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Tattooed Teachers? | Tattoo Machine Wholesale Supplier


I recently came across an article in The Guardian called “Should Teachers be able to have Tattoos?”. The article peaked my interest because it’s not one that’s wholly new to me as my mum is a manager of a nursery and she we have had many conversations on whether she should show her tattoos at work, it’s something that she thinks a lot about. Now I am obviously coming from a bias position as we here at MTS as a tattoo machine wholesale supplier love everything about tattoos, so keep that caveat in mind so you know which side of the fence I am coming from. The article basically showed a few different statements from head teachers, teachers, parents and one tattoo artist that used to teach maths. It was fairly open ended in the way it didn’t state at the end whether there was a right answer, let's look at some of the points that were brought up.


This was a theme that came a lot, it seemed that it was widely agreed upon that teachers should appear professional, which is fair. Teachers are after all in a profession so they should appear professional, that’s basic logic, but who decides what looks professional? I would assume that it would be the head teacher but after conversations with my mum, it seems she thinks it is the parents. Societal norms exist for a reason, they don’t come out of nowhere and there is a silent agreement in what is normal and acceptable amongst general society. Professionalism on the other hand and in my humble opinion is just made up and if professionals began displaying their body art, while there would inevitably be some disapproval as there is in all things, then it’s just possible it would become normal for professionals to have tattoos.


This is another important one, it’s fairly well known at this point that some people get some pretty inappropriate tattoos. In this case, I have to agree, in a teaching position it's fair to say that these should be covered but you’d have to qualify what counted as inappropriate. If I was the queen of the world, which unfortunately I’m not, I would probably say anything with profanity or sexual content should be covered.


There was one quote from the article that made me kinda sad “my work is more important than my individuality”, I’m paraphrasing but that basically what one head teacher said. This made me sad for a number of reasons, firstly I felt like it didn’t really have to be a one or the other situation, I don’t see why you can’t be yourself and do well in your job. A tattoo is only ink in your skin it in no way hinders any of your cognitive function, it seems a little ridiculous to think that this could hinder your ability to do your job well. Secondly, it just made me sad that someone would value work over their individuality, but that is the 16-year-old in me talking and everyone holds different values, which is great, but I couldn’t live like that!


Of course, the “effect” a teacher with uncovered tattoos would have on children was mentioned. I think it was fairly agreed that children wouldn’t care, one parent brought up that it would encourage children to be more accepting of people who look different, and the maths teacher turned tattoo artist mentioned that tattoos bring up discussion, and discussion is always good for growing minds. I have to say I agreed, I don’t think a child would mind either way if a teacher had tattoos. Besides a lot of people have tattoos nowadays so a lot of children are already familiar with tattoos before they go to school, especially children like my son who has heavily tattooed parents. On the other hand, one teacher pointed out that children are made to follow dress codes so the teachers should set the example, it’s a good point, my only criticism would be to question the value of dress codes, do we really need them at all, child or teacher? That’s my 16-year-old self talking again.

Obviously, I think that teachers should be allowed to have tattoos on display so long as they are appropriate but the attitudes in the article were pretty mixed. It did stand out that there was no one that said overwhelmingly NO, teachers shouldn’t show their tattoos. I think the debate is very much open. What do you think? Do you agree with me? Let us know! Remember if you are a tattoo artist looking for tattoo machines we are a tattoo machine wholesale supplier so check out our store!

Love Katy…


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  • Katy Jackson