What Are the Tattoo Laws in Texas?

Texas laws governing tattoos and tattoo studios specify that minors under the age of 18 may not be tattooed except under very specific circumstances. Tattoo artists must inform those getting a tattoo of the health risks involved and must keep detailed records regarding each client, according to the Texas Administrative Code.

In Texas it is illegal to tattoo anyone under the age of 18 unless the tattoo is being done to cover an existing tattoo that contains obscene language, gang symbols or drug references. When this type of tattoo is done, one of the minor’s parents must be present, must provide a photograph of the tattoo being covered and must submit complete identity and contact information to the tattoo artist.

Tattoo artists may not tattoo anyone who is under the influence of drugs or alcohol or has a rash or abrasion on the skin to be tattooed. Tattoo artists are required to inform clients verbally and in writing regarding the risks associated with tattooing including risks of pain, scarring, bleeding, swelling, infection and nerve damage. The tattoo artist is also required to maintain complete client records for two years, such records to include the client’s contact and identity information, the name of the tattoo artist, the date the tattoo was performed, the location of the tattoo on the client’s body and the colors of the tattoo. The client must sign these records.