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Tattoo Quotes That Will Leave Their Permanent Mark On You

Norbert Juma, Editor
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Permanent ink is forever, and these compelling tattoo quotes will stay with you for a lifetime.

It feels like tattoos are everywhere these days.

They have become a normal part of every day life.

Although people with tattoos used to be looked down upon greatly in the past, tattooing has become an acceptable part of modern culture.

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According to a survey by the Harris Poll, 3 in 10 American adults have at least one tattoo.

This shows that tattoos have become more common and accepted in society.

If you do not understand the fascination with body art, you might be wondering just what motivates people to get inked – and to endure the pain that comes with it.

People are drawn to tattoos for many different reasons.

Most people get tattoos that have meaning behind them.

It could be to honor someone or something, to celebrate their fandoms, or to remind them where they came from and what to live by.

For some people, tattoos are a piece of artwork.

It’s a fashion statement.

A way for them to express themselves and create their own identity.

So, if you decide to get inked, for whatever reason, be proud of it.

Everyone is free to express themselves, and people with tattoos chose for their expression to be through body art.

They chose to make their body a work of art, a canvas with endless possibilities to put on it.

Below is our collection of inspirational, meaningful, and powerful tattoo quotes, tattoo sayings, and tattoo proverbs, collected from a variety of sources over they years.

If you like this article, we suggest you explore our most popular quotes article, a list of short inspirational quotes for daily encouragement. 

Look through our complete collection of inspirational quotes here.

Tattoo Quotes That Will Leave Their Permanent Mark On You

The global tattoo industry is worth an estimated $50 billion, with the United States alone accounting for $3 billion of that market.

This indicates the growing popularity and financial success of the tattoo industry.

1. “Our bodies were printed as blank pages to be filled with the ink of our hearts.” – Michael Biondi

Tattoo Quotes about Bodies

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2. “My body is my journal, and my tattoos are my story.” ― Johnny Depp

Tattoo Quotes about Stories

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3. “Tattoos, for me, are like a timeline of my life. I could look at a certain tattoo, and it reminds of me of a certain time in my life and why I got that tattoo.” – Tyga

Tattoo Quotes about Lifes timelines

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4. “Tattoos are a permanent commitment of passion.” ― Tawny Lara

Tattoo Quotes That Will Leave Their Permanent Mark On You

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5. “If you like how people look when they’re all covered in tattoos, then you should be covered in tattoos.” – Lil Peep

Inspiring Tattoo Quotes

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6. “Tattoos … are the stories in your heart, written on your skin.” – Charles De Lint

Tattoo Quotes about Skin

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7. “I am a canvas of my experiences, my story is etched in lines and shading, and you can read it on my arms, my legs, my shoulders, and my stomach.” ― Kat Von D

Tattoo Quotes about Body parts

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8. “I want my tattoos to be a story of my life.” – Anne-Marie

Tattoo Quotes about Life

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9. “Usually all my tattoos came at good times. A tattoo is something permanent when you’ve made a self-discovery, or something you’ve come to a conclusion about.” – Angelina Jolie

Tattoo Quotes about Self discovery

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10. “Show me a man with a tattoo and I’ll show you a man with an interesting past.” ― Jack London

Tattoo Quotes about Past

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Tattoo quotes for those who want their bodies to be a canvas

According to a survey by the Pew Research Center, Millennials are the most likely generation to have tattoos, with 47% of individuals aged 25-39 having at least one tattoo.

This shows that tattoo culture is a growing trend among younger generations.

11. “Tattoos are like stories – they’re symbolic of the important moments in your life. Sitting down, talking about where you got each tattoo and what it symbolizes, is really beautiful.” – Pamela Anderson

Tattoo Quotes about Important moments

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12. “I’m from a nice, suburban, middle-class family, but my tattoos remind me where I’ve been.” – Tom Hardy

Deep Tattoo Quotes

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13. “I want a tattoo over my heart that reads TRY HARDER YOU LAZY PARAMEDIC SHITBAG OR I WILL HAUNT YOUR BEDROOM FOREVER” ― Warren Ellis

Hilarious Tattoo Quotes

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14. “Tattoos have a power and magic all their own. They decorate the body but they also enhance the soul.” – Michelle  Delio

Tattoo Quotes about Magic

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15. “Our bodies were printed as blank pages to be filled with the ink of our hearts.” ― Michael Biondi

Tattoo quotes for those who want their bodies to be a canvas

16. “Some of my tattoos are a bit silly, but I know where and what time I got them.” – Ed Sheeran

Wise Tattoo Quotes

17. “I think tattoos are a way to express yourself without words. Without having to explain yourself, people can look at your tattoos and see who you are.” – Jodi Morgan

Tattoo Quotes about Expression

18. “Getting a tattoo is a nice way of reclaiming your own body, to help tell yourself that you’re in charge.” – Ashley Love

Tattoo Quotes about Controlee

19. “For me, a tattoo is an art installation that I get to wear all the time. It’s all about self-expression. You get to wear your insides on your outsides.” – Malia Jones

Tattoo Quotes about Art

20. “My tattoos have become a part of me. When I look in the mirror, I just see my face.” – Lil Peep

Tattoo Quotes about My self

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Tattoo quotes celebrating body art

21. “My tattoos are a source of strength — they crystalize what’s important to me in life. I’m a big believer in the power of symbols and how they can hold meaning and memories.” – Eleni Stefanou

Tattoo Quotes about Symbols

22. “I look at tattoos as a commitment to life.” –  Jeff Hardy

Tattoo Quotes about Commitment

23. “A word to the wise, a tattoo is obviously for life, so make sure you’ve triple-checked for typos and spelling errors.” – Lucy Alice Morris

Tattoo Quotes and Guides

24. “I like tattoos. I’m gonna be covered. I’m not going to touch my face or under the chin on the neck: it’s my least favorite place.” – Mac Miller

Tattoo Quotes about Limits

25. “Tattoos tell the world we’ve still got something to say.” – Liz Jones

Tattoo quotes celebrating body art

26. “They keep track of time. Sometimes things happen and you feel that you need to mark them down.” ― Scott O’Connor

27. “Good tattoos aren’t cheap and cheap tattoos aren’t good.” – Josephine Fuller

28. “To me, tattoos are a way of people being able to express themselves and have other people look at them and get a little insight into who they are, without ever even saying a word to them.” – Colin Kaepernick

29. “If I decide to get a tattoo, it’ll be a map of where I live on my chest in case I ever get amnesia.” ― Stewart Stafford

30. “People are proud of their tattoos. It’s like a modern coat of arms.” – Christian Louboutin

Tattoo quotes to honor self expression

31. “With my tattoos, I’ve got my war side on my left side, being left handed, and a faith side on my right side, right with God.” – Jalen Rose

32. “I love math. I have little secret number tattoos everywhere. I design them.” – Pauley Perrette

33. “The tattooed man has solidified his own skin and become that solid object; that permanent identity that all men in fear of the amorphous become.” – Donold Richie

34. “You don’t choose your tattoo design, your tattoo chooses you!” ― Shirin Naghashlou
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Tattoo quotes to honor self expression

35. “I look at my body as an extension of the music. My body is a canvas, and with my tattoos, I want them to be a direct reflection of my thoughts.” – Lil Skies

36. “I’m addicted to tattoos. I can’t stop; I love them.” – Adrianne Palicki

37. “So many people always fear tattoos because they don’t want to limit themselves from certain jobs. I clearly never let that stop me and just got covered head to toe.” – Jeffree Star

38. “Tattoos fulfill a need to inscribe the self as an individual.” – Margo Demello

39. “We are all tattooed in our cradles with the beliefs of our tribe; the record may seem superficial, but it is indelible.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.

40. “Tattoos give us the inspiration to be ourselves.” ― Anthony T.Hincks

Tattoo quotes that will inspire you to create your own identity

41. “I do have a few little tattoos, but they were mostly done to cover scars because I’m so fair.” – Dolly Parton

42. “If people are honest with themselves when they choose a tattoo, the art will represent them better than anything that will ever come out of their mouth.” – Troy Holloway

43. “The ink of a pen is simply the blood of a heart” ― Michael Biondi

44. “I was just a big fan of tattoos always growing up, and I wanted something cool that symbolizes what I’ve been through in my life, and everything on my chest and my back is like a collage.” – Kevin Durant

45. “Tattoos made my skin more ‘me.'” ― Larry Smith

Tattoo quotes that will inspire you to create your own identity

46. “The tattoos are about my grandmother dying, and they tell the story about my mother and father, my brothers and my sister, my kids. It’s pretty much a family tree on my arm with my life in football, too.” – Timothy F. Cahill

47. “My tattoos are reminders to hang in there when things get tough.” – Demi Lovato

48. “Tattoos have a power and magic all their own. They decorate the body but they also enhance the soul.” – Michelle Delio

49. “If the body is a temple, then tattoos are its stained glass windows.” – Sylvia Plath

50. “A tattoo is an affirmation: that this body is yours to have and to enjoy while you’re here. Nobody else can control what you do with it.” – Don Ed Hardy

51. “Comparatively, tattooing is not the hideous custom which it is called. It is not barbarous merely because the printing is skin-deep and unalterable.” – Henry David Thoreau

52. “A quote is just a tattoo on the tongue.” – William F. DeVault

Tattoo quotes to fit your unique thoughts on body art

53. “Tattoos made my skin more ‘me’.” — Melissa Maxwell

54. “Getting a tattoo should hurt. It’s a rite of passage.” — Jenna Jameson

55. “Tattoos exude pain and pleasure all at the same time.” — Chester Bennington

56. “Tattoos transform us from raw animals into cooked cultural beings.” — Claude Lévi-Strauss

57. “Tattoos are permanent and a lifelong commitment, the same as marriage.” Chester Bennington

58. “Books are to me as homemade tattoos are to an inmate. Can’t get enough of them.” ― Laurie Notaro

59. “Tattooing is about personalizing the body, making it a true home and fit temple for the spirit that dwells inside it.” — Michelle Delio

60.“Tattoos set you apart. Besides being a colorful accessory to any ensemble, they convince your parents once and for all that you are a lost cause.” — Amy Linden

61. “The tattoo represents not only a willingness to accept pain — to endure it — but a need to actively embrace it. Because life is painful — beautiful but painful.” — Nicola Barker

62. “I read somewhere that getting a tattoo, “is a journey, not a destination.” Maybe as we travel life’s roads, we just need to trust the journey a little bit more, even when we aren’t quite sure as to how all the pieces of the puzzle will come together.” — Suzanna Parpos

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Tattoo quotes about this body art form

63. “I like my feet. I have a tattoo on my foot with my last name.” — Caity Lotz

64. “I wouldn’t want a tattoo at all. They’re difficult to cover up.” — Richard Armitage

65. “I have a tattoo that I got in Memphis, and another I got in Dayton.” — Colin Donnell

66. “My tattoo is a phoenix. I got the first when I was 16. I hid it for years.” — Ashley Scott

67. “My tattoo is of a cannon in Vancouver that I got in a fleeting moment of stupidity maybe 14 years ago.” — Ryan Reynolds

68. “If you’re over 22, getting a tattoo and you don’t do work that involves tools you should be ashamed of yourself!” — Sean Lock

69. “Anyone who’s had a tattoo knows once you get your first one, as you’re walking out the door, you’re planning the next.” Chris Evans

70. “I can’t make a song for a particular person or demographic. If I love it, I’m gonna do it. I have to perform it for the rest of my life. A song is like a tattoo – you can never get away from it.” Rihanna

71. “I have a tattoo on my foot that says ‘it’s a whale’ in Japanese, because Japanese people kill whales. My stuffed whale was like most children’s teddy bear. I took it with me everywhere. I slept with it. I couldn’t live without my whale.” — Skylar Grey

72. “One of the first pieces of advice I was ever given, on my first job was, you should always buy something to treat yourself to say well done for getting the job! However I’ve not followed through on that yet… I’ve always wanted a tattoo, something to mark my experience.” — Sam Claflin

Get inked with these tattoo quotes

73. Keep choosing joy

74. See the good

75. Perfectly imperfect

76. Fighter

77. Breathe

78. Courage, dear heart

79. Live fearlessly

80. Warrior

81. Be still

82. And still I rise

Tattoo quotes and why people love them

83. “The tattoos, they were just something to do.” –Robert Parish

84. “Tattoos are addicting, and I used to have this tribal tattoo, but I was never really happy with it.” –Randy Orton

85. “I just like tattoos.” –Amy Winehouse

86. “Tattoos are addictive.” –Bradley Beal

87. “I love tattoos.” –Wiz Khalifa

88. “People see the tattoos, and they either read things or they see things and they don’t really know that I’m just this guy that gets up and makes coffee in the morning and hangs out with his friends and walks his dog and reads his Bible and goes about his day.” –Joel Madden

89. “In high school, I used to draw on my arms with a Sharpie. I knew I was gonna have a lot of tattoos.” –Odell Beckham, Jr

90. “There is something vulnerable about showing your tattoos to people, even while it gives you a feeling that you are wearing a sleeve when you are naked.” –Lena Dunham

91. “There is something in the act of having tattoos done that I love. It can be quite addictive.” –Lena Headey

92. “As soon as I saw tattoos as a way to tell your story, I thought, ‘Oh my gosh, I totally get it.’ So I got my first tattoo a couple of years ago, and it’s the word ‘hope’ on my left arm. It has a couple of dots at the end for each of my kids.” –Kristian Bush

More Tattoo Quotes And Sayings

93. “Maybe that’s what I needed. Another tattoo. Some pain on the outside to ease the pain on the inside.” ― N.R. Walker

94. “Scars are the tattoos your despondence carved once…” ― shivangi lavaniya

95. “I’ll become someone new. Through blood and pain and ink, I can be remade.” ― Alice Broadway

96. “In tattooing, linework is arguably the most important element. Lines form the basis of our sketches and the stencils used to apply the artwork to the skin.” ― Shelly Dax

97. “I’ve got tattoos, I’m a subculture. Some kind of post-teen bag lady, that’s me.” ― Salman Rushdie

98. “Two teenage boys have tattoos on their necks, instantly halving the alienation they’d hoped to achieve.” ― Samantha Hunt

99. “Your art is creating your future.” ― Cary G

100. “Affiliating tattoos with hipsters would be giving hipsters too much credit.” ― A.D. Aliwat

101. “I don’t have any myself,” Mia said, her voice slow and deliberate. “But I’ve always found tattoos sexy.” ― Katherine McIntyre

102. “She had a flower tattoo on her wrist; “What does that mean?” he asked her. “Absolutely nothing,” she said, “it’s just a flower.” ― C. JoyBell C

Tattoo Quotes From Famous Professionals

103. “The one in the movie is not real, but my Casper tattoo is real, and it is my only one.” — Casper Van Dien

104. “I have Bob Dylan lyrics on my ribs. I’m a diehard Dylan fan, and my dad and I joke that if I ever met him, I’d have him sign his name right under my tattoo and then I’d run to the parlor to get his signature tattooed.” — Carly Chaikin

105. “Some songs are just like tattoos for your brain… you hear them and they’re affixed to you.” — Carlos Santana

106. “Getting a tattoo would probably make me cry.” — Calvin Trillin

107. “You have to have your face in the food. These days people think a tattoo and a bottle of Sriracha equals success.” — Bobby Flay

108. “I probably have the crappiest tattoo — not only in country music — but maybe the world.” — Blake Shelton

109. “I’m celebrating my love for you with a pint of beer and a new tattoo.” — Billy Bragg

110. “What’s funny is my husband doesn’t have any tattoos at all, so he must be a very conservative one.” — Ashley Scott

111. “I go through stages. Randomly, I’ll be attracted to a crazy rocker with tattoos. And I find that I’m extremely attracted to ambition and wit.” — Ashley Greene

112. “The tattoo can only exist as part of the skin, as a drawing always is an incision in the material and therefore cannot be parted from it.” — Antoni Tapies

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Tattoo Quotes To Make You Embrace Art

113. “I feel like the last tattoo you got is usually your favorite.” — Nico Tortorella

114. “Although my everyday artwork is tattoo oriented, I definitely do not try to limit my art or art mediums.” — William Webb

115. “Tattooing is historical, cultural and a great form of art but it should always be safe for both the client and the tattoo practitioner.” — William Webb

116. “My tattoo is a cross, a rose and a shark. A cross is a cross, a rose like love and a shark is a pretty tough animal.” — Goran Ivanisevic

117. “I got tattoos for purely antisocial reasons, and now people do it for social acceptance. I miss individualism.” — Mike Ness

118. “You have to think hard with a tattoo. ‘What will I love for the rest of my life?'” — Kate Upton

119. “But for me, to get the tattoo was part of moving into adulthood. Making a choice that is permanent and that I’ll have to stick with.” — Francois Arnaud

120. “My dad is a little Scottish guy with tattoos all over his arms.” — Scott Raab

121. “It’s more likely I’ll dye my hair green, get a bunch of tattoos and go on tour with Amy Winehouse.” — Mike Huckabee

122. “I’m a big fan of zombies, and I have a zombie tattoo on my leg.” — Tyler Posey

Tattoo Quotes To Embrace Art

123. “I believe tattoos are a lifestyle not a fashion trend.” — Machine Gun Kelly

124. “He would have been handsome—in a serial-killer kind of way—if not for those tattoos.” — Gena Showalter

125. “I’ve always described parts as tattoos. For actors our tattoos are in the form of films.” — Eric Bana

126. “I got a heart tattooed on my foot. It’s my first tattoo.” — Goldie Hawn

127. “I got my first tattoo when I was 16 years old and I went with my mom to get it done – she has a bunch too so we’re tattoo buddies now.” — Josh Hutcherson

128. “I’m waiting to get old – I think old guys with tattoos look good.” — Ryan Gosling

129. “If I ever lose a role because of my tattoos, I’ll quit Hollywood and go to work at Costco.” — Megan Fox

130. “I never thought about getting any tattoos removed.” — Henry Rollins

131. “I have no tattoos that I regret – I have had some that I have had changed according to how my life was.” — Nas

132. “A lot of guys in jail tattoo their hands.” — Daniel Day-Lewis

Tattoo Quotes On Their Significance

133. “The tattoo is a true sign of personal expression.” ― Dita Von Teese

134. “Tattoos tell stories of crime and passion, punishment and regret. They express an outlaw, antiauthoritarian point of view and communicate a romantic solidarity among society’s outcasts.” ― Douglas Kent Hall

135. “Tattooed men who are not behind bars are either latent criminals or degenerate aristocrats. If someone who is tattooed dies in freedom, then he does so a few years before he would have committed murder.” ― Adolf Loos

136. “The tattoo attracts and also repels precisely because it is different.” ― Margo Demello

137. “A tattoo doesn’t make you look like an individual.” ― Talcott Parsons

138. “People who don’t like me talk about it as though I’m trash because I have tattoos. I find that insane because it’s 2008, not the 1950s. Tattoos aren’t limited to sailors. It’s a form of art I find beautiful. I love it.” ― Megan Fox

139. “Beauty is skin deep. A tattoo goes all the way to the bone.” ― Vince Hemingson

140. “Tattoos are like marriage: it’s a lifelong commitment, it hurts like hell, and the color fades over time.” ― Terri Guillemets

141. “The tattoo has a profound meaning: the superficiality of modern man s existence.” ― Anthony Daniels

142. “A tattoo is a true poetic creation, and is always more than meets the eye.” ― V. Vale

Tattoo Quotes About Self-Expression

143. “I’m planning my most ambitious tattoo yet. You can never have enough tats.” ― Amy Winehouse

144. “As addictive and satisfying as my first tattoo, Wolf’s Remedy left me craving more.” ― Lyle Tuttle

145. “I just think they look good on people. You spend a lot of time in the mirror looking at yourself when you have tattoos. Same way with other people. It just looks good.” ― The Rev

146. “In life we encounter many people who, in some way or another, try to tattoo our faces.” ― Dan Ariely

147. “My boyfriends going to college so I made him tattoo my name on his foot so I know he’s mine.” ― IU

148. “I was excited about getting my first tattoo, but I was only twelve, so I had to hide it from my mother.” ― Mark Wahlberg

149. “Louie brought his new girlfriend over, and the nicest thing I can say about her is all her tattoos are spelled correctly.” ― Robert Harling

150. “I think if you’re going to get a tattoo, it should be significant, especially when it’s all the way up your arms and your body.” ― Blake Lively

151. “It wasn’t the tattoo that had changed her, had given her repossession of her body. It was her actions, her choices. It was finding the path when it looked like there weren’t any paths to be found.” ― Melissa Marr

152. “Every rock’n’roll band I know, guys with long hair and tattoos, plays golf now.” ― Alice Cooper

Which of these tattoo quotes was your favorite?

Tattoos have become a normal part of modern culture.

They are being worn by celebrities, athletes, people within the fashion industry, and everyone around us.

Although they cannot change who you are, tattoos can help you create your identity, boost your confidence, and make you feel good about yourself.

Hopefully, the quotes above have inspired you to be your true yourself.

Did you enjoy these tattoo quotes?

Which of the quotes was your favorite?

Feel free to share your thoughts with us in the comment section below.

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  1. Marie Claire

    September 22, 2022 at 9:26 AM

    My friend in college loves to get a tattoo on her body whenever something extraordinary happens in her life. Like when she had her baby, she put a big lily flower on her back since she named her baby Lily. Aside from the fact that most people get a tattoo for a piece of work and fashion statement, most of the people I know here in New York City who have a tattoo do it for their meaning. I’m still not decided to ink my body and get a tattoo, but if ever I have one, it would be because of its meaning, and I like to grab one in one of the quotes you share in your post.

    • Danielle Dahl, Lead Contributor

      September 22, 2022 at 4:59 PM

      If I were going to get a quote tattoo, it would come from this list too! Thanks for letting us know that you liked the article! Keep us posted if you decide to take the plunge and get a tattoo!

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