UPDATE | Army updates tattoo regulation

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Saturday, April 11, 2015

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW) -- Soldiers can now tattoo their arms, legs and the majority of their bodies after the Army published new rules.

On Friday, the Army published an update to its set of rules on tattoos. They update Army Regulation 670-1.

The new policy doesn't limit the size or number of tattoos a soldier can have on their arms and legs.

Soldiers cannot get a tattoo on their face, neck and hands, which were stated in the previous regulation. Those restrictions include anything above the t-shirt line, on/inside eyelids, mouth, and ears, according the U.S. Army Regulation 670-1.

The previous rules stating that racist, derogatory, and sexist tattoos are against regulation also remain.

Here is the updated Army Regulation 670-1.

Thursday, Oct. 16, 2014

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW) -- The Army has changed its appearance regulations when it comes to tattoos and hair styles.

Some in the military wear their memories on the front line.

"Soldiers have been one of the first ones to get tattooed. It's one way to book mark a chapter in your life and when your life could potentially be cut short, it's something that means a lot to us," former soldier and tattoo artist Isaac Mitchell said.

Mitchell fought in Iraq and Afghanistan and now tattoos for a living. He's seen the Army appearance rules change over the years.

"When it started coming out that there [would] be a new tattoo policy, everyone flooded in," Mitchell said. "Including officers to get more tattoos added."

Those rules are no face, neck or hand tattoos. Although, in 2003 they needed more soldiers, so they let people with those forbidden tattoos join the Army.

In March, the rules went back. You can't have more than four visible tattoos below the elbow or knee and no sleeves.

The soldiers who joined with tattoos and don't fit the rules are grandfathered in, but they could not become an officer. Now, the Army says "candidates are to be evaluated based on all the characteristics of a soldier."

"To me, that says the military doesn't really have a problem with tattoos and it proves that a tattoo doesn't make you a better or a worse soldier," Mitchell said.

If a soldier has a tattoo that still doesn't fly, they have to pay to have it removed. Women's hairstyles have changed too. After the Congressional Black Caucus said the army hairstyles were offensive and targeted African American women.

"The army policy type stuff there's so many loopholes and changes constantly it's hard to keep up with," Mitchell said.

Here is the full list of the Army appearance rules and regulations.