How to Get a Tattoo License – Hawaii

Tattoo artists must get a license issued by the state of Hawaii. A new Tattoo Artist License costs $75.00. To get the license, you must pass a Blood borne Pathogens exam, which costs $75.00.

Hawaii body art by tattoo artist

You must renew your license by December 31 of every even year. For licensed tattoo artists, a renewal costs $7.50, as long as the paperwork is received in the office before the license expires. If you wait until after it expires, the renewal fee is $75.00. Make all checks payable to State of Hawaii.

Tattoo Artist License Application

tattoo artist license application

To apply for a new tattoo artist license, you need to have the following:

Print and fill out a license application.

You will need to provide this report to the Hawaii State Tattoo Shop where you work.  

Certificate showing that you have passed your Blood-Borne Pathogens examination.

Find an approved Blood borne Pathogen course here.

Exam fee is $75. 

Hepatitis B vaccine (highly recommended). The cost of vaccination may be covered by your health insurance.

If your county has additional regulations, you can find them here.

To apply for a new tattoo artist license, you need to have the following:

  • You will need to provide this report to the Hawaii State Tattoo Shop where you work.
  • Certificate showing that you have passed your Blood-Borne Pathogens examination.
  • Find an approved Blood borne Pathogen course here.  
  • Exam fee is $75.
  • Hepatitis B vaccine (highly recommended). The cost of vaccination may be covered by your health insurance.

If your county has additional regulations, you can find them here.

Note:

If you need a temporary license for a tattoo convention, you will fill out the same form as the state license. (Just circle “Yes” to make sure your license is given to you at the convention instead of being mailed to you.) 

For Permanent Makeup Artists:

Permanent makeup artists must obtain a tattoo artist license to operate. You will need to fill out the application, take the blood borne pathogen course and pass the exam, and turn in your health report form.

Getting the Hepatitis B vaccine is highly recommended for permanent makeup artists.

Turn in Your Application

Mail or take your completed tattoo license application to the food safety branch of the Hawaii department of health:

Food Safety Branch
99-945 Halawa Valley Street
Aiea, HI 96701

They will review your application. If approved, you should receive your license within 2-3 weeks of submitting your application, along with your returned TB/Syphilis Report Form.

Things You Should Know:

It is illegal to tattoo anyone under the age of 14. To tattoo a minor between the ages of 14 and 18, you must have parental or guardian consent.

Department of Health Administrative Rules: https://health.hawaii.gov/san/files/2013/05/11-17.pdf

Things You Should Know:

It is illegal to tattoo anyone under the age of 14. To tattoo a minor between the ages of 14 and 18, you must have parental or guardian consent. 

Department of Health Administrative Rules: https://health.hawaii.gov/san/files/2013/05/11-17.pdf

Prepare for a Tattooing Career with the Artist Accelerator Program

examples of students own tattoo

Learning the steps you need to take to get licensed is an important step in your journey, but it can also be pretty eye-opening to how difficult tattooing can be. Without the right knowledge, it’s impossible to level up your skills and become a professional tattoo artist. 

However, finding the straight-forward information you need to progress is difficult. And with so much out there online, it’s hard to avoid picking up bad habits from incorrect and outdated resources.

This is one of the biggest struggles new tattooers face, and too many talented artists have given up their goal of getting into tattooing because of the years it would take to unlearn their bad habits. 

That’s why aspiring artists are learning to tattoo with the Artist Accelerator Program’s structured course. As a student, you learn every step of the tattooing process from professional artists with the experience and advice you need to build your skills and create incredible tattoos. 

With the Artist Accelerator, you can stop wasting time searching through incorrect information. You just get the clear, easy-to-understand lessons you need to start improving fast… along with support and personalized feedback from professional artists in our online Mastermind group.

Over 2500 students have already gone through the course, with many of them opening up their own studios. If you want to join them and learn the skills you need to start tattooing full time faster…

Click here to learn more about the Artist Accelerator Program.

Looking for a tattoo apprenticeship?

Tattooing 101's Artist Accelerator 90 day program is the closest thing to a real apprenticeship

  • 500 video modules
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AUTHOR
Nathan Molenaar

Nathan is a licensed professional tattoo artist with over 8 years’ experience working at studios across the globe, including Celebrity Ink, the world's largest tattoo studio chain.

When he's not tattooing, he spends his free time sharing his experience and knowledge with aspiring artists who dream of pursuing a career in the tattooing industry.

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