Popular Restaurant Passed New Dress Code Banning Tattoos, 'Heavy' Jewelry

A popular restaurant in Sydney, Australia, has passed a new dress code banning visible tattoos, "heavy" jewelry and designer clothing, according to multiple reports.

The dress code, which was implemented at Double Bay's Bedouin, was created to "discourage intimidating appearances" and "make patrons feel comfortable," Sky News reported.

"We value our customers and community stakeholders and have always implemented house rules that include a dress policy that discourages intimidating appearances," Bedouin co-licensee Poata Okeroa told The Daily Telegraph via 7 News.

The policy will be enforced on staff and patrons alike, meaning that any customer with visible tattoos or "designer labeled apparel," will be barred from entering the restaurant.

Liberal Party Vice-President Teena McQueen called the decision to ban diners an act of "discrimination" when speaking to 7 News.

"I mean, it's discrimination, as simple as that," she said. "As long as people pay their bills at any restaurant, wear what you like, wear nothing for all I care—but let's just treat everyone equally."

Chef Michael McElroy, who has neck and arm tattoos, said he was upset to learn he could no longer visit the restaurant.

"I've never heard of this policy in Australia, I have head and arm tattoos and not once when dining out has this come up until recently," he said. "Hearing they are now introducing these rules is a shame."

The stigma associated with tattoos is nothing new.

Tattoo artist Tiara Nikole Gordon told Bustle, "In my first few years of learning, I was advised not to tattoo hands, throats or basically anything that would be visible."

She explained that she's seen more "open minds" in the "professional world" regarding tattoos. Still, some tattoo artists told Bustle that certain placements and/or designs are still sometimes seen as "troublesome" in professional settings.

Tattoo artist Max Brown said that his corporate clients tend to avoid getting hand and neck tattoos.

"We tattoo tons of people in the restaurant industry and hand, neck, or full sleeve tattoos seem to make no difference in job placement or upward mobility, [but] when we tattoo people in more corporate industries, tattoos tend to be delegated to areas easily covered by sleeves and pant legs," he said.

Based on the advice and/or observations of other artists, Bustle also advised those in professional settings to think hard before getting tribal tattoos, pot leave tattoos and "dark-themed" tattoos.

Tattooed bartender
A popular restaurant in Sydney has implemented a new dress code banning visible tattoos, “heavy” jewelry and designer clothing, according to multiple reports. FXQuadro/istock