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Skin Piercing: Acupuncture, tattooing, ear-piercing, electrolysis, semi-permanent skin colouring

If you want to set up to carry out skin piercing in the New Forest District, you must first ensure that you register with New Forest District Council. Skin piercing includes:

  • cosmetic piercing (including ear piercing)
  • tattooing
  • semi-permanent skin colouring (such as semi-permanent makeup or microblading)
  • electrolysis
  • acupuncture



To start trading you will need to register both the premises and any person(s) undertaking the treatment separately. If you are a new member of staff at a premises that already has registration, you will need to apply for personal registration only. Find out details of the registration feewhich is payable either by cheque, or by card over the telephone.

Once an application has been made and a fee has been paid we will inspect the premises. If we consider that the applicant's procedures and the premises to be suitable, then registration will be approved.


You must ensure that the procedures, equipment and facilities used are safe and hygienic, and that measures are in place to prevent the spread of disease. These standards are set out in local byelaws (see below). A premises must also be compliant with health and safety law.

Draft New Byelaws

The Council is seeking to introduce new updated and adobe icon consolidated byelaws [1013kb] in respect of acupuncture, tattooing, semi-permanent skin-colouring, cosmetic piercing and electrolysis. Copies of these byelaws will also be kept at the offices of the Council at Appletree Court, Beaulieu Road, Lyndhurst, Southampton SO43 7PA.

Any objection to confirmation of the byelaws should be made by letter addressed to Mr G M Robb, Department of Health, Room 631B, Skipton House, 80 London Road, London, SE1 6LH


Consumer Guidance

Microblading is a very popular treatment which is used to enhance eyebrows. Further information on this type of adobe icon semi-permanent skin colouring [538kb] is available by following the link.



If you have traded in other parts of the UK, particularly larger cities, you may have found that registration to operate as a hairdresser was necessary. In the New Forest District, hairdressers do not require any specific registration or license in order to operate. However, as is the case with all businesses, you are subject to regulation under The Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974.  Find more information about hairdresser health and safety by following the link.

Updated: 14 Jan 2019
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