There is no doubt tattoos are more mainstream today than ever before. According to the Pew Research Center, as many as 40 percent of all millennials have some type of body ink. While attitudes toward tattoos may be changing as a general rule, the image of tattooed employees in the workplace hasn’t evolved as quickly. For millennials heading out to the professional workforce for the first time, it might be time to give the body art a second thought.

Hiding the Evidence

A recent report at Money found that 70 percent of millennials sporting body ink hide it from their employers. When researchers from the University of Tampa interviewed students on the subject of tattoos, they discovered the vast majority (86 percent) saw the ink as an obstacle in finding employment after graduation. While tattoos are becoming more widely accepted in some circles, conservative professions like law and finance are distinctly bucking that trend.

The Issue of Free Speech

Some tatted individuals believe their body art is protected by the First Amendment and a few have even taken their cases to court. However, pervious lawsuits have indicated most arguments are settled in favor of the employer. An article from Texas A&M University, Corpus Christi, pointed out that tattoos are considered “mutable” characteristics under the law, which means they don’t pass First Amendment muster as a protected method of communication. Discrimination based on body art – and body piercings – is considered acceptable under the current laws.

In addition to conservative professions like law, banking and finance, other occupations may discourage body art visibility as well. Customer-facing jobs, such as sales and customer service reps, are less likely to accept applicants with visible tattoos. Even if the employer in these situations is comfortable with body ink, it is highly possible not all of the customers of the company would feel the same way.

The Bottom Line on Body Art

For those preparing to enter the workforce, it might be best to choose locations for your body art that can be easily hidden under professional clothing if you don’t want your ink to be a hindrance to your upward mobility. If you currently have ink on a conspicuous area like the face, neck or hands, laser procedures are now available to remove that body ink if you are concerned about your marketability in a fiercely competitive job market.

At Incredible Veins Skin & Body, we offer the very effective Picosure laser for removing body art. Sessions are relatively quick and no more painful than getting the ink originally, in most cases. Most patients will require a series of sessions to achieve satisfactory results. To learn more, contact Incredible Veins Skin & Body at 818-446-2995.

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