Tattoos & Professional Business Appearance – Be Wary Of The Message Tattoos Can Send At Work

Tattoos & Professional Business Appearance – Be Wary Of The Message Tattoos Can Send At Work

Tattoos & Professional Business Appearance Hi! I’m Antonio Centeno, the founder of Real
Men Real Style. Today, we’re going to be talking about tattoos and professional appearance. If you haven’t already, please subscribe to
our YouTube channel. By doing that, these videos will come right to you. If you like
this video, if you find it useful, I would appreciate it if you would like it down below.
I’m also going to link you to our free 47-page e-book on men’s style. Okay, let’s get right to the question. “Antonio,
I love your videos. I think I’ve seen every last one of them.” That’s a lot of videos.
“I have a question that isn’t about clothing. Do you think tattoos are inappropriate for
a man who wants to appear professional? I don’t mean large, obnoxious tattoos I mean,
tattoos that are under your clothing such as on your chest, on your back, on your shoulder?
These tattoos are only seen without a shirt on. Do you think these are inappropriate?” This is a great question. It’s something that
I know has been written about and talked about ad nauseam. It really, to me, comes down to
perception and what other people think of you because you can be a great person and
you can do everything great and you can be literally Mother Teresa, but if you saw a
picture of — let’s just use Mother Teresa. If you saw a picture of Mother Teresa or somebody
else who’s a really great person out there and they’ve got tattoos all over them, maybe
with piercings — and I know you didn’t mention piercings — you’re going to have
a certain impression of them and it’s going to vary from person to person. Those of us that are maybe in the counterculture
or were around people — let’s say we’re in Austin, Texas and we see a lot of tats, maybe
it’s not really an issue to us and we’ve learned to look beyond it, but for many people, especially
other parts of the world, that is something that is just — it has kind of a negative
appeal to it. I grew up around tattoos. My stepfather, he
had tons of tattoos on his arms and on the rest of his body that he picked up at the
Navy. He had a lot of great stories with those tattoos, but I can tell you that the perception
that other people have had of him and those tattoos have gotten him in trouble. Some of those tattoos, I’m not going to elaborate
on them, but let’s just say they — when you get tattoos in the ’70s and you’re in the
Navy, they don’t always have clothing on women, so I learned a lot about the female anatomy
from my stepfather’s forearms. In any case, I know that he has had to go in and have those
altered because he worked in environments in which people complained once things became
more politically correct. Now, your question is about ones that people
aren’t going to see, but there are going to be times that you are going to reveal that
to people. You’re going to find yourself in casual work environments in which, let’s say,
you have a t-shirt on or you are going to a swimming event, and you don’t even think
anything of it and you remove your shirt. You’ve got to think, “Okay, what are the signals
I’m sending?” At the end of the day, if you work in a creative
environment, if you have established a rapport with your peers and they know that you deliver,
it may just be something that, “Wow! I didn’t realize he had all these tattoos. It makes
me think a little bit differently of him.” You do need to realize that there are many
places in the world where it still is considered — my wife’s Ukrainian and when she came here,
she sees all these people with tattoos and that’s kind of something that people get in
prison in that part of the world, and there’s a long history. There are other places in
the world where it has a religious signification. There are other parts of the world where it
just has different meanings. Coming from a military background in the Marine
Corps, everyone had an EGA tattoo on them. I think I’m one of the few guys to get out
of the Marine Corps without having the EGA somewhere on my body. What a lot of us don’t
think about and is the outside of that context, what are people going to think? It sounds
like that you want to get some of these tattoos and you’re also thinking about your career. If you’re going to go forward with it, I like
the idea of having those in places where people aren’t going to see them. There’s a great
example out there. His name is Nick Wooster. I probably just butchered his last name, but
in any case, he waited until later on in life to get a number of tattoos on his body and
he has his entire arms tattooed. This is a guy in the fashion industry, but when he has
a suit on, you cannot tell he has any tattoos. He doesn’t have them going up his neck.
He doesn’t have a teardrop underneath his eye, things like that where you can’t hide
it. It’s interesting because whenever he wears
a short sleeve shirt, all of a sudden, it gives a very different feel. If I saw him
in a short sleeve shirt, I would just have a different perception. I wouldn’t believe
that this was some guy that normally wears a suit day in and day out, and he works very
high up in corporate America. So you just need to be aware of the perception
other people are going to have of that. Here in the United States, it has shifted quite
a bit. I mean, you see tons of women getting tattoos on their bodies. I don’t like it,
but it’s one of those things that it’s much more accepted. Outside of the United States,
other parts of the world, it still hasn’t caught on and I don’t know if it will, so
be careful. Understand that it will be sending a message, but it sounds like you’re going
to go about it the right way. I wish you the best of luck. All right. If you enjoyed this video, I would
appreciate it again if you would like it down below. Make sure to subscribe because I’ll
see you in the next video. Bye-bye.

70 thoughts on “Tattoos & Professional Business Appearance – Be Wary Of The Message Tattoos Can Send At Work

  1. @imthedomz Thank you sir – appreciate it when people click the "LIKE" button as it helps more men discover my videos. – Antonio

  2. Great videos Antonio – I like your advice and way of thinking.

  3. Good question….Even better answer! You are getting better and better Antonio. Keep up your great work. Cheers…

  4. @appleglory Thank you sir – it is appreciated!

  5. @sunnybrett Thank you sir – that's what practice will do for you. Now I just need to cut out my use of "crutch words" and get to the gym 5 times a week vs. 2 🙂

  6. It's ok, I wear suits every day, but I also have tattoos (and piercings) which nobody would ever see in the professional environment. Most people I work with would not even think I have them. But I don't bring my personal life into my professional life. It's all how you handle it. It's just how you present it…. cuz they're going to figure it out at the company picnic!

  7. @LensiMS Thank you for saying so – hope you stay tuned.

  8. @ATHThomas Well, there's always the light linen suit for the picnic, if you've got a really embarrassing one to hide 😀

  9. @CityStreetShoes Anywhere? Or would you say keep them where they can be hidden by clothing as needed?

  10. Thanks, good point and by the way, the white background you've been sporting as of lately, seems better to me than the old black one 🙂

  11. @yourpsychedelic Thank you – I'm going to put it to a vote here in a couple months and see what everyone prefers – It's going to be fun!

  12. @miker2209 You are welcome!

  13. @gempidge I like it!

  14. Great topic! Personally I think tattoos are unprofessional. You make many valid points.

  15. I hate tattoos. The irony is that tattoo people judge me because my hair is longer[just below my ear and not even that long]. I digress. I have had a few of these tatted freaks at bars actually make fun of me because of my hair. I tell them , at least I can cut my hair , but you eye sores are forever. Shuts these scumbags up.

  16. They are dirty looking. I had dealing with tattoo wait staff or sales people. Disgusting.

  17. Excellent video. I think tattoos can be interesting and express oneself in a positive way while remaining professional all at the same time. I'm still on the fence about getting a tattoo as I'm going to school for architecture (means clients both local and international). I can't see this being an issue as I'd without a doubt be wearing a suit/dress shirt.

  18. Smart.

  19. I have a cross tattoo on my shoulder with a verse from scripture and I have had it for almost a year and a half. Is that really a big deal even though I can cover it up?. I don't see how a cross can be offensive. I do come from a Christian home and I did my research on tattoos before getting it. I did pray about it and I knew this tattoo will represent my relationship with Christ. Is having that tattoo a bad thing later on?. And will it seriously keep me from getting a huge professional job?.

  20. MrCaddillacPorche you obviously have judgment issues

  21. I was taught in the Military only get a tattoo you can cover up with your uniform or clothing. I am glad I stuck to this. I have a tattoo on my upper arm of a platoon emblem when I went through basic. It can only be seen when I remove my shirt. So it won't send the wrong messages to anyone. I work in a factory so it really doesn't matter on the shop floor. But for those who want to climb the ladder in the company, it could be a problem. I think it is becoming more acceptable today though. 

  22. I was able to have a professional international computer programming career, with plenty of tattoos. The only way to change the perception of tattoos in the professional workplace is for smart professionals to get great tattoos. 

  23. People who are considering tattoos should wait at least a year to think it over. What sounds like a good idea today might be different years down the road. Also make sure pick the right tattoo artist. 

  24. So I have bean thinking of getting a tattoo for at lest 2 years. I'm thinking about getting it on my inside bicep. I think it would be easy to hide and I like the idea of having a tattoo on my arm but i'm a little scared because I am a business major at university right now and I don't really know how the "Real World" of business works. Is this place a good idea or should I pick a new place? Thank you for any advice! 

  25. Personally I have a full sleeve of ink and yes I do keep them covered with clothing but literally no one rarely finds out I have tats unless I tell them and show or if I happen to run into. Co worker out side of work for social reasons

  26. Thanks Antonio, I was wondering whether or not to get a tattoo and now I guess I'll spend my money on a sporting coat later on. Thanks for the great video

  27. Very well spoken and informative. I completely agree with everything you said.

  28. Ok what about those of us that used to be completley different and have tattoos on our neck? Now that I do wear a dress shirt everyday it still doesnt cover it all and Im extremely self concious about it. Is there anything someone can recommend? I know theres laser removal, but that just makes them look even more hideous!

  29. Personally I think if you are worrying about what people are going to think of you then tattoos aren't for you. I'm a woman and have 19 tattoos and I don't give a fuck what anyone thinks of me. I don't live in America and to be honest I haven't have any bad reactions to my tattoos. For you to say tattoos don't look good on women is pretty sexist to say that about a whole gender. Sure some girls have annoying and stereotypical tattoos. But tattoos are a form of art and when I look at them I judge the art not the person wearing it. If someone didn't give me a job because of my tattoos I would be glad, because I wouldn't want to work for them anyway. Just do whatever floats your boat guys, and don't listen to people who try to stop you living your life!

  30. I just finished my degree in business management and I have a full sleeve. I wouldn't want to work for a company that wouldn't hire someone for their appearances anyway, whatever the salary would be, I wouldn't let myself work for these kind of people. Good thing my focus was entrepreneurship I guess

  31. Everyone has herd the saying "The first impression is the lasting impression". And one aspects of that is how you look. You can be tall, short, fat, thin, bald, white, black, yellow, rich, poor, tattooed and etc., but people are going to label you. This is our nature as human beings. You can argue this point but in the end you are still going to get labeled. We have no control over the genes that we get from our parents, disabilities we are born with, or chronic deceases that we can get, but purposely putting giraffe on your body proves that you have no respect for your body or yourself esteem. This is a trend and trends do change with time but how you are labeled will not.

  32. I feel pretty fortunate: Only my forearms are tattooed, very large and solid black ink; and that's the the only part of my body I'm required to show at work (hands and face and neck don't count 😛 ). On the other hand, I'm working in the caregiving sector, a traditionally female line of work, so I guess the tattoos mark me as a "non-normal male" … in turn, that might make me seem more appropriate for this kind of tradtionally felmale (or "non-male) line of work, marking meself as "not-normal".

    But at the same time, I realise that I shouldn't wear a short-sleeved shirt if I'd ever go to a job interview at a bank or an insurance company 😛

  33. What are you talking about? What you do to your body is your business and I don't care about your feelings. I think tattoos are ugly and that my opinion.

  34. Very neutral discussion, as a young guy who has an interest in tattoos, it's great to hear this although I thought about it too, way better than my dad or parents just lecturing this as a no-no, as forbidden fruit always tastes better and just makes me want them more, but I'm picky and want good design so I think I'll wait until later to get tattoos, or at least get non visible ones

  35. I am 17 and will be 18 soon. I am debating on getting a tattoo. I have been thinking and I want one on my thigh. My mom doesn't want me getting one, but she has one on her lower back… the only time my tattoo will show is when i'm in shorts or a bathing suit or something. the tattoo i want has meaning… i'm going to college to be a zoologist and i don't know. what should i do? would it be ok to get one?

  36. hi sir..I want to make a tatto on my neck of avicii.. it's Just a decent shape of two triangles of black colour..I just wanted to know that will it create problems for me in business??

  37. I'm planning to work in the banking industry, and I'm going for my first tattoo in a month. I'm just being careful that my tattoos are inoffensive, and can be hidden by a suit.

  38. This question makes no sense . If his or her tattoos are " not visible " i.e. Hidden under clothing then what is the worry ?
    I work in a professional international hotel environment ( suit and tie every day ) and Never have any of my numerous tattoos put me in a difficult situation .Why ? Well because it's called knowing how to adapt and keeping what's private private . I am former military and the people who see my tattoos for example during an after work run , take no notice because they know me for the professional image I show . Many of my professional colleagues are Tattooed and likewise it never effects their professional status or clients attitudes towards us because again most of them are intelligent and well dressed and thus know how to remain clean cut without showing what is private . Yes I do agree there are instances where it may be an issue ( life guard etc ) but if you need to ask the question you most probably should never be getting Tattooed in the first place . Rule of thumb to tattoos if you are like myself in suit and tie – Nothing visible past sleeve cuff / Nothing around neckline / never act like you are any different from a non Tattooed person / don't panic if something shows by accident – its 2016 so let your intelligence draw attention away from your tattoos and towards your professional value . It's all very simple if you treat tattoos as a personal thing rather than an image boost ..

  39. Ok is it unprofessional somebody answer please is it unprofessional for me to have a small kissing mark on my neck?

  40. I have full sleeve tattoos. I'm a project architect. I've actually had a person blurt out in the middle of a meeting "have you guys seen that? That's amazing" She was referencing a realism tattoo of an eagle. I think it comes down to your personal brand. I'm somewhere between a creative office job and a construction site, so it's something that can actually get you a little bit of credibility for being different.

  41. Image is a useful tool for managing perceptions of people who are silly enough to base judgement on outwards appearance. I'm a head office accountant, with tattooed arms and mostly tattooed colleagues. If my tattoos are never visible to you, I am managing my image for you. If I know you and I manage my image for you, I do not respect your intellect. Is this OK?

  42. perception is a major role. A lot of people especially the young get ink and pierced without thinking the whole idea through. A lot of time it's done on a wim. if you would not hang it on your living room wall why would you put it on your body? A full sleeve? sure why not but if it also covers your hand and neck that could pose a problem especially if you work in a white collar world. pierced ears? Sure but nose lip tounge no.

  43. nice video!

  44. My opinion is I have tattoos on my face neck hands and arms and chest I don't wanna be dying one day and look back at something and I didn't do something I wanted in life all cuz of a job

  45. i already have tattos on both side of my neck . what can i do?
    i really need your opinion
    help me.

  46. Really good,tatto gives wrong impression

  47. if i am in a coorporate field. can i get a tattoo then plz reply

  48. Tattooed or Not! People are always judging you! So it's upto you how you carry them and the Rapport or the environment you build around you, The tattooed people I've come across mostly are the creative one's and yeah there are others who have low self esteem and want to prove they are tough! So it's your take buddy! However my advice before getting a tattoo don't think how much it would cost do your research on the tattoo artist and his previous work and the ink he or she uses! And think of a design or art for a conversation starter! You would have more genuine friends than the Fakers!

  49. Doesn't mak you bad

  50. As a supervisor involved with hiring people here's how I see it: A (emphasis on "A") tattoo is one thing; if you have a tattoo (or two or three) here and there on your arm, chest, leg, hand or something like that, that's fine. However, if you walk in for a job interview and your arms all the way up to your neck and face look like a page out of a comic book immediately I'm going to think something like "probable ex-convict…run a thorough background check!" Apart from that there's a greater than 90% chance that you've already killed your job prospects looking like that in the first place. I mean think about it; first impressions mean a lot….if you're house hunting and you saw an abandoned decades-old derelict run-down house with weeds and trees covering it up unless you're in the market for a "fixer upper" or was going to flip it would you buy it? I doubt it.
    Of course people are free to do what they want but you people need to think twice about getting this crap BEFORE you do it and NOT after! Like a guy I work with says about people who are covered in tattoos from head to toe: "Enjoy a lifetime of minimum wage jobs!"

  51. he didnt anwser the question whatsoever and he also said that when you get to know someone and i find they have tattoos you will look at them differently! why its the same person you talked to before everything is on apperance and its really sad

  52. this guy seems like he cheats on his wife on business trips,robs his clients, and misses his son’s tball games but promises to catch the next one

  53. I would say don`t tattoo face, neck and hands. With forearm tattoos you cant roll up them sleeves in the summer so I would stick to the upper arm above the elbow.

  54. I have my neck covered up and have face tattoos and I’m an automotive technician/performance tuner specializing in high end European vehicles

  55. This is a very great video! I am thinking about getting my first tattoo, and I will definitely keep your advice in mind!

  56. I'm a 27 year old male and I find tattoos on women to be very trashy. But it is a blessing in disguise. Just like brightly colored animals are usually venomous, so are females with tattoos. Great way to tell.

  57. It comes down to what other people think of you? Wtf the only opinion you should care about is your own. If you don’t like my tattoos or the way I carry myself, then go sit on a stick. If I’m gonna express myself through tattoos then I’m gonna show it off. Not hide it. I’m proud of myself, and if being acceptable means to follow a way of life where you can’t express yourself because of what people might think of you. Then I don’t care to be accepted.

  58. all my ink is completely covered by collar/tie and longsleeves. none on hands/neck/face/head. i prefer a stealthy approach.

  59. EGA?

  60. these are such outdated veiws

  61. Tattoos for gangsters! period

  62. Tats are a sign of a person that is irrational and makes bad and poor choices. Its a permanent indication that you're not as smart as you're projecting and people don't like them. Ask yourself, why do I want this? The answer should tell you everything, if the answer is 'its MY choice' then there you go, you're a dumb selfish ass, enjoy your life.

  63. this is not bad advice actually, a bit old school but none the less great advice

  64. Only 7 years and how things have changed. This advice may as well be from 50s

  65. Tattoos are for dull people who crave attention

  66. employees seeing tattoos at a casual situation like store or beach can cause problems, especially if satanic or fascist in nature. Tattoos give the impression of rebellion and prisons. Women getting tattoos gives the impression they are less reputable.

  67. I've known white-collar people to lose their jobs over ostentatious tattoos.

  68. Politically correct

    I Wanted a small cross on my face lol but I don’t think it’s coming from something negative but visually my physical appearance would make me look like a drug dealer is what most people what would assume and I can’t do it because I need to look professional lol my goal was to get my high school diploma, enter the military and after my contract get face tattoos because I can’t have tattoos in the military so well I was planning on getting it when I got out and well if I get the tattoo I won’t be able to work in this community because of the way people will look at me


  69. Thank you for addressing this subject. Great! Enjoy!

  70. Thank you for addressing this important subject. I feel strongly opposed to tattoos in the business place. They are beyond low class, low prole, vulgar, hostile & contemptuous toward society.

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