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Piercings and tattoos in the physics community

  1. Jun 20, 2012 #1
    Hello all,

    Anyone here (visibly) pierced and/or tattooed? Did it affect your chances of finding work? What about REUs or internships?

    My gut feeling is that it's probably not that big of a deal for most. I come from a front-end banking background where dress code is everything, and then moved to the IT department where hardly anyone cared. I'm curious if I would be looked down upon walking into work with a nose ring and sleeve.

    And on a lighter note, does it count TOWARD you if your tattoos are science/math related? :tongue:
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 20, 2012 #2
    I don't think it matters very much. If you look like you just got off a Harley after breaking a pool cue on some guy's head, that might count against you... who wants an intimidating coworker? But if you look harmless enough, just inked and pierced, I don't think you'll have any problem at all.

    I have to ask about your tattoos now though... you have "BORN TO PROVE" on your arm or something?
     
  4. Jun 20, 2012 #3

    turbo

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    No tats or piercing, here. I'm unconventional enough on my own, and don't need to join that crowd to prove that I'm an individual.

    Playing guitar all weekend in Uni and then later in life gave me all the individuality that I needed.

    @OP: I would try to stay conventional. You may have a fantastic chance to hook up with a great prof, and it would be shame to have it blown because (s)he was turned off by your appearance.
     
  5. Jun 20, 2012 #4

    Drakkith

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    Good rule of thumb for tattoos and piercings: Get them where you can cover them up!
     
  6. Jun 20, 2012 #5
    A nose ring is too close to the eyes, uncommon and makes me uncomfortable, specifically my nose.

    Look down on? no way. But other people, sure some would, some wouldn't, some may be favorably biased towards you because of it.


    I'm a smoker. That's worse. :smile:
     
  7. Jun 20, 2012 #6

    Astronuc

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    I had a pierced ear (left) during university. I removed the stud for a while, and the hole closed up. I work in a pretty conservative industry - the higher up, the more conservative. I've thought about getting it re-pierced, but then I've haven't really bothered.

    For a long time, I kept my hair short, but now it's long. I did get some grief about my beard when it got long, but now, it's generally accepted along with my ponytail. My grad school colleagues told me that I wouldn't get a job with my beard. I interviewed for one job and got an offer the next day. I didn't shave. Some of my colleagues were shocked.

    I know guys in the industry who have piercings, and some have unusual hair - as in colored mohawks, but that's unusual.

    My brother thinks my long hair and beard is a professional hindrance. I don't think so, nor do I care.
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2012
  8. Jun 20, 2012 #7

    Danger

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    I had a piercing... twice. It wasn't visible to the general public. Unfortunately, my immune system is so obnoxious that both of them grew out and fell into my shoe. I reluctantly elected to abandon the effort.
    I know that it isn't relevant to the original question, but I figured that I'd put it out there.
     
  9. Jun 20, 2012 #8

    Drakkith

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    I'm afraid to ask...but where was the piercing given that they fell out "into my shoe"??
     
  10. Jun 20, 2012 #9

    DaveC426913

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    I was afraid someone was going to ask.

    I could happily go to my grave with a big fuzzy grey patch in place of the answer to this question.
     
  11. Jun 20, 2012 #10

    Danger

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    Hmmm... about 1 1/4" above my... uh... favourite appendage. :shy:
    It was a 5/8" horizontal staple with 1/4" beads, and a 3" chain hanging from the left side with another 1/4" bead on the end.

    :rofl:
     
  12. Jun 20, 2012 #11

    DaveC426913

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    Got my left ear pierced about 10 years ago. Have pretty much forgotten it's there.
     
  13. Jun 20, 2012 #12
    I've had nightmares about having a tattoo. I think they're ugly and pointless. I don't care what people's excuse is for getting a tattoo, it's never a good excuse. People get tattoos of their loved ones to remember them by... as if they'd forget about them if they didn't have the tattoo. They must not have been too loved if you need a constant reminder.
     
  14. Jun 20, 2012 #13

    Drakkith

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    That's nice. Have you considered that peoples reasons for getting tattoos might be just as valid as yours are for not getting them?
     
  15. Jun 20, 2012 #14

    dlgoff

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    1 1/4"? And I thought you were dangerous. :devil:
     
  16. Jun 20, 2012 #15

    Danger

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    Above, you pest! I said above. :grumpy:
     
  17. Jun 20, 2012 #16
    I don't know, I don't think you're going to get an answer to your question. Personally I would question your motives if you walked into my office like that, and immediately my opinion of you would be low.

    You'd have to really impress me, if I was in a position of offering you a job or research, looking like that.
     
  18. Jun 20, 2012 #17
    What dipole said...
     
  19. Jun 21, 2012 #18

    DaveC426913

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    It's a tricky thing, this judging on first impressions.

    In my office, it's ability to do the job that is scrutinized. So "first impressions" takes a back seat to the "show me the money".

    But there are places where the image you send out is an aspect of the job. And in those kinds of jobs, someone who sends the wrong message is also someone who doesn't understand the requirements of their job.
     
  20. Jun 21, 2012 #19

    D H

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    But we do do it, at least in job interviews. I've sat on the interviewer side of the table for my last three employers. Every single one has had "first impressions" as one of the evaluation form items. Dress and appearance can play a part of that first impression, particularly if it's inappropriate.

    The general rule is business formal / formal side of business casual when you interview for a job that requires a bachelors degree or higher in a technical field. Leave your rings at home, cover your tattoos. Don't dress like a slob or worse. You can try wearing that stuff to work once you land the job. Some employers won't care, others will ask you to go home and change.
     
  21. Jun 21, 2012 #20
    I was thinking more along the lines of how it would be viewed once you have the job (probably didn't make that very clear, re-reading my post). I wouldn't walk into an interview in a sleeveless shirt to show anything off.

    Thanks for the replies, everyone. :)
     
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