Louisiana Department of Health & Hospitals | Kathy Kliebert, Secretary

Statewide Initiatives

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Commercial Body Art

Commercial body art has been regulated in the state of Louisiana since 1999. Commercial body art (CBA) is defined by Part XXVIII of Title 51 of the Louisiana Administrative Code as "the practice of physical body adornment by registered establishments and operators utilizing, but not limited to, the following techniques: tattooing, cosmetic tattooing, body piercing, branding, and scarification." The definition does not include activities defined as medical procedures by a state medical board; commercial body art facilities and operators are specifically prohibited from performing such procedures. Moreover, it does not include the use of a pre-sterilized single-use stud and clasp ear-piercing system to pierce the earlobe; thus, women's accessory stores and mall kiosks that perform ear piercing are not governed under this authority.

The DHH Food and Drug Program regulates commercial body art under the authority given by Part XXVIII (cited above) and LSA R.S. 40: §2833 (primarily). Each facility engaging in tattooing, body-piercing, or other CBA activities is required to be permitted in accordance with these regulations and each person performing said tasks must be registered with the state.

Presently contractors (retired sanitarians) are responsible for conducting pre-operational and routine inspections and complaint investigations. The program manager position for Commercial Body Art is currently vacant; please contact the Food and Drug Program Central Office staff with questions or to schedule an inspection at 225-342-7516.


Frequently Asked Questions

 If you are a prospective CBA facility owner or CBA operator (tattoo artist, piercer, et cetera), the following documents may be of use (all documents below are in Adobe Acrobat format; go to the Adobe Acrobat website to obtain Reader software if needed):