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Can You Join The Army If You Have Tattoos

Can You Have A Full Sleeve Tattoo In The National Guard

Tattoos Before Joining The Military – You’re Ruining Your Life..

The National Guard follows the Armys stance in terms of full sleeve tattoos.

The U.S. Army recently changed its policy regarding tattoos on the arms.

You are allowed to have tattoos on the entire arm, but not past the wrist bone.

Therefore, a full sleeve tattoo is possible in the National Guard based on current standards.

The same is true of sleeve tattoos on the legs since the National Guard now allows body art on that section of the body.

What Tattoos Are Not Allowed In The National Guard

Once again the National Guard follows the same standards set forth in the Wear and Appearance of Army Uniforms and Insignia manual.

The National Guard has two determining factors for unauthorized tattoos:

1. Location

2. Content of the Tattoo

First, in terms of location, the National Guard tattoo policy has very few places on the body where tattoos are not permitted.

Regardless, the head, scalp, face, neck, and hands are pretty much off-limits with a couple of exceptions.

You can find out if you follow the National Guard tattoo policy for 2021 by doing the t-shirt test.

When you put on a t-shirt and look in the mirror do you see any ink visible above the collar line of the shirt?

If so, you technically are in violation of the National Guard tattoo policy.

The restrictions also apply to the hands and legs.

What Tattoos Are Allowed In The Marines

There are restrictions regarding content of tattoos, but well get to that in a bit.

  • Sleeve tattoos are now allowed but cannot fall below the wrist.
  • Band tattoos are permitted.
  • Tattoos are not allowed above the collar bone and cannot be seen above the uniformed fitted T-shirt.

Hand tattoos are prohibited in the Marines, with the exception of a single band tattoo on the finger.

They can have a single band tattoo of no more than 3/8 of an inch in width on one finger.

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What Tattoos Are Allowed In The Army

The U.S. Army prides itself on a clean and neat presentation.

However, the military branch has adapted to modern social norms where nearly half of all Millenials have at least one tattoo.

The Army revised its tattoo policy during the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq in order to open up a larger recruiting pool.

Tattoos and brands are defined by the U.S. Army as permanent markings that are difficult to reverse in terms of financial cost, discomfort, and effectiveness of removal techniques.

The Army tattoo policy no longer limits the number of tattoos on a solider.

Additionally, the size of tattoos is also not scrutinized near as much as previous generations.

As a result, members of the Army are allowed to have as many tattoos as they want on their chest, arms, torso, and legs.

It is an adaptation of a previous Army tattoo policy that limited the number of tattoos to four below the elbow and knee.

However, the skin below the wrist and from the neck up is still off-limits.

The only exception to the hand is a ring tattoo, with one being permitted per hand.

Questions About Tattoos And Tattoo Removal

Can You Have Tattoos In The Army National Guard

It is common to have questions about your tattoos, or about the tattoo removal process. If you are not sure whether one of your tattoos will keep you from enlisting, be sure to talk with your recruiter and review the applicable regulations. If you have questions about laser tattoo removal, feel free to contact us. We are happy to sit down with you, assess your tattoos, and give you a realistic idea of the amount of time, cost, and the number of treatment sessions that it will take to remove them.

We are thrilled that you are considering making a career out of serving our great country. And we are here to do whatever we can to help make your dream a reality. Contact us today for a consultation, and lets get started!

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Navy Tattoo Policy 2022

Like other branches of the U.S. Armed Forces, the Navy updated its tattoo policy in 2016 in an effort to ensure that the branch is able to recruit and keep talented sailors.

“The tattoo policy change was made to reflect tattoo realities in the nation our military serves. The Navy does not want to miss opportunities to bring in talented men and women willing to serve,” it said in a 2016 publication of All Hands, the U.S. Navy magazine.

Neck and sleeve tattoos are allowed, officials said. But tattoos that are “prejudicial to good order, discipline, and morale, or be of a nature that brings discredit upon the naval service” are banned, including those that are racist, sexist, extremist, or indecent. Commanding officers and the chain of command are responsible for making these determinations.

Specifically, one tattoo is allowed on the neck, but it cannot exceed one inch in any direction. Any size or amount of tattoos on the arms and legs are allowed, officials said.

Examples Of Army Offensive Tattoos

Here are the main types of tattoos the U.S. Army analyzes and may prohibit you from enlisting in the military:

  • Sexist Tattoos: Soldiers are not allowed to have body art that advocates a philosophy that degrades or demeans a person based on gender.
  • Racist Tattoos: Soldiers are not allowed to have body ink that degrades or demeans a person based on race, ethnicity, or national origin.
  • Extremist Tattoos: The Army determines extremist tattoos as body art affiliated with, depicting, or symbolizing extremist philosophies, organizations, or activities. The Army has zero-tolerance toward organizations that promote racial or gender intolerance.
  • Indecent Tattoos: The Army clarifies that indecent tattoos are grossly offensive to modesty, decency, propriety, or professionalism. The definition of indecent tattoos in the Army is fairly loose. It might include body art like a character flipping the bird or using the restroom on another object.

Lastly, branding tattoos are not authorized in the U.S. Army.

Military personnel are prohibited from having tattoos, including brands on the head, face, and neck.

There are several commonly asked questions regarding the Army tattoo policy:

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National Guard Tattoo Policy

The US National Guard is an important branch of the United States Armed Forces. The National Guard and Air National Guard are reserve forces, which means that those that serve do so on a part-time basis while also holding civilian jobs. Removery often sees clients who plan to join the National Guard but have tattoos that violate their tattoo policy.

Air Force Tattoo Ideas And Meanings

Can I join the Army? – Army Jobs

Turns out, the Air Force gives you wings!

In fact, I would venture to guess that 90% of all Air Force tattoos somehow incorporate the famous wings overlapping a central star.

Youll also see Airmen sporting USAF tattoos that symbolize a deep patriotic pride in their nation and flag.

Eagles abound, and of course, no USAF tattoo is complete without showcasing the very symbol of the branch the fighter jet itself.

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Air Force Tattoo Policy 2022

Tattoos in the U.S. Air Force are allowed on the chest and back below the open-collar uniform as well as on the arms, legs, and as a ring tattoo on one finger on one hand, according to the official policy sent to FOX Television Stations.

“Ring tattoos are limited to a single band of no more than 3/8 of an inch in width, below the knuckle and above the finger joint ,” the policy states.

It adds that there are no size or placement limitations on tattoos as long as they are in accordance with its official rules.

Tattoos are not allowed on the head and neck in the area above the open collar uniform, as well as on the lips and tongue. Any tattoos that are “obscene, commonly associated with gangs, extremist, and/or supremacist organizations, or that advocate sexual, racial, ethnic, or religious discrimination are prohibited in and out of uniform.”

“Indecent tattoos/brands/body markings are grossly offensive to modesty, decency, or propriety, or shocks the moral sense, because of its vulgar, filthy, or disgusting nature, or its tendency to incite lustful thought. It is indecent if it tends reasonably to corrupt morals or incite libidinous thoughts,” the U.S. Air Force tattoo policy states.

What Can You Do About It

You can always try to join the military with the tattoos you have, but chances are you will get rejected. Your best bet is to undergo a laser tattoo removal procedure. Many people ask, does laser tattoo removal hurt? The answer depends on your pain tolerance, but most of them arent much more painful than getting the tattoos inked in the first place. The laser tattoo removal process doesnt take too long, but it will require multiple treatments, depending on the size and location of the tattoo.

If youre in the Falls Church, VA or Fairfax, VA areas and want to learn more about laser tattoo removal cost and the procedure, be sure tocontact us.


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Military Tattoo Policy And Joining The Military

Another recurring line of questioning in future military personnel is the issue of tattoos. We live in an era that emphasizes the importance of expression that takes on the form of what previous generations considered mutilation. Whether or not that kind of accusation holds any weight is normally left up to the individual.

But for those joining the military, its a different story. Although there exists a long history between the military and tattoos, all U.S. military branches have standards about where, what, how much, and how many their members can have prior to

enlistment, and during service. These regulations ensure that all personnel maintain appearance standards for the given branch, much in the same way each branch maintains standards concerning uniforms and uniform appearance. In addition, as it applies to the content of the artwork, military regulation on tattoos is also in place to minimize the establishment of unnecessary divisions or senseless conflict between service members.

As is often the case, each branch has its own definition of what amount of ink is acceptable, as well as the content and location. During MEPS, recruits will be given a full physical to verify that he or she is fit for duty. During this time, you will be looked over by a military doctor, who will assess if your artwork violates any of the military tattoo policy.

According to Navy regulations, enlistment standards are based on four criteria,


Us Army Tattoo Policy: What’s Not Allowed

U.S. Army considers new tattoo policy

The Army’s policy prohibits tattoos or brands that might be considered offensive, regardless of where they appear on the body. Specifically, the regulations forbid:

  • Extremist tattoos. According to the regulations, these are tattoos or brands “affiliated with, depicting, or symbolizing extremist philosophies, organizations, or activities.” This would include tattoos that: feature philosophies, groups or activities that promote racial or gender intolerance encourage discrimination based on numerous factors, including race, gender and religion advocate violence or “other unlawful means of depriving individual rights under the U.S. Constitution, and Federal or State law.”
  • Indecent tattoos. These include tattoos or brands that are “grossly offensive to modesty, decency, propriety, or professionalism.” The Army’s regulations do not provide examples of tattoos that would fall under these descriptions.
  • Sexist tattoos. These include tattoos and brands that “advocate a philosophy that degrades or demeans a person based on gender,” according to the regulations.
  • Racist tattoos. Tattoos or brands that “advocate a philosophy that degrades or demeans a person based on race, ethnicity, or national origin” are not allowed.

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What Other Grooming Standards Does The National Guard Have

Once again, the National Guard follows the same rules and guidelines as the U.S. Army.

The grooming standards expect men and women to be neat, clean, and well-groomed in personal appearance.

Common logic follows with standard short haircuts for men and neatly pinned up hairstyles for women.

Men are not permitted to have beards in the National Guard, but tightly regulated mustaches are allowed.

Body piercings are also not allowed on male members of the National Guard, yet females can have a single piercing on each ear.

You can get a more detailed explanation of National Guard expectations by studying Army grooming standards.

Navy Tattoo Ideas And Meanings

The U.S. Navy has a rich history when it comes to tattoos and their meanings.

For instance, you might see an old-timer sporting an anchor, a few swallows, a dagger with a rose, etc.

The younger generations are catching on to the meaning behind these, and are carrying the torch and heading for the tattoo parlor for the same tattoos.

Here are a few U.S. Navy tattoo ideas and their meanings:

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Popeye The Sailor Man

While Popeye is a Sailor Man, and therefore a card-carrying member of the good ol U.S. Navy, hes a go-to for Coast Guardsmen who are looking for a great tattoo.

Dont be too surprised if you come across loads of Popeye-themed tattoos on Coasties young and old.

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Can I Join The Army With A Tattoo

Explaining the Army tattoo policy

One of the most common questions we get is Can I Join the Army if I have a Tattoo. This article answers that question and outlines what types of tattoos may keep you from joining the U.S. Army.

You will NEVER be allowed to enlist in the Regular Army, Army Reserves, or Army National Guard if you have any of the non-waivable disqualifying tattoos below. Depending on abundance of recruits, standards may be more strict than listed:

  • Tattoos located on the head, face, neck, wrists, hands, or fingers
  • Tattoos which are extreme, sexist, indecent, or racist
  • Having more than four tattoos located below the knee or between the elbow and wrist

As part of efforts to maintain the professional appearance of the force, the Army dialed back the number, size and placement of tattoos in the March regulation.

Previously authorized tattoos were grandfathered in, but Soldiers hoping to become an officer had to get an exception to the policy.

The updated regulation takes into account that previously authorized tattoos should not prevent a Soldier from becoming an officer, but that candidates are to be evaluated based on the whole Soldier concept, or all characteristics of a Soldier.

Here is the latest policy on tattoos from Army Regulation 670-1 :

33. Tattoo, Branding, and Body Mutilation PolicyNote: This paragraph is punitive with regard to Soldiers. Violation by Soldiers may result in adverse administrative action and/or charges under the provisions of the UCMJ.

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What Kinds Of Tattoos Are Outright Banned

Per Marine Corps bulletin 1020 dates 29 October 2021:

Tattoos that are prejudicial to good order and discipline, or that are of a nature to bring discredit upon the naval service, are prohibited. Examples include, but are not limited to, tattoos that are drug-related, gang-related, extremist, obscene or indecent, sexist, or racist.

You can read longer descriptions about type of banned content in MCBUL 1020.

Body Piercing While In Uniform

Members are prohibited from attaching, affixing or displaying objects, articles, jewelry, or ornamentation to or through the ear, nose, tongue, or any exposed body part .

The exception to this is that women are authorized to wear one small spherical, conservative, diamond, gold, white pearl, or silver pierced, or clip earring per earlobe and the earring worn in each earlobe must match. The earring should fit tightly without extending below the earlobeexcepting the connecting band on clip earrings.

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What Is The Marine Corps Tattoo Policy

  • The Marine Corps is stricter than other branches of the military when it comes to tattoo rules. They only allow tattoos on one arm and require a temporary cover-up before you can even apply. The Marine Corps requires that tattoos must be covered before you join.
  • If you want to be an officer in the Marines, they will also ask you if your tattoo has any religious or gang connotations. If it does, they wont accept it on any part of your uniform.
  • Many people have had their dreams crushed because of this new policy. Its not fair for those who have a lot of tattoos but still want to serve our country and make a difference.
  • What Air Force Tattoos Are Allowed

    National Guard Tattoo Policy for 2021: What IS and ISN

    Well, for starters, Airmen can sport tattoos that are nearly 100% the size of their body.

    As previously mentioned, the Air Force has lifted the 25% rule , and for good reason.

    Recruiters were aware of the fact that nearly half of all millenials had a tattoo.

    But what they quickly realized was that 1 in every 5 of the recruits who did have tattoos had tattoos that required review and were potentially disqualifying.

    And the #1 disqualifier turned out to be the 25% rule.

    Go figure.

    Today, with that rule out the window, Airmen can have virtually any size tattoo, or grouping of tattoos, anywhere on their chest, back, arms, legs, and feet.

    Ah, yes, the feet! Here is where the Air Force differs from other branches as well.

    They allow tattoos on the feet below the ankle line.

    In other words, Airmen can get inked up to their hearts content .

    Sleeves anyone?

    Its true, this means the USAF now allows sleeve tattoos full-sleeves or half-sleeves, or anything in-between is now perfectly acceptable.

    Hand tattoos are technically allowed, but as mentioned, theyre limited to one ring tattoo on one hand only.

    According to one news report, Current Airmen with existing hand tattoos that were authorized under the previous policy will be grandfathered in under the old policy standards.

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