Finger tattoos have become very popular recently, and it’s easy to see why. While smaller than most tattoos, these inkings are no less meaningful and can be adapted to suit any style. From bold and statement-making to tiny and delicate, there’s a finger tattoo out there to suit everyone. Feeling inspired to get one of your own? Keep reading to find out all about finger tattoos and discover the best tattoo designs that will stand the test of time.
1. Ring Finger Tattoo
Ring finger tattoos are a beautiful way to show your commitment to your other half. Many couples choose these inkings for their wedding, and they can be a great alternative to a real ring as a tattoo can never be lost or stolen. They are also ideal if you are unable to wear your wedding ring at work for safety reasons. The ancient Romans believed the ring finger contained the ‘vein of love’ which connected directly to the heart, making this finger tattoo a very romantic and meaningful option.
2. Small Finger Tattoo
The trend for small tattoos is showing no sign of slowing down. If you are searching for the perfect subtle inking, a small finger tattoo could be perfect for you. Mini symbols, initials, and shapes are all popular options and are tiny enough to you won’t need to worry about keeping them covered. Small finger tattoos can be just as meaningful as large pieces, and you will always be able to see your inking whenever you want.
3. Cute Finger Tattoo
Cute tattoos take many forms – from fruit to candy, cartoons, and even dinosaurs! To get the perfect cute finger tattoo, choose your favorite character or theme, then select an artist with an adorable art style. When it comes to finger tattoos, keeping it simple is usually the best option. Try a cute line-drawing in black or blue ink for the best results.
4. Side Finger Tattoo
Side finger tattoos are a great subtle option as they aren’t visible unless you move your fingers in a certain way. Many people choose secret messages, mantras, or single letters for their side finger tattoos as these inkings have a mysterious and intriguing quality. They are also popular as couple’s tattoos, as messages can be spelled out when the pair hold hands.
5. Inner Finger Tattoo
One of the most discreet types of inking is the inner finger tattoo. This tattoo will only be visible if you show your open palm to someone else, make it ideal for those who prefer to keep their body art private. As a result, it’s the perfect placement for a tiny, meaningful tattoo design, such as an initial or symbol. Plus, tattoos in this area are slightly less painful than outer finger tattoos, as there are more muscle and fat to protect the bones and nerves.
6. Middle Finger Tattoo
Looking for ink with attitude? Try a middle finger tattoo! Favored by stars like Ariana Grande, the middle finger tattoo is all about showing off your rebellious spirit with a bold and attention-grabbing design. Alternatively, your middle finger is generally your longest, which means it’s perfect for larger vertical designs such as line drawings or patterns.
7. Heart Finger Tattoo
Heart tattoos are usually chosen as a symbol of love, romance, and commitment. They can also represent self-love, family, or act as an expression of a person’s loving and caring spirit. Because it’s visible whenever you look at your hand, a heart finger tattoo will always remind you about the most important thing in life: love.
8. Rose Finger Tattoo
Rose tattoos are one of the most popular tattoo designs of all time, and they look great when placed on your finger. These sweet-smelling flowers have petals and thorns, meaning they represent both the beauty and pain of life. Roses are also linked with love and passion, so they are often chosen as a tattoo tribute to a loved one.
9. Lion Finger Tattoo
Made popular by celebrities like Cara Delevingne and Anthony Joshua, lion finger tattoos stand out because they are unusually detailed when compared with standard finger designs. A symbol of pride, nobility, courage, and strength, the lion is known as the king of the jungle. It’s a popular ink option for those that feel connected to those attributes. Alternatively, if you’re born under the star sign Leo, you’ll love a lion tattoo.
10. Snake Tattoo
Snake tattoos not only look cool, but they are also versatile and can be adapted to fit any placement on the body – so it’s not hard to see why they’ve never gone out of style. Historically, snakes represent creativity, knowledge, fertility, and transformation, making them perfect for both women and men. They also have a cool Gothic appeal and are popular with those looking for a unique finger tattoo option.
11. Tattoo with Words
Fingers are long and straight, making them perfect for a word tattoo. These meaningful inkings are a pure way to express what is most important to you. You can also use your finger tattoo to spell out a special quote or to hide a secret message for a special person to read. Whatever you choose, your finger tattoo with words will make a powerful statement.
12. Butterfly Tattoo
Butterflies represent transformation, freedom, and beauty. They are popular with both women and men, and your butterfly design can be adapted to suit your style. For a more masculine take, try a black ink butterfly in a static pose. Meanwhile, a feminine butterfly tattoo could wrap around your finger and feature an accent color like red or yellow.
13. Flower Tattoo
Flower tattoos have many different meanings, from the joyful optimism of the sunflower to the spiritual harmony of the lotus. When choosing your floral finger inking, think about what you want your tattoo to represent and if it fits with your style. Long-stemmed flowers like daisies and roses also look especially beautiful when placed on your finger.
14. Finger Dot Tattoo
One of the simplest and most popular finger tattoo designs is dots. While they are understated, dot tattoos also carry a lot of meaning and significance. A single dot often represents a ‘full stop’ – the end of one phase and the start of another. A row of three dots is another popular version of this tattoo. Once often worn by gang members, today, it is associated with living life on your terms. It can also be considered a Christian tattoo, representing the Holy Trinity.
15. Henna Finger Tattoo
Considering a finger tattoo but not quite ready to commit? Try having your chosen design inked in henna, which is painless and naturally fades over a few weeks. This natural plant-based dye has been used to create beautiful body art for centuries; the most well-known is mehndi, the traditional wedding tattoo of India. While you could take inspiration from Indian culture for your henna tattoo, any design can be inked in henna if you choose an experienced artist.
16. King and Queen Finger Tattoo
One of the most iconic couple’s tattoo designs is the king and queen symbols. This inking represents mutual respect and shows that while you have different roles, you complement each other perfectly. An ideal way to pay tribute to the one who rules over your heart, king-and-queen finger tattoos look especially romantic when you and your other half hold hands.
17. Rosary Tattoo
For religious people, a rosary finger tattoo can be a subtle yet meaningful reminder of their faith in God. A Catholic symbol, the rosary is used to count prayers and is associated with the Virgin Mary. As a tattoo, it is considered to represent God’s protection from evil. In Scripture, the right hand is also associated with strength, power, and blessings, so having a rosary inked on a finger of your right hand could be especially significant.
18. Arrow Tattoo
Arrows are a simple and stylish option for a finger tattoo for both men and women. They represent your direction in life and the importance of moving forward, not backward. Many people consider an arrow tattoo to symbolize staying true to yourself and your goals. So, not only do these tattoos have a positive and motivating meaning but they also perfectly align with the shape of your finger.
19. Diamond Tattoo
Diamond is the strongest natural material on Earth and has been considered precious – even priceless – for thousands of years. It’s no surprise then that diamonds have come to represent strength, wealth, beauty, and eternal love today. While these glittering gems would look great as a tattoo anywhere, they also suit a finger placement. Many people also choose a diamond tattoo as an engagement inking, as the traditional proposal gift is a diamond ring.
20. Moon Tattoo
Moon tattoos have been a popular inking design choice for many years as it is instantly recognizable. Its bold shape looks great when inked on fingers. The moon is associated with the night, so it’s an attractive tattoo for those with a mysterious side. The moon can also represent transformation, as it waxes and wanes each month.
21. Anchor Tattoo
Another tattoo design that has been popular for centuries is the anchor. These nautical symbols often represent the end of a long journey. Anchors can also symbolize safety and hope, which is why they are often chosen as a couple’s tattoo – they express that you are each other’s ‘safe harbor.’ The anchor tattoo is perfectly shaped to fit on your finger, making it a great option for a wedding tattoo.
22. Feather Tattoo
Feathers represent hope, courage, and freedom because they allow birds to fly. People who long to ‘spread their wings’ and see the world may choose feather tattoos to symbolize their free spirit. Additionally, peacock feathers represent spirituality, beauty, self-awareness, and leadership. Like arrows, the long, slender shape of feathers makes them the perfect option for a finger tattoo.
23. Gun Tattoo
While gun tattoos are considered controversial by some, they are also a popular tattoo choice. They can be considered to represent violence and aggression – however, the gun is also a symbol of defense and protection of those you love most. It can also symbolize a fiery ‘loaded pistol’ personality! A small gun inking, such as one on your finger, is a less threatening and more discreet option for those who want a gun tattoo design.
24. Infinity Tattoo
The infinity tattoo symbol is small and self-contained, and its smooth figure-eight look fits perfectly on your finger. Because of its simplicity, the infinity symbol suits both men and women. It is often combined with other elements – such as a name or cross – and is also popular as a wedding tattoo, where it symbolizes the infinite love of the couple.
25. Wave Tattoo
Like the infinity symbol, the wave tattoo has simple and fluid lines that look perfect on your finger. Popular with men and women who take a relaxed approach to life – or simply love the ocean – a wave finger tattoo will remind you to go with the flow and that summer is just around the corner.
How badly do finger tattoos hurt?
While all tattoos carry some degree of pain, most people consider finger tattoos to hurt more than tattoos on the arm or wrist. That's because the nerves and bones in our fingers are close to the skin. There is also very little muscle or fat to act as a protective cushion from the needle. However, finger tattoos are, by definition, small, so they take less time to complete. As a result, the pain won't last long and will be easier to manage.
How Quickly do Finger Tattoos Fade?
Finger tattoos are some of the fastest inkings to fade and blur. To keep yours looking crisp and vibrant, make sure you follow all the aftercare instructions very carefully in the first few days after getting the tattoo. Choose blue or black ink over other colors as the dark pigment will look fresher for longer, and try to avoid inking over your knuckles as these tattoos tend to fade even faster. Book an appointment with your tattoo artist every 10 to 12 months for a touch-up.
How long do finger tattoos take to heal?
From the time your tattoo artist applies the bandage after inking, finger tattoos can take up to six weeks to heal. Your skin will start looking normal after two to four, but be patient with caring for your hands.
How much do finger tattoos cost?
The price of a finger tattoo will vary based on the tattoo artist you choose. In general, a finger tattoo will cost between $50-$100.
Arabella Roden is a skilled writer and sub-editor with over ten years of experience across print, digital, and B2B. She holds a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism and specializes in beauty, hairstyles, fashion, tattoos, and lifestyle topics. Arabella is currently the Chief Sub Editor at Mecca Brands and has been writing for The Trend Spotter since 2019.
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