Top Models with Tattoos – Can You Have Tattoos and Be a Model?

In the past, tattoos were a bit of a taboo. Nowadays, however, it’s common to see tattoos on the most famous faces around – and that includes top models. 

But in a society where we are still told tattoos may prevent us from finding work or landing job roles, surely the industry of modelling would be the most strict about allowing models with tattoos in the workplace?

Read on to discover which top models are tatted, how they get away with it, and whether it’s a good idea for an aspiring model to be inked. 

Top Models With Tattoos

You’d be surprised how many top models actually have tattoos (and you’re bound to quite a few familiar names on the below list):

– Kate Moss. Kate has an anchor on her wrist and twin sparrows on her lower back. 

– Jourdan Dunn. Jourdan has many different tattoos that reflect her spirituality. 

– Cara Delevingne. Cara has a lion tattoo on her finger, as well as a number of other small tats. 

– Bella Hadid. Bella has Angel wings on her ankles.

– Catherine Mcneil. Catherine’s back is covered in tattoos.

– Erin Wasson. Erin has lots of little inklings on both arms.

– Ruby Rose. Ruby has full sleeves and lots of other tattoos covering her entire body.

– Freja Beha Erichsen. Freja has the word ‘float’ tattooed on her neck.

– Kendall Jenner. Kendall has her inner lip tattooed. 

– Gisele Bundchen. Gisele has small tattoos on her wrist and ankle. 

– Carolyn Murphy. Carolyn had a large tattoo on the side of her hip which she has since had removed. 

– Daria Werbowy. Daria has small tattoos on her fingers and arms.

– Natalie Westling. Natalie has bold black tattoos.

– Tasha Tilberg. Tasha has some tattoos everywhere including her arms, chest and back.

So how do these top models get away with having tattoos?

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Can Models Have Tattoos?

In the above list, many of the models are already at the top of their game. Top models of our era like Bella Hadid and Cara Delevingne have already made quite a name for themselves, and are household names. They’re able to get work simply by being who they are. They are famous and rich enough to get offered jobs because their fame means they have an incredible influence on buyers. 

Other models, like Ruby Rose, fit into the category of alternative modelling. That means they’re less likely to be seen modelling for top designer brands like Chanel or Tom Ford. Having said that, Kendall Jenner recently faced a campaign for Estee Lauder – and she has several little inkings. In the past, a brand like Estee Lauder (who prided themselves on being exclusive and posh) would never have hired a model with tats. But as fashion becomes more diverse, we are seeing more old-fashioned brands make changes to try and keep up with the times.

Some models listed – like Gisele and Kate Moss – are at the end of their modelling careers, and can afford to make some risks they perhaps wouldn’t have done at the peak of their modelling careers. 

You’ll notice, too, that most of the top tattooed models only have small, easily coverable tattoos. It’s rare that a model has a large tattoo, but not unheard of – Jourdan Dunn has the symbol of the Egyptian goddess Isis on the back of her neck, as well as a large ink phoenix up her side. 

Alternative Modelling

Alternative modelling is a great niche of modelling to enter into if you are covered in tattoos and piercings. An alternative model is one who doesn’t look or reflect the masses – they stand out for their ecletic style. This could be because of their inked works of art and facial piercings, or they could have a unique make-up style or hair colour.

There are lots of brands who require alternative modeld. Brands like Killstar, Dolls Kill and Black Milk will all be on the lookout for models who have an attractive, unique style. 

Tattoo Quality

Like with all art, tattoos can be done well… or very badly. The quality of your tattoo will impact how easy it is for you to find work. It goes without saying that any offensive tattoos (swear words, vulgarity, anything racist or violent) will completely prevent you from finding work. Not many brands will want to associate themselves with something potentially damaging. 

I’m An Aspiring Model – Can I Get a Tattoo?

If you plan on modelling for the alternative modelling niche, you should have no problems finding work as long as your tattoos are flattering and well done. 

However, if you wish to enter high fashion or commercial modelling, you should think twice before getting a tattoo. While it’s true that tattoos are becoming more mainstream, there are still those who prefer their models without. This includes some brands and agencies. 

It’s ultimately your decision whether to get a tattoo ornot, but it’s important to be realistic and manage your expectations. Getting an obvious tattoo could harm you modelling career and you may lose work to other none-tattooed models. It all depends on the brand, their audience and their overall shoot goals, but generally a model without tattoos will have an easier time finding work than one with tattoos. 

Tattoos can be removed, but it is a painful, expensive and lengthy process – and the results are not always 100%. Think long and hard before committing to a tattoo – remember, it’s like a permanent accessory you can never take off.

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