Special treatments

Acupuncture, cosmetic piercing, electrolysis, semi-permanent skin colouring and tattooing

Complete our online application form. Read the byelaws below. Do not apply if you cannot meet the standards as set out in the byelaws.

You will register your premises and every operator, for each form of special treatment you perform. You have to register if you provide a mobile service.

You must be registered at every premises you work at within the Reading borough.

You will have to register to provide treatments at an event in Reading. Once you have registered you won’t need to re-register if you return for other events in the future.

Registration fees
Service Charge
Registration of premises (including one operator) £281
Each additional operator £49
Replacement of operator certificate £34

Once we have received your application we will endeavour to visit you within 14 days so please register before you are due to open. We will send you your registration certificate and a copy of the byelaws. You can start to trade when you have received and displayed your certificate and the byelaws.

We cannot refuse to register a premises or operator but we will inspect your premises to make sure they meet the required standards. If you are in breach of the byelaws or the Health and Safety at Work Act and you fail to act on advice we give you, we can take legal action. This could result in the Magistrates Court withdrawing your registration.

The legislation does not contain an exemption for physiotherapists as they are not considered to be ‘medical practitioners’ . If a physiotherapist is providing acupuncture under the supervision of a medical doctor registered with the GMC an exemption can be given provided the doctor provides written confirmation that this is the case.

It is an offence to tattoo someone under the age of 18.

If you lose your certificate you can apply for a replacement – at a small cost. If you have changed your name and want to amend your certificate, you should contact the Food and Safety Team.


Acupuncture Byelaws

Cosmetic Piercing Bylaws

Electrolysis Byelaws

Semi Permanent Skin Colouring Byelaws

Tattooing Byelaws

Please see the data privacy notice for more details of how we keep your data secure.

Cosmetic interventions

In Reading, only the procedures mentioned on this page need registration. We follow the Local Government(Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982.

London authorities use different law to regulate special treatments. They use the London Local Authorities Act 1991. This is why they licence more treatments than we do.