Getting inked–a cheesy phrase, but a cultural phenomenon that attracts and hooks people instantaneously. Whether for artful expression, grievance and moving on, or an eternal skin declaration of love, tattoos have different meanings for everyone. Similarly, where there is good, there is bad…and the ugly. A one-of-a-kind tattoo idea takes imagination and creativity, and deciding on placement is even harder. Before you join the ranks of upper-arm crosses or butterfly “tramp stamps,” read on and educate yourself.
10. Chinese Symbol–It’s everywhere, including every tattoo book in every shop across America. It can be assumed that, for the most part, you spontaneously decided to get tattooed, and in what better way than representing your “love” for Asian calligraphy. Worse, there is a high chance that your “I love you, Mom” symbol actually means…well, nothing.
9. Fairies–Colorful, girly creatures sitting on mushrooms or holding flowers whilst elegantly “flying” through the air. For most people, a fairy doesn’t provide the deep meaning they are looking for in a tattoo, but oddly, this is an extremely common piece of skin art that is chosen simply for cuteness rather than something concrete.
8. Butterflies and Flowers–Usually a combination of light blue butterflies and peachy-pink, open flowers swirling together along the ribs, ankles, or back. A common tattoo idea for the females, as it accentuates their summer tan and new bikini. That is pretty much all.
6. Skulls Galore!–Any way you can think of them: on fire, flames coming out of the eyeballs, wrapped in roses, wrapped in barbed wire, etc. Creativity counts, of course, but a word to the wise: it doesn’t make you a bad ass.
5. Rosary Beads–Where? Around your ankle, with the cross neatly positioned on the top of your foot. We’ve all seen it, and if you’re absolutely not religious, it’s just a waste of good skin real estate.
4. Dragons–If you’re a guy, find a chick with a fairy tattoo and you’re set! Unless you’ve invested mounds of cash and session time into creating an entire-body dragon beast (for whatever reason), sporting a small, green lizard above your pecs is something you’re probably going to regret later.
3. Crosses–This is the guy’s version of the Rosary Beads. Crosses are almost always tattooed on the upper arm, with lettering or a ribbon and black and white shading.
2. Nautical Star–Do you know what it means, or are you getting it because you’d love to fill the spot around your elbow?
1. Tribal–There is only one way you can make this tattoo stand out–think intricately! There are a million different tribal designs that take detail and uniqueness to another level. If all you want, and can take, is 10 thick lines on your upper arm and shoulder blade, then congrats! You can audition for the Jersey Shore. Lastly, this tattoo idea is no stranger to the overwhelming female epidemic of tramp stamps.