Meaning of Skull Tattoos

There are some general meanings for skull tattoos. Many people consider them to mean death or anger. In the beginnings of the art of tattoo, the skull wasn’t just a symbol of death, it was a symbol of life celebration.
People with skull tattoos have their own reasons for their tattoos. The skull is a powerful image that they can really relate to and  is widely recognized.


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Full Back skull Tattoo Skeleton tattoo

As used by pirates in their tattoos and on their flags, skull tattoos have represented rebellion and victory. Skulls have also symbolized strength, protection, power or a significant life change. Often, skull tattoos mean overcoming a great adversity by the bearer.

Many religions have traditions of skull tattooing. In Christianity, skull tattoos often symbolize eternity or the human remains left behind after the soul leaves. In Kabbalah, skulls represent rebirth or an uplifting in recognition of the death of a loved one.

marvelous skull tattooFramed skull and roses thigh tattoo skull leg tattoo


Day of the Dead is a celebration of the life of those who have passed and the sugar skull is frequently associated with this Mexican holiday.  The vibrant look of sugar skull tattoos mimics the cheerful and lively celebration of this festival. These highly popular tattoos are often a praise to a lost loved one and are very fashionable. Sugar skulls are often being perceived as more feminine but also men decide to get them tattooed.

girl skull tattoos Mexican skull tattoo Mexican sugar skull tattoos sugar skull tattoos

Tattoos that include skulls and roses often show the contrast of life and death, beauty and decay. The skull and roses tattoos are a reminder to the bearers of the contrast of good and evil and the balance of such philosophies in life.

 Meaning of Skull Tattoos Skull and roses tattoos Skull tattoos by Kostas Baronis Proki

The skull tattoos are often the choice of women. The skulls can have heart shaped eyes, pink bows, flowers, butterflies and other traditionally female characteristics. But a lot of women decide to get a simple black skull design as well as the colorful one.
This type of tattoo can be chosen when a couple wants to have matching tattoos and they like skulls.

Skull tattoo by Steve LaMantia tragus-piercing-skull-tattoo Wedding ring tattoo Skulls ring tattoo

Regardless of the meaning of a skull tattoo to the bearer, some people may misinterpret it. When choosing a skull tattoo, be prepared to explain what it means to you.

Skull tattoos by Boris Backert Skull thigh tattoo tattoo by Lenad Nada

skull tattoo

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