At the core, tattoos are supreme forms of self-expression. LGBT tattoos capitalize on this by expressing love to the fullest. Queer tattoos come in many shapes, colors, and sizes. Yes, there is a good showing of rainbow tattoos, but that’s not all there is. From pop culture to high art, inspiration for LGBT tattoos knows no bounds. They are just as varied and unique as the many people who consider themselves part of the LGBTQIA community.
We wanted to celebrate all things gay so we turned to social media to discover the latest and greatest LGBT tattoo ideas. There are tons of good ideas out there but the more personal you can make the design, the better. Sure, a little rainbow tattoo will work but if you’re interested in some other ways to express your identity, scroll through the inspired tattoos below for your queer ink inspiration. It’s time to get gooped and gagged!
Show Your Pride and Get Inspired by These LGBT Tattoos:
Let’s kick things off with an exceptionally cute LGBT tattoo that looks as good as it sounds. “Fruity,” this tattoo proclaims. Who is jealous they did not think of this first? If you’re not married to the idea of a tattoo in just black ink, consider forgoing it altogether. The artist could have easily outlined these letters in black but they look so much lighter and cuter this way.
Keith Haring in Barcelona
Barcelona has tons of notable public art from Roy Lichtenstein to Rebecca Horn. But, one of the most popular works was completed in the late 80s by pioneering queer artist Keith Haring. The 30 meters-long mural was meant to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS. This tattoo pays homage to it.
“Love is love,” this tattoo states in rainbow letters. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel when it comes to your LGBT tattoo if there’s a powerful saying (even a well-known one) that expresses your Pride, go for it! You could do something similar in a tidier font or go this route for something that looks more personal.
Glitch tattoos are a huge trend and we’re happy to see that the Queers are representing with it. It’s a great design because the term “Queer” is meant to express fluidity in sexuality and gender. That makes this a truly inspired LGBT tattoo.
Baby Pride Frog
Well, we did not know we needed this micro tattoo of a frog holding an LGBTQIA Pride flag but we absolutely do need it. The entire thing fits underneath a quarter so it’s a small but mighty little design. You could do something similar by choosing your favorite animal and giving them a flag to fly. Who could be made at a tattoo inspired by nature?
Where are the plant gays at? This stunning LGBT tattoo finds a fern frond in rainbow color. There’s a slight ombré effect which makes it all the more visually interesting. Almost any botanical element will work in this way. Think of a rainbow rose or your favorite flower.
“Queer Queen,” this tattoo says beneath a lady-head tattoo of a fabulous-looking royal. Bow down to this queen! This tattoo made us immediately think of Perfume Genius’ track “Queen.” The second verse of the song includes the following lyric: “Don’t you know you’re queen / Gleaning, wrapped in golden leaves.” Yes, it’s about a drag queen.
Does anyone fancy a sapphic tattoo? We found a bunch of them and this is one of the most colorful. With a watercolor effect in the background, we’re treated to a rainbow beneath these two symbols. The background could be applied to any number of designs and will make any tattoo even gayer.
In the Cards
How fun is this? We find a pair of queens (yes, more queens!) getting romantic. What a fabulous idea that would also work for a pair of Kings or Jacks as well. We love the more playful LGBT tattoos the most and something similar would offer more whimsy.
Death to Gender
Amen! In a world where gender (sex) reveals are the norm, it’s refreshing to see a tattoo that proclaims the death of gender. Who else is ready to be rid of this ridiculous social construct? This is one of the LGBT tattoos that really makes a cool political statement while also reading as cool and understated.
LGBT Tattoo from Berlin
Here’s a tattoo shared from Berlin. There, the bear is a symbol found on the city’s coat of arms. That makes this sticker tattoo very appropriate and also very cute. Sticker tattoos can be made to work for just about any character you might want so feel free to explore those possibilities with your tattoo artist.
Sappho and Erinna
Inspired by Simeon Solomon’s Sappho and Erinna in the Garden at Mytilene, this gorgeous tattoo captures romance with a touch of magic. Is it as beautiful as Sappho’s poetry? We’d wager it gets close. Fine lines and minute details make this design a real standout. It’s one of our favorite LGBT tattoos on the list!
This tattoo belongs to an individual who named themselves Pigeon. Appropriate, right? The anti-assimilation slogan “Be Gay, Do Crime,” has been around since the 1960s and it feels more relevant than ever with state legislators penning anti-trans and anti-gay laws and putting them on the books. It shouldn’t be a crime to be your most authentic self.
The straights really have a hard time with the whole pronoun thing but you can get a tattoo that makes a personal and political statement about it like this LGBT tattoo that says “she/they.” Easy! If you’re proud of your pronouns and want the world to get them right, consider getting something similar.
Make a Splash
Here’s another watercolor design and they are very popular among rainbow flags and imagery. If you’d like to make a splash, consider something similar and request from your trusty tattoo artist. You don’t have to be the most creative person in the world to walk away with a winning LGBT tattoo. Just find a cool technique that you want to try and go from there.
Be a Unicorn
Dance to the beat of your own song, baby! This gorgeous unicorn has a sort of crystal mane that sparkles in vibrant color. Unicorns are popular among LGBT tattoos so you’ll be in good company if you choose to get one. We love the geometric elements of this design which really look unique and singular.
Where are the RuPaul’s Drag Race fans at? Who could forget the iconic moment when Valentina refused to remove a face covering when it was time for a lipsynch? Let your favorite drag queens be your ink inspiration!
Line ’em Up
Are you more of a minimalist? This LGBT tattoo imagines the colors of the Pride flag in understated lines. What a sophisticated yet playful way to show your true colors! You could go thicker for something more impactful but we are a fan of these thin lines. A word of caution: with lines this fine and bright colors, this tattoo will fade over time. Be prepared to need a touch-up down the line.
You can work a rainbow into just about anything as long as you’ve got a creative artist to work with. In this case, we find those Pride colors represented in the spine of a Spinosaurus. You can make just about any design an LGBT tattoo if you put your mind to it. A creative tattoo artist will also help you realize your unique vision.
Here’s a funny one! Is your “gaydar” in tune? This tattoo makes sure that it’s always on point. It’s one of the silliest LGBT tattoos on this list and we love folks who don’t take themselves too seriously. A gaydar tattoo is a great idea and you can think of even more creative ways to make it buzz.
Here’s a handsome neo-traditional tattoo that finds two sailors in an embrace. “Love as deep as the seas,” a banner beneath it reads. How sweet! If you like more traditional tattooing design, request an LGBT tattoo that harkens back to old-school tattoos. You won’t be disappointed!
If those minimal lines weren’t doing it for you, perhaps these dots will? This is one of the most versatile LGBT tattoos as it will look great anywhere on your body. This would also look great down the back of the neck, on your chest, near the ankle, or even above the crook of your arm. The possibilities are truly endless here.
“Trans rights are human rights,” is a message we need today more than ever before. As lawmakers in conservatively governed states have taken up dangerous legislation that targets, of all people, trans children. Say it loud and say it proud. In this current climate, your LGBT tattoo can be a potent political statement and a sign of solidarity with the entire community.
Fancy a bit of kawaii goodness? This adorable cloud LGBT tattoo delivers the cuteness with a sense of Pride. We find a sweet face in the cloud with a rainbow trailing behind. Simple lines are all it takes to bring a cute little tattoo to life. What a dream!
Okay! We did not come for the merman romance but we are here for it. This tattoo has been completed in a neo-traditional style that borrows from traditional tattooing hallmarks but creates something fresh and new. This LGBT tattoo is such a fun spin on more traditional mermaid tattoos.
This breathtakingly beautiful LGBT tattoo finds two hands connected by a rainbow thread. What an absolute dream of a tattoo and a magical idea. If you’ve got a partner, you might want to get something similar that matches. One person can have one hand and the other another.
Light and Dark
We find a party of contrasts with the above LGBT tattoo that finds a black storm cloud next to a beautiful rainbow. There’s a graphic quality to the design that makes the tattoo read as flat, and we mean that as a good thing.
Top surgery for Trans men and nonbinary folks is a huge part of the transition process. This stunning LGBT tattoo is a celebration of the surgery’s completion. Gender-affirming surgery and care are essential for many in the Trans community and access to it should be much easier than it is today.
Getting Right to the Point
You can get right to the point if that’s your speed. This “Gay” tattoo puts it plainly. Sure, a rainbow is more visually appealing but there’s something to the bluntness of this design that really does it for us. You really can be as straightforward as possible with your LGBT tattoo and you won’t live to regret it.
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Here’s one of our favorite, offbeat, LGBT tattoos on this list. It’s a spring or slinky done in a rainbow ombré with a nice purple star for good measure. You can make anything queer, it just takes a little imagination! This could also work for other shapes and designs like everyday objects that you want to make a little bit gayer. There are just so many possibilities!
If you loved these LGBT tattoos, we’ve got many more to share with you. If you’re looking for more queer tattoo inspiration, keep scrolling for even more colorful, meaningful, and beautifully weird designs. You won’t regret it.
Come through, rainbow dancer! Here’s a pride tattoo that hails all the way from South Korea. We love the sharp detail and vibrant colors here. The shape of the design makes it look so alive.
A Pineapple for Two
Pineapple pride! We love this ombre fruit that’s got a heart tucked inside. Are we all feeling fruity? You better believe it.
Watercolor tattoos are big in the queer community and for good reason. The form rejects coloring inside the lines or strict black and white. Also, they’re a great way to incorporate all the colors of the rainbow.
If you’re a bit of a goth gay, feel free to stay on-brand with a tattoo that’s bold and black and right to the point. We adore this queer tattoo in a funky font.
You’re a magical unicorn and that’s why people love you. This polkadot be-speckled unicorn has plenty of candy-tinged color to bring it to life. A banner reading “born this way” seals the deal. Glitter and be gay!
Judy, Judy, Judy
Judy Garland is a gay icon and was so beloved that members of the queer community used the coded language, “friend of Dorothy” to let others know that we’re all part of the same family. Dorothy refers to the character Garland played in The Wizard of Oz. The upside-down triangle in the background has been a symbol of pride and solitude for decades. Bravo! This is so sweet!
We won’t get into details, but this is one mighty fine queer tattoo that’s going to speak to a lot of people. This is sort of an inside joke, but if you meditate on it long enough we’re sure you’ll put it together.
Are you feeling it? We can get behind this rainbow and its fabulousness. If you’re going to go full color, this is how it’s done.
We are very much into this wavy love tattoo that features a bunch of colors and looks vaguely 3D. Love is love!
Yes, we did need this tattoo of some lesbian lovers. This design is pretty traditional which makes it all the more exciting when you consider its subject matter. Celebrate love that’s true.
Tom of Finland was known for his hyper masculine homoerotic art. We find a nod to it with this very tidy black tattoo.
Awake and alive is a great way to describe living your most authentic life. The artist who shared the image wrote that this is a handpoked tattoo. It’s impeccable!
Keith Haring Bop
Keith Haring created lively pop art that represented many different aspects of the queer community. Here, we find a tattoo inspired by his work. It’s a party!
The equality symbol represents the fight for equal rights under the law and in society writ large. We love this sketchy watercolor take on it.
We cannot get enough of these lesbian lover pieces. As if one heart wasn’t enough to show just how much love there is, the artist has included fill that looks like heart wallpaper.
Here, we find a deconstructed trans pride flag that’s absolutely remarkable. The colors of blue and pink bleed together here to represent this particular individual’s identity as a nonbinary person. Very thoughtful design!
“Sissy That Walk” is a song by the one and only RuPaul. We cherish this tribute to it and all of the wonderful pastel inks used to achieve this design.
Can’t Get Enough of It
We’ve seen plenty of queer love on this list and this seventies-kissed design is a wonder. Members of the LGBTQIA+ community really do have a thing for hearts and polka dots.
Where’s the Lie?
One last heart and some dazzling little polkadots here. “Gender is a construct” is a fundamental concept in queer and feminist theory. Who knew it would make for such a spectacular tattoo?
While not a heart, this person couldn’t help but go for the little dots, because, why not? A trans pride flag with the word “proud” over it really works.
Wave That Flag
Show your pride and never hide! You can’t go wrong with a rainbow and if it’s a watercolor tattoo, you know you’re doing it right.
The cheery flowers around this lesbian love tattoo bring a lot of warmth to the overall design. You can’t go wrong with flowers!
Why do we love dots so much? We’re not complaining, but it’s a recurring theme. These rainbow dots are handsome and a subtle way to show love and acceptance.
This very traditional tattoo is just like one you’d find on many soldiers decades ago. Instead of the American flag, we find the eagle carrying a pride flag which makes it instantly more attractive! If you’re into this Americana style, you can still get gay with it!
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The Stonewall Riots are considered by many as the start of the gay liberation and LGBTQ rights movement in modern America. This amazing tattoo pays tribute to those who fought, protested, and gave their all to give us the rights we enjoy today.
There you go! We hope these gay tattoos inspired you to consider getting one for yourself. It’s important to show and feel your pride all year long and a tattoo might be just the thing to remind you that you’re fabulous.
There you go! Aren’t these LGBT tattoos everything? We hope you feel inspired by these designs to get your very own Pride tattoo that celebrates your personality and, of course, love. Happy tattooing!
- 1 Show Your Pride and Get Inspired by These LGBT Tattoos:
- 1.1 Feeling Fruity
- 1.2 Keith Haring in Barcelona
- 1.3 In Love
- 1.4 Queer Glitch
- 1.5 Baby Pride Frog
- 1.6 Gay Fern
- 1.7 The Queen
- 1.8 Love Wins
- 1.9 In the Cards
- 1.10 Death to Gender
- 1.11 LGBT Tattoo from Berlin
- 1.12 Sappho and Erinna
- 1.13 Do It
- 1.14 Pronouns
- 1.15 Make a Splash
- 1.16 Be a Unicorn
- 1.17 Valentina
- 1.18 Line ’em Up
- 1.19 Spinosaurus
- 1.20 Gaydar
- 1.21 Sailor Romance
- 1.22 …
- 1.23 Trans Rights
- 1.24 Cute Cloud
- 1.25 Mermen
- 1.26 Rainbow Thread
- 1.27 Light and Dark
- 1.28 Top Scars
- 1.29 Getting Right to the Point
- 1.30 Rainbow Spring
- 2 Rainbow Ribbon
- 3 A Pineapple for Two
- 4 Queer Vision
- 5 See?
- 6 Gaga Said
- 7 Judy, Judy, Judy
- 8 IYKYK
- 9 ABFAB
- 10 Technicolor Love
- 11 It’s True
- 12 Tom
- 13 We’re Here
- 14 Keith Haring Bop
- 15 Watercolor
- 16 Gal Pals
- 17 Trans Pride!
- 18 Darling
- 19 Can’t Get Enough of It
- 20 Where’s the Lie?
- 21 Authentic
- 22 Wave That Flag
- 23 Intertwined
- 24 Dots
- 25 Old School
- 26 Herstory
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