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Skin piercing and tattooing licence

Under the Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982, anyone carrying on a business involving any of the following activities must be licensed:

  • skin piercing
  • acupuncture
  • tattooing
  • semi-permanent skin colouring
  • electrolysis

How to apply

Before applying for a licence, please read the guidance advice note (Word, 30kb) on which procedures require licences and which do not, including dermaplaning and dermabrasion. 

Complete and return a Skin Piercing and Tattooing application form (Word, 195kb).


Licence with premises: £358

Licence without premises: £301

Please include the fee with your completed application form. Cheques made payable to 'North Ayrshire Council'. If your applications is refused, or granted for a shorter period than you applied, the fee will not be refunded or reduced.

What happens next?

Once we have received your application:

  • we'll arrange to carry out an inspection on your proposed premises (if applicable) to make sure they meet the required standards
  • your application will be advertised on this website to allow members of the public to make any objections or representations
  • if appropriate, you will have to display a Site Notice at or near the Premises.

How long does the licence last?

The licence is valid for 3 years from the date of issue, unless the Committee has decided on a shorter period. The expiry date is stated on the licence.

Renewing a licence

If you have applied for a renewal before the expiry date, you may continue trading after the expiry date has passed, for as long as it takes for us to deal with your renewal.