Top 67 Day Of The Dead Tattoo Ideas [2021 Inspiration Guide]
To declare a striking affinity for Mexican culture, fashionably clever men are turning to Day of the Dead tattoos en masse. These dramatic Spanish-themed creations are a huge hit all over the world.
For a dose of Latin machismo, guys of all backgrounds are becoming captivated with Day of the Dead skin art.
These stylish ink arrangements bring new life to some of mankind’s most ancient traditions. Additionally, the festive skull tats slyly offer a socially appropriate outlet for demonstrating a fascination with necromancy.
Some skin art aficionados have turned Day of the Dead tattoos into an annual spring tradition. This technique offers an excellent path towards complete body coverage at a steady pace that ensures ample planning time.
While this blatant fascination with the afterlife may seem morbid to cultural outsiders, this yearly holiday is actually intended to mark a jubilant celebration of existence. In a sense, the Day of the Dead designs collected below are truthfully an expression of carpe diem!
These iconic skulls and related imagery can keep the fiesta going all year round. They also enshrine a classy way to enshrine a personally meaningful heritage.
As a final bonus, the designs showcased below are bound to elicit illicit attention from the Latina population.
Day of the Dead Tattoo Ideas
A big part of La Catrina Day of the Dead tattooing is calavera make up. This is done to put an internal emphasis on life and death and create a visible celebratory atmosphere for remembering those who have passed. This piece does an excellent job in creating memorable makeup. The Ace of Spades is often used to color over the nose and signifies luck. Effects around the eyes are also central to the tattoo and in this piece they’re simple yet clever bubble additions. The images surrounding the tattoo are also well etched – the roses in particular are brilliantly worked. There’s a great depth to color and the dewy element is also perfect.
This Day of the Dead girl is inked in a more traditional black and gray fashion, allowing the calavera make up to be focused on clean, fresh black line. An important aspect of many calavera tattoos is sewing the mouth of the La Catrina shut, which is done cleanly in this tattoo.
This Day of the Dead Tattoo is a more subtle, portrait style piece. The artist had developed great realism in the almost photo quality of La Catrina, with only a few line effects and the sewn shut mouth. It’s a beautifully etched forearm sleeve well supported by classic sketch style roses at either end to provide depth and image fill.
A brilliant Chicano style chest tattoo representing the Day of the Dead. The three portraits are exceptionally etched in black and gray, simply contrasting between clean outline and shading variations. In images where the mouth is not sewn shut it’s customary to show exposed teeth through the cheek. This is demonstrated in the difference between the center La Catrina image and the one on the left side of the chest. The artist’s choice to center the piece with a red rose is nicely worked and provides additional balance to the overall ink and a bright counterpoint.
A wicked calavera Day of the Dead Tattoo. The vivid red highlights in etching and background fill give the La Catrina a well constructed ghostly glow and works with the alternating black and white elements. Using a large amount of white ink can be detrimental to some tattoos however adds realism to the makeup. It looks just as it would in a parade or celebration. Traditionally, the color white in calavera make up depicts purity, while other colors also have meaning.
An exceptional small hand tattoo. This stylized La Catrina opts to go bright and brilliant. The electric blue face makeup creates a vivid platform for the colorful shapes and shades of the other paint. The use of black shade for hair and lower fill helps finish off the ink and provide a better fill for the available space.
This is an interesting portrait sketch tattoo of La Catrina. The lower hair shading features an innovative technique which looks excellent against skin and traditional gray shadow. The face etching looks great – there’s a sharpness to the black line that helps it seem realistic. Centering the eye shadow (there’s more above the eye than below) is the only technical step you could revise in this piece as it looks a little unbalanced.
An interesting mask that would benefit from more subtly shaded make-up – there’s not quite enough gradient shadow around the eyes and on the nose to delineate the line work. The other odd part of this tattoo is the head angle. While unique, the art work’s detail would benefit from a more front on La Catrina facial image.
This Day of the Dead tattoo is in the process of an upgrade. The artist is adding fuzzy black shade in places to add a darker element and help the feature stand out from the subject’s other tattoos. This change is visible when comparing the shading towards La Cantrina’s face with the more faded hair at the bottom. An additional application that could make this ink pop further is adding fine black single needle to accentuate her make-up.
The clarity in eye ink is the key to this traditional black and gray Day of the Dead tattoo. La Catrina’s eyes are accentuated by small white ink highlights making her gaze more intense. The shadow contrast is also very well done in combining against negative space and crisp, clean, single needle black outline. The decision to not tattoo more than a scrap of hair works well because the artist has created a well defined border for her face to be framed with.
This La Catrina is etched with such clean line tattooing and smart white ink flourishes that the dark nature of the shading doesn’t compromise the overall image. The use of a candle at wrist helps balance the lower arm sleeve and provides beautiful, flowing white ink highlights into bubbling, fuzzy black shade. At the other end, the Day of the Dead girl’s snatches of hair make fantastic contrast to the elegant darkness at the heart of the art work.
This is a cool lower arm sleeve Day of the Dead tattoo. The central La Catrina image is well supported by epic shade work incorporating heavy black and wicked negative space. The smoke effect pouring from the eyes of the well etched skull is a good use of space and scale. The girl herself is unique in sporting a modified Marge Simpson hairdo which serves the same space and balance creating role that the skull performs.
There aren’t many Day of the Dead girl tattoos tagged on people’s neck. This example is crisp, if lacking the more flamboyant shade effects. The art is delivered with sound black line technique and smart shading fundamentals. The light gray shaded lace edging of La Catrina’s cowl is a cool component of the work providing a natural border for the full image.
Wow! This is a fantastic color La Catrina tattoo. The degree of realism and clean artistic skill makes this a sensational piece of art. The use of playing cards etched with DOBs is a beautiful memorial touch, while the subtly colorful fingers and face of the Day of the Dead girl are flawless. You won’t find a better color example of this style of tattoo.
A wicked upper arm La Catrina piece. The girl is a beautiful focal point however the technical aspects put this piece over the top. The blinged out gun is brilliant – sexy chrome filigreed with intricately detailed white ink – ably supported by the smoke effects threading through the fuzzy black fill. The artist’s choice to replicate the gun’s shade effect in scoring the girl’s face is effective technical execution, as is creating the tricky illusion of three closed eyes.
A simple calavera tattoo etched cleverly with black fine line needle work and fuzzy black shading. It’s a solid if unspectacular piece delivered with clarity and skill. Again, small pockets of white ink highlights are drawn in to strengthen the overall makeup effect – it’s especially effective on the skull’s teeth enamel.
This is a polished Day of the Dead girl tattoo. The artist has shown off precision in technical execution to display a work of quality. Love the different shading gradients in this piece. Surprisingly, there’s no negative space in the piece, it’s instead strengthened by a flat gray scale fill befitting the overall dark effect. This shading allows the tremendous make up effects to look crisp and subtle by the addition of fine line white needle complementing the black.
Is that Paris Hilton? I swear that looks like Paris Hilton… Anyway, this La Catrina is a killer bicep tattoo combining negative space and fine needle work. The white ink highlights this time are designed to support the gray parts of the ink to add clarity. The rose, and Paris’ hair are given a jolt by using this effect, which contrasts well with the alternating neg space and black birds above the woman.
This tattoo is cool. The epic hair effect and supporting shade are done with a fat, thick line shading gun to give it that rougher, darker edge. This application works exceptionally well in direct comparison to the fine black line of the Day of the Dead girl’s tattoo makeup, which is a lot more subtle and detailed.
A wicked Day of the Dead tattoo. This full sleeve balances traditional motifs – La Catrina, skulls, roses, sombrero, Mariachi guitarist – with elements of portraiture realism to depict a wonderful memorial tattoo. Love the photograph quality of the little girl at top left, while the black/neg combination of the sombrero helps in transition the many tattoo elements.
The artist in this piece has done a fantastic job to create that sewn illusion to the make up. It’s been precisely drawn to create that uncomfortable, skin pinching effect with clean style, especially in the areas around eyes and mouth. Also love the shawl’s etched pattern on negative space technique – it creates a cool and unusual counterpoint to the spooky facial makeup.
Day of the Dead Tattoo FAQs
What does the Day of the Dead Girl tattoo symbolize?
La Catrina (Day of the Dead girl) is traditionally a beautiful woman in make up resembling a combination of calavera (skull) and calacas (skeleton). She symbolizes the Goddess of Death and the Mexican willingness to show humor while celebrating and honoring death during the Day of the Dead.
The Día de Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is a popular Mexican festival where families gather to honor and remember loved ones that have passed away. It is believed souls of the dead return to visit the living in homes, businesses and cemeteries.
There are numerous motifs associated with joyful Day of the Dead festival which involving marches, parades, brightly colored altars and special meals dedicated to the deceased. La Catrina is a popular totem in Chicano and Aztec style tattooing due to its beauty and link to the traditional Latin American themes of family, faith, and honor.
The Día de Muertos celebration – usually held at the start of November – began in Mexico but now stretches to much of the Latin speaking world and parts of the USA.
Top 29 Best Watches Under $500 For Men
With cellphones so ubiquitous, your watch choice can be less about telling time and more about personal style. However, a watch is not ‘just’ a watch. For example, the vast majority are made for right-handed people, but a select few cater to the lefties among us. There is a wide range in functionality and size.
The wristwatch is also one of the few socially acceptable accessories for men, so why not have a small selection? If you’re not cashing a CEO’s paycheck just yet, here are the top 28 most handsome watches for men that retail for under $500.
Got a bigger budget? Then check out our guide to the best men’s watches under $1000 instead.
Top 29 Best Watches Under $500 For Men
1. Tommy Hilfiger Stainless Steel Men’s Watch
If you like the feel of a pliable, non-metal band but aren’t comfortable with genuine leather, this watch comes equipped with a handsome synthetic band. At 46mm in diameter, this watch is perfect for men of smaller stature, as it will not overpower your hand or make it look like you’re wearing your father’s watch. With bold Arabic numerals, a stainless steel case, and classic styling, this watch is an outstanding choice for an everyday watch and the man on a budget.
2. Nordgreen Pioneer – Black Dial
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Not everyone has an endless amount of cash to drop on a luxury timepiece. If you’re money-conscious but want something high-end, then why not consider the Nordgreen Pioneer.
An inspired take on a classic Chronograph, Nordgreen celebrates the Danish with what they call a timepiece “that captures the sustainable future.” Available in various dial colors from blue, black, and white. There’s even the choice of three case colors – gunmetal, silver, and rose gold. A perfect addition to the collection of any watch enthusiast.
3. Fossil Grant Brown Leather WatchCheck Price
This lovely offering by Fossil features slim Roman numeral hour markers and delicate cut-out hands. The casing is stainless steel and is water-resistant to 165 feet, making it a great dive watch. The band is made of supple, soft calfskin leather and uses a buckle closure.
Of course, this timepiece also comes with the generous 11-year warranty and it’s own fun tin. This watch oozes class and is great for nearly every occasion in your life.
4. Citizen Sport Stainless Steel Men’s Watch With Brown Leather Band
If you don’t want to deal with changing out a battery in a digital watch, this watch is powered by either natural or indoor lighting. The mineral crystal face and stainless steel case make this watch water-resistant to 330 feet, making it a great choice for swimmers and snorkelers.
Handsome and utilitarian, this is a great watch for everyday wear. It’s one of the best watches for men who are always on the go.
5. Fossil Men’s Machine Chronograph Silicone Watch
This watch was designed with the active man in mind. The knurled silicone band stands up to sweat and oils without issue, and the timepiece itself is water-resistant to 165 feet.
The patterned bezel and quality craftsmanship of the black dial is excellent, as is to be expected from a Fossil watch. It even comes in the iconic and collectible tin!
6. Citizen Men’s Eco-Drive Watch
This men’s watch features Japanese quartz movement that charges itself indoors or out when exposed to light, making it a great choice for those who don’t want to change out the battery too often. The stitched canvas strap is soft against your skin and will wick away moisture, while the mineral crystal face stands up to the rigors of your everyday life.
Water-resistant to 330 feet, this dive watch is a classic and simple design you’ll be proud of for years to come.
7. Invicta Pro Diver Chronograph Men’s Watch
Another gorgeous offering by Invicta, this watch features a bold design with a slightly nautical feel to it. It will look at home whether you’re wearing a business suit or are going for a dive of less than 660 feet. This piece is also covered by a one-year warranty as a matter of course. The luminosity feature and magnified date window make it a great choice if you work or play in low light.
If you want something that looks like a Tag Heuer but without the luxury watch brand price tag, this is a good option!
8. Casio Edifice Multi-Function Men’s Watch
This watch has three sub-dials for 12 hour, 60 minute and 60-second displays, in addition to the standard time. It also features a fold-over, push-down clasp on the stainless strap, keeping it secure throughout your activities. If you’re looking for a classy timepiece that shrieks sophistication, this is a great choice.
9. Fossil Machine Three Hand Stainless Steel Men’s Watch
This quality watch is a chameleon piece. It looks at home as a dress watch riding below the cuff of your best suit, and it also looks great paired with jeans and a t-shirt. Backed by Fossil’s 11-year warranty as a matter of course and beautifully crafted, this smoke-colored piece is guaranteed to become the go-to accessory for nearly every occasion.
10. MVMT Watches Black Face Men’s Watch
If you like the look of a simple watch, this minimalist offering from MVMT is right up your alley. With just a plain black face, tick marks to denote the hours and a single date window, there is nothing overdone or extravagant about this design. The is understated and suited to the simple design. It’s definitely a classy, low-key piece for the budget-conscious.
11. Timex Weekender Watch
If you’re looking for a fun watch to pair with casual outfits, this is a great option. The band is blue and yellow woven nylon, and the face features both civilian and military timekeeping. An Indiglo night light is also included. This watch is water-resistant to 99 feet, meaning it can withstand splashes of water or exposure to rain but you won’t want to submerge it.
12. PUMA Ultrasize Black Sport Men’s Watch
Boasting a 50mm diameter, this piece is perfect for the large-framed man or one who likes to wear his accessories oversized. A true fashion statement, this sports watch comes in eight different colors schemes to match your favorite hues.
Do be aware, however, that the dial knob is configure for left-handed men!
13. Timex Easy Reader Men’s Watch
Another dress watch designed with the older gentleman in mind, this watch features a white dial with generously sized numerals that do not appear comical to the casual observer.
It’s also an excellent choice if you take your contacts out at night and still want to be able to check the time. With classic lines and a simple white face, the watch would not be out of place at any casual gathering. It comes with Timex’s one-year warranty at no additional charge.
14. Fossil Nate Men’s Chronograph Watch
For men who like a more gritty, industrial feel to their accessories, this Fossil watch is right on point. The bezel is gear-edged and the face is utilitarian black and gray. Water-resistant to 165 feet, this watch is a great choice if you like your adornments to be understated yet add visual interest.
It’s definitely a stand-out piece, for those who would take notice!
15. Timex Expedition Field Chronograph Men’s Watch
Featuring an indigo night light, tachymeter, a date window and a buckle closure, this watch is perfect for men who like to work or play outdoors. It is also water-resistant to 330 feet, making it a great choice for snorkeling or swimming.
You won’t want to wear it for diving, however. With classic, black styling and a genuine crystal face, this is a timepiece that will stand the test of time in both form and function.
16. Seiko 5 Automatic Stainless Steel Men’s Watch
This Seiko automatic watch has all the bells and whistles you need, but presents it all in a plain and strikingly attractive manner. It features a date window in either English or Spanish, sword-shaped hands, a sweeping second hand and a mineral dial window. This is a great option for the man on the go. The canvas strap can be removed and hand-washed if sweat or other odors become an issue.
This watch is not water-resistant, so you’ll only want to wear it when you won’t be popping by the pool for a swim!
17. Invicta Pro Diver Collection Silver-Tone Men’s Watch
For those who prefer an all-metal timepiece, the stainless steel Invicta fits the bill nicely. It has a similar aesthetic to a Tag Heuer watch, but at a more affordable price. Equipped with a unilateral bezel and removable links, the band can be customized to fit your wrist perfectly. The face is flame fusion crystal and features a magnifier to highlight the date window.
It’s also water-resistant to 660 feet. If you’re looking for a gorgeous watch that stands up to an active lifestyle, this is an excellent choice.
18. Seiko Men’s Adventure-Solar Classic Casual Watch
This Seiko watch derives its power from either natural or indoor light and can withstand water depths of up to 330 feet. The supple brown leather strap and timeless brushed steel give this piece an attractive look, and the alarm chronograph is easy to set.
If you’re looking for a watch that can serve as a backup for your wake-up call while traveling, stand up to the elements and look awesome, this casual wrist watch is a winner.
19. Nautica Men’s Stainless Steel Watch with Blue Resin Band
Featuring a plethora of options and a smart, snappy style, this a great casual watch with a eye-catching blue dial. The hardy resin band is adjustable, and the face is protected by a mineral window. Whether for work or play, this bold blue design is handsome and substantial on the wrist. It comes with Nautica’s five-year warranty at no additional charge.
20. Citizen Sport Men’s Stainless Steel Watch with Black Leather Band
The black, red and white face of this piece eschews the traditional two-tone color scheme so often employed in other watches, and the contrasting stitching on the band adds creative flair. It comes backed by Citizen’s five-year warranty and will compliment any casual outfit.
21. Alessi Tic15 Analog Display Analog Quartz Black Men’s Watch
Another not-quite-round offering on our list, the curved square casing of this piece gives it instant visual appeal. Sleek and clean, this unfussy design will be a compliment to almost any occasion. It has quartz movement and is water-resistant to 99 feet, making it a great choice for everyday wear.
22. Invicta 1517 I Force Collection Watch
Another on our list designed for left-handed men, this watch is something special. Water-resistant to 330 feet and featuring oversize stenciled numbers and a sub dial, this watch is great for any casual outfit. The cloth band is extremely durable and stands up to dirt, sweat and grime.
If you lead an active lifestyle, this watch will be right at home in your collection.
23. TRIWA Blue Steel Nevil Canvas Watch
This watch comes in a whopping 14 color variations, all of them beautiful. You may decide to add more than one to your collection!
Designed in Sweden, this watch features Japanese quartz movement, a stainless steel casing and a strap made from Tärnsjö organic leather. TRIWA, which stands for Transforming the Industry of Watches, believes in the artistry of fine jewelry and it shows in their product.
24. Victorinox Swiss Army Alliance Watch
Another fine dress watch from the makers of the Swiss Army knife, this watch is emblazoned with the internally recognized cross and shield emblem. It has no sub-dials, tachymeter or other add-ons to detract from its simple and appealing style.
This watch will be at home with all but the most formal of outfits and carries a two-year warranty.
25. Ingersoll Automatic Stainless Steel Bull Run Watch
Again, Ingersoll remakes the classics and brings them into the present day. With a highly polished stainless steel casing, two sub-dials, a date aperture and arrow-shaped hands, this quartz watch is beautiful.
The band features contrasting stitching on the fine-grain leather, adding depth and detail to the workmanship. This watch will compliment any casual occasion and can be relied upon for years to come.
26. Tissot Quickster Chronograph Black Leather Men’s Watch
Made with scratch-resistant sapphire crystal and Swiss automatic movement, this watch is a smart and utilitarian choice. If you’re looking for a solid Swiss watch that isn’t flashy, this is an excellent option. It’s also guaranteed for two years.
27. Seiko Sport Solar Men’s Beige Watch
Are you getting tired of squinting down at your watch or holding it closer and closer to your face? Don’t worry, we all get a bit nearsighted with age, especially over the age of 40.
If you’re not quite ready for reading glasses or a comically huge watch, this is a great choice from Seiko. The numerals, indices and luminous hands stand out in stark white against a black background, and the numerals are generous in size. It’s a perfect casual watch for the older gentleman.
28. Seiko Men’s 5 Watch Blue Canvas Band
This simple and affordable watch has a clean, crisp aesthetic to it and doesn’t bog down its design with a ton of bells and whistles. It’s time and date, end of.
If you want a watch for casual wear, this Seiko is a shoo-in. The band is forgiving and comfortable against your wrist, and it’s blue color will likely compliment your existing wardrobe. The price is also extremely affordable.
29. Tommy Hilfiger Men’s Stainless Steel Watch With Brown Leather Band
Featuring the Hilfiger logo at the three o’clock position, this wrist watch is a statement piece. It is a bright, shiny stainless steel work of art that you’ll be proud to wear at all but the most stuffy of workplaces. The calfskin leather band uses a buckle closure and the date window is beside the logo at three o’clock.
If you’re a fan of Tommy clothing, cologne or luggage, you can complete your look with this stunning accessory.