Is joining the Defence Reserves part of your career goals? If so, read on to learn how a tattoo might affect your application.

What to Know About Having Tattoos in the Australian Defence Force — Defence Reserves

Becoming a part of the Defence Reserves is a rewarding opportunity. But first, you must apply for a position and be allowed to move to the next step. In some cases, a tattoo might prevent you from going forward.

According to the Australian Defence Force’s website regarding Behaviour and Appearance in the Air Force, the policy on tattoos is unclear. The website states that all ADF personnel must exhibit “high standards of behaviour and appearance” and “represent the community and values of the Service.”

However, it’s worth noting that the tattoo policy throughout the ADF is currently under review. Until new guidelines are introduced, all tattoos will be subject to the discretion of your Defence Force Recruiter.

Tattoo Content

Currently, every tattoo is treated on a case-by-case basis. However, in the past, the Defence Reserves have not been known for tolerating obscene or offensive tattoo content. This may include tattoo content that depicts nudity, violence, gang symbols, and signs of extremist beliefs such as Nazi symbols. These types of tattoos might exclude you from consideration even if the tattoo is not normally visible.

Tattoo Placement

Where your tattoo is located may have some bearing on your application. For example, if you have a tattoo on your lower back or ankle, it might be considered acceptable since it would not be easily seen. However, highly visible tattoos, such as those on your hands, wrists, arms, face, or neck, may receive more scrutiny when you apply for a position with the Defence Reserves.

One possible exception to this is if you have a small ring tattoo where one might wear a wedding or engagement ring.

Keep in mind these are not hard-and-fast guidelines, as the current tattoo policy is under review. Use these as suggestions only and contact your Defence Force Recruiter with specific concerns.

Are Permanent Makeup Tattoos Allowed?

Historically, female Defence Reserve applicants have been allowed to have natural-looking eyebrow tattoos and/or lip tattoos that resemble lip liner makeup. To qualify, the eyebrow tattoos must follow the natural eyebrow arch, and lip tattoos must be flesh-coloured and look natural. Otherwise, your application might get rejected.

Consider Laser Removal for Tattoos That Violate Defence Reserves Policies

If you fear that the Defence Reserves may reject your application based on the size, placement, or content of your tattoos, laser tattoo removal can help you overcome this barrier to entry. Our skilled laser tattoo removal technicians can turn your skin into a blank slate, allowing you to join the Defence Reserves and start building the career you want.

Find a Removery location near you to start on your path to greatness!