Beauty & makeup

Body piercer

Body piercers pierce parts of clients' bodies with a needle and then insert different types of jewellery or metal.

Annual Salary


Average UK salary in 2018 was £29,588 (source Office for Statistics)

Working hours


Future employment

There will be 1% fewer Body piercer jobs in 2024.
In your local area

What's it all about?

Your day-to-day duties might include:

  • discussing with the client the type of piercing they want and advising on what may be suitable
  • explaining the procedure and pointing out any risks involved
  • advising on suitable types of metal and jewellery
  • sterilising the piece of jewellery and the area which is being pierced
  • disposing of the needle, following health and safety guidelines
  • showing the client how to care for the piercing as it heals, and what to do if there’s a problem

You could also train as a tattooist, and offer this service as well as piercing.

You can get into this job through:

  • work towards this role
  • specialist courses run by private training organisations


You can contact registered body piercing studios about being taken on as an assistant. You would then train with them to get the skills and knowledge needed for the job.

Other routes

You could take short training courses and distance learning courses but it's important to be aware that these will not qualify you. You'll still need hands-on, supervised experience in a registered studio.

Further information

Body piercing is unregulated, so choose courses carefully. A background in beauty, art or tattooing may be helpful.

You can find out more about training with a registered body piercer from the UK Association of Professional Piercers.


How much you earn will depend on factors like your talent and ability, whether you offer tattooing as well as piercing, the reputation of the studio or salon, and how much you can charge if self-employed.


You’ll usually work 5 or 6 days a week, often including weekends and in the evening.

You’ll work in a studio or salon, which could be part of a beauty salon, or as an ear piercer in a jewellery shop.

With experience, you could set up your own salon, and employ other piercers or tattooists.

Skills required and how your skills match up

What skills are required?

You'll need:

  • the ability to work well with your hands
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • active listening skills
  • customer service skills
  • to enjoy working with other people
  • sensitivity and understanding
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device
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