Individuals who are seeking a high-profile career but are stuck with body art from their past – perhaps a conspicuous neck tattoo or offensive forearm ink – may consider laser tattoo removal in order to boost their chances of climbing up the corporate ladder.
Employers in the U.S. aren't prohibited by law to discriminate against job candidates based on their body art. Officials in Sydney, Australia recently enacted a ban on visible tattoos for police officers, leading to an uptick in the number of laser tattoo removal procedures being done in the area, according to a report by newspaper Sydney Central.
"We have noticed a large number of young professionals that are having their tattoos removed," said Jacinta Keoghan, medical director of a cosmetic procedure spa, quoted by the news source. "We find that these tattoos are often from previous relationships, or undertaken many years ago. We have also had an 80-year-old woman come through our doors."
For recent college gradates, there may be some other factors to consider.
An article in Purdue University newspaper The Exponent reports that some people entering the labor force with ink may be better off than others. For instance, one pharmacy student who has amino acid tattoos on the back of his arms found that his body art was actually appealing to his new employer, perhaps because the tattoos were related to his science field.
The news source states that some employers are bound to be more conservative than others, and that it may all come down to the placement of a tattoo. This suggests that college students may want to consider getting inked in an area that can be easily concealed. Hiding body art may be especially important during a job interview, when a potential employer is making his or her first judgment of candidates.
"Human nature, as it is, can be an unspoken factor," said Tim Luzader, the director of the Center for Career Opportunities at Purdue, quoted by the news source.
For some people, it's too late to take into consideration the size, location and appropriateness of a tattoo when it comes to job prospects. Luckily, modern laser tattoo removal procedures are more effective than before and tend to be less painful than getting inked.