Unit of competency details

SHBBCOS008 - Provide 3D nipple areola complex tattooing (Release 1)


Usage recommendation:
Release Status:
ReleaseRelease date
1 1 (this release) 16/Dec/2021


SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 110301 Beauty Therapy 

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 110301 Beauty Therapy 02/Feb/2022 
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Unit Of competency

Modification History

No equivalent unit.


This unit describes the outcomes required to prepare for, design and perform the appropriate areola tattooing required to meet client requirements following breast surgery, breast removal or breast reconstructive surgery.

It requires the ability to assess the client’s requirements, assess a client’s suitability for procedure, advise the client of what can be expected as an outcome and the best treatment options, prepare equipment for procedure, perform procedure and provide adequate post-treatment care and advice.

This unit applies to cosmetic tattooists who work in salons or clinics where cosmetic tattoos are provided on face or body.

The skills in this unit must be applied in accordance with Commonwealth and State or Territory legislation, Australian standards and industry codes of practice.

Cosmetic tattooing is subject to Skin Penetration regulation in some states and territories. The supply of topical anaesthetics is restricted in some states or territories.

Pre-requisite Unit

Unit Code 

Unit Title 


Maintain infection control standards



Maintain infection prevention for skin penetration treatments


Provide cosmetic tattooing consultations


Apply knowledge of colour theory and pigmentology to cosmetic tattooing


Incorporate elements and principles of design to cosmetic tattooing


Identify the function and structure of skin and hair for cosmetic tattooing

Competency Field

Cosmetic Tattooing

Unit Sector


Elements and Performance Criteria



Elements describe the essential outcomes

Performance criteria describe the performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element.

1. Set up treatment area and equipment and prepare client.

1.1. Access and review client treatment plan if available and confirm client objectives and expectations.

1.2. Prepare self for treatment with correct personal protective equipment.

1.3. Check treatment area is ready and required equipment and consumables are available.

1.4. Identify time frames from last surgery, unilateral or bilateral reconstruction, type of reconstruction, chemotherapy, radiation, nipple reconstruction and any post-surgery infections.

1.5. Complete and update consultation and medical history forms.

1.6. Identify and record any contraindications and scarring on the treatment plan.

1.7. Identify and describe to client the treatment protocols, procedural plan, and timeframe, follow up procedures and after care details and maintenance.

1.8. Identify the ideal location to place the tattoo using the Golden Ratio, measure area and draw planned design.

1.9. Identify and describe possible colour outcome or result.

1.10. Seek client consent to proposed design and colour.

1.11. Prepare pigment colours and consumables, tools, and all items for treatment using aseptic standard technique.

1.12. Set up treatment area according to infection control standards, and ensure required equipment and consumables are available.

1.13. Ensure client is comfortable, provide disposable gown, and cleanse and anaesthetise skin area to be treated in accordance with relevant state and territory legislation.

2. Perform 3D nipple areola complex cosmetic tattooing.

2.1. Map out shape and colour of cosmetic tattoo according to final design.

2.2. Seat the patient comfortably on workspace ready for procedure.

2.3. Photograph area to be tattooed prior to treatment.

2.4. Open sterile needle packs in front of client.

2.5. Select, prepare and record needles and pigments to be used.

2.6. Set appropriate needle depth for skin being tattooed and draw pigments into hand piece.

2.7. Provide cosmetic tattooing treatment according to aseptic methods and art and design requirement, using correct needle, angle and depth for the application.

2.8. Interact with and reassure client throughout the treatment and describe the end of the treatment to client.

2.9. Complete procedure according to health, hygiene and skin penetration regulations and requirements.

2.10. Cleanse the skin and apply aftercare products so that client discomfort is minimised.

2.11. Take after treatment photographs.

3. Review treatment.

3.1. Evaluate treatment outcomes with client and seek feedback to determine client satisfaction.

3.2. Record treatment parameters and outcomes of treatment on client treatment plan.

3.3. Rebook client as required for check-up or further treatments.

3.4. Monitor client through healing and recall in correct time for follow-up procedure.

3.5. Assess healed results, take healed photographs and complete follow-up procedures.

4. Advise client on aftercare.

4.1. Provide post-treatment care advice and recommend products and future treatments.

4.2. Manage client expectations of treatment outcomes and discuss and select evaluation strategies.

4.3. Provide advice on suitable referral source for treatment progress, and recommend products and future treatments as required.

4.4. Take final photographs.

4.5. Rebook client for re-assessment or further treatment as required.

5. Clean treatment area.

5.1. Remove used linen and clean treatment surfaces and equipment according to organisational policies and procedures.

5.2. Dispose of sharps in sharps container.

5.3. Sterilise any instrument that has come into contact with body fluids.

5.4. Restock equipment and products in preparation for next treatment.

5.5. Dispose of general and any hazardous waste to minimise negative environmental impacts and according to organisational policies and procedures.

Foundation Skills

Foundation skills essential to performance in this unit, but not explicit in the performance criteria are listed here, along with a brief context statement.



Reading skills to:

  • interpret potentially complex documents:
  • organisational work health and safety policies and procedures
  • materials describing industry and regulatory requirements of skin penetration procedures.

Writing skills to:

  • produce clear and accurate records of treatment and post-treatment advice.

Oral communication skills to:

  • provide explanations and advice to clients that describe in simple terms the healing process and post treatment care procedures and products
  • question and confirm client understanding of information and advice provided.

Problem-solving skills to:

  • resolve situations when outcomes of cosmetic tattooing do not meet client expectations.

Unit Mapping Information

No equivalent unit.


Companion Volume implementation guides are found in VETNet - https://vetnet.gov.au/Pages/TrainingDocs.aspx?q=255d312b-db07-48f2-b6d6-1b0b06c42898


Assessment requirements

Modification History

No equivalent unit.

Performance Evidence

Evidence of the ability to complete tasks outlined in elements and performance criteria of this unit in the context of the job role, and:

  • perform six different cosmetic tattooing treatments for clients on the breast areola
  • for each of the above clients:
  • apply tattoo pigments effectively
  • use suitable needles
  • evaluate healed results and provide touch-up treatment as required
  • photograph treatment area prior to and after treatment for each of the above clients
  • record treatment and update client treatment plan for each of the above clients
  • provide post-treatment care and product advice.

Knowledge Evidence

Demonstrated knowledge required to complete the tasks outlined in elements and performance criteria of this unit:

  • state, territory or local health and hygiene regulations and requirements relevant to cosmetic tattooing:
  • skin penetration guidelines
  • use of topical anaesthetics
  • practitioner’s legal and insurance liabilities and responsibilities for cosmetic tattooing treatment:
  • role and importance of indemnity insurance
  • potential risks, liabilities and consequences of non-coverage
  • organisational policies and procedures relevant to cosmetic tattooing:
  • client record management
  • equipment use and maintenance
  • incident reporting
  • linen use and laundry procedures
  • personal hygiene and presentation
  • presentation of treatment area
  • waste disposal
  • work health and safety requirements:
  • safe practices and management when using electrical currents
  • safe practices for using needles
  • considerations for safety of operator and client during treatment
  • use of disposable gowns for clients
  • pre- and post-treatment skin cleansing methods
  • safe use of topical anaesthetics in accordance with state and territory legislation
  • range of consumables and tools required to perform areola tattooing procedure
  • appearance, causes and management of adverse effects of cosmetic tattooing:
  • bruising
  • inflammation
  • torn skin
  • unsatisfactory appearance
  • different skin sensation
  • post treatment care procedures and advice for 3D nipple areola tattooing:
  • allergies to dressings
  • special care of treatment area
  • sun protection
  • managing the healing process
  • follow up treatments
  • ongoing assessment
  • contraindications that prevent or restrict treatment or require clearance from a medical practitioner to proceed and their relationship to cosmetic tattooing:
  • bacteria
  • fungal
  • parasitic
  • viral infections
  • adverse outcomes of previous cosmetic tattooing
  • type one and two diabetes mellitus
  • bruises
  • cancer related treatments
  • rashes
  • scar tissue
  • skin trauma
  • female breast structure:
  • blood supply
  • nerves
  • lymphatic system
  • mammary gland
  • breast parenchyma
  • mastectomy and breast reconstruction surgery:
  • mastectomy surgeries
  • processes of breast reconstruction
  • nipple reconstruction
  • mastopexy
  • adjuvant therapies, chemotherapy and radiation
  • lymph node dissection and lymphedema
  • breast anatomy:
  • unilateral reconstruction
  • bilateral reconstruction
  • post-surgery:
  • infections
  • further surgeries
  • tissue necrosis
  • sensation
  • scarring
  • timeframes and medical clearance
  • aesthetics of nipple areola complex tattooing:
  • position and size of the nipple areola complex
  • pigments and colour matching
  • procedures for tattooing nipple areola:
  • cleansing
  • use of anaesthetic
  • review appointments
  • tattooing techniques:
  • design
  • Penn method (Golden Ratio)
  • different type of needles and their applicability
  • scar tissue
  • availability, preparation and dilution of pigments
  • available devices:
  • machine
  • single hair strokes
  • methods used to cleanse skin during and after the treatment
  • post treatment care procedures and advice for specific treatment area:
  • special care of treatment area
  • sun protection
  • managing the healing process
  • follow up treatments
  • ongoing assessment
  • procedures for reviewing and assessing treatment
  • process for correction of previous treatments to nipple areola.

Assessment Conditions

Skills must be demonstrated in a cosmetic tattooing environment; this can be:

  • an industry workplace or
  • a simulated workplace set up for the purpose of skills assessment.

Assessment must ensure access to:

  • relevant documentation:
  • organisational policies and procedures relevant to cosmetic tattooing
  • current standards and guidelines:
  • safety guidelines for skin penetration procedures
  • use of topical anaesthetics, according to state or territory legislation
  • manufacturer instructions and safety data sheets for pigments and any other chemicals as required.

Assessment must ensure use of:

  • cleaning and disinfection products and equipment
  • client gowns and hair protectors
  • personal protective equipment:
  • disposable gloves
  • apron
  • sharps container
  • face mask or mouth cover
  • hand washing facilities:
  • basin
  • hot and cold running water
  • liquid soap
  • single use towels or hand dryer
  • equipment:
  • cosmetic tattoo machine
  • a minimum of ten pigments
  • pigment:
  • holders
  • diluters
  • colour modifiers
  • disposable needles in sterile packs
  • disposable, single use, sterile skin wipes
  • sterilised or single use and disposable small tools and equipment
  • tissues
  • topical anaesthetic creams, according to state or territory legislation
  • individual work station consisting of:
  • adjustable treatment table with safe working access to both sides and ends
  • individual electricity supply
  • magnifying lamp
  • operator chair
  • trolley for products, bowls and equipment
  • treatment towels or linen, or disposable linen
  • clients with the expectation that the services provided reflects those of a commercial business
  • assessment activities that allow the individual to:
  • complete cosmetic tattooing services within commercially realistic speed, timing and productivity requirements
  • demonstrate competency in an environment reflective of real work situations
  • manage tasks and contingencies in the context of the job role.

Assessors must satisfy the Standards for Registered Training Organisations' requirements for assessors and:

  • have worked for at least three years where they have applied the skills and knowledge of this unit of competency.


Companion Volume implementation guides are found in VETNet - https://vetnet.gov.au/Pages/TrainingDocs.aspx?q=255d312b-db07-48f2-b6d6-1b0b06c42898