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What piercings do professionals allow?

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I tried googling this, but didn't really come up with much.

What do you think professionals would allow? I know piercing on the ear lobes is accepted, but what about multiple piercings on the ear?

I would assume that facial piercings are out of the question, but what if you had them? Would your boss hire you, but request that you don't wear them at work and leave the holes open?

Also, do you think professionals would accept surface piercings to be exposed? These are piercing on the body, such as ankles, back of the neck, sternum (between the boobs), etc.

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What kind of professions are you thinking about? It would also depend upon the area of the country.

A general rule of thumb, the more professional your occupation and the higher up you rise, the less piercings would be accepted.

Multiple piercings in the earlobe, please describe. I have 4 per ear. They are all in the lobe and I wear very small earrings in them. Most people don't notice or say nothing because they are discreet. I'm just an admin in a central office that has no direct physical contact with customers. Ear bars and large gauged holes would be looked down upon where I work.

i know my office would not hire someone who showed up to an interview with anything other than ear piercings. as for multiple ear piercings, it would probably depend. if we're talking two or three holes, or a small cartilage piercing, then that would probably slide if the candidate was great otherwise.

though the other day i did notice that a girl from accounting has one of those surface piercings in the spot between her thumb and forefinger. i have a feeling our very conservative CFO would not be pleased, but chances are he'll never look at her close enough to notice it.

It really depends on where you're going. When I applied here I thought I was going to have trouble -- I had a nose stud and three earrings in each ear, as well as tattoos on my arm I covered for the interview.

2.5 years later, I have a lip ring to go with the nose ring, pink hair, never cover my tattoos and I wear hoodies and skate shoes pretty much every day. My boss seems to approve of this; he said to me once, "This is what young people do so I thought, I will have to get used to it." Haha.

Of course, I work for a small business and my boss is the owner, so if he's fine with it, no one else can do a thing about it. A big business on the other hand has plenty of company policies and dress codes and etc. So you'd have to find out from the individual place you want to work. I never thought I'd be able to have an office job and look like a punk, but here I am.

Original Post by moonikins:

What kind of professions are you thinking about? It would also depend upon the area of the country.

I am majoring in dietetics and nutrition, so I would most likely be working in a hospital or in an office in a private practice. I am not sure if I will become a registered dietician (RD), but I'm sure that would call for less piercings.

Also, by multiple piercings in the ear, I mean all over the ear, especially higher up.

And if a boss does not like any piercings that you have, do you think they will automatically turn you down, or allow you to work there but with no piercing jewelry in (bare piercings)?

Multiple piercings in the earlobe, please describe.

You might want to take the piercings out for an interview, and ask then what the policy is. That way they won't turn you down right away just for having a problem with the jewelry, and once you know whether or not they have a problem with it you can go from there.

I have 4 earring holes in each lobe that ascend on an angle upwards. They're about 1/4 inch apart and don't get to the cartilege area. I was going to get a cartilege hole in each ear and then just never did.

I rarely change them anymore, partly out of laziness and partly because I moved and most of my earrings are not easily accessible. I plan on redoing our bedroom in the spring so I can bring my vanity upstairs. I mostly wear 4 silver hoops in each ear. The largest is 1/2 inch diameter. They get slightly smaller as they ascend. I love these hoops. I can sleep in them and if I'm outside and the wind blows I can hear a gentle whistle in my ears. I also hear that whistle if I ride my bike. I chose the silver hoops because I'm blonde and I like silver and white gold better.

I worked retail for awhile at a Lowes when I quit my job. I was there for several months before anyone noticed and then I was told I could only wear posts for safety reasons.

When I used to do taxes, they wouldn't allow any facial piercings except earrings. I only had 2 holes in each lobe at the time. Men were told they couldn't have any visible piercings.


Edit to add: The places where I worked that didn't want visible piercings would allow you to just take the piercings out while you were there. I'm not sure they would have hired someone who had a large gauged hole in their nose or ear.

Our office policy is only one piercing per ear (none for men).  There are some people that have multiple holes (tee hee) in each ear, but they can't wear additional earrings.  No other noticeable piercings allowed.  No tattoos visible.

My hospital is somewhat lax.  You're not supposed to have visible tattoos, but I know one of mine peeks out often, and another girl in my department has one on her forearm.  We're both working there, though and not required to wear cllothes we guarantee will cover them up.

Multiple love piercings, cartilage piercings, and even a small tragus is acceptable.  I thought the girl with the industrial was overstepping her boundaries, anything that looks like it should be in Hot Topic catalogs are probably best left for off the clock wear.  I haven't seen her wear that industrial in a very long time, mind you.  I don't know why she stopped wearing it, but she did.

One of the guy nurses has his ears pierced, but no bigger than a 14g.  And I know the girl with the vampire kiss was asked to have hers taken out.  General rule of thumb: Ask your potential employer.  If you've already got them and they're hesitant to hire you for them, assure them that retainers are dandy and you'd be happy to wear them.

P.S. Miss Crystal here, she's got 1.5" ears, three labrets, a medusa, a huge septum, and double nostrils.  Her piercings are so old, though, she can take them out for long periods of time without being noticed so she doesn't need retainers.  Her ears look like kitty butt when she takes everything out, but her hair hides it.

Her employer, a government hospital, is totally fine with it.

I work for a VERY large corp with a fairly conservitive atmosphere and some peircings/tattoos are ok.  When I was in a sales department I kept all the tattoos covered and peircings (nose, ear) low key silver studs.  Now that I am in the IT epartment, I don't worry about it.  They never let us see the light of day :) lol

Since you are going to be interacting with the public, just keep in mind the over all concept that at work, it's not about you expressing yourself.  It's about getting the job done.  Anything that would be distracting or alienating to your customers is going to be a problem for your boss. 

Fo the interview I would take it ALL out/cover it up/go low key.  You can always add it back a little at a time until you start getting comments! =)

There are probably a lot of companies where multiple piercings (other than ears) are discouraged.  When I was in the hospital, one of my nurses had tattoos and he was required to wear band-aids over them when on duty.

I pranced around the Allstate corporate headquarters with a conch piercing and nose ring. There are no hard and fast rules anymore

I work for a large government agency in an office full of attorneys and accountants, but I have 00 gauged ears (I wear skin tunnels), 3 additional ear piercings, a tongue ring and a hoop nose ring.  I did wear a small stud in my nose when i interviewed but when i asked if the hoop or gauges were a problem, my office administrator was totally fine with it.   The assistant to the regional director has hot pink hair and multiple ear piercings and tatts as well.  I do have a lot of contact with witnesses, defense counsel, FBI, DOJ and other government officials, but no one has had a problem with my piercings or tatts.  I dress professionally and  perform my job well.  I think that a lot of offices, including ones that you would imagine are very stuffy, like mine, have really loosened up about this stuff.  I would just suggest to go very low key to the interview and ask.  Or add stuff gradually and if they have a problem with it, offer to wear retainers.


A lot would depend on what type of profession we're talking about.  IT seems to be a little more relaxed than most, finance a little more conservative.   It also depends on how high up the ladder you want to climb.  Take a clue from your bosses' boss. 

I work in legal/finance.  but again...totally depends. 

I think it is totally unfair that women can have some piercings (primarily earlobes) and men cannot. =/

I have an eye brow piercing and have been on numerous interviews and been offered many jobs.  I live in Austin and am a therapist.  Personally, I would not want to work for anyone that was not accepting of piercings or tattoos.  It just seems wrong to restrict someone's freedom of expression.

I work in a conservative financial office and I have 7 ear piercings (three in one and four in the other), a tongue piercing, a small dot scar from a nose piercing and a small dot scar from a lip piercing.  But I don't speak with my mouth wide open, so the tongue wasn't noticed by anyone for quite a while and I rarely flash it (plus it's a clear ball, so even more difficult to see), and I rarely wear more than one or two small studs per ear.  And I don't think anyone but me can even see the scars, so that's not an issue.

I would keep the piercings to ones you can hide or remove at work if necessary.  Take them out for interviews and find out the policies on body art before you show it off.

Definitely take them out for interviews. Don't wear them until you know 100% about the company's policies. That said, most professional jobs won't accept much asides from a couple piercings in the ear.

I think the biggest thing you have to think about is what message am I sending with my appearance and does it conflict with my job? (The higher up you go the bigger deal this becomes.)

There will always be people at any job that think it's not a big deal and other that hate it.  When you decide to openly wear your art you will have to overcome the stereotypes that the haters stick you with. Co-Workers are not like friends.  You don't normally get to choose who you have to work next to, you just try and get along with everyone. 

It is best to find a place that fits your personality (body art is beautiful!) but when times are tight, sometimes that is not an option.  Go low key for the interview, ask about the policy and then decide 'can i live with this'.

Good luck on the job hunt!


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