It used to be that the majority of tattoos were meant to be hidden away, but these days more people prefer to get their tattoos in visible areas, such as on their forearms. What makes forearm tattoos so popular now is because they allow people to express themselves in new ways. Their forearm tattoos are there for everyone to see, which allows outsiders to get to know the owners of these tats before they’ve even said a word.

As far as forearm tattoo ideas go, you really can go in any direction. If you want to get a half-sleeve, you’ll have a ton of great design options at your disposal. If instead you’d rather have a bunch of different designs on your forearm, you can do that too!

Below are some of the most popular forearm tattoo ideas and reasons why they have become so popular.

The portrait
There aren’t too many forearm tattoo designs more popular than the portrait tattoo. You can get a picture of a relative tattooed on your arm, or you can get a picture of a fictitious character. It’s completely up to you, but be sure that it is a portrait that you really love since you and everyone else will be looking at it for the rest of your life.

The quote
This is one of the most personal forearm tattoos out there, so it’s vital that you get a quote that will mean as much to you now as it will 50 years from now. Some people choose to get inspirational quotes on their forearms, while others choose to go with a favorite lyric. These forearm tats can be placed down the front or back of your arm, or you can even have the quote wrap around your forearm.

The nautical
It used to be that only sailors would get nautical tattoos, but once the tats’ meanings came to be known by more people the designs blew up. The anchor represents stability in one’s life; sharks represent strength and fearlessness; and ships represent adventurousness. All of these and the other popular nautical tattoo designs look fantastic on the forearm regardless of how small or big they are.

The landscape
Landscape forearm tattoos are usually best at a, well, landscape viewing angle rather than going straight up and down your arm. You have an endless list of landscape design options to choose from, and we definitely recommend getting something unique so you will know you’re the only person in the world with that particular forearm tattoo. Since these types of tattoos usually have a lot of detail, be sure to get an experienced tattoo artist to draw it up for you.

The skull
The skull tattoo has been one of the most popular tattoo designs pretty much ever since tattooing became a thing. It’s a way to show that you have accepted your own mortality and that you should make the most of every day. Skull tattoos can go absolutely anywhere on your body, but the forearm is a great location for it because it will constantly remind you to get the most out of your days and not to fear what’s in front of you.

The religious
There are hundreds of great religious tattoos that people get on their forearms. The most popular designs are Jesus, the cross, angels, and heaven. People who get religious tattoos on their forearms are very proud of their beliefs and they look at their tattoos anytime they need a reminder of what they live for. Religious tattoos used to be pretty simple to draw, but these days you can get very detailed images right there on your forearm.

The mechanical
If you want to go the complex route, then you’ll definitely want to look into getting a mechanical tattoo. These designs make it look like your arm is partially robotic, which looks amazing when done correctly. This is the type of forearm tattoo that you’ll want to get if you want to turn heads because it most definitely will turn heads. Again, you’ll want a great artist to do this type of forearm tattoo for you since it is not the easiest type of design to draw.

The favorite animal
This one is pretty obvious. If you have a favorite – you know, one that makes you feel that much more alive – then it can be the perfect design for a forearm tattoo. You have a lot of decisions to make on an animal tattoo, though. Do you just want its head with some designs around it, or would you rather have its entire body going up your forearm? Either way, animal tattoos seem to be great forearm tattoos because they pop off of the skin a bit and they’re the types that you want everyone to see.

The stained glass
If you want a forearm tattoo that is pretty much universally seen as being beautiful, then you’ll definitely want to look into getting a stained glass tattoo. It looks fantastic on the forearm and you can go in many directions as far as colors and design go. There aren’t too many stained glass meanings out there, but that’s not really the point of this tattoo. Of course, you can always make get a stained glass tattoo in the shape of another object to add in a bit more meaning. The stained glass tattoo goes best on the front of your forearm so everyone can see it in all its glory.

The three dimensional
The three dimensional tattoo can be absolutely anything, including all of the forearm tattoo ideas listed above. If you do decide to go the 3D route, be sure that you get a trusted artist to work on the tat since it takes a lot of skills to make an amazing three dimensional tattoo. This is especially true with forearm tattoos because the artist will have to work with the curvature of the arm. When done correctly, you will be very proud to show off your 3D forearm tattoo.

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