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Tattooing, semi-permanent skin colouring, cosmetic piercing, electrolysis, acupuncture

Anyone who wants to perform acupuncture, skin piercing, electrolysis, tattoos, semi-permanent skin colouring as a business must register to do so.

You need to be registered with any local authority in whose area you carry out a particular procedure.

This does not include where a person is under the direct supervision of a registered medical practitioner or a dentist.

The aim of registration is to protect members of the public from the transmission of blood-borne viruses such as HIV, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and other infections.

Both the person who performs the work and the place where the skin piercing takes place must be registered. If you do not register you can be fined, and in some cases your registration will be suspended.

This registration covers:

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

You must register both yourself and your premises.

How to apply

You need to complete and return an application form. You can contact us for a form or you can download one. Completed forms must be returned to us with the registration fee to:

South Gloucestershire Council, Department for Environment and Community Services, PO Box 1954, Food and Health and Safety, Bristol BS37 0DD.

If you would like to pay by credit card, call 01454 868001 and return the form by email to

Separate fees are required for registering the person and registering the premises. Please see below for current charges. We may wish to visit your premises to ensure that they reach the legal requirements for the treatment, and for general health and safety.

When we have received and processed your application forms we will issue you with registration certificates. Registration certificates, together with a copy of the relevant byelaws must be displayed at the premises.


£117.90 per premises
£117.90 per individual carrying out the treatment

The registration does not have to be renewed.

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