Can You Get a Piercing in Scotland? All You Need to Know

Have you ever found yourself wondering whether you can get a piercing in Scotland? Well, wonder no more, because I’ve got the answer for you. As someone with a fair amount of experience in the piercing department, I’ve always been curious about the regulations surrounding the practice in different parts of the world. Scotland, in particular, sparked my interest recently – is it even legal to get a piercing there? And if so, how easy is it to find a reputable piercing parlour? After some digging, I’ve got the full scoop on everything you need to know about getting a piercing in Scotland.

Now, as you may know, not all piercings are created equal. There are different types, different materials, different healing times – it can get overwhelming, even for a seasoned piercing enthusiast. So before we delve deeper into the specifics of getting a piercing in Scotland, let’s take a quick crash course on some of the basics. First of all, there are two main categories of piercings: ear piercings and body piercings. Ear piercings are pretty straightforward – you’ve got your standard lobe piercing, as well as various cartilage piercings like helix, tragus, and conch. Body piercings, on the other hand, can be done in a multitude of places – think belly button, nose, eyebrow, tongue, and more. Each piercing comes with its own set of risks and requirements for aftercare, so it’s important to do your research beforehand to make sure you’re fully prepared.

Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s get back to the question at hand: can you get a piercing in Scotland? The short answer is yes – there are plenty of piercing parlours and studios throughout Scotland that offer a wide variety of piercings. However, there are certain regulations in place that both the piercer and the client must adhere to in order to ensure a safe and hygienic piercing experience. In the following sections, I’ll break down some of the key regulations and best practices to keep in mind when seeking out a piercing in Scotland.

Types of Piercings

Piercings are a popular form of body modification that have been around for centuries. In Scotland, there are several types of piercings that are popular. Here are some of the most common types:

  • Ear piercings – This is probably the most popular type of piercing in Scotland. Ear piercings can be done on the earlobe or the cartilage. They are also one of the easiest and quickest piercings to heal.
  • Nose piercings – Nose piercings are another popular piercing in Scotland. They can be done on the nostril or septum. These piercings can take longer to heal than ear piercings but are still relatively easy to care for.
  • Tongue piercings – Tongue piercings are a bit more daring than ear or nose piercings. They can take longer to heal but are generally safe when done by a professional piercer.
  • Body piercings – This category includes piercings on the navel, nipples, and genitalia. These piercings can be more uncomfortable to get and take longer to heal, but they have gained popularity over the years.

Before getting any type of piercing, it’s important to do your research and find a reputable piercing studio. Make sure the piercer is licensed and experienced in the type of piercing you want. Also, make sure to follow all aftercare instructions to avoid infection and promote healing.

Piercing Places in Scotland

Scotland may not be the first place that comes to mind when you think of piercing studios, but the country actually has a vibrant piercing scene. From traditional Scottish piercings to trendy body art, Scotland has a range of piercing places that cater to all tastes and styles. Below are some of the most popular piercing places in Scotland.

  • The Scottish Tattoo and Piercing Centre – With locations in Glasgow, Edinburgh, and Dundee, The Scottish Tattoo and Piercing Centre is a popular choice for body art enthusiasts. They offer a wide range of piercings, from traditional earlobe piercings to more unusual piercings like the septum or dermal anchors. Their experienced piercers also use only high-quality jewellery, ensuring that your new piercing looks great and heals well.
  • The Studio – Based in Aberdeen, The Studio is a piercing and tattoo studio that caters to a diverse clientele. They have a reputation for being one of the best piercing studios in Scotland, offering a sterile and professional environment. They specialize in ear piercings, but also offer a range of other piercings, including nose, lip, and navel piercings.
  • Flesh Tattoo and Piercing – Located in Edinburgh, Flesh Tattoo and Piercing is a modern and stylish studio that offers a range of piercings. They pride themselves on their high standards of hygiene and professionalism, and their piercers are known for their expertise and attention to detail. They offer ear piercings, as well as more unusual piercings like the tragus, rook, and conch.

If you’re considering getting a piercing in Scotland, it’s worth doing your research and choosing a reputable piercing studio. Look for a studio with a good reputation, experienced piercers, and a clean and sterile environment. And remember, getting a piercing is a big commitment, so make sure you’re prepared for the aftercare process and are willing to take care of your new piercing properly.

Traditional Scottish Piercings

Alongside the modern piercing scene, Scotland also has a rich history of traditional piercings. One of the most well-known traditional Scottish piercings is the Highland Nose Chain, which was worn as a symbol of strength and masculinity by Highland warriors. Other traditional Scottish piercings include ear lobe piercings and lip piercings, which were popular among Scottish women in the 19th century.

Piercing Aftercare

Aftercare is one of the most important aspects of getting a piercing, as it can affect how well your new piercing heals and how good it looks. After getting a piercing, it’s important to keep the area clean and dry, and to avoid touching the piercing with dirty hands. You should also avoid swimming or submerging the piercing in water for at least the first few weeks. If you experience any issues or signs of infection, such as redness, swelling, or discharge, you should contact your piercer or a healthcare professional.

Piercing Type Healing Time
Earlobe 4-6 weeks
Nose 6-8 weeks
Lip 8-10 weeks
Cartilage 6-12 months

Remember, everyone’s healing process is different, so it’s important to listen to your body and take care of your new piercing properly.

Piercing Aftercare

Getting a piercing requires a certain amount of aftercare to ensure proper healing and prevent infection. Here are some tips for taking care of your piercing:

  • Clean regularly: Make sure to clean your piercing at least twice a day with saline solution or an antiseptic solution recommended by your piercer. Avoid harsh chemicals like hydrogen peroxide or alcohol as they can irritate the piercing.
  • Avoid touching: Resist the urge to frequently touch or twist your piercing as this can introduce bacteria and delay healing. Only touch it when cleaning or changing jewelry.
  • Be mindful of clothing: Choose loose-fitting clothes that won’t rub against your piercing and irritate it. Avoid tight clothing or jewelry that can get caught on your piercing.

Common Aftercare Mistakes

While taking care of your piercing sounds simple, many people make common mistakes that can lead to infection and delay healing. Here are some mistakes to avoid:

  • Skipping cleanings: It’s important to clean your piercing regularly to prevent buildup of bacteria and debris.
  • Using harsh products: As mentioned earlier, avoid using harsh chemicals on your piercing as it can dry out the skin and prolong the healing process.
  • Over-cleaning: While cleaning is important, over-cleaning your piercing can also irritate the skin. Stick to the recommended cleaning routine.
  • Touching the piercing: As mentioned earlier, touching your piercing can introduce bacteria and delay healing. Keep your hands away from it as much as possible.

What to Do if You Notice Infection

If you notice any signs of infection like redness, swelling, pain, or discharge, it’s important to take action immediately. Here are some steps to take:

  1. Don’t remove the jewelry: Leaving the jewelry in can help drain the infection and prevent it from closing up, making it harder to clean.
  2. Clean it regularly: Increase the frequency of your cleanings to three or four times a day.
  3. Seek professional care: If the infection persists or gets worse, consult a professional piercer or doctor for advice and treatment.

Remember, caring for your piercing is an important part of the piercing process. Following these aftercare tips and avoiding common mistakes can help ensure proper healing and prevent infection.

Signs of infection: What to do:
Redness Increase cleaning frequency
Swelling Don’t remove jewelry, seek professional help if it persists
Pain Don’t remove jewelry, seek professional help if it persists
Discharge Increase cleaning frequency, seek professional help if it persists

Always consult a professional piercer or doctor if you have any concerns or questions about caring for your piercing.

Piercing Risks and Complications

While getting a piercing in Scotland may seem like a simple and harmless process, there are potential risks and complications involved that should not be overlooked. The following are some of the most common risks and complications associated with piercings:

  • Infection: One of the most significant risks associated with piercings is infection. Piercers must follow strict sterilization procedures to prevent the spread of infection, but even with proper precautions, infections can still occur. Symptoms of an infected piercing include redness, swelling, pain, and discharge.
  • Allergic reactions: Some people may have an allergic reaction to the metal used in their piercing. The most common culprit is nickel, but other metals like gold and silver can also cause reactions.
  • Keloids: Keloids are raised, thickened scars that can form at the site of a piercing. Some people may be more prone to keloid formation than others, and they can be difficult to treat.

Proper Aftercare

One of the best ways to prevent piercing complications is by following proper aftercare procedures. After getting a piercing, it’s important to keep the area clean and dry. Avoid touching the piercing unless necessary, and when you do touch it, make sure your hands are clean.

Your piercer should provide you with aftercare instructions specific to your piercing, but in general, you should avoid swimming, bathing, or soaking the piercing in water for at least the first few weeks after getting it.

If you experience any signs of infection, such as redness, swelling, or discharge, seek medical attention right away.

Piercing and Jewelry Materials

The type of material used in your piercing and the jewelry you wear can also affect your risk of complications. Some metals, like surgical steel and titanium, are less likely to cause allergic reactions than others.

Recommended Materials Avoid
Surgical steel Nickel
Titanium Gold (unless it’s at least 14-karat)
Bioplast Silver

If you are prone to allergies or have sensitive skin, it may be a good idea to opt for jewelry made from hypoallergenic materials or to stick with metals that you know you don’t react to.

Overall, while getting a piercing in Scotland can be a fun and exciting experience, it’s important to be aware of the potential risks and complications involved. By following proper aftercare procedures and being mindful of the materials used in your piercing and jewelry, you can help reduce your risk of complications and keep your piercing looking and feeling great.

Legal Age for Piercings in Scotland

Getting a piercing is an exciting experience, but before you go ahead and get one, there are a few things you should know. In Scotland, there are legal requirements that must be met before anyone can receive a piercing. One of these requirements is meeting the minimum age for piercings.

  • The minimum age for earlobe piercings in Scotland is 16 years old. This means that if you are under the age of 16, you will not be able to get your earlobes pierced in Scotland, even with parental consent.
  • For piercings other than earlobes, the minimum age is 18 years old. This includes piercings such as nose, tongue, belly button, and genital piercings.
  • It is important to note that some piercing shops may have their own policies in addition to these legal requirements, so it is always best to check with the shop beforehand.

Parents or legal guardians cannot give permission for a minor to receive a piercing, regardless of the type of piercing. This means that if you are under the age of 18, you cannot get any type of piercing in Scotland, even with parental consent.

It is important to consider the health implications and potential risks of piercings, especially for younger individuals. Younger individuals may not have fully developed immune systems, which could lead to increased risks of infection or complications.

Piercing Type Minimum Age
Earlobe 16
Nose, Tongue, Belly Button, Genital 18

It is important to follow these legal requirements when receiving a piercing in Scotland to ensure your own safety and wellbeing.

Piercing Studios vs Tattoo Shops

Getting a piercing in Scotland is a popular practice for those looking to add some flair to their look. However, choosing the right place to get your piercing can be tricky. Two common options are piercing studios and tattoo shops. Each has its own advantages and disadvantages.

  • Piercing Studios: These establishments specialize in piercings and typically have a wider selection of jewelry. They often have experienced piercers who are knowledgeable about the latest techniques and trends. Piercing studios also tend to have a cleaner and more sterile environment, as they are solely dedicated to piercing. The downside is that they may charge higher prices for their specialized services.
  • Tattoo Shops: Many tattoo shops also offer piercings as a side service. This option may be more convenient for those looking to get both a tattoo and piercing done at the same time. Tattoo shops are also typically more affordable than piercing studios. However, the downside is that the piercer’s experience and knowledge may not be as specialized as in a dedicated piercing studio

Cleanliness and Sterilization

When it comes to piercings, cleanliness and sterility are of utmost importance. It is important to choose a place that follows proper sterilization techniques and uses sterile equipment. Both piercing studios and tattoo shops should use new, disposable needles for each client. However, it is important to note that piercing studios typically have a higher standard for cleanliness and sterilization due to their specialized focus.


When it comes to pricing, it can vary greatly depending on the establishment and the specific piercing. However, piercing studios tend to charge higher prices due to their specialized services and higher standard of sterility. Tattoo shops may offer more affordable prices, but it is important to ensure that their experience and knowledge is adequate for the type of piercing you are looking to get.

Comparison Table

Piercing Studios Tattoo Shops
Specialization Specialize solely in piercings and have experienced piercers Piercings are often a side service, piercer’s experience may not be as specialized
Cleanliness and Sterilization Higher standard for cleanliness and sterilization due to their specialized focus Should follow proper sterilization techniques, but may not have the same level of standard as piercing studios
Pricing Generally higher due to specialized services and higher standard of sterility May offer more affordable prices, but piercer’s experience and knowledge should be adequate for the type of piercing desired

Ultimately, the decision of whether to choose a piercing studio or tattoo shop for your piercing will depend on your personal preferences and priorities. Consider the level of cleanliness and specialization you are looking for, as well as your budget, when making your decision.

Piercing Jewelry Options

Getting a piercing in Scotland can be an exciting experience, but choosing the right jewelry can be overwhelming. There are many different types of piercing jewelry available, each with its own unique style and advantages. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the different piercing jewelry options to help you make the right choice.

7. Captive Bead Rings

  • One of the most popular types of piercing jewelry, captive bead rings are a versatile and stylish choice.
  • They consist of a hoop with a small bead or ball that is held in place by tension, creating a seamless look.
  • Captive bead rings come in a range of sizes, metals, and styles, making them suitable for different piercings and preferences.
  • They can be worn in various piercings, such as nipples, belly buttons, and septums, among others.
  • Captive bead rings may require some skill to insert and remove, but they usually stay in place securely once they are in.

When choosing the right piercing jewelry, it is important to consider your piercing location, size, and healing stage, as well as your personal style and preferences. Always make sure to choose high-quality, hypoallergenic materials to avoid any irritation or infection.

Can You Get a Piercing in Scotland? FAQs

1. Is there an age limit for getting a piercing in Scotland?

Yes, you must be 16 years or older to get a piercing without parental consent. If you are under 16, you can still get a piercing, but you will need parental consent.

2. What type of piercings can I get in Scotland?

You can get any type of piercing in Scotland, including ear, nose, lip, tongue, navel, and genital piercings.

3. Are there any restrictions on where I can get a piercing in Scotland?

Yes, there are some restrictions. For example, it is illegal to get a piercing in intimate areas if you are under 18. Also, some piercers may choose not to perform certain piercings, such as dermal piercings, due to safety concerns.

4. How do I find a licensed piercer in Scotland?

Look for a professional body piercing studio that displays a license to operate. You can find many licensed piercers through online directories, word-of-mouth, or by checking with your local health authority.

5. What should I bring with me when I go to get a piercing in Scotland?

You should bring a valid form of photo ID, as well as any paperwork or parental consent if you are under 16.

6. What should I expect during the piercing process in Scotland?

Your piercer will sanitize the area where the piercing will be done and mark the spot. They will then pierce the skin, insert the jewelry, and provide you with aftercare instructions.

7. What should I do if I experience any problems after getting a piercing in Scotland?

If you experience any redness, swelling, or pain after getting a piercing, you should contact your piercer or a medical professional right away.

Closing: Thanks for Reading!

Thanks for taking the time to learn about getting a piercing in Scotland. Whether you’re getting your first piercing or adding to your collection, it’s important to do it safely and work with a licensed professional. Be sure to follow any aftercare instructions given by your piercer to avoid any complications. Come back soon for more helpful articles!