1. Home
  2. Blog
  3. Pay And Benefits
  4. Are Piercing Apprenticeships Paid?

Are Piercing Apprenticeships Paid?

Apprenticeships are an excellent way to gain practical skills and knowledge while earning a wage. However, you may be wondering, “Are piercing apprenticeships paid?”

Piercing apprenticeships are common for individuals interested in becoming professional body piercers. These programs provide aspiring piercers with hands-on training, mentorship, and an opportunity to develop their skills in a professional setting. However, one crucial aspect that potential apprentices often consider is whether these apprenticeships are paid. 

This article will explore the topic and shed light on the factors determining whether piercing apprenticeships are paid or unpaid.

Are Piercing Apprenticeships Paid

Understanding Piercing Apprenticeships

Piercing apprenticeships serve as a fundamental stepping stone towards a successful career in the body modification industry. Aspiring piercers learn the art and science of body piercing, including sterilisation techniques, proper placement, jewellery selection, aftercare instructions, and client interaction. Apprenticeships are typically conducted in piercing studios under the guidance of experienced mentors or master piercers.

While no universal guidelines exist for piercing apprenticeships, some studios offer paid ones. These paid programs are often highly competitive and may require additional qualifications or prior experience. The compensation provided to apprentices in these cases can vary widely and may be influenced by several factors:

  1. Studio Policy: Each piercing studio has its policies regarding apprenticeships. Some studios recognise the value of the apprentice’s contributions and provide financial compensation accordingly.
  2. Location: The geographical location of the studio plays a role in determining whether apprenticeships are paid. In regions with higher living costs, studios are more likely to offer paid apprenticeships to support their apprentices’ livelihoods.
  3. Experience and Skills: Prior experiences in the body modification field or related areas, such as customer service or art, can increase the chances of securing a paid apprenticeship. Demonstrating exceptional skills and dedication during the application process can also make a difference.
  4. Duration of Apprenticeship: A piercing apprenticeship can vary significantly, ranging from several months to a year. Longer apprenticeships are more likely to be paid, as they require a substantial commitment of time and effort from the apprentice.

Unpaid Piercing Apprenticeships

It is common for many piercing apprenticeships to be unpaid, especially for those just starting their journey. The reasons behind unpaid apprenticeships can include the following:

  1. Education and Training: Apprenticeships are primarily focused on education and skill development. Unpaid apprenticeships allow aspiring piercers to learn the craft without putting financial strain on studios that invest their time and resources in training.
  2. Limited Resources: Some studios may need more financial resources, making it difficult for them to provide monetary compensation to apprentices. Instead, they may prioritise imparting knowledge and experience as compensation.
  3. Industry Norms: Unpaid apprenticeships have been a traditional practice in the body modification industry for years. This tradition has its roots in the historical journey of the craft and the understanding that learning and dedication are often rewarded in the long run.
  4. Benefits and Perks: Although unpaid, apprenticeships can come with other forms of compensation, such as free or discounted piercings, access to professional networks, and valuable mentorship, which can significantly enhance an apprentice’s learning experience.


Whether piercing apprenticeships are paid, or unpaid depends on various factors, including studio policies, location, experience, and the duration of the apprenticeship. While some studios offer paid apprenticeships, unpaid programs remain prevalent in the body modification industry. Aspiring piercers should consider the overall value of the apprenticeship, including the educational opportunities, mentorship, and potential networking benefits, alongside monetary compensation. Regardless of the financial aspect, a piercing apprenticeship can provide a solid foundation for a successful career in body piercing.

Updated on May 16, 2023

Was this article helpful?

Related Articles