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Frequently
Asked Questions
  
San Francisco Health Network
Environmental Health

Helpful Links

SFDPH Fees

California Health and Safety Code

SFHC Article 40

Tattoo Safety Tips (pdf)

Guidelines for Special Events

Facility Plan Check Guidelines (pdf)

 
Related Programs

Temporary or Special Events

 
Program Contact

Main Number: (415) 252-3800
Fax: (415) 252-3842

Tattoo, Body Piercing and Permanent Cosmetics Program

The Tattoo, Body Piercing and Permanent Cosmetics Program regulates tattoo, piercing and permanent cosmetic facilities in order to ensure the proper maintenance, cleanliness and sterilization procedures.

 

Principal Activities and Services

  • Issue Permits
  • Conduct yearly inspections of all facilities for general maintenance and cleanliness, proper sterilization procedures.
  • Maintain and issue registration documents and registration cards to all active practitioners.
  • Promulgates and publicizes new or revised existing ordinances and regulations.

 

Obtaining a Permit

See the SFDPH Fee Schedule for current application fee information. Send all application forms and fees to:

  • Environmental Health Branch
  • Attn: Tattoo, Body Piercing and Permanent Cosmetics
  • 1390 Market Street, Suite 210
  • San Francisco, CA 94102
 
Permit for business owner/operator

A business owner/operator is someone who engages in the practice of tattooing, body piercing or applying permanent cosmetics. To apply for a business owner/operator permit:

  1. Fill out and complete the following forms:
    1. Application for Body Art Establishment (pdf)
    2. Zoning Referral Form (pdf)
    3. Fire Marshal Form (pdf)
    4. DBI Referral Form (pdf)
    5. Declaration of Healthy and Safe Working Conditions (pdf)
  2. A check for the application fee payable to the SF Department of Public Health (See Fee Schedule doc under "Helpful Links")
  3. A completed Application for Registration Card (pdf)
  4. Provide copies of the following for each practitioner:
    1. Driver's License or Photo ID
    2. Current Blood-Borne Pathogens Training Certificate (that meets Cal OSHA requirement of not less than 2 hours of instruction)
    3. Hepatitis Vaccination Certificate or completed Declination Form
  5. Tattoo Consent Form
  6. Tattoo After Care Instructions
  7. Exposure Control Plan
  8. Floor Plan or Layout for existing tattoo establishments

 
Permit for practitioners

Practitioners are persons who are solely engaged in the practice of tattooing, body piercing or applying permanent cosmetics. To apply for a practitioner permit:

  1. A completed Application for Registration Card (pdf)
  2. A check for the application fee payable to the SF Department of Public Health (See Fee Schedule doc under "Helpful Links")
  3. Provide copies of the following for each practitioner:
    1. Driver's License or Photo ID
    2. Current Blood-Borne Pathogens Training Certificate (that meets Cal OSHA requirement of not less than 2 hours of instruction)
    3. Hepatitis Vaccination Certificate or completed Declination Form

 
Temporary permits

Temporary permits are required for tattooing, body piercing or permanent cosmetics booth at special events. For a temporary permit, fill out and submit the following forms:

  1. Special Event Vendor and Sponsor Application to Operate Tattooing, Body Piercing and Permanent Cosmetics Booth (pdf)
  2. Copy of current San Francisco Tattoo Practitioner License or a completed Application for Registration card (pdf)
  3. Provide copies of the following for each practitioner:
    1. Driver's License or Photo ID
    2. Current Blood-Borne Pathogens Training Certificate (that meets Cal OSHA requirement of not less than 2 hours of instruction)
    3. Hepatitis Vaccination Certificate or completed Declination Form
  4. Tattoo Consent Form
  5. Tattoo After Care Instructions
  6. Exposure Control Plan
  7. Floor Plan or Layout of Booth
  8. A check for the application fee payable to the SF Department of Public Health (see Special Event Vendor and Sponsor Application for fees)
  9.  

 

 

Making a Complaint

If you would like to make a complaint regarding a tattoo, body piercing or permanent cosmetic business or practitioner you may call 311.

311 City Customer Service Agency - Service 24x7

San Francisco Department of Public Health Environmental Health Branch