Microblading Regulations Australia - Guide by Location
In Australia, microblading is regulated as a part of the tattoo and body art industry. Regulations widely vary by state, so we bring you a comprehensive overview by location.
Microblading Regulations Australia – Guide by Location
In order to work legally as a microblading artist anywhere in Australia, you have to know and comply with the specific laws and regulations of each state. Unfortunately, they get a little complicated with regards to permanent makeup.
Specifically, microblading is not a recognized unit of competency under Australian law. It’s still considered too niche to be acknowledged on its own. Instead, you need to comply with the laws on tattooing or cosmetic tattooing.
PMUHub has researched the specifics of microblading regulations in Australia. Here’s an overview by location for each Australian state.
Microblading Regulations Australia: General Guidelines
Getting a microblading license in Australia is subsumed under the government-recognized qualification of SHB50321 – Diploma of Cosmetic Tattooing.
The diploma is included in the Hairdressing and Beauty Services Training Package (code SHB) as of December 2021.
If you want to work as a permanent makeup artist in any Australian state or territory you need to find a Registered Training Organization (RTO) that is qualified to deliver this qualification in their SHB training package.
As a part of the diploma you can choose the elective unit of competency called SHBBCOS004 – Provide cosmetic tattoo for eyebrows in addition to other core and elective competencies.
Up to that point the requirements are the same everywhere. Once you complete your training, you need to research the specific requirements of offering microblading services in your state or territory.
Microblading Regulations in Australia by State
Australian states and territories somewhat vary in their specific legislation, but the overall pattern of regulations is the same. In general, you will need:
- Certification by an experienced artist
- An infection control certificate
- Appropriate insurance
- Properly registered premises
Your certification needs to be provided by an artist who holds a current Training and Assessment certificate (TAE). The TAE is required of anyone who wants to be an educator or trainer in Australia.
Make sure that your microblading trainer’s certification is up to date. If their qualifications are outdated, the certificates they give out are invalid.
Infection control certificates are issued by RTOs. The relevant unit of competency is SHBBINF002 – Maintain infection control standards and is included in the Diploma of Cosmetic Tattooing, as well as in several other qualifications.
If you have your own premises, or rent, they have to be registered for providing microblading, permanent makeup, tattooing, or body art services. They also have to meet the standards of your local council.
You are only allowed to provide your service within your registered premises, but some states allow mobile business premises too. Check your local regulations to make sure.
If you’re employed as a PMU artist in a salon, they need to make sure their insurance covers providing microblading or cosmetic tattooing services.
If your business is standalone, you need professional indemnity insurance. Home salons and retail spaces also need public liability insurance.
Image source: Freepik
Microblading Regulations in New South Wales (NSW)
New South Wales subsumes microblading under body art and tattooing procedures. The government’s NSW Health website has a factsheet on the topic of health requirements for body art and tattooing businesses.
The factsheet lists detailed requirements for:
- Business hygiene,
- Personal hygiene for tattooists,
- Other requirements, including: registration with council, handling waste, supplying anesthetics and other products, etc.
The fact sheet also defines fines and penalties for failing to comply with regulations. Depending on the severity of the infraction, the fees range from $127 to $1100. Penalties for heavy infractions range between $220 and $11,000 or 6 months imprisonment.
Microblading Regulations in Victoria (VIC)
The Australian state of Victoria defines body art as any process used to decorate, adorn or mark the body. This includes traditional tattooing and cosmetic tattooing, and therefore microblading.
There are age restrictions on body art procedures, and businesses must follow the guidelines for infection prevention and infection control. The state of Victoria also issues client information sheets which a microblading business must provide to customers prior to the procedure.
You can find those sheets, as well notices about the scope of registration for tattooing businesses, at the VIC Department of Health website.
Microblading Regulations in Queensland (QLD)
In Queensland, microblading and any other cosmetic tattooing is categorized as a Higher risk personal appearance service under the interpretation of tattooing.
These services are defined as skin penetration procedures in which the release of blood or other bodily fluid is an expected result.
You need a specific higher risk personal appearance service license to offer microblading services. The license can’t stay valid for longer than 3 years at a time.
The whole licensing process, including application, eligibility requirements, obligations, suspension of license, etc. is regulated by the Public Health (Infection Control for Personal Appearance Services) Act 2003.
Image source: Freepik
Microblading Regulations in Western Australia (WA)
The Department of Health of the Government of Western Australia includes cosmetic tattoos in skin penetration procedures under body art and beauty therapy.
Skin penetration operators including PMU artists must maintain a standard for infection control and comply with the Code of Practice. The Code outlines requirements such as basic hygiene, sterilization, and disinfection.
Failure to comply invokes a fine of $1000 as well as daily penalties. You can learn more at the WA Department of Health official website’s Skin Penetration Procedures page.
Microblading Regulations in South Australia (SA)
South Australia regulates the tattoo industry via the Consumer and Business Services (CBS for short). However, their governmental pages specify that you don’t need to notify CBS if you provide tattooing which resembles make-up.
You do, however, need to notify CBS if you have a subcontracting arrangement with another tattoo business or sell tattooing equipment.
Outside of that context, a PMU business must comply with the Guidelines on the Safe and Hygienic Practice of Skin Penetration.
The Guidelines cover topics such as:
- Authorized officers,
- Hygiene and antiseptic procedures,
- Risk assessment,
- Injuries, etc.
It’s important to note that, in SA, clients aren’t required to disclose if they carry a bloodborne virus (such as herpes). Artists are expected to work with the assumption that all body substances, including blood, are potential sources of infection.
Microblading Regulations in Tasmania (TAS)
The state of Tasmania includes microblading in its overall Guidelines for Tattooing and refers to it as cosmetic tattooing along with several other PMU procedures. Tasmania’s Guidelines for Tattooing are a part of its Public Health Act 1997.
These guidelines are meant for businesses that provide tattooing and PMU. They address the concerns of:
- Preventing infection,
- Health and safety in the workplace,
- Registration of premises,
- Technical requirements for tattooing, such as preparing the work area, preparing the skin, cleaning, disinfecting, etc.
Microblading Regulations in Northern Territory (NT)
In the Northern Territory of Australia, permanent makeup and cosmetic tattooing are subsumed under beauty therapy.
The information made available online by the Territory’s Government is sparse and mostly deals with registering businesses that provide hairdressing, body art, and beauty therapy services.
That said, they do encourage business owners and practitioners to contact the Environmental Health/ Public Health body of the Northern Territory Government’s Department of Health for more detailed information on registration and regulations that impact your business.
Microblading licensing regulations are prone to change. The safest way to check them is to contact your local authority that regulates body art and get the information directly.
Microblading Regulations Australia – Main Takeaways
In Australia, there is no government-recognized microblading qualification as such. Instead, microblading and all other permanent makeup is subsumed under the various umbrella terms of
- Body art,
- Cosmetic tattooing, and
- Beauty therapy.
The licensing process and relevant regulations vary from state to state. They mostly deal with standards of hygiene and health management.
Your first step should be to get certified with an experienced microblading artist who holds a current TAE. From there, check your state regulations and the requirements of your local council.
Keep in mind that regulations are prone to change. Check for updates from time to time and renew your license or certification as necessary.