What are the tattoo trends to look forward to
in 2021?

That dumpster fire of 2020 is sure to open up a creative renaissance that has the potential to get people excited about kickstarting their next tattoo project. With this in mind, I spoke with many artists and came up with this list of 13 trends to anticipate for 2021.

Some of the focus will be on bold colors such as bright reds or pale blues. The real estate you use will bounce between large-scale blackouts to micro-realism tattoos. Below are the trends I’m looking forward to seeing. If something catches your eye (or is new to you), jump on Instagram and search any of these keywords.  

Fine Art

Expect to see a lot of people asking for riffs on the classics like Picasso, Monet, and Van Gogh.

Thin Frames

Using a slim frame to reveal a small portion of a bigger subject can be eye-catching and beautiful.

Single Line

These tattoos are not new, but the minimalist style picked up speed in 2020 and is sure to carry more through this year.

Dainty Ornamental

This delicate style gives off an ornate, almost jewel-like, vibe.

Fine Line Surrealism

These dramatic pieces feature unique pieces housed in contrasting black and gray.

Colorful Palms

This space began to gain traction last year with bright floral designs between both hands.


Celebrity chefs helped to popularize this look and artists have taken it to the next level using the knife as a frame to house something completely different.


These other-world tattoos have maintained their popularity and lead the way as a striking cover-up option.

Painted Skull

Skulls are amazing images that skew toward darker color and content. Oftentimes there is a bright contrasting color that highlights a “living” image within the skull.


Lettering has been a staple tattoo for generations.


Coming out of a dark year like 2020, you can expect people to push their personal boundaries and go for this style of vivid gradient that carries an incredible “pop”!

Baby Yoda

Look, it’s Baby Yoda. He’s cute like Hello Kitty and Pikachu.

Art School

The dramatic shading of a sketch tattoo or a design stylized like a vibrant watercolor design using ink like it’s transparent will take you right back to your 101 class.

woman tattooing a arm


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