Why don’t models usually have tattoos?
For one, as others have said here, Tattoos are not what are needed for the photo shoot. Small tattoos such as a heart, start, or any Small size tattoo can be removed via Photoshop or concealed with makeup for the runway. But it could be a deal breaker for a model when casting with 30 other models. Obviously, an in-demand model could get away with having a small tattoo much easier than a new face trying to break into the industry.
Another thing is that tattoos are something that one gets along the road of life. Many models start at young ages before even considering a tattoo. Once they are in the industry, they pretty much “need” to get permission from their agent before making any major changes to their look. And a major change to them would seem like a minor change to non industry people. I once had a model get her ears gaged to celebrate her new contract!
And the other reason is that tattoos have yet to cross into the fashion world. Like Russians in the NBA, there are some but you don’t quite notice them. If Anna Wintour like tattoos then maybe they would catch on faster. But tattoos did not start as a mark of glamour, beauty, and wealth. It is only a very modern idea for getting a “cute” tattoo of a dolphin on one’s ankle.
Aline Weber with a bird tattoo.
Chanel Iman with a clothes hanger tattoo.
Anja Rubik has a tattoo of a fat rat on her wrist.
from Answers by James Santiago on Quora via Quora.