FBI Tattoo Policy for 2023 (Can FBI Agents Have Tattoos?)

The acceptance of tattoos around the world is growing and so is the number of people that sport body art. Some researchers state that as many as 30% of the adult population in the United States have at least one tattoo to their name.

Whether they like it or not, many industries have been forced to change their policy on tattoos due to this newfound popularity.

When it comes to the prestige and responsibility associated with the position, FBI agents have one of the most important jobs in the country. They are tasked with investigating and combating federal crimes, and they must be able to maintain a high level of integrity and professionalism at all times.

From the date of foundation in 1908, the FBI has been very strict when it comes to tattoos. Agents were not allowed to have any visible tattoos, regardless of their size or location on the body.

This policy was in place for many years, but it began to change in recent years as the number of people with tattoos increased.

So, can you have tattoos as an FBI agent nowadays? Let’s find out.

FBI Tattoo Policy – All You Need to Know

FBI Tattoos - all you need to know

If you’ve been thinking about joining the FBI but you have some tattoos that you’re worried about, then you’re in the right place. Below we’ll briefly discuss everything you need to know about the FBI tattoo policy.

As things stand, the FBI no longer discriminates against applicants with tattoos. Whether you have a couple of small tattoos or a full sleeve to show for it, you have as good a chance of scoring the dream job as anyone else.

However, that doesn’t mean that the FBI is okay with any tattoo you might have. There are still some restrictions in place. While there’s no official law that states you can’t have ink on your face or neck, it’s generally not considered to be professional and might be seen as one bridge too far for the FBI.

The same goes for offensive tattoos. If your tattoo is deemed to be racist, sexist, or otherwise inappropriate, it will most likely count against you during the application process. The same goes for any tattoo that might be associated with gangs, violence, or racism. These are obviously big no-nos for anyone who wants to work in law enforcement and especially in an organization of FBI stature.

Tattoos are not forbidden in FBI undercover operations, according to a person who spoke on condition of anonymity, but he or she added that they “may present as a potential risk to the covert operation and the employee specifically.”

What’s more, the latest version of the Special Agent Candidate Information Packet states the following: “Tattoo(s) determined to be disruptive to the learning environment must be covered by similarly colored long sleeves or a long sleeve shirt to wear under the polo shirt.”

In other words, if your tattoos easily draw attention because they’re so well-executed (no pun intended) or because they’re particularly interesting, you might be asked to cover them up.

Of course, this isn’t a huge deal and it’s certainly not the end of the world. If you’re serious about joining the FBI, then you’ll most likely be willing to make this small sacrifice for the greater good.

Frequently Asked Questions

Now that we’ve settled whether FBI agents can have tattoos, let’s take a look at some of the most frequently asked questions related to the subject.

  • Can FBI agents have sleeve tattoos?

Yes, FBI agents can have sleeve tattoos as long as they’re not offensive in any way or disruptive to others. The FBI appearance standards mean you should maintain a professional appearance at all times, so any tattoo that might be considered disruptive to the learning environment must be covered up.

Can FBI agents have tattoos?
FBI agents need to cover disruptive tattoos
  • Can FBI agents have neck tattoos?

While neck tattoos are definitely less common in the FBI, they are too allowed as long as they’re not offensive or disruptive to others. Covering a neck tattoo is considerably more difficult than covering a sleeve tattoo, so it’s generally not recommended.

  • Can FBI agents have face tattoos?

No, FBI agents cannot have face tattoos. This is because they can be considered disruptive to the learning environment and they’re generally not considered to be professional.

Final Word

So, there you have it! That’s everything you need to know about the FBI tattoo policy. As long as your ink is not offensive and you’re willing to cover it up if necessary, you shouldn’t have any problems joining the organization. Good luck!