To wonder is a visible tattoo will really ruin my career chances?

(51 Posts)
superstarheartbreaker Sun 06-Oct-13 23:49:52

I a tattoo on my hip and I would like to have another one. I work in education and I am applying for teaching jobs. I am thinking of getting a snow leopard on my shoulder. Ok , so not too visible but is it a risk? Do employers discriminate agains tattoos? I read in the news that they do. Not the mail btw!

InspectorMagnet Sun 06-Oct-13 23:56:15

Call me a prude, but teachers shouldn't be exposing their shoulders at work and certainly not at an interview. Therefore tattoo shouldn't be a problem.

CoffeeTea103 Sun 06-Oct-13 23:57:59

Why would your shoulders be exposed at work? Also think teachers should dress appropriately, so if your shoulders are covered then it shouldn't be a problem

PiratePanda Sun 06-Oct-13 23:58:43

If you're happy wearing clothes to work that fully cover up your tattoo then it won't be an issue, surely?

Yes, no vest tops or shift dresses if you do

Can't you just get it on your butt or fanjo

No one gets that out at school

Unless they're pissed and a teacher from the. 80's (thanks Mr Connelly from Ayr Academy)

superstarheartbreaker Mon 07-Oct-13 00:00:55

I would always cover up. So i guess it's not a biggie. I might get it elsewhere though.

Remotecontrolduck Mon 07-Oct-13 00:03:06

I think for teaching yes it will matter. Wrongly in my opinion as I have no issue with (non-offensive) tattoos. Some people will judge you though unfortunately.

If it can be covered up then you should go for it, but it will really need to be covered.

SugarHut Mon 07-Oct-13 00:03:34

Will it beyond ruin your chances, no. Not the smartest move, yes.

I do agree with other posters though, surely you don't have your shoulders out, in which case, it won't matter?

ravenAK Mon 07-Oct-13 00:10:24

I'm a teacher & have a large shoulder tattoo.

I tend to wear long sleeves for work as having one part of the tattoo peeking out from under a short sleeved top looks silly. Some of my work blouses have sheer sleeves, though - it's certainly not any secret in school that I have a tattoo, & I'll cheerfully roll my sleeve up if students ask to see it.

But as Inspector Magnet says - on interview you'd be wearing something formal, so a shoulder tattoo won't present any problems.

It makes me slightly cross that any of this is even a consideration, but I'd probably be more careful about vibrant hair colour or piercings if you're jobhunting & playing safe.

DioneTheDiabolist Mon 07-Oct-13 00:11:36

Dsis is a teacher. Her shoulder tattoo has never been an

yellowsnownoteatwillyou Mon 07-Oct-13 00:26:48

I know a female teacher who has 2 tattoos on her lower arms, one on the underneath of her arm and on the top of her other arm. And I'm talking massive tattoos.
She apparently never wears short sleeves, I don't see how this works,but she's still employed and working her way up the ladder. She also has an under cut shaved in her hair, and she's not an art or drama teacher.

DSis is a teacher and has tattoos on both wrists. Never had a problem so far.

fortyplus Mon 07-Oct-13 00:56:10

I don't think you'll ever know whether or not it's a problem. If you attend an interview and don't get the job you'll never know whether a tattoo had anything to do with it.

I don't base my opinions of colleagues around their tattoos - I don't like them but probably wouldn't think 'yuk' any more than I would if they had a large wart on the end of their nose wink

FunnyRunner Mon 07-Oct-13 01:05:30

As long as it can be covered up you should be fine.

Teaching can be conservative as a profession, in the same way that other professions are. I say 'conservative' with a small c obviously Gove you cunt grin

missmarplestmarymead Mon 07-Oct-13 09:50:34

I would be surprised if it would ruin it but it may be best to think that some people are prejudiced against them and no-one is prejudiced because someone does not have one.

My friend is a school governor (chair) and often sits in on interviews. She does not like them and if there was not much to choose between two candidates, the one who didn't have a tattoo would get the job. Obviously, she wouldn't give that as a reason to the others on the panel or to the candidate.

I suppose I am saying you are always taking a chance that you will come in front of someone who may dislike them and use them to block a promotion whereas you will never be blocked because you don't have one.

SamG76 Mon 07-Oct-13 09:58:58

Agree with Miss mmm. I don't like tattoos at all and while I'd try not to hold it against someone in a job interview, there always the possibility of unconscious bias.

thegreylady Mon 07-Oct-13 10:03:20

My dd is a teacher and has two small tattoos. One is on her shoulder and one on her foot. The one on her foot shows if she wears sandals but there have been no comments about it.

FunnyRunner Mon 07-Oct-13 12:34:07

The worst thing is tattoos on the face, neck or hands to be honest. They are the hardest to hide. DH has been on an interview panel where a guy came in with a tattoo weaving up his neck. No matter what his credentials he was never going to get the job. People can wail and flail over the unfairness of it all but when you are representing an organisation at a senior level you need to be able to present yourself well to many different people from many different backgrounds. It's just a fact.

Beastofburden Mon 07-Oct-13 12:46:32

I would have thought it depends a bit on the tattoo. A nice snow leopard elegantly drawn somewhere not too in your face ought to be fine and a bit cool for the students.

People who have their entire skin coloured in with dodgy women, bits of sci-fi and general cartoon stuff- not such a professional look.

IvanaCake Mon 07-Oct-13 12:51:23

I can't see the problem with a shoulder would be easy to hide. I have a small one at the top of my back and no one I worked with ever knew it was there.

Goldenbear Mon 07-Oct-13 12:59:32

I'm a SAHP so it's not a reference to my job but DP who is an Achitect was talking to me about this the other night as there is an Architectural Assistant who has just started working at the practice and he tattoos on both arms. DP says he is very ambitious and wants to be an associate Director by the time he is 30, DP seems to think the tattoos will hinder this ambition as the company won't want an Associate representing them, in contact with clients and bringing in business. When he was interviewed the tattoos were not on show.

Goldenbear Mon 07-Oct-13 13:01:12

Sorry Architect not 'Achitect'.

pinkyredrose Mon 07-Oct-13 13:13:14

goldenbear if he wears long sleeves how will the tattoos hinder him?

Beastofburden Mon 07-Oct-13 16:17:46

I had a lot to do with high octane architects in posh international practices. They all had a very striking personal style, be it in dress, hairdo or general aura. Piercings, "forward" fashion and rainbow hair were the order of the day for the Young Ones. The odd tattoo would just vanish in the general creative mayhem, seems to me.

SilverApples Mon 07-Oct-13 16:23:18

Choose a place for your tattoo that can be covered by professional dress.
Problem solved.

bzoo Mon 07-Oct-13 16:30:03

I am part of a management team in Private Healthcare. I have a hand/wrist tattoo. I see many healthcare professionals with tattoos and piercings. I started off as a cleaner within the company and 2.5 years later I had worked my way through the ranks and about to enter senior management. Tattoo or no tattoo my work ethic shone through and ultimately THATS the point. A tattoo doesn't affect work ethic or working hard. Most people don't notice my tattoo straightaway!

Pendeen Mon 07-Oct-13 16:36:32

I must be a very "low octane" architect then!

Such ostentatious (and tacky) displays are never going to be part of my appearance n front of clients. smile

lisad123everybodydancenow Mon 07-Oct-13 16:48:42

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Beastofburden Mon 07-Oct-13 18:05:56

Well I was trying to find a polite way to say very, very camp.....

aroomofherown Mon 07-Oct-13 18:08:26

I commented (positively) on a teaching colleague's tatto this afternoon. It was on her forearm.

I have two small ones - ankle and wrist. Never been a problem, even in a school that didn't permit staff to show tattoos.

pinkyredrose Mon 07-Oct-13 18:10:01

pendeen well good for you. Judgemental much?

fifi669 Mon 07-Oct-13 18:44:49

My workplace doesn't allow visible tattoos. I do however have one on my wrist and did so at interview, I pointed it out when I read the employee manual. They jokingly said I'd best collect my stuff...

I think such policies are to deter the more outrageous, in your face (or on your face) tattoos bit generally no one cares

KatyPutTheCuttleOn Mon 07-Oct-13 18:47:40

I think it'd be better to cover up to be honest, but it all depends. There is a teacher I know who has tattoos all down both arms and he always wears a long sleeved shirt.

sparklekitty Mon 07-Oct-13 18:53:57

I'm a primary school teacher and have 2 visible tattoos, one on my wrist and one on my foot (only visible in the summer really). My wrist one is on show pretty much all the time.

The kids ask, I show them and tell the story behind it. I also make sure I tell them only grown ups can have them coz they don't rub off. Most of them then tell me all about their parents ones (often massive portraits of them on various appendages!)

quoteunquote Mon 07-Oct-13 18:58:42

The last operation I had, my surgeon had a tattoo on her hand, she did a great job of chopping bits off me, didn't seem to hold her back.

McSmoke Mon 07-Oct-13 18:59:16

Lots of the teachers at my girls' school have small wrist or ankle tats. One lady even has a full sleeve tatoo, and no one has ever complained to the school(I know as I am a Governors).

Goldenbear Mon 07-Oct-13 19:18:16

The company my DP works for is both international and Is owned by probably one of the uk's most famous designers. His impression is that this man's career progression will be limited as a result.

It is not practical to cover your arms all of the time as in when it is hot. This is how they found out he has tattoos as he is sitting at his desk with sleeveless tops. Clients obviously visit the office but at the moment he is not really in contact with them. It hasn't occurred to him that they are a problem so he why would he cover them up?

deste Mon 07-Oct-13 19:27:32

My DD us also a teacher and has one on her wrist and one on her foot. She was offered every job she went for including one at a private school. She was the first one on her course to be offered a job.

Goldenbear Mon 07-Oct-13 19:32:04

I bet it wasn't Eaton College?

maddy68 Mon 07-Oct-13 19:44:25

I am slt in a secondary school. We do not allow anyone with a visible tattoo. We have a strict dress code , no piercings other one pair of stud earrings etc

You are a role model and a professional who is dealing with young people, parents and visitors

I am not anti tattoo, I have one myself but the students would never know as it's not visible

bebopanddoowop Mon 07-Oct-13 19:51:49

Both my husband and I are tattooed and he works in an office and always wears a dark coloured long sleeve shirt to cover his which although can get hot, is smart so appropriate. I work from home so is not a problem but when I briefly worked in a school I wore my hair down, dark tights and long sleeves to cover them. I was never told I had to but I did out of respect - they are personal and not to everyone's taste. Now I have a job where it doesn't matter if I'm tattooed (in art industry) so I don't get so hot covered up in the summer!

If you are getting your shoulder done measure where your hemlines go so that it doesn't show. It will cause more hassle than it's worth otherwise.

Good luck

Wuxiapian Mon 07-Oct-13 20:35:50

As long as it's never on show, I don't see the problem.

lurkerspeaks Mon 07-Oct-13 20:51:11

MY sister has lots of tattoos and is a teacher. Her work wardrobe is very carefully chosen (I didn't even know 140 denier tights existed) and I would be very surprised if any of the teenagers she teaches even know she has them.

In day to day life they are clearly visible but she hides them at work.

VikingVagine Mon 07-Oct-13 21:01:49

I have several visible tattoos, a nose piercing and occasionally blue or pink hair. I'm a teacher, (in France though) and no one bats an eyelid any more .

Littlestgirlguide Mon 07-Oct-13 21:03:25

My DD's reception teacher has a small tattoo on her wrist. It's not an issue as long as its discreet.

VikingVagine Mon 07-Oct-13 21:07:19

Forgot to add that it hasn't hindered me at all, last time I was inspected I got the best possible report and promotion.

WorrySighWorrySigh Mon 07-Oct-13 21:34:35

I used to work as a lifeguard so got to see an awful lot of body graffiti. Too many people seemed to have treated their bodies like a piece of old wall. Lots of random scribbling and no coherent style.

I havent yet seen great art in a tattoo. Mostly they just look like sub A level Art sketches. After a few years mostly they look like they have been done in blue biro.

Tattoos are a fashion. Unlike hair colour, most piercings, clothes etc, you are stuck with this fashion choice.

Pendeen Tue 08-Oct-13 16:49:00

Thank you, pinkyredrose

jnl0612 Tue 08-Oct-13 16:59:51

I work for a very large international company, (not in teaching) they have a no visible tattoo policy, so if you have any visible you have to cover them with plasters/bandages etc they have been known to turn people down for jobs because of neck / facial tattoos in the past

lljkk Tue 08-Oct-13 17:06:54

Our local lifeguards have as many tats as the pool customers (which is to say, quite a lot).

I don't think colleagues will care but some parents might decide it's an excuse to have no respect.

Come to think of it, NO ONE at my work place has a visible tat.

BucketArse Tue 08-Oct-13 17:07:22

If you ditched the snow leopard idea (Why? Just Why?!), and went with an excerpt from the new National Curriculum, you could flash it at interview as a selling point.

Until they change it again and you have to get it lasered.

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