45 Meaningful Memorial Tattoo Ideas to Honor a Loved One

memorial tattoos
Memorial tattoos are a great way to honor and remember someone who has passed away. It can be difficult to come up with the perfect design for your loved one, but we want to make it easier and offer some helpful advice on what you should consider.

When someone we love dies, the pain and sadness can be overwhelming. When thinking about what to do in honor of that person, a memorial tattoo might be just the thing you’re looking for. It is a permanent way to remember your loved one by wearing their name or something significant on your body forever.

We will cover everything you need to know about these meaningful tributes, including what they mean, how you can find the right designs for your loved ones, and more.

What are memorial tattoos?

A memorial tattoo is a form of body art that commemorates someone who has died. It can be used to express grief, but also as an expression of all they meant to you.

When it comes to these commemorative body art designs, you have many options and styles at your disposal. The tattoo may reflect the person’s life or death; both are perfect reasons for getting inked with meaningful images of remembrance like butterflies (a symbol of transformation and rebirth) and hands (a symbol of prayer).

For those who want to embrace a darker side, there are also skull tattoos that can be used as memorial designs. 

It’s important not to forget about the person but find ways to think positively and remember what you had together.

The best memorial tattoos design ideas

A tattoo is a great way to remember a loved one who has passed away. Many different designs can be used for memorial tattoos, and each design can have a special meaning for the person who gets it. 

Parents memorial tattoo ideas

A parent’s remembrance tattoo is one of the most common memorial tattoos. 

Parents are some of your biggest supporters and their job was to keep you alive on this earth, so it makes sense that they would be forever engraved in your heart. 

You may want to get a tattoo in honor of them or you may have lost one parent and wish to pay homage to their memory.

There are endless options for a parent remembrance tattoo, but most people choose to get something simple and elegant. 

Grandparents memorial tattoo ideas

Grandparents are a very important part of our lives, whether they are still around or have passed away. 

A grandparents’ remembrance tattoo is a great way to keep them close by and always remembered. There are many different ways to go about getting this type of tattoo. You could get the names of your grandparents tattooed on you, or maybe a picture of them that is special to you. 

Partner memorial tattoo ideas

Tattoos can be a way to honor someone you lost, whether it’s your partner or just a friend. Memorial tattoos are common after the loss of a loved one and often take on some special meaning that is specific to that person.

Tattoo ideas for memorials include things like names, dates, hands holding hearts with initials inside them or even a simple rose.

Find a tattoo artist

Use the search form below to find an artist by their name, location, or style of work.

Use the interactive USA map below to open a new page with all tattoo artists from a certain city or state. Hover on the state to see a hint, do the same with a marker to read the explanation on following steps.

Pet memorial tattoo ideas

Pet memorial tattoos are ever-increasing in popularity. As we know, pets can be considered family members, and losing a pet is often just as hard on the people who care for them as losing a human member of your family would be. 

Memorial tattoo ideas for pets include anything from a simple outline of your pet’s breed to an intricate portrait. You can also include symbols that are meaningful to you and your pet, such as a heart or paw prints.

Other unique memorial tattoo designs

  • Tattoos of butterflies and flowers

Butterflies symbolize the soul, so this would be a good option for memorializing someone who had passed away or lost their spirit in some way. There are many different types of butterfly tattoos out there: colorful ones that depict strength and courage, black and gray colored butterflies with dream-like qualities, or colorful ones that represent femininity.

Anna Finnerman and Kassaundra Kinney are some of the best in this design.

  • Small footprint tattoos 

Small footprint tattoos with the loved one’s name inside of them are also a great idea for memorializing someone you miss. They’re small enough to not draw too much attention but personal enough to make it obvious who the tattoo is for.

Ray Jimenez’s small tattoo style is the best for memorial tattoos.

  • Anchor tattoos 

Anchor tattoos are often chosen as memorials because anchors keep ships in place and represent stability and safety. They can also be seen as a symbol of hope, which many people find comfort after the loss of a loved one. 

  • Handwriting or signature

This will be a unique and special way to keep them close to your heart always. Just make sure that whoever does the tattoo can replicate the writing perfectly! 

Some of the best tattoo artists who specialize in lettering are DahVees and Mary Janed. You can also check out other masters in this style if you are not good with the location or price.

Memorial tattoo placements

Where you place a memorial tattoo is just as important as the design itself. You’ll want to consider how visible you want it to be and whether or not you’ll need to cover it up for work or other occasions. 

Here are some popular placement ideas:

  • On arm, near the elbow or shoulder;
  • Across chest or back;
  • Near heart;
  • On ankle or foot;
  • On wrist or inside arm near the elbow;
  • On the top or side of the foot.

Summary

Memorial tattoo ideas are a beautiful way to remember and honor those who have passed away. They can be tailored to fit the individual that they commemorate and can include any design elements that feel important to you. 

So if you’re considering a memorial tattoo, take the time to think about what design will best represent your loved one. Be sure to talk to your artist and explain exactly what you want, so they can help bring your vision to life. And most importantly, be sure to cherish the memory of your loved one every time you look at your tattoo!

FAQ

🔎 Who can get memorial tattoos?

There are no restrictions on who may wear these types of tattoos and they make an excellent way to remember someone special in your life.

⏳ Is there a certain time frame after someone has passed away that you can get a memorial tattoo?

There is no specific time frame after which you should get a memorial tattoo. Some people choose to wait until the first anniversary of the person’s death, while others may get one as soon as they feel ready. Ultimately, it’s up to the individual and their personal preferences.

🥀 What are some popular designs for memorial tattoos?

Portraits of the person who has passed away, a design that was important to the deceased such as a favorite sports team or pet, and abstract tattoos with hidden meaning for those close enough to understand.

🤔 Where can I find an artist ready to get a memorial tattoo?

A great place to look is by asking around at local shops or on specialized sites like Ink-Match, where you can find the perfect artist from your state and at a price that is right for you.

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