50+ Elbow Tattoos: A Complete Guide With Inspiring Ideas

Elbow Tattoos
If you are looking for some intricate location for new ink, the elbow tattoo is the perfect area. This article will describe everything about this tattoo design. Check out the information below!

The elbow is one of the most eye-catching places to get a tattoo. Any design will look attractive, from large plot tattoos to minimalist inscriptions. But is this location really so beneficial, and which designs are the most suitable for elbow tattoos? The answers to these questions are in the article below.

We will cover all information about elbow tattoos you should know. Also, you will find many gorgeous ideas for the ink to match the skin. So let’s get started!

We have great news for those looking for a new tattoo artist. You can find one in our extensive database of tattooists who will cope with any custom design!

Looking for Tattoo Ideas?

We have more ideas in the gallery with the best elbow tattoos. Take a look and get inspired!

Main Pros and Cons of Elbow Tattoos

The elbow is quite suitable if you are searching for an excellent placement for a new tattoo. But before choosing the design, you should know more about elbow tattoos. 

Main pros and cons of elbow tattoos

Pros That Offer Elbow Tattoos

Listed below are the benefits of getting an elbow tattoo.

  • 👍 It is a unique location and a chance to stand out.
  • 👍 This placement suits both men and women. 
  • 👍 Any design will become eye-catching there, even the simplest one.
  • 👍 You can combine elbow tattoos with other inks, and it won’t look overwhelming.
  • 👍 You can choose any size of ink as there is enough space to create artwork.
  • 👍 You can hide it easily if needed.

Main Cons of Elbow Tattoo Placement

Despite so many advantages of elbow tattoos, there are some drawbacks you should consider before picking this placement:

  • 👎 The most significant downside of this area is the painful tattooing process. Elbow is considered one of the worst painful parts of body art. The reason is the small amount of fat and many nerves that pass there.
  • 👎 Also, the healing process lasts longer than other body areas, so you should provide aftercare more attentively.
  • 👎 Not all elbow tattoo designs will look their best in this placement because this body part is always in movement, and skin is no exception.

What Tattoo Designs and Styles Choose for This Location

As an elbow tattoo is a location that is always in motion, you should consider this unique feature when choosing the design. Here are a few recommendations that will help you with the choice:

  • 💪 Choose designs with symmetrical lines or images that cover all the elbows to avoid shifting the drawing.
  • 💪 Put all the essential details of the tattoo on a flat surface. It means escaping the elbow band, especially if you have a large-size plot image.
  • 💪 Use negative space or one shade of ink on the elbow bone. In this case, the tattoo will look smoother, and the tattooing process will be less painful.

The most popular styles you can pick for your elbow tattoo are tribal, old-school, neotraditional, geometric, and botanical designs.

Besides, if you are interested in botanical designs, check out the rose tattoo ideas for men that will impress you with originality and classiness.

The Most Stylish Elbow Tattoo Designs for Inspiration

 You’re already aware of some positives and negatives effects of elbow tattoos and several tips on choosing the right design; now it’s time to search for the best ideas for new ink. So many options and designs will look great on this placement. But we gathered some of the most stylish and outstanding elbow tattoos for you to impress the world.

Round Elbow Tattoo

Round elbow tattoos are one of the most convenient options for this placement. They may be top of the list as the most trendy, elegant, and least painful. 

There are so many ideas for this design. It can be the minimalistic brush stroke, the laurel wreath, the Celtic circle, or the sun with rays. There are also fascinating water-colored abstracts to get on the skin.

Botanical Tattoo 

Botanical designs are classical drawings in tattoo art in general. Elbow tattoos are no exception. This design looks perfect, both in black and colored ink. You can put a flat, traditional red rose or get tricky vines with leaves and flowers. There are so many interpretations of elbow flower tattoos that it is much easier to show the examples than describe them with words. 

Also, check out these trendy ideas of birth flower tattoos to inspire more floristic designs.

Moving Tattoos on the Elbow

Another interesting elbow tattoo idea is a moving drawing. The principle of the image is based on the bending of the elbow. The artist applies the tattoo in such a way that it changes the shape and image during the movement. 

Usually, insects are the best variant to depict on the elbow tattoo as you can mimic their fly. But you can experiment with other subjects or creatures. 

Creating such a tricky tattoo requires experience and talent. Not all artists can do this. But fortunately, we have an extensive catalog of tattooists from all over the U.S. that can intricately engrave these tattoos.

Trendy Animal Designs

Getting animal images in elbow tattoos is an exciting idea. A wide range of fauna creatures will look gorgeous in this area. You can choose:

  • 🐾 Wolf;
  • 🐾 Monkey;
  • 🐾 Bear;
  • 🐾 Shark;
  • 🐾 Snakes;
  • 🐾 Reindeer;
  • 🐾 Tiger;
  • 🐾 Elephant;
  • 🐾 Spider with web;
  • 🐾 Otter.

We don’t consider all home pets like dogs, cats, hamsters, etc. The choice is crazy. In addition, you can use 3D elements to give the elbow animal tattoo a more realistic design.

Elbow Inscriptions

Inscriptions on the skin are always a good idea if you want to have meaningful and symbolic tattoos. The elbow is also a perfect space for them. When deciding which font for words to choose, we recommend getting one with fine and smooth lines. They are delicate and appropriate for women as the tattoo design idea.

Tricky Patterns

Tribal or mandala-style tattoos fabulously match those who like meaningful and sophisticated designs. Each pattern has a deep sense. This elbow tattoo design is a win-win option because the drawing looks smooth and doesn’t change its look during the actions. Also, the elbow pattern tattoo can be a perfect addition to existing tattoos on your arms. 

Hand-Poke Elbow Tattoo

Hand-poke elbow tattoos are extraordinary drawings. Firstly, they look fabulous due to their thin lines and unusual design. Secondly, this technique involves applying ink without a preliminary contour so the drawing can be more intricate. This design indicates flat images with faint, intermittent lines and a minimalistic plot.

Hand-poke tattoos claim a high skill level from the tattooist to put the drawing on the skin without a preliminary sketch. We know many masters that can do this work on the top. You can search for them in our extensive list of tattoo artists and find one that meets your needs.

Shattered Glass Tattoo

A shattered glass elbow tattoo is one of the most dramatic designs. It can have a deep meaning and tell the history of a broken heart. Beating glass on the skin can combine with drops of tears or blood. Or you can create the effect of the hollow in the center of the ink.

Black Ink Ideas for Elbow

Black ink is one of the most suitable colors for elbow tattoos. The reason is that the black color is less noticeable in creases and changes in the tattoo during arm movements. It is an excellent design for men as it is an impressive and strong drawing. 

Besides, there are many tattoo ideas, from small patterns or figures to oversized tattoo sleeves with many details. You can also combine black and gray to make more shades and shapes for the drawing. 

Minimalistic Ink

Minimalistic designs are always trending. It is an excellent idea for an elbow tattoo for a few reasons:

  • It is easy to hide as they are usually miniature size;
  • They are less painful during the tattooing process;
  • They look perfect in black or colored ink;
  • They are more artsy and elegant on the skin.

In addition, a minimalistic elbow tattoo is an excellent option for women.

Abstract Design

Abstract designs are gorgeous and intricate. Elbow tattoos with these unusual patterns suit expressive people. These drawings can be masterpieces because of a combination of shapes, lines, and bold stripes. Tattoos can play with colors. Besides, such elbow tattoo is perfect for water-colored techniques as it predicts blurred lines and color mixing.

Eye on Elbow

The last elbow tattoo on this list is an eye tattoo. This drawing is unique and unexpected. If you do it in a realistic style, it will be outstanding. You can put it on the inner side of the elbow to imitate the blinking. Or you can use an all-seeing triangle eye or other interpretations for your ink. Also, you can combine it with several details like sunrays, geometric figures, etc.


Here it is! The best collection of elbow tattoos if you choose this place for new ink. We also described the pros and cons of this location so that you can make an objective decision about whether it is good or not. We can say that a tattoo on the elbow is a great place to apply because of its uniqueness. Therefore, if you are thinking about getting new ink, stop on the choice of elbow tattoo.


🤍 How Fast Does an Elbow Tattoo Fade?

We can say that elbow tattoos fade more quickly than inks on other placements because we always use this location to lean with it on different surfaces. But you can use the design with bright colors or bold black ink images to slow down the fading process.

🤠 Is an Elbow Tattoo a Good Option for Men?

The elbow tattoos are perfect as they are unisex. The difference is only in style or design. If you want extensive ink, choose elbow tattoos with detailed drawings. If you like calm images, pick a minimalistic design.

💵 What Is the Average Price for Elbow Tattoos?

The price for an elbow tattoo depends on its size and style and the tattoo artist’s experience. You can count the price before the tattooing process in the tattoo calculator on Ink-Match. In this case, you will know what to expect.


Was this article helpful?

Stay Tuned

Subscribe to our newsletter to receive new guides, ideas, and useful tips for tattoo artists and fans first.

You may also enjoy these articles: