Renfrewshire Council

Skin piercing and tattooing licence

How to apply, what documents you need, after you've applied, how much the licence costs, how long an application takes, who is consulted, objections and representations, conditions of the licence, how long the licence lasts for.

If you run a business anywhere in Renfrewshire which carries out any of the following activities, you need a licence from the council:

  • Acupuncture
  • Cosmetic body piercing
  • Electrolysis
  • Tattooing (permanent or semi permanent, including micro pigmentation).

How to apply for a licence

We now accept skin piercing and tattooing applications online, including the use of electronic signatures.

You can apply, upload and sign for your supporting documents and pay for the licence online.

Apply for a skin piercing or tattooing licence

You can see the Council's policy on electronic licensing applications in Appendix 1 of the report to  the Regulatory Functions Board meeting on 15 September 2022.

See the guidance on applying for a skin piercing and tattooing licence [211KB] .

What you need to do after you've applied

You must display a public notice at the proposed premises as soon as the application has been lodged.

The display notice must be displayed for a period of 21 days together with a copy of the application.

At the end of the 21 day period you must sign and return a certificate of compliance to confirm that you have displayed the notice for the statutory period. 

You can find a display notice and certificate of compliance in the guidance on applying for a skin piercing and tattooing licence [211KB] .

How much it costs

See the civic application fees page for skin piercing and tattooing licence fees.

How long your application will take

All applications made under the Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982 must be considered within 3 months and a decision made within 12 months.

Who is consulted about your application

A copy of your application will be sent to Police Scotland, Scottish Fire and Rescue, Local Councillor, Community Councillor, Community Resources Section, Development and Housing Service and, where the premises are within Paisley Town Centre, the Town Centre Manager.

They will carry out their own investigations and report back to the licensing section.

If there are objections or representations to your application

If an objection or representation is received, the application must be considered at a meeting of the Regulatory Functions Board. You will be formally cited to attend the meeting and a copy of the letter of objection or representation will be sent out to you with the citation letter.

Conditions of the licence

You can see the conditions of the licence in the  skin piercing and tattooing licence conditions [79KB] .

A copy of the conditions of licence for skin piercing and tattooing will be issued to you if your licence is granted. The council requires all licenceholders to have a thorough understanding of these conditions and they should be kept as they form part of your licence.

How long the licence lasts for

Applications for the grant of a licence are generally granted for a period of one year. Applications to renew an existing licence are normally granted for a two year period.