You love tattoos and are planning to get a meaningful, eye-catching masterpiece on your body? There is no better place on your body than the chest to achieve that. For tattoo lovers, the body is a canvas and a chest area is a great place to put beautiful large designs and art.
Chest tattoos for men have quickly become among the most popular tattoo placement ideas. After all, that’s a perfect way to show your beliefs and memories. For some guys, chest tattoos represent strength, masculinity, pride, courage, friendship, and family. They opt for chest tattoos to show off their badass side.
Some men use it as a fashion statement. Artists love chest tattoos because they have a lot of space to work with and to put a lot of stuff on. The cool thing about chest tattoos is that you can cover them up when you need to. Because of that when you think about getting a large tattoo you really can think outside of the box.
Chest tattoos are most suitable for brave men. Why? Well, they are known as some of the most painful tattoos. The area along the sternum and ribcage has less muscle fat meaning tattoos are more painful there compared to other places. You can expect less pain along the peck area if you have bigger muscle mass that provides padding and decreases pain.
But they, it’s all worth it because chest tattoos are powerful, awesome, and women love them. Remember, no pain no gain. However, you should opt for a chest tattoo and a specific design because you want to. This guide has great ideas that you can use as a source of inspiration.
Best Chest Tattoos for Men: 70+ Design Ideas
Sometimes choosing the right design for your chest tattoo can be a difficult task. So we will show you the collection of all sorts of chest tattoos below. From big tattoos to small and simple tattoos on the middle of your chest, options are endless.
1. Simple Chest Tattoo
In some cases, a simple chest tattoo can make a huge statement. Simple tattoos are discreet and delicate but powerful at the same time. You have tons of options, from the simple crows or doves on either side of the body to the one simple small piece that holds a special place in your heart.
A simple or minimalistic tattoo can be the best decision if you want to start small and graduate to the bigger design. For example, you can add quotes or other designs to the initial small piece of body ink.
Or if you have not yet decided what full chest tattoo designs are the best for you, starting small is the right way to go.
These tattoos are also suitable for men on the budget. It’s needless to mention you can cover them up easily, whether with clothes or with a new tattoo in case you don’t like it anymore.
2. Cover Up Chest Tattoo
We all have a past, and we all have made mistakes, something that we regret. Nobody is perfect. The point is when we make a mistake we don’t fall, we learn from them to move on with our lives. The tattoo can be one of those mistakes.
This “mistake” can be a chest tattoo that you don’t like anymore, maybe the name of the person that is not in your life anymore, or something that you decide to get tattooed on your body on a whim.
Or maybe your previous tattoo artist didn’t do a good job.
A cover-up chest tattoo is here to save the day. Your chest cover-up tattoo can be rich and full of details. But it’s crucial to choose an artist with excellent reviews. You need to know that covering up old ink is not an easy task. For the cover-up tattoo, the artist will choose a dark theme so it can blend with existing ink on your body.
3. Tribal Chest Tattoo
Tribal chest tattoos have a long history. They have become one of the most popular tattoo designs in the world. These symbols never get out of style. Tribal chest tattoos represent strength, history, and courage. They also serve to establish differences between the local tribes.
Throughout history many tribes only allowed a man to put a tribal tattoo on himself if he has accomplished something i.e. when he became a man.
To wear a tribal tattoo you need to do so to honor your ancestors, your family, and most importantly you. Choosing the right tribal tattoo can be hard; it’s important to understand the meaning behind them.
For example, a South American tribal tattoo is more complex than the other tribal tattoos. Maya people were good at predictions, so they have a lot of symbols to represent good and evil.
In Polynesian tribal tattoos, there are a lot of motifs with shark teeth. For some, they are just another use of geometrical figures, but for Polynesians the shark represents protection. And of course, there are a lot of other symbols in Polynesian tribal tattoos like a rock that depicts a chief warrior.
In Celtic tribes, there are a lot of symbols that represent power, union, lucky charm, and fortune.
Your tribal tattoo can be limited to the chest area only or go down your arm to mimic the shield.
4. Name Chest Tattoo
If you want your chest tattoo to represent something meaningful and show someone just how much you appreciate them, tattoo of their name is a perfect choice for you.
With a name chest tattoo, you will wear that special someone close to your heart. This is, really, a classic approach to ink because it is so personal. This kind of tattoo is beautiful because of its simplicity and you can feel free to add more details around it. If you want you can put some flowers around it or some stars to make it more personal.
That said, ink is something permanent on your body so you need to choose well whose name you will use. These tattoos are reserved for the most special people in your life. It can be your wife, child, girlfriend, or maybe a friend.
Choosing the font of the name is also a big deal. Cursive calligraphy is considered romantic, but you can also go for a simple font, a plain one.
5. Gangster Chest Tattoo
We all know who is a gangster. In its literal meaning, a gangster is a member of an organized gang of criminals. They engage in criminal activities, violence, intimidation threats, illegal trades, and more.
However, the gangster is also a term that many people use to refer to someone tough, resilient, and strong.
Like all tattoos, gangster chest tattoos have many different types and meanings.
In some gangs, tattoos have a strong presence of violence to show how dangerous they are. The basic intention of these types of tattoos is to impress others, or to use secret symbolism between gang members.
Others use gangster designs to show loyalty to the members or team.
Gangster chest tattoos often feature elements such as guns, knives, and religion. These tattoos are usually black, have no color, and are low in details.
With the growing popularity of these designs, gangster chest tattoos aren’t just for gangs only anymore. Nowadays they represent a trend that shows off men’s badass side.
6. Quote Chest Tattoo
This tattoo represents the wearer’s beliefs and tells the world “I am who I am”. Most tattoos of this kind are not overly decorative. The main focus here is on the quotes and their meaning.
Since this type of tattoo is symbolic to the wearer, you can choose a quote from the book, favorite lyrics from a song, movie, or even a famous speech.
Sometimes a quote chest tattoo is a man’s state of mind; it is a deeply personal narrative. Everything can be motivation for the quote chest tattoo, e.g. birth of a child, the death of a loved one, the person you love, your past, hopes for the future, life with a lot of ups and downs.
Quote chest tattoo can heal your past and help you look forward to your future. Quotes can be large, small, and with beautiful fonts and styles. Research well to fully understand what your quote represents before you put it permanently on your body.
7. Religious Chest Tattoo
The chest is the place where your heart beats, so there is no better place to show your devotion to faith. More and more people show their devotion to the faith through ink.
People who get tattoos with religious motifs show their faith is strong and use it as guidance in life. For most men, religious chest tattoos are a reminder God is close to them and that they can always rely on God.
This type of design is often admired for its size, details, and complexity. It may take weeks to complete complex designs. Most popular religious chest tattoos are crosses, angels, quotes from the Bible, saints, Jesus’ face or Jesus on the cross, and more.
You can put a cross in the center of your chest. In the Christian faith, the cross is symbolic for its link to God, or it can represent that every person wears their own burden.
Some people go for a tattoo of an angel that serves as their guardian from evil. And of course, you can choose to put hands together, maybe holding the cross. Options are endless. Hands put together represent prayer and inspire us to pray all the time and address God in the good and bad times.
For the religious chest tattoo in big size we can’t forget the Virgin Mary, yet another popular choice for men.
8. Snake Chest Tattoo
What makes snakes amazing is that they suit any tattoo style. Whether you want an American traditional tattoo or Japanese irezumi, snakes are always a great choice.
Besides snake alone, you can combine it with a rose. These tattoos look cool, badass and symbolize love and passion. If you don’t want a tattoo with a romantic feeling, choose the tribal style of the snake.
A small snake chest tattoo is also an excellent choice. When you feel ready for a more elaborate design, it’s easy to add all sorts of images around the snake.
If you are not the type of guy who wants a simple design, then a snake’s open mouth with teeth can be an intimidating and edgy alternative. This kind of tattoo shows the dangerous side of the snake and commands respect.
Probably the most iconic snake tattoo is of the snake eating itself. This symbol is ancient and it is called ouroboros. Its history is thousands of years old and it is a cycle of life, death and rebirth. It represents infinity and unity.
But if you want your tattoo to have the meaning of the internal battle of the two opposite sides of your personality then a two-headed snake is perfect. This snake represents your aggressive side and your peaceful side. Or for someone, two-headed snakes represent two different paths in their life.
9. Roman Numerals Chest Tattoo
Everyone’s got an important date, one day or more of them that bears major significance. This date can refer to a pleasant event such as an anniversary or birth of your kids, but it can also symbolize tragedy e.g. death of a loved one.
One way to pay homage to the important date in your life, regardless of its nature, is to get a roman numerals tattoo on your chest. The location of this tattoo indicates you’re keeping that date close to your heart. At the same time, roman numerals look sophisticated and powerful.
Besides important dates, men also get a roman numeral tattoo featuring their lucky number. You have plenty of options with roman numerals tattoos. For instance, you can opt for digits alone or you can add other details and images such as flowers, someone’s name, crown, among other things.
10. Full Chest Tattoo
Known as Gorget or a Decolletage, a full chest tattoo is a type of tattoo that covers the entire chest, instead of focusing on a specific area. This kind of tattoo is popular among edgy and adventurous men who love elaborate designs.
The main advantage of full chest tattoos is that they allow you to combine several ideas into one unique concept that tells a specific story. It can be the combination of positive and negative symbols intertwining into the eternal struggle between good and bad. In fact, it can be anything you want.
Full chest tattoos look great in black, but multicolor designs are also visually appealing. Most men, however, opt for black or combination with colors such as red.
11. Half Chest Tattoo
Unlike full chest tattoo that covers the whole area, these tattoos take up only a half. Basically, these tattoos cover a single pec muscle. Most guys combine a half chest tattoo with a sleeve thus getting even more space to tell a specific story or get all designs they want tattooed on their body.
Starting with a one-sided chest tattoo is convenient in more ways than one. Not only does it allow you to keep working on expanding the existing sleeve or shoulder tattoo, but it gives you other options too. This type of body art can be a great choice for men who still aren’t sure whether they want to get a full chest tattoo.
If you decide to expand on it in the near or distant future, it will turn into a full-chest tattoo of a unique design. But if you don’t intend to turn it into something larger, it will still look awesome and manly. In other words, this is a win-win option.
12. Japanese Chest Tattoo
Also known as irezumi, Japanese tattoos are works of art. You can easily recognize them by their vivid colors and maximum use of space. These tattoos look like paintings and that’s exactly what makes them so popular.
While Japanese tattoos are usually multicolor, you can opt for black ink if you want to. It will look just as powerful. When it comes to Japanese tattoos and their elaborate designs, choosing a talented tattoo artist is crucial.
13. American Traditional Chest Tattoo
American traditional tattoos are a popular choice for many. This tattoo style has strong black outlines and focuses on specific colors such as yellow and red. Of course, an all-black American traditional tattoo can give your design a unique accent.
Common themes in traditional tattoos are of nautical nature, but you can also opt for eagles, panthers, pinup girls, you name it.
14. Rose Chest Tattoo
Rose is one of those floral tattoos that looks great on men and women alike. On a man, this beautiful flower symbolizes strength, nobility, and courage. A rose also stands for love and passion, when done in red.
Additionally, a rose tattoo can signify the presence of beauty, balance, and finding your own path in life. Different colors have more specific meanings and this is where a tattoo artist steps in and explains the symbolism behind different designs.
Some men may opt for a rose tattoo to show off their masculinity.
15. Multicolor Chest Tattoo
Most guys opt for black chest tattoos. While there’s nothing wrong with that, if you want to add a dash of color, you can definitely do that. Multicolor chest tattoos are artistic, often mystical, and always amazing.
Keep in mind multicolor tattoos tend to fade faster than their black counterparts. However, the chest area isn’t exposed to the sun like the face, neck, and hands are, so your tattoo gets decent protection.