Top 101 Military Tattoo Ideas – [2022 Inspiration Guide]
To move the trench ten feet closer meant the death of thousands, yet it marked another victory in the fight for freedom. Those who managed to dodge the rain of heavy machine gun fire would still find the chance of trenchfoot slowly creeping up.
When it comes to the military, countless brave men have risked everything to protect the freedom of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
Their incredible stories often end in paying the ultimate sacrifice. Not to mention, the night terrors and feelings of loss.
From the soldiers to the airmen, sailors and marines, I’d like to share with you a handle of popular symbols you’re probably familiar with.
For instance, you’ll find many designs that include the devil dogs, globe, anchor and eagle for Marines. Not to mention, Semper Fidelis, or always faithful in Latin. For the Navy you’ll often spot the anchor, while those in the Air Force tend to feature eagles and flight. I could go on..
However, when it comes to veteran memorial designs you’ll usually see a red remembrance poppy for those who helped fight in the war.
Regardless if you’re in the army or coast guard, marines, etc, you’ll surely appreciate these top 100 best military tattoos for men. From dog tags to incredible realistic tributes to fallen soldiers, each has a special significance.
1. Forearm Military Tattoos
The forearm, with its well defined musculature and prominent visibility,is an ideal place for these tattoos inspired by military service. The variety of styles and subjects that can be applied to the forearm—from photo-realism to abstract designs—ensures that there is a tattoo out there for every soldier.
2. Military Skull Tattoos
One way or another, most soldiers come into contact with death. Whether it is on the front lines, or as part of the sprawling combat infrastructure, soldiers deal in war and war results in death. It is no wonder then that many of those who serve choose to incorporate the most definitive symbol of death into their tattoos, often with stunning results.
3. Arm Military Tattoos
The arms are what allow soldiers to do their jobs: from firing a rifle to refueling tanks, the arms make it all happen. They are also the most popular part of the body to get tattoos, so it is no surprise that many of the men and women who serve in the military choose to get ink on their arms.
4. Bicep Military Tattoos
The bicep has long been a popular spot for tattoos for a few reasons. The large muscles of the bicep make a great canvas that highlight the masculinity of these military tattoos, and the placement provides the wearer with a higher level of discretion regarding visibility than other more prominent locations.
5. Sleeve Military Tattoos
Full sleeves continue to gain popularity as tattoos become more mainstream and acceptable in practically every part of society. The large canvas of the entire arm provides artists opportunities to utilize the natural lines created by the musculature of the limb as well as plenty of room to incorporate a variety of elements and tell a story with a tattoo.
6. Chest and Side Military Tattoos
The chest and side of the torso have become popular locations for tattoo in the last decade, and for good reason. Besides the back, these are the largest canvases on the body and provide artists room to create stunning and intricately detailed designs. These military inspired pieces demonstrate what is possible when tattoos are applied to the chest and torso.
7. Back Military Tattoos
By far the largest canvas on the body, the back is perfectly suited for large, detail dense tattoos. While these striking military pieces utilize a photo-realistic black and gray approach, any number of different styles and methods can be applied to back pieces.
8. Leg Military Tattoos
The legs continue to gain popularity in the world of tattoos. The large size and well-defined muscles of the legs—specifically the calves and quads—allow artists to apply bigger designs and provide opportunities to utilize the natural lines of the body to create more interesting tattoos. These military inspired designs show just how stunning the results can be when applying ink to the legs.
9. Black and Red Military Tattoos
In the world of modern tattooing, black and red color schemes are most commonly associated with the trash polka aesthetic, although this doesn’t mean that any black and red tattoo is trash polka. Many of these military tattoos use a black and gray approach and then incorporate a limited use of red for the poppies worn by veterans in remembrance of their fallen comrades.
Military Tattoo FAQs
What do military tattoos represent?
To serve in a nation’s military is to make the most profound of sacrifices. The men and women who leave their friends and families behind to put their lives on the line for our country’s population are the best and bravest we have to offer. Because of the traumatic nature of warfare and combat, as well as the deep camaraderie that is established between soldiers, many servicemen and servicewomen choose to commemorate their time in the military with tattoos.
The range of designs and concepts that are utilized for these powerful tattoos is as varied as the soldiers who enlist. Some people choose to memorialize their service with the names, locations and bases where they were stationed during an operation. Other soldiers use images of combat to honor their fallen comrades.
The use of powerful imagery is a common element in these tattoos: American flags<span data-contrast=”auto”>, weapons of war and the red poppies associated with WWI veterans are all there. The Punisher mask from comic books has also become a popular design in United States armed forces circles thanks to the character’s penchant for dishing out righteous, violent retribution.
While every piece will have its own personal significance ascribed to it by the wearer, all of these tattoos are worn to memorialize soldiers, past and present and honor the sacrifice that they have made.
Enjoy these military tattoos but looking for more inspiration? Click on the links below for more galleries: