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Body Art Establishments

The Tattoo and Body Piercing Establishment Registration Act, (410 ILCS 54), became effective July 1, 2007. The Illinois Department of Public Health's Body Art Code (77 Ill. Adm. Code 797) became effective December 26, 2008. This Code specifies the standard for the conduct of body art procedures, sets standards for the process by which the Department and its delegate agencies inspect and register body art establishments and sets the fee requirements.

All establishments providing body art services such as tattooing, piercing, branding or scarification are required to be registered with the Department. Upon receipt of a completed registration application, an inspection is conducted to monitor compliance with the program. Renewal inspections are conducted periodically. Certified Local Health Departments may contract with the Department to conduct the inspections in their jurisdiction.

Most Recent Additional Requirements For Body Art Establishments

January 2019
The existing Human Trafficking Resource Center Notice Act has been altered to include body art establishments to the list of already existing business types that are required to post the Notice.  (775 ILCS 50/5 (f))

IDPH is required to monitor this during our visits to the establishments and enforce when found to be noncompliant.  (775 ILCS 50/20)

This Act is available for your review to the right under "Laws & Rules".

We have also included the link for you to use to retrieve the notices so you may print and post as required.

General Body Art Program Information:

The Illinois Department of Public Health regulates all establishments that perform body art procedures such as tattooing, permanent makeup – including Microblading, piercing, etc. These procedures DO NOT fall under the license of cosmetology or esthetics and therefore shall not be done but under the required body art establishment registration as a body artist. These body art services shall be completely separate from services that fall under those other licenses to meet Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation’s requirements.

IF YOU ARE PLANNING TO TEACH Microblading or Micropigmentation:
You shall also contact the ILLINOIS Board of Higher Education to obtain the information about their requirements you must comply with. This is under the private business school and vocational section.
Phone: 217.782.2551

If you plan to have other services that do not fall under the Illinois Department of Public Health, Body Art Program, such as eyelash extensions, eyebrow threading, micro-needling or tattoo laser removal, you may need to contact the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional regulations. Phone: 217-785-0820 Website:

About Body Art Permits:

The location holds the Body Art permit with IDPH, not the individual. The artist is required to provide proof of education including a blood borne pathogen training that meets OSHA standards. The training is not required to be completed in Illinois. The establishment owner (or registration holder) is responsible for determining whether the artist is proficient to do the job they will have at the shop and whether to allow them to work under the owner’s registration certificate for the location.

There is a MINIMUM of 2 sinks required for every body art shop - 1 in the restroom and 1 in the work area that is used for nothing else but the artist for handwashing. See sections 797.100 and 797.1100 g and h for further details. Portable sinks are NOT ACCEPTABLE.

If body art is done in a Physician’s office by the Physician they are exempt. If it is done in a Physician’s office by anyone else it must be a registered location.

Only Operators are allowed to register for body art registration certificates.  Pursuant to Section 15 of the Tattoo and Body Piercing Establishment Registration Act, only Operators are legally permitted to apply for body art registration certificates.  The past practice of accepting applications from persons other than Operators, including landlords who rent premises upon which such operations are conducted will no longer be followed.  The landlord of a location cannot register the location they are renting out to an Operator but the Operator itself must obtain and maintain their own registration and be responsible for the functions in their own business at the address.

To Apply For A Body Art Permit:

Please review the two documents under ‘Laws & Rules’ of this webpage for a full explanation of the state rules the shop shall comply with. Print, complete, and submit the Body Art Facility Permit Application under ‘Forms’ on this webpage. See the Body Art Fee Structure document under ‘Forms’ to calculate the appropriate fee.

The application and review process from when the application is received to when the inspector contacts the applicant to set up the inspection is APPROXIMATELY 4 to 6 weeks. . This is dependent upon the number of applications received for review, the completeness of the application, including the fee () , and the schedule of the inspector responsible for your area. The inspection is required prior to providing services.

This state registration takes care of the IDPH requirements. PLEASE remember to check for local business and zoning requirements before attempting to gain the state registration. Your city and county government may both have additional requirements to make the location compliant.

MOBILE UNIT INFO: - See Temporary below.
Fully equipped mobile units applying for the regular year registration shall pay the $500 fee, (plus $50 more per additional station).
If it is not fully equipped and does not have a bathroom in the unit it can only apply as a temporary unit registration which is $250 per 14 consecutive days.

An inside space may also be registered such as a community building or convention center for exhibits and shows. The temporary fee is $250 and is valid up to 14 consecutive days. Application shall be received by the Department no less than 30 days prior to event.

If you have any additional questions about the body art program and IDPH, they may be directed to the program email address.



Laws & Rules