Tattoo Artists

Laws & Permits

North Carolina law requires tattoo artists to obtain a permit from their local health department before tattooing anyone. Permits are valid for one year from the date issued, and are not transferable between locations. If a tattoo artist plans to operate at more than one location, separate applications must be submitted for each location. The cost for a tattoo artist permit is $250.

It is illegal to tattoo anyone under 18 years of age in North Carolina.

Once obtained, tattooing permits must be posted at the business entry or entry to the tattoo artist’s room within the business.


Environmental Health Specialists perform yearly inspections on:

  • Equipment
  • Instruments
  • Procedures
  • Tattoo parlors
  • Utensils


Tattoo artists are required to follow sanitation and infection control procedures to be permitted, and must have a working knowledge of blood-borne pathogens and diseases, as well as the measures necessary to prevent spreading those pathogens and diseases.

Equal Opportunity

Interpreter services are available at no cost. Haywood County Health and Human Services is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Statutes & Regulations