A news story from last week has caused some real anger and debate over the laws over permanent make up. ITV News ran a story you can watch briefly here (apologies, UK only I think), which showed a girl who is 14 up here at ITV’s Newcastle studio (yes, I live there in the background, couldn’t help but tell you all) whose mother let her get tattooed on her eyes, lips and eyebrows, as well as a tattooed beauty spot, which I can’t even seem to see to be honest.
Should this have happened? That’s what has some of us in a bit of a debate, if you will. Over at my favourite forum, Tattoo.TV, the laws regarding permanent make up and minors seem to have been cleared up a little by a friend, who goes by the name Sharkboy on the site:
I write legislation for a living. It’s not the most exciting career by a long stretch but it does make you appreciate the implications that a subtle change in wording can have. In this case, the trouble is that the artists are happily exploiting a legal loophole to allow the tattooing of this "make-up" on under 18s. The legislation states that it applies to the permanent sub-dermal insertion of ink. The loophole? Simple, they call it "semi-permanent", the legislation cannot be applied and they’re free to tattoo any age with parental consent. The 2003 Miscellaneous Provisions Act at least now allows for some control of the hygiene standards etc. required of these people.
This is a loophole many are happy to exploit to make a bit of money from minors who want to be tattooed with make up. On all accounts many of us seem to think this is extremely wrong! If someone tattooed the sole of a minor’s foot with the excuse that it’ll wear away after a few months, does that make it right? Should we be able to tattoo our children, in the name of vanity, because it will “only” last for five years? In my opinion, of course not.
Are you as appalled by this story as we are? You’ll be happy to know there is something you can do- get to your local politicians and see if they can help close this silly loophole! No one should be able to tattoo a child because of only one word in a piece of legislation, yet only we can help change it by bringing this out-dated law to the attention of those in power. Get to your local politician as soon as you can, you may help save some kid’s skin.
If you’d like help finding out how to get in touch with your local MP, I’d be more than happy to help, if I can- just pop in a message and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can 😉
UPDATE: Another friend has offered up a link to do with body art and the law, especially non fatal offences and consent, it’s really interesting, so I’d recommend reading it here. Page 6 onwards has some really great information, though I’d suggest reading the whole thing if you find this interesting.