The demand for white ink tattoos has exploded over the last several years. In response, tattoo artists are learning to specialize in its unique application. White ink is thicker than standard tattoo inks and therefore can be a pain to tattoo with. For the person getting a white ink tattoo, they can expect to experience more scarring than standard tattoos. The scarring leaves the skin raised until it heals. Many will love the way that looks, but it doesn’t generally last.
White tattoo ink is generally mixed with a small amount of another ink to give it a slight color and contrast with a person’s skin tone. Tattoo artists favor mixing a tiny amount of blueish-grey ink for people with a pale skin tone. These tattoos are so thrilling because they have an almost ethereal, haunting appearance. People love them because they look subtle and understated. Let’s take a look at 25 white ink tattoo designs that truly make the most of this unique tattoo trend.
25. Let it Bee
This adorable bumblebee is a great design for us to start exploring white ink tattoos. As you can see, the artist has liberally applied the ink to help it stand out on this person’s pale skin tone. Fine, crisp lines are hard to achieve with white ink and it takes a good deal of experience to master.
24. A Different Method
This very fine and detailed tattoo looks completely different from the last because the tattooer didn’t use a tattoo gun. They, instead, achieved this design using a stick and poke (s&p) method. In general, but especially with white ink, s&p tattoos fade over time.
23. A White Rose
This stunning white ink tattoo looks so sharp! It appears to be fresh but mostly healed. This is such a beautiful tatt.
22. Another Flowery Design
This extremely detailed design is fake! While this is beautiful, many people on social media are using tattoo hashtags and claiming that their drawn-on designs are actually real. White ink does have some limitations and this would be an almost impossible tattoo.
21. A Modest Hummingbird
Like the bumblebee, this beautiful hummingbird tattoo is modestly done and capitalizes on its minimal design. Often, less is more with white ink.
20. A Haunting Lotus
The person with this subtle tattoo would probably have to point it out for you to clock it. Lotus flowers are a beautiful symbol of rebirth and enlightenment.
19. A Magical Stone
This very calming tattoo is a shew or show-stone. These stones are popular among those interested in divination in the 17th century and beyond. Today, you’re probably more familiar with another term for it, the crystal ball.
18. Yay or Neigh
Ancient cave paintings are such powerful works of art because they instantly connect us with our ancestors. This minimalist horse tattoo reminds of scenes you’d see in the Lascaux Cave in France.
17. You’re Ready for this Jelly
Jellyfish are mesmerizing creatures. There’s no doubt that this tattoo design benefits from the dreamy quality that white ink provides.
16. It’s Geometric
A clean, abstract design, this tattoo is completely healed after a year. This stick and poke tattoo probably took a great deal of time to complete, but the end result is very much worth it.
15. A Ghostly Dragon
Dragons are popular not only in mythology and fantasy, they’re consistently some of the most requested tattoo designs. This smokey looking dragon is an excellent example.
14. Stained Glass
This gorgeous geometric rose tattoo looks like something you’d find in a pane of stained glass. It’s also just as sharp.
A very different aesthetic gives this tattoo of a plant an elegant look. The shapes of the leaves look similar to hearts and we’re here for that.
This dragon in the shape of an infinity symbol hits the mark. It’s smartly done and looks fantastic.
11. Tree of Life
The concept of a sacred tree or tree of life is fundamental in the mythology of many cultures. This beautiful tattoo is a nod to nature and the earth we all come from.
10. Expert Level Goodness
An absolutely phenomenal, ornamental design here. This big, beautiful thigh tattoo stuns in white ink.
9. Don’t Overthink It
This very funny tattoo is so real for those with anxiety. This tattoo might be drawing inspiration from Kanye West‘s “Fade.” In the song, “I think I think too much,” is a repeated lyric.
8. Cat’s Meow
If you like your tattoos with a bit of narrative, this cat and fish tattoo is certainly in that lane. It’s adorable and funny. May humans love for their pets never die!
7. Stay Dry
Random objects like cups, mugs, and clothespins are inspiring tattoos more and more. We think this umbrella is firmly a part of that tattoo trend.
6. A Receding Hairline Solution
This very fun tatt of a spider’s web at the hairline was a choice. This is another example of a machine-free tattoo that was done with a needle and ink. Face tattoos are not for everyone, but it’s probably a good idea to have a sense of humor about them.
5. Not a Fighter
This is another hand-poked tattoo that would be a gentle reminder to spread love instead the next time you go to flip the bird.
4. The Birds
Seagulls remind us of lazy days at the shore. This tattoo shows some of the limitations of white ink. It lacks opacity in most cases and this application would have benefited from a bit of pigment added to the ink.
3. No Two Are the Same
A snowflake is a design that definitely benefits from being tattooed in white ink. This crisp, fine line tattoo is simple and cute.
2. Been There
This tattoo of the continents was an interesting choice. Perhaps the person who got this wanted to convey their love of the planet.
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1. The Palm
This stellar tattoo of a palm tree comes from a South Korean tattoo artist. It’s expertly done. We imagine this tattoo will be very, very hard to see once it’s healed.
White ink tattoos are definitely trending right now, but there are certain constraints and issues associated with them. While they are attractive, they can fade over time and will most likely need plenty of touchups down the line.
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