Even as tattoos generally become more acceptable in society, there are some placements that remain controversial among the more conservative set. The neck is one of those places. But neck tattoos have recently grown in popularity (largely thanks to Instagram), so we dug in and asked the question: are neck tattoos for women still taboo?
In the comments, readers were divided on the issue. While most agreed that the given reason was bad, some observed that a no hands or necks policy was common. Others noted that neck tattoos are often allowed only if the person is already heavily tattooed. One person even pointed out that these tats were nicknamed “job killers.”
The fact is, tattoos in visible areas like the neck, hands, and face have had a bad reputation. Too often (and unfairly) associated with rebels, outcasts, and even criminals, they have been seen as unprofessional, dangerous, and, yes, tacky.
Thankfully, that perception seems to be shifting. As celebrities like Sofia Richie, Halsey, and Kehlani get inked on their necks – and show them off on Instagram – neck tattoos for women have become more common. Even more, appreciation has grown for the neck as a beautiful canvas for self-expression through tattoos.
Even so, not all employers and industries are on board. Unless you’re really into turtlenecks and/or scarves, it’s hard to hide a neck tattoo. For some employers, this will be a problem. While a few industries (healthcare, finance, and education, to name a few) are notoriously hostile toward visible tattoos, it often comes down to company policy or even the preferences of the person making the hiring decisions. So, for that reason, the “job killer” nickname for neck tattoos might be at least partially warranted.
Still, it’s not like tattooed people don’t work. They may just need to pursue jobs that welcome their unique expression. Talking to Tattooed Women, bartender and business owner Jamie Chambers explained her decision to get a visible chest tattoo this way: “I realized that I’m not going to be working for the government or anywhere that wouldn’t be okay with me having a chest piece.”
For those considering a neck tattoo, this mindset is key.
Other Considerations for Women Considering Neck Tattoos
Society’s perceptions aside, there are a few things to know before getting a neck tattoo.
The neck is more exposed to the sun and other elements, which means it’s at greater risk of damage and aging. Over time, wrinkles, fading, and sagging of the skin may affect the tattoo’s appearance. If you’re not already taking great care of your neck, you’ll want to up your game with your new ink.
Additionally, while the neck isn’t the worst place to get a tattoo, it’s not the easiest either. The skin on the neck is thin, with more nerve endings than most places. Plus, depending on the location of the ink, you could find yourself in a strange (and uncomfortable) position during the tattoo process. Unbearable? Probably not. But definitely worth considering.
And, finally, there is the question of finding an artist. Even as policies against neck and hand tattoos become less common, it’s still worthwhile to discuss your plans with your artist before you get to the studio.
So are neck tattoos for women still taboo? Our conclusions.
Well, we’re biased, but we’re going with no.
There was a time that society at large opposed all tattoos for women – and it wasn’t even that long ago. Even if neck tattoos aren’t yet universally welcomed, they’re growing in appreciation and acceptance. As more and more women choose the neck for their ink, we expect society to soon catch up with this beautiful trend.