Khmer tattoos, also known as Sak Yant tattoos, have been extremely popular in Southeast Asia for centuries. These designs not only look good on the skin but they also have very powerful meanings.
They’re still mostly found in Asian countries and other heavily Buddhist areas, but over the last decade, it seems like more and more people from the West have learned about the style and have chosen to get their own Khmer tattoos.
If you have seen Khmer tattoos before and are interested in getting your own, you have come to the right place. On this page, we will take a look at some of the most popular Khmer tattoos and their meanings to give you a better idea about whether they are the right kind of designs for you.
Popular Khmer Tattoo Meanings
Regardless of the design, you will usually find that Khmer tattoos will have a couple of base meanings. In most cases, they will symbolize protection, and you will also usually find that the owners of these tats believe that they have magical powers. Of course, if you get a Khmer tattoo, you do not have to use any of these meanings. It’s just important to know that they are associated with just about every Khmer design out there today.
The Yant Sing Thong tattoo is a highly detailed lion holding a flag. It represents superiority in everything in life, which is something that plenty of people want to have. It is known as the top Khmer tattoo to get if you want to have a lot of power in your life.
One design that is just as popular among Hindus as it is with Buddhists is the Ganesh tattoo. This is usually a very large Khmer tattoo that has an elephant sitting in a meditative position. It represents one’s ability to overcome hurdles in one’s life regardless of how challenging they are.
The Sariga Koo Yant design is one of the best Khmer tattoos to get if you are looking to get a love tattoo. Not only is it a fantastic choice for people who are trying to show that they have love in their lives, it is also quite popular for people who want to have the power to attract. And even on top of those meanings, you can also get the Sariga Koo Yant if you want to have extra luck during the big moments in your life.
If you feel like you have a bit too much activity going on in your head and want to be able to focus a bit easier, then you might be interested in the Pra Jao Haam Tukh tattoo. This Khmer design is said to give people the ability to block out all of the unwanted noise, especially in moments when they need to focus.
If you are already interested in bird tattoos, then you will probably love the Hongsa Yant design. This is a classic Khmer tattoo that seems to be one of the favorites among people who have been recently introduced to this style. It includes a swan bird and is said to give the wearer the ability to persuade everyone around them.
This is a great Khmer tattoo to get if you have had a tough time getting your way in the past and just want a bit of a jolt when you need to convince someone of anything.
Other Khmer Tattoo Meanings
One of the coolest-looking Khmer tattoos is the Hanuman Yant, which is a circular design that shows a soldier fighting for what is his (or hers). This is a great Khmer tattoo to get if you are looking for a design that represents bravery and strength. Those are meanings that plenty of people want in their tattoos, which is why the Hanuman Yant is growing in popularity right now.
If you are a hard worker and want a bit of luck growing your business, then you might be interested in the Tong Maharat. This Khmer tattoo, which is in the design of a large flag, is said to give people great foresight with their businesses, allowing them to know just what to do to grow their companies. The Tong Maharat looks great on the chest or shoulder because of its flag-like design.
The Turtle Yant looks pretty much exactly as you would expect it to if you have seen the Khmer tattoo style in the past. It is a circular turtle design that symbolizes one’s ability to stay healthy while also being one of the top good luck charms in Buddhism. This is an excellent Khmer tattoo to get if you are looking for one that will fit perfectly on your upper arm or on your chest.
Khmer Tattoo Designs and Placement
In just about all cases, Khmer tattoos are made in black ink without any other colors. If you know that you want a colorful tattoo, we recommend looking into other tattoo styles since the color would throw off the classic look of Khmer tattoos and could be seen as offensive. That being said, there’s nothing wrong with tweaking these designs to suit your needs.
As we pointed out up top, most Khmer tattoos are quite large, though you can shrink most of them down to fit anywhere on your body. Of course, if you want the most detail you won’t want to shrink down the designs that are meant to have a bunch of discernable symbols in them.
Is the Khmer Tattoo Right for You?
We hope you now have a better understanding of Khmer tattoos and their meanings. These are very cool tattoos that really stand out when compared to the common Western styles that are so popular these days. What’s really great about Khmer tattoos is that most of them have two or three great meanings, so it’s really not difficult at all to find the perfect one for you.
If you find that any of the Khmer tattoos mentioned above are a good fit for you, we highly recommend seeking out an artist who has experience with Khmer tattoos or similar styles.