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If you have any queries about current skin piercers, or would like information on obtaining a registration, please email:

Do I need to register my business?

You need to be registered with us if you want to carry out activities which pierce the skin. It's against the law for you to carry out these activities without a registration in place. You'll need to register as an individual who carries out these activities and register the premises where the activities will take place. 

You will need to register the following types of skin piercing:

  • acupuncture (including dry needling)

  • cosmetic piercing (including ear piercing)

  • electrolysis

  • semi-permanent skin colouring (including make-up, micropigmentation, derma pigmentation, microblading, skin needling, temporary tattooing and cosmetic tattooing)

  • tattooing.

Please note: we don't accept applications to register for extreme activities such as eyeball tinting, extraocular implants, corneal implants or ashes in tattoo ink.

Can I carry out mobile skin piercing treatments?

No, we do not allow businesses to register for mobile treatments which involve travelling between clients' homes.  This is because these treatments can't be provided safely and in accordance with legal requirements within a domestic environment.

How can I register?

  1. You will need to register yourself as a practitioner to carry out your specific activity(ies), as well as the premises you intend to operate from. Complete the registration forms below.

  2. Once we've received the form, we'll ring you so you can pay the registration fee by credit or debit card. The fee is £131 for each individual person registration and £170 to register the premises you wish to operate from.

  3. When your payment has been processed, we'll arrange a suitable time to inspect your premises to check you meet all the conditions below. If our visit shows you meet all the conditions, we'll register you for that activity.

  4. If you have an existing registration and wish to vary it, for example to add an additional activity please contact us at and let us know the change. We will then let you know whether a variation charge will be payable (£50) and the next steps.
Register Your Premises - Online Form
Register as a Practitioner - Online Form

What conditions does my business need to meet?

Our inspector will check that:

  1. Your premises meet general health and safety requirements. View the health and safety basics on the Health and Safety Executive website.

  2. Your premises meet the following conditions:

    • There's a wash hand basin in the treatment room and access to another sink for cleaning. The second sink can be located in the communal kitchen within the business but must not be the toilet sink. For activities operating from domestic premises it is acceptable to use a wash hand basin in a toilet/cloakroom if that toilet/cloakroom is kept spotlessly clean and free from any objects that do not need to be there and is only available for use by the operator at the times that treatments are being carried out, enabling sterile conditions to be met.

    • All surfaces in any part of the premises used by clients are kept clean and in good condition.

    • All furniture and fittings in the treatment area are kept clean and in good condition.

    • Table, sofas, seats and other items of furniture used in the treatment area have a smooth, impervious surface which is regularly wiped down with disinfectant and covered by a disposable paper sheet. This should be changed after each customer.

    • A 'no smoking' sign is clearly displayed.

  3. Your staff meet the following conditions:

    • Any overalls worn by staff are clean and in good condition.

    • Hands and nails of staff are kept clean.

    • Any open cuts, wounds, sores or boils are suitably covered by a waterproof dressing.

    • Staff aren't smoking or drinking in treatment area.

    • Staff have sole use of washing facilities that provide hot and cold running water, soap and a nail brush.

  4. Your equipment meets the following conditions:

    • Any needle, metal instrument or item of equipment you use in treatment are in a sterile condition and kept sterile until they're used.

    • If you don't use pre-sterilised items, then you need to have adequate facilities to sterilise items.

  5. You have the following documents for the officer to check:

    • Consent form

    • Medical consultation form

    • Aftercare form

    • Cleaning schedule

    • Copy of waste agreement- sharps and clinical waste

    • Copy of insurance

    • Copies of qualifications certificates, for all practitioners.

If you need guidance to meet these conditions we can offer you advice or help - please contact us.

Business advice for cosmetic fillers for under 18s

View the Botulinum toxin and cosmetic fillers for under 18s: guidance for businesses

Does tacit consent apply?

No. This means you and your premises must be registered with us before you offer any piercing, tattooing, acupuncture or electrolysis services.

How long will my registration last?

Neither premises and practitioner registrations expire but can be cancelled or suspended by a court.