“Tattooists, semi-permanent makeup artists and waxing specialists raise their voice for legalizing their professions as independent areas of fashion services”

정재헌 기자l승인2018.05.10l수정2018.05.10 15:57







The Korean law defines tattoo and semi-permanent makeup as in the category of the medical practices and waxing in skincare treatments. As a result, the so called fashion artists tend to find a job overseas or roll up their sleeve to separate their technique from the existing legal boundary. So, the above mentioned leaders of the associations gathered together to set sail the Promotion Committee of Constitutional Appeal for Legalizing Tattoo and Semi-permanent Makeup. The KFTA was established five years ago and has 2,500 members. President Im emphasizes that fashion tattoo is an area of culture as proven through its long history. She asserts that tattoo is used to draw hairlines on the hair loss parts, to balance the color of the skin and to cover the surgery marks of cesarean section over just fashion icons. In this respect, tattoo must be approached psychologically rather than medical practice according to her. As opposed to the arguments of the medical circle that tattooists can possibly cause blood infection, Im argues back that certified tattooists and semi-permanent makeup artists take the state hygiene education twice a year so the assertion has lack of medical grounds. The KAMA was established to promote certified semi-permanent makeup artists in 2017 and has 200 members and 41 board members. President Kim deplores the Medical Law, Article 27 (unlicensed medical practice) as it even causes conflicts and distrust between the people in the tattoo and semi-permanent makeup industries due to the legal boundary. Kim says that the talented artists have no choice but leave the country to find a job overseas under this current law. The KWTA was established three years ago to promote waxing industry in Korea and has 400 members and 16 board members. President Lee says that waxing is under control of skin-related associations as the license is only given when obtained a national certificate related to skin treatments. But waxing is an independent area and needs customized curriculum and training. Lee holds a workshop once a year and organizes a meeting twice a year to deliver up-to-date technique. She has 13 years of experience in Brazilian waxing and is an owner of New York BB and a professor at Myongji College. It might be arguable whether these specialized areas should be received as their own areas of professions. But the Korean government must respond to the needs and wants of Im, Kim and Lee and their fellow members of the associations.  


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