Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

top Yakuza dragon tattoo ideas featured image
Published on May 8, 2024

Do you feel like you're navigating the murky waters of the underworld in search of the ultimate Yakuza Dragon Tattoo Design?

Well, you don't need to delve into the shadows any longer. Brace yourself and prepare to embark on an exhilarating journey through the world of ink and intrigue as we uncover the most powerful Yakuza Dragon Tattoo designs from over the internet.

Get ready to explore how each line and curve of these Dragon Tattoos encapsulate tales of loyalty, power, and the fierce code of the Yakuza.

What Does A Yakuza Dragon Tattoo Mean? 

Before getting yourself inked in a new Dragon Tattoo, you might ask yourself, What Does A Dragon Tattoo Mean?

Yakuza Tattoos or Irezumi began in the 17th century when people caught stealing and gambling were sent to prison, where they were marked with ink to identify them.

Irezumi Tattoos are consistently applied by hand using wooden handles and metal needles attached via silk thread.

They require a special ink known as Nara ink, which is a tattooing method practiced by both the Ainu people and the Ryukyuan people, who use ink derived from the indigo plant.

During the Edo period, irezumi kei, or tattoo punishment, was a form of criminal penalty. The location of the tattoo was determined by the crime.

For example, thieves were tattooed on the arm and murderers on the head. The shape of the tattoo was based on where the crime occurred.

In Yakuza Tradition, a Dragon Tattoo symbolizes wisdom and power. However the color of the dragon also has importance.

A black dragon represents experience, a green dragon represents nature, and a gold dragon represents value. 

Yakuza Dragon Tattoo Designs

Now that we’ve learned a brief history of Yakuza Dragon Tattoo designs, let’s take a look at some of the best Yakuza Dragon Tattoos the internet has to offer. 

1. Blue Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Blue Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Photo credit: @nguyen.kito.art

Starting off with your Yakuza Dragon Tattoo, try out a Blue color for your Dragon. In Japanese culture, a Blue Dragon Tattoo represents strength, wisdom, and good fortune. A Blue Dragon can also represent Ryūjin, a Dragon deity of the sea symbolizing the power of the ocean, who, in some tales, has the ability to transform into a human state.

2. Red Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Red Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Photo credit: Cuded

A Red Yakuza Dragon Tattoo represents strength and power. In Yakuza tattoo art, the Red Dragon Tattoo may represent the warrior spirit and unyielding courage. It's often inked on those who wish to convey their leadership qualities and their ability to overcome challenges no matter the odds.

3. Yellow Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Yellow Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Photo credit: AmazingTattoo.Art

Yellow Dragons are associated with wealth, prosperity, and wisdom. For the Yakuza, a Yellow Dragon Tattoo may symbolize someone who is not only successful but also respected for their intellect and judgment. It may be a choice for those who see themselves as strategic thinkers or business leaders. 

4. Green Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Green Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Photo credit: @japanese.ink

The Green Dragon stands for nature, growth, and life. It is commonly chosen to symbolize a new beginning or a significant change in life. For Yakuza members, the Green Dragon might also represent aspirations for rebirth or renewal, perhaps after a period of turmoil or personal transformation.

5. Black Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Black Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Photo credit: Sunset Tattoo

Black Dragons are the most enigmatic of Dragons and are often associated with wisdom, experience, and the unknown. In Yakuza tattoos, Black Dragon Tattoos might represent the mastery of the hidden knowledge and the power that comes with great age and experience. They are also symbols of fearlessness in facing the unknown.

6. White Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

White Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Photo credit: www.congress-intercultural.eu

White Dragons are deeply connected to purity, spirituality, and protection. They are often seen as guardians that guide the soul, offering light in times of darkness. In Yakuza tattoos, a White Dragon Tattoo might be chosen to protect its wearer from harm or to signify a journey toward spiritual enlightenment. 

7. Dragon And Tiger Yakuza Tattoo

Dragon And Tiger Yakuza Tattoo

Photo credit: @rox.tattooist

In Chinese tradition, the Tiger and Dragon represent Yin and Yang, respectively. They are the two opposing forces that represent the universe, with the Dragon symbolizing the heavens and the Tiger representing the Earth. A Dragon Tiger Tattoo represents universal balance and harmony. 

8. Dragon And Koi Yakuza Tattoo

Dragon And Koi Yakuza Tattoo

Photo credit: Reddit

Inspired by the story of the Koi that traveled up and over a waterfall to be transformed into a Dragon, A Dragon Koi Tattoo represents the transformation one goes under after a long journey, physical or emotional. A Dragon Koi Tattoo has both a Koi Tattoo and a Dragon Tattoo symbolizing both sides of the journey. 

9. Dragon Fish Yakuza Tattoo

Dragon Fish Yakuza Tattoo

Photo credit: ar.inspiredpencil.com

Based on the same story of the Koi traveling up the waterfall, a Dragon Fish Tattoo symbolizes resilience and tenacity. Unlike the Koi Dragon Tattoo, which depicts both the Dragon and the Koi, a Dragonfish Tattoo shows the Koi fish at the halfway point in its transformation, symbolizing that you change over time and not immediately during your journey. 

10. Minimalist Yakuza Dragon-inspired Tattoo

Minimalist Yakuza Dragon-inspired Tattoo

Photo credit: @trenched

For those who love the Irezumi Tattoo style yet don't want to go all out with their design, check out this Yakuza-inspired Minimalist Dragon Tattoo.
  While Irezumi Tattoos are known for their full-body artwork style you can just take the signature art design and imbue into your tiny Tattoo like shown. 

11. Double Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Double Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Photo credit: @diaoshane

You don’t have to settle for just one Yakuza Dragon for your Tattoo. You can also add other elements to your Irezumi Tattoo, like adding different symbolic Japanese images like cherry blossoms, a Japanese fan or, like in this design, a Japanese Goddess. 

In Chinese mythology, The Dragon and Phoenix signify the harmonious union of opposites. The Dragon represents the masculine, with its strength and power, while the phoenix embodies the feminine, representing grace and beauty. A Dragon Phoenix Tattoo symbolizes auspiciousness and harmony, and in East Asian culture, the Dragon and Phoenix represent marital harmony and are often used at weddings. 

13. Gyarados Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Gyarados Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Photo credit: Reddit

This Pokemon Tattoo is of Gyarados who is among the first generation and 130th Pokemon in the Pokedex. Once it appears, it goes on a rampage. It remains enraged until it demolishes everything around it. Gyarados was inspired by the tale of the Koi that transformed into a Dragon as his pre-evolution form is Magikarp, a Koi Pokemon. 

14. Mushu Irezumi Tattoo

Mushu Dragon Tattoo

Photo credit: @tattoosnob

Mushu is the loud-mouthed, self-proclaimed guardian of Fa-Mulan. Mushu was the guardian of the Fa family until he failed to protect Fa Deng, a solider and family member. Despite his initial selfish behavior, Mushu eventually cares for Mulan and places her safety and happiness above his own.

15. Japanese Mask Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Japanese Mask Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Photo credit: Pinterest

You can add other elements to your Yakuza Dragon Tattoo, such as a Japanese Mask Tattoo to add more symbolic meaning to your design. Japanese masks have a variety of meanings depending on the style chosen, however, this design depicts an Oni Mask, which is used to ward off evil spirits. 

16. Pikachu Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Pikachu Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Photo credit: @victormartins_tattoo

So, it's not exactly your traditional Yakuza Dragon style, but why not consider getting a Tattoo of one of your favorite characters with their own Irezumi Tattoo? This design has an angry-looking Pikachu taking a look behind while he holds an opium pipe. Perhaps angry Ash is looking to throw him into battle once again. 

Unlike the Japanese Oni Mask from previous, you can almost opt for a Yakuza Dragon Tattoo with an actual Oni. Oni are a type of yōkai, or Japanese demon, that are often depicted as cruel, evil, and fierce. While there is no meaning for a Japanese Dragon Tattoo with an Oni. Tattoos of Oni are symbolic of warding off evil spirits, so together, they offer duel protection.

18. Dragon and Samurai Irezumi Tattoo

Dragon and Samurai Irezumi Tattoo

Photo credit: @irezumidisciples

Samurai were the hereditary military nobility and officer caste of medieval and early-modern Japan. Samurai were expected to live by a strict moral code called bushido, or "The Way of the Warrior", which was influenced by Confucianism. Samurai masks, like in the design shown, were facial armor worn by Japanese warriors during battle to protect their faces and scare enemies.

19. Shenron Irezumi Dragonball Tattoo

Shenron Irezumi Dragonball Tattoo

Photo credit: Reddit

This Dragon Ball Tattoo is of Shenron the mythical Dragon who is summoned once all of the seven Dragon Balls are gathered together in the Dragonball franchise. Shenron was created by the Nameless Namek, an alien being from the planet Namek who split into two Namekians, Kami and King Piccolo. 

20. Haku Irezumi Dragon Tattoo

Haku Irezumi Dragon Tattoo

Photo credit: Tattoodo

This inspired by Anime Tattoo is of Haku the river spirit who takes both the form of a twelve-year-old boy and Dragon in the Studio Ghibli film Spirited Away. When in his Dragon form, Haku has a teal and mint green mane, with a white, scaled body. Haku is the deuteragonist of the Spirited Away film and aids Chihiro in her quest to save her family and escape the Spirit Realm. 

21. Kaido Irezumi Tattoo

Kaido Irezumi Tattoo

Photo credit: Reddit

Kaido is the leader of the Beast Pirates and one of the Four Yonko who rule over the New World in the One Piece universe. Kaido took control of Wano with the aid of Orochi before betraying him for his new Onigashima Project. This One Piece Tattoo is fantastic with great coloring and detail and showing off the scar given to Kaido by Kozuki Oden. 

Where To Get Your Yakuza Dragon Tattoo? 

It’s not just about the Tattoo Design. Tattoo location is equally important when it comes to your Yakuza Dragon Tattoo. So, let’s take a look at some of the best Yakuza Dragon Tattoo locations. 

1. Body Cast Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Body Cast Yakuza Dragon Tattoo

Photo credit: Bruno Fuga Advocacia

If you want to honor the true Yakuza style, you must get yourself a full-body cast Yakuza Dragon Tattoo. Yakuza members get full-body tattoos to show their pain tolerance and commitment to the group and to display their skills, so if you really want to show your commitment, you need to go all in with your design. 

2. Arm To Chest Yakuza Dragon Tattoo Ideas

Arm To Chest Yakuza Dragon Tattoo Ideas

Photo credit: Pinterest

The arm-to-chest is a classic Irezumi Tattoo design. Usually, the Dragon’s tail begins toward the bottom of the forearm near the wrist and works its way up the arm before rolling over the shoulder and resting its head on your pectoral muscle. You can choose to have different-sized sleeves if you don’t want to have your tattoo extend to far. 

3. Yakuza Dragon Tattoo Design On The Back

Yakuza Dragon Tattoo Design On The Back

Photo credit: www.fmstudies.org

The back is the go-to place if you’re serious about your Irezumi Dragon Tattoo design. The back has all the space required for you to go with massive, intricately detailed designs that really show off the Irezumi art form. This White Dragon Irezumi Tattoo is really phenomenal, with great contrast against the black background. 

4. Yakuza Dragon Tattoo On The Arm

Yakuza Dragon Tattoo On The Arm

Photo credit: @jehoo1

If you want to show off your new Yakuza Dragon Tattoo as often as possible then get one on your arm. The arm is the easiest place to show off your new design that also has a decent amount of space for a nice sized tattoo. 

5. Leg With Yakuza Dragon Tattoo Ideas

Leg With Yakuza Dragon Tattoo Ideas

Photo credit: @diaoshane

Finally, the leg, like the arm, is one of the best places to get your Irezumi Dragon Tattoo if you’re looking to show it off as often as possible. While the arm is probably easier to show off by simply rolling up the sleeves or wearing a vest, the legs will require you to live in a warmer climate where you can wear shorts if you want to show it off as often as possible. 


As our journey draws to a close in the ink-drenched saga through the heart of the Yakuza's world, we hope you've been inspired by the perfect Yakuza Dragon Tattoo Design.

But if the Yakuza Dragon didn’t inspire you, check out these Yin Yang Dragon Tattoo designs, these beautiful Dragon Rose Tattoos, or another Japanese style Tattoo in these Kitsune Tattoo ideas.

Paul Mulligan
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