Everybody Tells A Story: What Does Your Ink Say At Work? - Guest Post By Brigitte Evans

Tattoos have been around in some form or another since ancient history. Used frequently in religious rituals and rites of passage, they were related to spirituality and tradition in many cultures, and yet in others, they’ve been used as slave markings. They’ve been around for such a long time, and have meant different things to different people, that it’s absolutely impossible to pinpoint one exact thing that tattoos are supposed to represent. They are as varied as human themselves, and so are the opinions about them. Your ink may mean one thing to you, but a whole different thing to your boss. So, how can you predict what others will think of your chosen markings? How will it influence your position in the company or the ability to get hired in the first place? Well, it depends on several factors.

The company you work for

Who are you more likely to trust with an open heart surgery, a person with clean, tidy hands, or a person whose forearms are inked with skulls and crossbones? Most people would choose the former, even though there isn’t a particularly valid reason except sheer prejudice to do so. A lot of us have been socialized to relate tattoos to criminals and rebels, and your workplace might be the same. It also depends on the type of company it is. Conservative, traditional companies might view tattoos as a sign of foolishness, so consider the people you work with and their general attitudes. 

The position you’re applying for

Are you a hotel receptionist or a salesperson whose job it is to work with customers all day? Are you a musician or maybe a graphic designer who only works from their desk at the office? If you work with clients, tattoos will generally be discouraged, but if you are in a creative field where self-expression is encouraged, tattoos will most likely not be an issue.

The placement of the tattoo

Hey, if they can’t see it, they can’t bother you about it. Face, front of the neck, and hand tattoos are generally viewed negatively, but if you’ve got a discreet tattoo, or just the one you can hide by wearing a button-down shirt, it’s generally your own business and no one will care.

How you wish to be perceived

Tattoos often come off as playful, loud, and creative in the right environment, but if your aim is to look as serious as possible, they can be detrimental. There’s also the issue of fading, wrinkled, and poorly-drawn tattoos that tend to make a very bad impression on others. If your ink is preventing you from advancing in your job or getting hired, laser tattoo removal is a safe option that can get you your confidence back.

Your own skills

If you’re really, really good at your job, then it’s very likely you will have more freedom with how you act and whether you have ink on your skin. A lot of important historical figures had tattoos, and it didn’t really interfere with their jobs in any way.

Your own attitude

If you are insecure about your own marks, then people are not going to like them at all. Anyone who ever goes to get inked is encouraged to really make sure that this is something that they won’t regret, since tattoos are so lasting. People will keep asking about its meaning and whether it hurt, about how you chose the artist, and unless you’re ready to either explain it to everyone or to politely tell them it’s none of their business, a tattoo is probably a bad idea.
In the end, it’s all your choice. If you really want a tattoo and have a meaningful idea in your head, we do think you should get it – just be careful about the placement. Tattoos are becoming more accepted as the time goes by, so feel free to enjoy your ink fully.

Brigitte Evans is a Cosmetic Skin Care Consultant and a writer from Australia, with a sweet tooth for makeup and everything sparkly. When she is not drooling over the next big thing in the beauty industry, she is reading mystery novels and making plans for her next trip. She is a proud aunt of Sophie, age 2 who rounded her Chanel lipstick but loves her anyway. Twitter/Facebook.

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