Covering Tattoos For Work

  • Written By Dan Hunter on November 21, 2019
    Last Updated: March 17, 2022

Work is one of the main and most common reasons people try to cover their tattoos. Many workplaces don’t accept employees with visible tattoos, thinking they don’t fit the company’s image or policy. Some company’s perceive tattoos in the workplace to be unprofessional, too. The good news is that there are a couple of easy ways to hide your tattoo for you job or job interview as if it was never really there.

The most common way to cover a tattoo for work is by using foundation and concealer. You can also hide it with accessories, clothing and specialized skin-colored sleeves for arm and leg tattoos.

If your ink is still healing, we advise that you don’t use makeup.

Methods for Covering Tattoos

The most important factor that determines the difficulty level of covering a tattoo is its location and size. If the tattoo’s large enough to show through your summer clothes, or is on a body part like your arms, hands, and face, there are options to make it disappear:

  • Clothing
  • Makeup

Using Clothes to Cover Tattoos for Work

This is the easiest and most obvious option. Places like the lower back, stomach, chest, thighs and shoulders make it easy to hide your tattoo if you choose the right clothing.

If you have a tattoo on your chest or lower back, you can wear a high-neck or crew-neck top, high-waist jeans and undershirts.

If you have a sleeve tattoo, some brands provide a sleeve cover-up that matches your skin tone. These work well as a quick fix if you’re in a hurry, and it would take ages for anyone to notice that you’re using one.

How to Use Makeup to Cover a Tattoo

If using clothing to cover your tat isn’t possible, especially in the summer, cover it with makeup. Many concealers and foundations have proven effectiveness in covering blemishes and scars. Those with powerful coverage can hide dark-colored tattoos, too.

If Your Tattoo Is New

Make sure your tattoo isn’t fresh — wait at for a couple of weeks after you get it before applying any makeup. Fresh tattoos are fragile and susceptible to infections easily, not to mention that healing tattoos need to breathe. It’s not recommended to apply anything that could clog your pores and mess with the tattoo’s pigmentation.

If Your Tattoo Has Healed

Make sure you properly your healed tattoo with a fragrance-free cleanser before you apply any makeup to it. This ensures no dead skin, oil or dirt will be in the way of makeup properly covering your tattoo.

An extra tip for you is to apply some hair spray to your tattoo after cleansing and before you apply makeup. Leave it to dry for a few minutes. This will guarantee the makeup will last longer on your skin without fading away or rubbing off on your clothing.

Steps to Covering Your Tattoo

After you make sure your tattoo is healed, choose a concealer that’s labeled ‘high coverage’ or ‘color-correcting.’ It’s recommended that the concealer is several shades lighter than your skin. 

These concealers and foundations have full coverage that helps in hiding all the unwanted blemishes and scars for people who suffer from acne. They’ll help you hide your tattoo and prevent the dark color from showing through. Looking like you failed to hide your tattoo is worse than showing it on purpose.

Here’s your step-by-step process:

  1. Apply a concealer layer to your tattoo using a makeup sponge or brush
  2. Blot or dab the area instead of rubbing to best benefit from the product
  3. Wait for it to dry
  4. At this stage, you’ll still see your tattoo — don’t worry!
  5. Apply the foundation the same way you did with the concealer. Make sure it matches your skin tone perfectly this time
  6. Give it a couple of dabs with your fingers to further blend the edges
  7. By now, you’ll start to feel like a ninja
  8. Cover with translucent powder to give it a matt finish. If you leave it looking glossy, it’ll stand out from the rest of your skin tone
  9. Using your fingers, check the area to see if the product is set in place

Other Methods for Tattoo-Covering

  • Specialized tattoo covering products: Some brands offer products similar to foundations and concealers. These products’ sole purpose is to provide 100 percent coverage to your tattoo
  • Stage makeup: This is used in theatre plays and movies, so is known to provide high coverage, too
  • Spray Tan: This only works if your tattoo is small and light in color. Spray tans add a dark and even layer to the skin and help cover the tattoo

For Every Problem, There’s a Solution

Fortunately, you don’t have to remove your tattoo altogether to keep your job. You can hide it for a while with several easy and accessible methods. Makeup is the most reliable way of doing so, as it saves you the hassle of having to wear heavy clothing in hot weather. Small tattoos are easier to hide and handle with accessories, and sleeve tattoos have sleeve cover-ups specially made to hide them.

Also remember that for every job that doesn’t allow visible tattoos, there are plenty more that do!

Related Tattoo Articles