33 Kneecap Tattoos: From Very Popular to Quirkier Designs

Kneecap tattoos are widespread today and have been a popular option for really inked-up folks for centuries. The shape of the knee and the (often) tough skin over the kneecap can make these designs a challenge to tattoo, but seasoned tattoo artists can accomplish them out with ease! Kneecap tattoos are some of the most unique of thrilling tats today!

We wanted to discover more about kneecap tattoos, possible designs, and their limitations, so we turned to social media to find the latest and greatest kneecap tattoos that people have shared. What we encountered was a variety of designs that ranged from big and bold to small and cute. There are a couple of kneecap tattoo trends, but for the most part, this genre of tattoo is all over the map. Check out the coolest designs we spotted!

Popular Kneecap Tattoos and Trends

The Webs We Weave

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For all the spider-lovers out there, you know you’re wrong for it. However, this spiderweb tattoo does look very cool on the knee. Webs are extremely popular over the knee and elbow. If you have no fear, go with one for your kneecap tattoo.

Animal Faces

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One of the trends we noticed and have seen a lot since it’s warmed up are these animal faces as kneecap tattoos. Often, these designs will have an animal or other character with a mouth that opens around the kneecap. This one looks fierce!

Flower Kneecap Tattoos

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The biggest trend now is the animal faces but another extremely popular option is to slap a giant flower over the kneecap. Take a look at this pretty pink design that covers the knee in spectacular fashion.

Geometric Designs

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The third most common type of kneecap tattoo we encountered was geometric tattoos that cover the knee. How stunning is this black and grey design? We’ll take a look at its closer cousin next.

Mandala-Inspired Kneecap Tattoos

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Mandala-inspired tattoos are all the rage today. We find the geometric, flowering design extending from the knees all the way down to almost the ankle. Dramatic, right? Plenty of people have a kneecap tattoo like this and it is likely only going to become more trendy in the coming years.

Framing the Kneecap

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Another extremely popular kneecap tattoo design is a frame that surrounds the cap. Here we find barbed wire and flowers. A little bit sweet and sour! Barbed wire is very popular but also designs that are botanical in nature.

Unique Kneecap Tattoos

Fresh Possibilities

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Now, let’s take a look at some tattoos that expand on the trends we have covered as well as some truly unique and singular designs. Here is another example of one of these animal face knee tattoos. This one’s an electric tiger. This is so colorful and so full of energy. While an animal face is traditional, the artist has taken the concept to a whole new level in this design.

A Little Bit of Sweetness

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How cute are these berry kneecap tattoos? There’s something so sweet and nostalgic about them. If you’re after cute designs, fruit is your friend. Similar to the framed kneecap tattoo we showed you, this one dips down in a U-shape across the knee, accentuating the natural curve of the area.

Those Bees Have Knees

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A mildly popular kneecap tattoo trend is to have a bee tattooed over the knee for a visual reference to the phrase “bee’s knees.” These tattoos used to be much more popular but the concept has begun to fall from fashion.

Star Power

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These very stylized star kneecap tattoos are the perfect shape to make the most of a knee. Sometimes simple black ink and an understated design can really do wonders.

Unique Takes on Flowers

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Here’s a stylish flower that is somewhat abstract. It was an interesting idea and stands out from some of the other flower kneecap tattoos on this list. Work with your trusted tattoo artist to help you realize your vision and you won’t regret it!

Open Wide

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There are so many ways to frame a kneecap. This happens to be one of the most visually striking. As you can see, two animal skulls with their mouths open surround the knee. It’s a touch morbid but we live for the drama.

Knee Lucky

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You will find the fingers crossed motif in almost any tattoo artist’s flash catalog. It’s a popular symbol of luck and always looks fresh.

Take a Stab At It

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This old-school tattoo design finds a place in an unlikely spot. You often see these dagger tattoos as filler for sleeves, but it looks splendid as a kneecap tattoo as well.

RELATED: 26 Elbow Tattoo Ideas That Bend Traditional Designs in New Directions

Abstract Possibilities

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Here’s a kneecap tattoo that wants you to fall into the void. Bold, black ink looks ominous as it guides the eye to the center of the kneecap.

Break the Rules

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Here’s a cool design that we expect more to replicate in the coming years. We find a kneecap busting through a fence or netting. It’s a design full of action and we know plenty of people will love it. If you like the web kneecap tattoo idea but want to take it in a more unique direction, this could be the way to go.

Bat Attack

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Bat tattoos have been trending since 2020 for obvious reasons. While we have seen a bunch of bat tats, we have not seen too many bat kneecap tattoos. We think this one is kind of scary but ultimately fun!

Wreath Frame

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Here’s a clever way to frame your knee! After all, wreaths are round and often in a ring-like shape. We love the ancient look of this tattoo that resembles lithography.

The Weirder the Better

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We’ve got a fire snail on a knee with this very weird tattoo. Fire snails or Platymma tweediei are real but they do not actually leave a trail of burning slime in their wake. They are only found in Malaysia and in kneecap tattoos apparently.

Broken Glass

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A tattoo that looks like shattered glass was… a choice! We do not know what to make of it, but the comments on the image on Instagram were positive. We think this kneecap tattoo is right for people who like web tattoos as they are similar but offer different narratives.

Explore the World

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We find an Asian-inspired Harajuku design in this kneecap tattoo. The lines are so crisp and sharp here with beautiful colors applied in creative and fresh ways.

It’s Purrrfect

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We at MU love cat tattoos and this sleeping kitty is one of our favorite kneecap tattoos on this list. Work with a talented artist and you could walk away with a sleeping beauty like this one that cups the cap.

Winged Creatures

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Butterfly and moth tattoos are some of the most requested today. So, it was only natural to uncover a moth kneecap tattoo like this one. Super fine lines add texture and visual interest, making this tattoo look absolutely divine.

2.

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A step away from traditional tattooing but still tied to those roots, we find this cobra tattoo that marries old styles with new forms of expressionism. It’s one of the most haunting kneecap tattoos on this list.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE: 25 Cool Thigh Tattoos That You Need to See Before You Get Your Own

A Bright Idea

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We love any form of sun tattoo and this one looks like it’s from an ancient manuscript. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel when it comes to your kneecap tattoos. Go traditional for an understated and timeless look.

Wink!

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Eyes are popular among kneecap tattoos and this one we find blooming from a chrysanthemum. Orange and red inks pop next to the green color of the flesh around the eye itself. It’s rather creepy but overall an impressive tattoo.

Natural Beauty

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For a subtle nod to nature, consider getting the rings of a tree tattooed over your knee. This bright idea works well due to the natural shape of the knee and the roundness of a tree. Brilliant!

Spread Your Message

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This knee comes with instructions! “Take care of yourself,” the tattoo says. We’ll take this wise advice and urge you to do the same.

Go Dark

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Bold, black ink is all it takes for a truly dramatic tattoo. It’s been applied in thick shapes that appear ominous in the above example. Work with an artist and they can help you realize your own original, ornamental ink.

Take Flight

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Do you love bat-winged skulls? Perfect! We found the best little kneecap tattoo for you. A dark skull like this is a moody take but you could go in any number of different directions with it.

Compasses

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Do you have an adventurous spirit? These compass meets rose tattoos are a great option for you to express your love of travel.

More Bees on More Knees

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If you are into the “bee’s knees” tattoos, here is one last example that showcases how stylish you can get with them. Make your bees more decorative for an artful take on this punny tattoo.

Eyes

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All eyes on you! We leave you with some photorealistic eye kneecap tattoos that look very curious and offer a sense of mystery. It’s actually a bit creepy but a little bit of edge never hurts. Bravo!

Now you know all of the different kinds of kneecap tattoos that are out there. There’s no right or wrong way to go about it just make sure you are expressing yourself to the absolute fullest. If you liked learning about kneecap tattoos, check out these leg tattoos inspired by Ricky Martin and Adam Levine‘s new ink!

Check Out Ricky Martin’s New Leg Tattoo Below

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Is Ricky Martin “Livin’ La Vida Loca?” We think his new leg tattoo looks excellent with a distinct shape and clean design. It almost looks like a drop of pigment in water. Mesmerizing! The star thanked @roxx_____, the artist, on Instagram, calling him a “legend.”

Adam Levine’s Leg Tattoo Is All Drama and Waves

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Maroon 5 frontman, Adam Levine has also been chronicling his leg tattoo journey which took days for the artist Bryan Randolph to complete. This is not the musician’s first but it is one of the most ambitious tattoos. So, far he has only shared images of the new tattoo on his Instagram stories, but we hope a clearer shot of the finished product comes soon.

Geometric & Inspired

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As you might imagine, there are not a ton of people out there with leg tattoos like Ricky Martin and Adam Levine, but we were able to find continuous designs, similar to the ones they have. Here’s a great example of a black ink tattoo that employs geometric shapes in a wavy pattern. We think it also looks fantastic.

Mandala & More

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Here’s another example to get us kicked off. Notice how much of the leg is covered in black ink, almost like a blackout tattoo. Whenever the moody, dark stops, it reveals intricate shapes like the Mandala-inspired design at the knee and interlocking rings on the thighs. A dream!

Irezumi-Inspired

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This half sleeve that goes from the ankle up to the knee looks similar to Levine’s tattoo, as it uses a wave design similar to those found in irezumi, a traditional Japanese style of tattooing. Expect to see more like this as we continue on this leg tattoo journey.

Real Blackout

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We mentioned blackout tattoos earlier and this is another example, and in fact, it’s a better one. See how both legs have been completely blacked out only to reveal the tattoos that were done beneath them, that’s a big trend right now. While this is a bigger commitment than what Levine or Martin dedicated themselves to, it’s still an option for those who have a lot of patience!

Samurai

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We find a fantasy scene here from Japanese tradition that is more involved than Levine’s leg tattoo, but you can see the similarities. We love the inclusion of figures because we also like busy tattoos, if that’s true for you too, this could be a perfect inspiration.

The Wrap

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How handsome is this tattoo that wraps all the way down the leg, fading out at the ankle? We are very fond of this one and felt that others who like more visual interest would as well.

Enter the Void

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We really love the way this leg sleeve centers around a sort of vortex that occurs just above the knee. Everything seems to be trying to escape its inescapable pull. Storms like these are popular in irezumi and are often accompanied by cherry blossoms.

Psychedelic

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Here’s a wild design that is a touch trippy and offers viewers a bit of an optical illusion due to the way the lines run parallel lines make the area around the knee appear larger than it is. If you noticed, at the bottom of Martin’s tattoo, at the foot, the lines turn into parallel ones that run down to the toes.

Less Busy

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Here’s another design that should be getting somewhat familiar to you at this point. However, we liked how whittled down this leg tattoo feels in comparison to some of the others on the list. The lines of a wave broaden near the bottom of the leg near the ankle to create thick blocks of black.

Polynesian-Adjacent

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This swirling and mesmerizing tattoo design takes elements from tribal and Polynesian tradition to create a truly original design that culminates to a dramatic point just above the thigh. If you are looking for something just as bold, but with less black, something similar would be perfect for you.

Dragon Fire

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It’s not immediately clear when you look at these leg tattoos that there is a giant dragon staring you in the face, but that becomes apparent after time which is a lovely effect. These is very stylish and well-done design. Bravo!

Black Old Sun

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Look less at the shin and instead at the area behind the knee. We love the idea of these radiating geometric shapes filled with bold black ink. What do you think? Is it too blocky or a possibility?

RELATED: The 10 Worst Celebrity Tattoos, Superstar Ink that Truly Stinks

Creeping Snake

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To achieve the organic shapes that Martin and Levine’s tattoos both share, consider any element from nature. A snake would be an excellent choice for someone looking for a little edge. You can have the artist design it in such a way that it wraps around the leg to accentuate its shape.

Another Mix of Patterns

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This is not the first geometric tattoo design that has mixed patterns on this list, but it is the closest look we have had tattoos in this genre. Play with different geometric patterns like this to mix and match and find the best combinations.

Swirls and More

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See? By blocking sections with a bold design like these arches holding little t-shapes you can pair others with it to create even more visual interest. The swirling vortex at the knee is just a blast.

Chrysanthemum

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If you are wanting something a little softer with even more contrast, think of pairing something soft like a flower with a whole bunch of black. See how the flowers really pop and yet a swirl shape is twisting underneath? Not a bad idea!

Pop of Color

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We bring you more chrysanthemums in this leg tattoo, but this time the person has chosen to go with a lovely orange color to stand out against the grey and black of the heavy background. This is a beautiful tattoo and the black meeting the bright golden color is truly breathtaking.

Liquid

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As we hinted at before, Ricky Martin’s leg tattoo looks almost like oil in water or smoke or something making its way into a heavier substance. We love these liquid tattoos that look so fresh and fun.

Parallel Lines

ricky martin & adam levine both got massive leg tattoos, check out their new ink and more like it
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Ricky Martin really nailed his tattoo design and highlighted an emerging trend that we might have to go and do a whole list about! How cool and bewitching are these liquid designs? We think something similar would look fantastic on a leg.

Go Against the Grain

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This person really went out on a limb, did they not? We’re sorry. We have been waiting to make a limb joke for so long now, and this leg that with a tattoo that looks like the inside of a tree is pretty remarkable.

Radio Waves

33 kneecap tattoos: from very popular to quirkier designs | are you looking for fresh ideas for your kneecap tattoo? we've got some incredible ink inspiration to share with you.
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Bolts of electricity, radio waves, mind control… We are not sure, but we are really into this design that evokes one of the continuing visual metaphors in Twin Peaks. There’s so much energy here and you always want that in a tattoo, especially a big one.

Express Yourself

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At the end of the day, you have to get yourself a tattoo that you love and that expresses your point of view and aesthetic. Get weird. Find yourself a tattoo artist you trust and play with all sorts of styles and designs. You can create some stunning works of art like this one!

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE: 25 Architecturally Inspired Cathedral Tattoos That Embrace Gothic Style

Brushstrokes

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This tattoo looks like ink applied by brushstroke. It’s an evocative design that is reminiscent of Japanese calligraphy. See how the shape of the tattoo wraps around the knee and accentuates the natural shape of the leg? That’s the money!

There you go! What do you think of Ricky Martin and Adam Levine’s leg tattoos? Do you have the guts to get something as big and in-your-face? If so, we hope you take these other tattoos into consideration and use one or more to inspire your own original piece of art!

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