The new dress code - which will take place from next Friday - asks staff members to cover up any "extreme body art".
Only "discreet" tattoos may be visible, with male staff wearing blue denim jeans and female staff in denim skirts. Both sexes are not allowed open-toed shoes.
However, a spokesperson for the music store stated that some dress code reports had been "sensationalised", and that not all tattoos are banned.
They said: "But if someone does have extensive body art - whether in-store or at head office - we would expect them to cover this up whilst working. More discreet tattoos and piercings are not an issue so long as people look smart.
"It goes without saying that we want our work colleagues to feel valued as individuals who can express their personalities, but it's also important that we balance this against the needs and expectations of our customers, who, ultimately, have to be at the heart of everything we do.
"We'd like to think our colleagues are presentable anyway, so this is just about adopting a more consistent approach, which we believe our customers will appreciate."
The statement concluded: "We're sorry if, having read our explanation, you remain disappointed with our approach - it's never going to be easy pleasing everyone all of the time, but, as we say, ultimately we're just trying to create an engaging environment in which colleagues will be happy to work in and customers, who we mustn't forget should to be at the heart of everything we do, are happy to visit.
"So the next time you visit your local HMV, as we hope you will, we're sure that you'll find very little, if anything, has changed, and we'd like to make it clear to you that we welcome all colleagues and customers of all backgrounds, including, of course, those who value tattoos, piercings and other forms of body art."
However, HMV's corporate website currently holds a page for an employee named Geoff, who sports both an earring and a labret piercing just above the chin.
HMV sales have recently fallen under £1bn for the first time since the company went public in 2002.