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  1. Pittman, Alison PhD, RN
  2. Gary, Jodie PhD, RN
  3. Pepper, Catherine MLIS, MPH


Background: Schools of nursing and health care facilities frequently have policies prohibiting the visibility of body art (tattoos and piercings). The authors sought to understand literature specific to nursing regarding such policies.


Purpose: This integrative review examined literature regarding body art in nursing.


Methods: A systematic electronic database search was conducted for publications between 2010 and 2021. Thematic analysis of both empirical studies and nonresearch articles was completed.


Results: Thirty articles were analyzed, revealing 3 themes and 8 subthemes related to body art in nursing practice: level of acceptability (subthemes were positive perception, stigmatizing, and personal meaning); professional image (subthemes were appearance matters, policy, and trust and confidence); and infection concern (subthemes were hygiene and contamination).


Conclusions: Current understanding from literature regarding body art in nursing was summarized.