All about Japanese-style tattoos for men

  1. Peculiarities
  2. Varieties and sketches
  3. Styles and colors
  4. Selection Tips
  5. Where to locate?
  6. Nuances of application

The art of tattooing is immensely popular. At the same time, many people prefer exactly Japanese tattoo style. Read about sketches and features of such tattoos in our article.


The fashion for wearable designs came to Japan from China, and quite a long time ago, several thousand years ago, bypassing the stages of both prohibitions and flourishes. The very first Japanese tattoos were considered as a stigma and were applied either in order to use them to indicate the criminal, or to designate a person's belonging to a particular class.

In the future, the Japanese began to apply drawings to the body, using them as amulets and amulets... Moreover, tattoos were applied not in the usual way, with the help of a special apparatus, but with the help of plant thorns.

At that time, tattoo artists in Japan had a special attitude: they were respected and perceived as great creators.

Already closer to the Middle Ages, the art of tattooing became more popular and attracted geisha, lovers and priests. Tattoos also gained particular popularity among samurai men, thanks to whom the currently widespread "sleeve" tattoo appeared, for them tattoos meant strength, struggle and fearlessness.

In the future, wearable images began to be considered by the Japanese as part of everyday life, they began to be perceived as a symbol that made it possible to find out almost any information about a person, whether it be age, profession or number of children. Today, Japanese-style tattoos are just as popular. As a rule, they are dominated by plant or animal themes, but other themes can also occur.

Varieties and sketches


Representatives of the animal world are found on male tattoos quite often. Moreover, the meaning of such drawings may differ depending on what kind of animal will be depicted on them. So, The most common animal depicted in Japanese tattoos is the dragon, traditionally symbolizing good luck in any business, power and tremendous strength. In addition, he immediately personifies all 4 natural elements - fire, water, air and earth, as well as the connection of all 4 cardinal points. As a rule, those people who want to emphasize their authority, superiority over others apply a tattoo with this animal on their body.

Often, representatives of the feline family are found on Japanese-style tattoos. It can be a wild animal, for example, a tiger, symbolizing strength and fearlessness, or maybe an ordinary domestic cat, which symbolizes cunning and wisdom.

Of particular importance to the Japanese is this a fishlike the koi carp, which is also often depicted in Japanese tattoos. A flock of such fish, according to legends, was able to swim against the current and reached the very top of the waterfall. For their efforts, the koi carps were rewarded by higher powers and turned into beautiful golden dragons. The fish themselves began to symbolize the pursuit of a goal, a thirst for life, the ability to overcome difficulties, willpower and patience - a tattoo with a koi carp has the same meaning.

Such a fictional animal as the nine-tailed fox, or kitsune, is also very popular with the Japanese. The meaning of such a tattoo can vary depending on the plot features of the image, however, in general, kitsune symbolizes a person's desire to protect himself from troubles, problems and diseases. But the snakes on such tattoos, according to the Japanese interpretation, have, on the contrary, a negative meaning.These animals are considered symbols of evil and temptation, but at the same time they also mean wisdom. At the same time, despite the negative interpretation, the image of a snake is still often found on male Japanese-style tattoos.


Flowers, as a rule, symbolize tenderness, softness, and therefore such wearable drawings are made mainly by women, but such tattoos are often found in men as well. However, this is only the general meaning of such images. The interpretation of such drawings largely depends on which particular plant is depicted on it. So, on Japanese tattoos, sakura is most often depicted, which is considered the most mesmerizing tree. This tree blooms beautifully, but not for long, which is the whole secret meaning: human life is beautiful, but fleeting.

As a rule, people who put such tattoos on their bodies strive to appreciate every moment of their lives, to fill it with something vivid and memorable. Such a beautiful flower as magnolia, which is also very popular among the Japanese, means inner strength, the presence of a core, stamina and strong-willed character. The lotus flower symbolizes eternity, purity of soul and thoughts, innocence and inner beauty of a person.


Japanese characters are also a popular theme. Such drawings can be applied both as an independent image and as an addition to any plot drawing. Such images look very impressive, and their meaning can vary depending on the semantic load of the inscription. However, it also has its own nuances... So, if you decide to give preference to a tattoo with a hieroglyph, then the meaning of the inscription needs to be clarified.

To do this, you should turn not to an Internet translator, but to a knowledgeable person, since the program often gives an incorrect translation. Otherwise, having stuffed a hieroglyph on the body without knowing its meaning, you can get into a stupid situation if the inscription means something ridiculous or vulgar.


There are other themes in Japanese tattoos as well. So, quite common is divine theme... These drawings contain certain religious elements. Most often these are the faces of deities, in which superiority and strength are easily read. At the same time, we note that among all the other deities, Buddha is most often depicted on Japanese tattoos.

Quite often, Japanese male tattoos are depicted and samurai... Such tattoos are especially suitable for men who are distinguished by their fearlessness and fortitude. They are not afraid of obstacles that meet them on the way, and boldly go to their goal, despite all the difficulties. Such a Japanese tattoo as a mask also looks very interesting. For the Japanese, such a wearable image is considered the strongest amulet that is able to protect its owner from troubles, black magic and the evil eye.

Styles and colors

Japanese tattoos can be done in different colors. They can be either color or black and white - it depends only on the wishes of the owner of the future drawing and on the features of the image itself. However, colored Japanese tattoos are still more popular, while saturated shades prevail in them, namely: red, blue, green and yellow. The tattoos themselves are distinguished by asymmetry in terms of composition and smooth contours.

If we talk about style solutions, then in Japanese tattoos it is often used immediately. several styles. The most popular of these is trash polka... This style is characterized by the use of contrasting shades and a certain aggressiveness in terms of performance. Realism also suitable for such tattoos, especially when it comes to large images. Usually such drawings, if a good master worked on them, fascinate with their naturalism and beauty.

Watercolor style is also often chosen for applying Japanese tattoos. Drawings made in this style do not have clear outlines and borders, they look as if they were applied to the skin with real watercolors.

Minimalism takes place here too. Such tattoos look very laconic, while their big plus is that they can be easily hidden under clothes. Typical for Japanese tattoos is such a style as blackwork.

However, it is not suitable for all images, as this style uses only black and white colors.

Selection Tips

It is best to choose a drawing for a Japanese-style tattoo based on your preferences, focusing on your style, image, lifestyle and interests. At the same time, you need to clearly think over the color scheme and style of the future image - for this, you can view the options for existing sketches to make your choice.

When choosing a drawing, it is worth considering the future location of its location. - its size, style, plot details, as well as the price of application will largely depend on this. You shouldn't rush to get a tattoo on your body. Before that, you need to think carefully about everything and it is advisable to create your own sketch - with this you can be helped in a tattoo parlor.

Where to locate?

Japanese-style tattoos can be located on any part of the body, depending on the scale of the future drawing. - it can be sleeve, back, sternum, forearm, leg, chest or shoulder. It all depends only on your preferences, however, there are also some features that should be taken into account. So, if your tattoo has a sacred meaning, then it would be most appropriate to place it closer to the head. On areas of the body, which are hidden under clothes most of the time, personal tattoos are applied, which carry a special meaning for a person.

Tattoos that serve as a talisman, not recommended for use on the lower parts of the body, otherwise such amulets will simply lose their meaning and will not work. On those areas of the body that differ in a large area - they include the back, sides, chest, it is best to apply a large image, a small drawing simply will not look appropriate there. Conversely, on areas such as the hand, finger on the hand, neck or shoulder blades, it is better to apply minimalistic tattoos that are not very complex.

Nuances of application

Features of the Japanese style are used for the application of a special herbal-based dye, as well as needles, of which there can be from 2 to 10 pieces, fastened in one bundle. All this is necessary in order for the Japanese drawing to turn out bright and rich. It is also interesting that masters who work in traditional Japanese technique do not use special machines for tattooing. In this case, the needles are attached to a bamboo stick, and the coloring pigment is injected at a certain angle and with a specific amplitude, which is why such a tattoo in the end looks somewhat different than those tattoos that were made with a machine.

It should be borne in mind that the application of Japanese tattoos often takes a lot of time. This usually takes about a few days. This implies a rather large cost of the work of a professional master who will be engaged in drawing a picture.

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