The Corps will no longer require many Marines to take pictures with their tattoos when submitting packages for re-enlistment or special duty assignments.
The Corps has required pictures of tattoos since fiscal year 2015 to ensure “compliance” with the Corps’ tattoo policy.
The Corps currently has the strictest tattoo policy within the U.S. military, limiting officers to only four visible tattoos in their physical training uniform. Enlisted Marines are limited on the size of individual tattoos, while full and half sleeves are banned along with face, hand or neck tattoos.
Under the new MARADMIN, Marines who have do not have visible tattoos while wearing properly fitting physical training uniforms will no longer be required to send in a photograph as part of their package.
If tattoos are still visible while wearing the physical training uniform, a close-up photo showing only the visible tattoo will still be required when sending in a re-enlistment or special duty assignment package.
The change comes in the wake of the Marines Corps’ change to the photograph policy that seeks to eliminate unconscious bias from promotion boards and the assignment process.
The Corps stopped requiring pictures in those packages in September 2020.
The new MARADMIN aligns, “the tattoo compliance review process with DOD and Marine Corps guidance regarding selection processes,” Yvonne Carlock, a spokeswoman for Marine Corps Manpower and Reserve Affairs, told Marine Corps Times in an email.
“Commanders remain responsible for validating compliance with the service tattoo policy. This is not a change to the tattoo policy.”