15 Small Meaningful Tattoos That You’ll Want

It takes a lot of bravery and courage to endure a tattoobefore, during and after the inking. Getting a tattoo is like wearing the same shirt everyday─except you can’t ever take it off. Only few people have the dedication to wear something so permanent. Some get tattoos to celebrate their passions, others get tattoos to remind themselves of important lessons and events. And while sometimes tattoos are purely for aesthetics, oftentimes, the deeper meaning of the tattoo is what makes wearing the same shirt, if you will, every single day well worth it. If you’re looking for tattoo inspiration, look no further. We threw together a bunch of tattoo ideas for the person who is courageous enough to get inked. Read on for a few ideas. 


Symbolizing growth and change, butterflies are the epitome of our very human nature. Aside from those qualities, a butterfly is the perfect illustration and manifestation of our individual freedom. Whether you’ve experienced personal growth you’re proud of or you just think butterflies are super cool to look at, inking on one of these creatures wouldn’t be a bad idea─especially for a first tattoo. Simple, yet meaningful. Say no more. 

Floral Tattoo

Classic and timeless, flower tattoos might just be the most popular pick among the inked. They’re simple and can be painted as beautiful motifs. Whether you’re going for a simple cherry blossom or a colorful bouquet, flower tats can be extremely versatile. What’s even better is what your preferred flower may symbolize. For example, an ambrosia signifies a returned, or reciprocated, love; whereas a flowering cactus symbolizes grit and endurance. Some simple research will lead you to a flower whose meaning best suits your personality. But if you’re in it simply for the aesthetic, your options are endless. 



While each flower proudly flaunts its own unique meaning, the rose seems to stand out. Dating back to the time of early Romans and Greeks, this flower has been the symbol of love and enduring passion for thousands of years. Though red is the most illustrated, the many colors of roses are equally as beautiful, and with meanings worth reading into. For example, a white rose epitomizes innocence, a yellow rose epitomizes friendship and happiness, and a pink rose epitomizes gratitude and admiration. If you’re a fan of all of these, go crazy and ink on a rose bouquet. 


Whether you want a simple, dotted depiction of a constellation or a decorated, full-blown illustrated one, this tattoo option is a no-brainer. With nearly 100 known constellations, the options for which one to choose are relatively copious. For starters, you could choose the constellation associated with your birthday month or a constellation you find the most appealing and intricate. These can be inked on ornately with colors and figures, or delicately with faint lines and inconspicuous dots. 


If you’re looking for something unique, this tattoo might just be your answer. Their non-distinguishable lines and blurred hues make these tattoos stand out among their sharp-lined counterparts that prove more popular. Whatever illustration you choose to pursue, you might just want to consider watercoloring it. Talk about a piece of art. 


White Ink 

While they’re not necessarily easy to pull off by any means, white ink tattoos are impressive and extremely remarkable when done well. Finding a parlor that will ink on a design with white ink might not be simple, but they’re well worth it if you can locate an artist who’s willing to do it. The options for what you can paint on with white ink are endless, so get creative. 


Symbolic of direction and strength, arrows are the perfect choice for an indecisive tattoo wanter. You can make them as simple or as intricate as you’d like, as big or as small as you’d like. There are numerous arrow illustrations, including, but not limited to: a compass arrow tattoo, feathered arrows, geometric arrows, broken arrows, or multiple arrows coalesced together. 


Maybe you are drawn to a certain mantra, an inspirational quote by your most admired leader, or bible verse that you feel strongly about. If that’s the case, consider inking it onto your skin permanently. There’s no better way to remind yourself of that message than by seeing it everyday. If you’re worried your verse or quote is too long, perhaps a shortened phrase from it will suffice. 


Moon And Sun 

Like many other opposites evident in nature, the moon and the sun represent the beauty of complements. A tattoo picturing the two joined harmoniously will be a simple reminder of the beauty of opposites and the benefit of unity. Despite being opposites in their very nature, the moon and the sun would be nothing without one another, implying diversity and solidarity. Not only that, the two fit perfectly together─with the crescent moon wrapped circularly around the sun─making the perfect tattoo. 

3D Anaglyphs

Why settle for a two dimensional, depthless tattoo when a three dimensional one is completely doable? Showing off a 3D anaglyph will be sure to turn heads, as well as impress those who view it. Made up of blue, red and black ink, these tattoos make your skin look anything but single-planed. You might just need to buy some 3D glasses after getting one of these inked on. 

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Single-lined illustrations are simply that: those drawn in one consecutive pen stroke. These artistic sketchings have recently grown to fame, and tattoos are the perfect opportunity to show them off. Using this technique to tattoo your favorite uncomplicated silhouette, like a side profile or physique, is as trendy as it is artistic. 

Small Symbols

Think about what makes you most passionate or excited. Perhaps it’s a pair of pointe shoes, a silhouette of a kitchen utensil or a beach wave. Whatever it is, make it permanent and bring it to life on your skin. Heck, you could even ink on a pineapple. The deeper meaning behind this could be as simple or complicated as you wish. Either way, have fun with a symbol of the thing that makes you happiest. 


Just like the butterfly, the depiction of phases of a changing subject is symbolic of both growth and change. Just as flowers begin as seeds and grow into bouquets, the moon transitions between its phases. If these transitions are in any way meaningful to you, illustrating a set of phases by way of a tattoo wouldn’t be the worst idea. Besides, they’re unique and extremely appealing to look at. 


Lucky Number

Admit it, we all have lucky numbers and superstitions. Why not embrace them? Whether you’re into roman numerals or arabic ones, displaying your lucky number somewhere on your body might just make you think your good luck is bottomless. A simple number has a place nearly anywhere, so be creative with its placement─an ankle, wrist, or behind the ear are all worthy spots. 


We all have a happy place, be it a beach, a certain city or our homes. Whatever that place might be for you, getting a tattoo of its coordinates will be a sweet reminder of it every day. Perhaps you can’t stop thinking about that one vacation you went on a few years ago, or maybe you feel your happiest on your front porch. An inking of that spot’s coordinates is a guaranteed smile every time you see it. 

Let us know which tattoos you’ve gotten, as well as the ones you’re thinking about getting, in the comments below!

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