Arkansas Tattoo Laws in 2023 (Age, Fines & More)

There are a plethora of reasons why people want to move or travel to Arkansas.

The state is filled with natural beauty, from the Ozarks to the Arkansas River Valley, and there are plenty of activities to keep people busy, like hiking, fishing, and camping. The cost of living is also relatively low in Arkansas, which makes it an attractive option for retirees or families on a budget. And let’s not forget about the food—Arkansas is home to some of the best barbecue in the country.

While all the above is a mouth-watering prospect, it’s also an undeniable fact that Arkansas hosts some of the most talented tattoo artists in the country. Compared to a few other states, the average price of a tattoo session also seems quite an incentive.

Despite all the positives, not everyone is legally permitted to get inked in Arkansas. The state, like any other in the US, has some regulations that need to be followed.

So, if you’re thinking about getting inked while you’re in the Natural State, there are a few things you should know first.

Here’s a quick guide to tattoo laws in Arkansas.

Arkansas Tattoo Laws – What You Need to Know

Arkansas regulations on tattoos need to be followed both by the clients and the tattoo artists. Otherwise, you’re risking a hefty penalty.

Tattoo Laws for Clients

In Arkansas, it is illegal to get a tattoo if you are under the age of 18 (as stated in Ark. Stat. Ann. § 5-27-228).

To get inked in Arkansas, you need to have a valid form of ID that proves you are 18 years or older (in case the tattoo artist has doubts about your age).

However, if you’re under the legal age, not all is lost. Arkansas is one of the states that accept written parental consent for tattoos. So, if you’re under 18 and really want to get inked, you can have your parent or guardian sign a consent form. Additionally, your legal guardian needs to be present during the duration of the session – even if it lasts a whole day!

The above makes Arkansas somewhere in the middle when it comes to the strictness of the tattoo law since there are states that completely prohibit the procedure but also others in which parental consent is enough – there’s no need to sit throughout the session.

Tattoo Laws for Artists

In order to legally perform the procedure of tattooing, all tattoo artists need to be certified.

Moreover, Arkansas tattoo law clearly states that since tattooing is a form of body art, all licensed tattoo shops are obliged to pay an annual license fee to keep the business going (as stated in Ark. Stat. Ann. §§ 20-27-1501 et seq).

Tattooing from home or any other non-qualified place is penalized.

Naturally, the tattooing procedure needs to be completely sterile, meaning that all needles and other equipment used during the process need to be disposable. The tattoo shop is also required by law to follow specific health and safety guidelines to minimize the risks of diseases or infections.

What’s also worth noting, tattoo artists are allowed to refuse the client’s request if they find the design inappropriate (eg. for racial or political reasons), the client is under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or is simply behaving inappropriately.


The above information was referred from the following sources: