Published on May 10, 2023

While tattoos are more popular than ever before, facial tattoos are still relatively rare. Many cultures use intricate facial tattoos for decorative and religious purposes.

Face tattooing was brought to the West with the discovery of the Polynesian islands. The Maori people tattoo their faces to honor their gods and indicate the status of a person.

Although Western culture associated face tattoos with gangs and criminals, it's becoming more accepting of face tattoos as celebrities, and tattoo aficionados have started adopting the trend. Rapper Post Malone is one of the most famous examples.

If you want to make a bold personal statement, a face tattoo is the way to go.

Do Face Tattoos Hurt?

There is some cushioning around your face that makes it less painful, but it generally will depend on where your tattoo is and how much detail you will include. If the tattoo is small, with less intricacy, the duration will be faster.

However, it's essential to note that tattooing around your eyes can be very painful - and even frightening. You may find yourself instinctively recoiling when the needle approaches your eye!

Curious about tattoo pain? Our Tattoo Pain Guide: Where do tattoos hurt? has all the answers you seek. From sensitive spots to more tolerable areas, we'll help you navigate the pain landscape for your next tattoo

The Best Face Tattoos To Get

Getting a face tattoo is a big commitment, but with the right artist supporting you, you can get inked with a design you love. Here are our favorites:

Geometric Face Tattoo

Geometric Face Tattoo

Credit: Netluxury.com

This person has been tattooed with geometric symbols . It's not only a bold design; the style is symbolic of ancient sacred geometry and may have deep personal meaning.

Eyebrow Tattoos

Eyebrow Tattoos

Credit: Getty Images

If you run into this lady from this image in the street, you won't be able to tell that she's tattooed! Many models and actors tattoo their eyebrows to enhance their eyes and facial features.

While you can't really consider this body art, eyebrow tattoos have helped men and women change their appearance for years. If you don't want to commit to a permanent tattoo, a qualified beauty therapist will be able to provide a temporary one.

Forehead Face Tattoo

Forehead Face Tattoo

Credit: Ink. me

The forehead is often associated with physic powers, and the third eye. Many people express their mystical nature by tattooing the sun, moon, and stars on their foreheads and cheek. It's not beautiful but pairs well with facial piercings and bold hairstyles.

Script Face Tattoo

Script Face Tattoo

Credit: Projaqk.com

A face tattoo doesn't need to contain a sign or symbol. Some people prefer the written word.

You can choose a meaningful quote that represents you, the name of a lover or parent, or just the initials or first letter of the name of someone you'd like to pay tribute to.

Remember to discuss the placement and options with the tattoo artists you're considering first.

Looking for the perfect font to express yourself through ink? Dive into our Tattoo Font Ideas and unleash your imagination. From calligraphy to gothic, we've got the inspiration you need for a truly unique tattoo.

Skull Face Tattoo

Skull Face Tattoo

Credit @rickgenestofficial

This face tattoo was made famous by artist Rick Genest. It's not a common tattoo and one that few tattoo artists have perfected.

Rick Genest decided to cover his body with tattoos after a brush with death at the age of fifteen, including his face, to represent his experience.

If you want to go this route with your face tattoo, you need to find an artist you can trust.

Ear and Face Tattoo

Ear and Face Tattoo

Credit: Projaqk.com

Not everyone has the confidence to take on a full-face tattoo. The ear and neck are a subtle (and quite common) placement). 

In the case of this model, she's tattooed her ears with beautiful constellations, coupled with a cheeky fox on her neck. It looks great, but it's not as noticeable as some of the other face tattoos we've looked at.

Line Face Tattoo

Line Face Tattoo

Credit: @undefined (Instagram)

The subtle tattoos of arrows enhanced the model's facial features beautifully without becoming overly distracting. A simple line drawing can be a subtle addition to your face and jawline.

Sparkle Face Tattoo

Sparkle Face Tattoo

Credit: @undefined (Instagram)

Sparkle tattoos are everywhere these days, and they are perfect for women looking for feminine, playful face tattoos that resemble make-up or beauty spots.

Sparkles are associated with a sparkling personality, champagne, and fireworks, so who wouldn't want to adorn themselves accordingly?

Final Thoughts

Getting any form of body art is a lifelong commitment, so you need to choose carefully. Face tattoos are an even bigger commitment because they are very obvious, and while they are becoming more acceptable, some employers may not want to hire someone with facial tattoos. Consider your decision carefully before committing to a face tattoo.

Ryan S. Mills
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