regarding tattoos and you can get tattoos if you are 16. But there’s a chance some studios might reject you.

Some countries like the United Kingdom and Australia don’t allow minors to get tattooed regardless of parental consent. And in countries which follow Islam, tattoos are forbidden.

Reasons Behind Tattoo Age Restrictions

Most states in the U.S. have an age limit of 18 for tattoos and there are several reasons behind these age restrictions.

Medical Procedure

The skin is the largest organ in the human body and it serves as a barrier to protect us from bacteria, viruses, and other harmful microbes. 

Tattooing involves PUNCTURING the skin to insert ink into the inner layer of skin hence it is considered as a medical procedure. And there is always a chance that a tattoo could get infected plus teens are still growing and their skin is more delicate than an adult’s.

Reasons Behind Tattoo Age Restrictions

If you plan on getting a tattoo from a friend or someone, don’t do it. Please be aware that tattooing equipment needs to be super clean and sterilized, if not you will most certainly end up with a bad infection and the tattoo will look like crap plus it’s gonna be permanent.  

Also read: Can you tattoo over bug bites?

Permanent Decision

Parental consent is required for tattoos in minors because it’s a permanent decision that can have lifelong consequences. Many people end up regretting their tattoos and may later seek costly and painful removal procedures. 

Some employers also discriminate against people with visible tattoos, so getting one at a young age could limit job prospects down the road.

Considering all of these factors, it’s understandable why most states have chosen to set the tattoo age limit at 18. If you’re a minor considering a tattoo, be sure to talk to your parents about it first and do your research to make sure you understand the risks involved.

Legislators Are Old School

Almost all the legislators are from older generations and are old-fashioned and traditional. People from these generations look down on tattoos and might even consider it a sin. 

They have a lot of political influence and can easily make laws to get tattoos harder or illegal especially for minors.

Bottom Line

To summarize, you can get a tattoo at 16 in most states with parental consent. Parental consent laws for tattoos vary by state, but most states allow tattooing with parental permission as long as the tattoo artist is licensed. Some states require that the parent or guardian be present when the tattoo is being done, while others only require written consent.

It’s important to keep in mind that some states have no age limit for getting tattoos, but this does not mean that there are no restrictions. For example, in Alabama, anyone – regardless of age – must be 18 years old to get a tattoo from a licensed artist in a professional setting. 

So, while you may be able to find an artist who is willing to tattoo you if you’re under 18, it’s against the law for them to do so plus it’s punishable in most states.

Can You Get A Tattoo At 16 In Texas?

You cannot get a tattoo at 16 in Texas even with parental consent. It is illegal to tattoo minors in Texas and the only exception is if you are getting the tattoo to cover up an existing tattoo that may be offensive or inappropriate like a gang tattoo.

Can You Get A Tattoo At 16 In New Jersey?

You can get a tattoo at 16 in NJ. However you need written parental consent from your parent or guardian to get the tattoo, otherwise it’s illegal and the artist will probably reject you.

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