Does Stripe Allow Adult Content

May 12, 2022 | High Risk, Payments

Stripe has strict regulations with how they allow adult content. In Stripe’s rules and regulations they specify you cannot have pornography which depicts nude or sexual acts. Moreover, they don’t allow adult services such as escorts, massages, or live chat. Stripe also bans gentleman’s clubs, strip clubs, and topless bars from using their payment service.

Does Stripe Allow Adult Content
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Stripe Adult Content

For Stripe, adult content is loosely interpreted. For example, even adult-themed literature is banned according to their restricted business policy. As a payment provider, they don’t want to take on risks associated with the industry at all. That’s why they have very strict rules against adult merchants and online stores providing mature content. 

It’s understandable that a large payment provider like Stripe wouldn’t want to board merchants that have adult material. Paypal and Square also have strict policies against having pornograhic imagery and sexual acts on websites that process payments with them. These businesses don’t want to deal with age regulations and the brand association that comes with the field.


Are You Allowed to Sell Adult Content Through Stripe?

No, you’re not allowed to sell adult content through Stripe. If you use Stripe and they discover you’re selling adult material, they will terminate your payment processing. Find a payment processor who has experience with adult merchant accounts if you plan on having mature content on your website.

Stripe Adult Content

What Kind of Adult Content Can I Have On Stripe?

Specifically Stripe does not allow the following types of adult content: 

  • Pornographic matieral including images and literature that depicts or describes sexual scenes
  • Adult video stores with pre-recorded content
  • Nude or paid-profile streaming services
  • On-site locations like strip clubs and topless bars

Stripe and Wells Fargo Adult Payment Processing

Stripe and Wells Fargo Adult Payment Processing

Stripe has two major banks they consider Payment Method Acquirers. These are Wells Fargo and PNC. In order to get approval to process transactions, Stripe has to work within the scope of these banks’ regulations. This means that whatever Wells Fargo doesn’t want in a merchant account Stripe has to facilitate. 

Keep in mind, most large payment processors like Stripe have limited resources and an overall goal to make money. So if you’re upfront with a sales person at the beginning they may tell you that your adult products are allowed through their services. And for a short time this might be true. However, as your revenue increases Acquiring banks take notice. They may flag your account after your sales exceed $50,000. At that point you’ll have to make a choice to find a new payment processor or get shut down. 

Alternative Payment Processors for Adult Content

High risk payment processors are dedicated to creating custom merchant accounts for adult content. This entire field of payment processing is a niche for online stores that are off the beaten path of standard regulatory concerns. These processors can charge a premium, but the benefit is that you won’t get your account terminated. 

Adult merchant account providers won’t tell you how to operate. Unlike Stripe who may want you to change your products or replace your adult material with other types of content, high risk solutions are custom fit for your business.