The sun and the moon have carried different meanings and symbolism throughout the history of humankind. Depending on the civilization and the culture, both have served as an inspiration for different religious and cultural interpretations or were ascribed with a variety of symbols. For example, in ancient Egypt, the sun and the moon represented the deity, especially the Sun, which was worshipped as the deity Re, or the Sun God.
Some of the ancient symbolism of the sun and moon have remained in modern times. Inspired by the ancient and cultural interpretations, the sun and the moon are nowadays mainstream tattoo design inspirations as well.
So, if you were looking to get a cool, meaningful, and unique tattoo, we recommend you continue reading. In the following paragraphs, we’ll take a look at the meaning and symbolism behind sun and moon tattoos, as well as look at some interesting design ideas. So, without further ado, let’s get started!
The Sun and Moon Tattoos: Meaning and Symbolism
Unity of the Opposites
In the majority of cases, the sun and moon tattoos symbolize the unity of opposites, or the necessity for polarity, opposition, and differences to exist. However, depending on one’s personality and life experiences, the meaning and specific interpretation of this symbolism is ascribed independently.
For example, to some people, the sun and moon tattoos can symbolize the unity of the evil and the good in them, the masculine and the feminine, or the different aspects of their dual personalities.
Birth, Rebirth, and Balance
In many cultures and traditions, the moon and the sun carry different, individual meanings, For example, the moon, because of its phases and different appearances on the sky, represents birth and rebirth. This can be very powerful imagery that can be adjusted to anyone’s life and experience.
People change as they grow older, they discover themselves all over again, so a moon tattoo would be a perfect way to commemorate one’s ability to be ‘born again’. The changing moon in this case would be an expression of the nature’s transformation, as well as the cycle of human life.
On the other hand, the Sun often symbolizes some kind of deity. But the sun itself, apart from the spiritual symbolism, carries the meaning of a perfect balance, wholeness, and ability to keep everything in line (the Sun coordinating the movement of the planets in the Solar system).
The juxtaposition of these two meanings and symbolisms create a perfect tattoo design for those who simply want to honor life. Without balance, birth, and innovation of oneself, life would be completely meaningless. When you think about it, this is some powerful stuff.
Love or Lovers
In some interpretations, the sun and moon tattoos can symbolize two lovers. Now, of course, depending on who is wearing the tattoo, this can either mean that the lovers are united or separated since they cannot exist in the sky at the same time.
In many cultures the moon symbolizes femininity, so in such tattoo designs, the moon often symbolizes the woman in the relationship. The sun on the other hand symbolizes masculine power and energy, so it would represent the man in the relationship.
The sun and moon in such tattoo design can be either complementary or appear as complete opposites, depending on what the context of the depicted relationship is. Of course, tattoos always have the meaning you ascribe to them, so feel free to adjust this interpretation of your life and experience.
47 Best Sun and Moon Tattoo Design Ideas
Tarot Card Sun and Moon Tattoo Design
Tarot usually incorporates sun and moon imagery to showcase mental clarity, instincts, trust, feelings, and one’s perception of the past, present, and the future. The Tarot cards often have a rather interesting design, that is evoking the mystical and astrological of the moon and sun symbolism. The Tarot card inspired sun and moon tattoos can be either grey (black and white with shading) or true to the colors of the tarot cards.
Sun and Moon Intertwined Design
In some tattoo designs, the sun and moon are intertwined, where the moon is often placed inside the core of the sun. This often symbolizes the unity of the opposites, rather than disunity and conflict. Such tattoos can be black and white, but in some cases, coloring or shading is used to emphasize the difference and the separation lines between the sun and the moon on the tattoo.
Sun and Moon With Faces Tattoo Design
To add some depth and meaning to a rather simple sun and moon design, many people go for a design where the sun and moon have faces. Now, depending on the facial expressions depicted on the tattoo, the meaning, and feeling of the tattoo can vary from calm and serene, to focused and serious. In such tattoo designs, the moon and the sun are often intertwined as well.
The Sun and Moon Linework Design
Linework design may be one of the best design choices if you want to focus on the sun and moon as geometrical shapes. Sure, the artistic and almost cartoonish designs seem more appealing and meaningful, but the simple linework can sometimes be even more efficient in translating a meaning than the bold, complicated, and colorful sun and moon tattoos. The linework can be as simple or as complicated as you want, so this is a great idea for those who, for example, want a great tattoo but also want to save money by avoiding details and color.
Simple Sun and Moon Tattoo Designs
If you want to save money and not spend it on intricate, detailed, and extravagant sun and moon tattoos, then just get a simple sun and moon tattoo. These tattoo designs are extremely simple and include simple and small linework designs. Sometimes there can be some shading and dotting to add that extra dimension but will add to the final tattoo cost of course. Nevertheless, these tattoos can be just as pretty and interesting and the large bold ones.
The Kissing Sun and Moon Tattoo Design (The Lovers)
The kissing design of the sun and moon tattoos is especially interesting since it symbolizes the unity and balance between the lovers, despite their initial differences. The design is simplistic and focuses on the kissing aspect more than the sun and moon per se. The tattoo design can feature colors and detail but in most cases, the tattoos are grey with an emphasis on shading or linework.
Intricate Sun and Moon Solar System Tattoo Design
This design doesn’t put the moon and the sun as the centerpiece of the tattoo. Rather, it depicts them as a part of the whole solar system. The design often features intricate linework and dotting technique to create a harmony between the depicted items and symbols. Even though this design may seem more feminine forward, it is an excellent design choice for both males and females. It can be easily adjusted to your liking and colored if you want. However, these types of tattoos often only use black ink.
The Sun and Moon Held By Hands Tattoo Design
Now, if you’re looking for a simple way to get a sun and moon tattoo interesting, just make them look like they’re being held by hands. No, but seriously, this can be a rather interesting concept as you can see from the exemplary designs. These tattoos often have a religious connotation, where the hands represent God, while the sun and moon are His creation. Needless to say, the design can mean whatever you want it to mean of course. But, overall, the hands to as an extra twist to a simple sun and moon tattoo for sure.
The Sun and Moon Yin Yang Tattoo Design
The yin yang design for a sun and moon tattoo is one of the best concepts in our opinion. This design simply has the best of both worlds, the appearance, and the meaning. It can show the necessity of the existence of the sun and moon duality, or the necessity of bad and evil for a balanced world. Regardless of the meaning you choose, the tattoo design simply looks exceptional, and it can be further adjusted and personalized of course. These types of tattoos are often black and white, so honor the yin yang symbol, but they can also be colored in whichever color suits the design the best.
Unique Sun and Moon Tattoo Designs
In case the aforementioned designs simply don’t speak or work for you, we’ve decided to include some other design and concepts which are more unique. These tattoo designs are often personalized, so feel free to add your twist to the design of your liking. The designs are incredibly intricate and mesmerizing, so we sure hope you get inspired by the ones we selected.
We hope that you liked our tattoo design choices and that you’ll get the inspiration for your new tattoo. We chose the designs based on the current trends as well as what our tattoo experts believed looks good, and will look good on everyone. Getting a sun and moon tattoo can be pretty exciting, so make sure to go for the design that is perfect for you. And remember, every tattoo has the meaning that you ascribe to it, so it doesn’t have to necessarily symbolize or mean what most people would assume. Have fun with your new tattoo and good luck!