28 Impressive Tribal Tattoo Ideas for Men & Women to Inspire You in 2023
Tribal tattoos are one of the oldest forms of tattooing and are believed to have originated in Polynesia. It’s also a little-known fact that the word derives from the Polynesian word Tatau. These tattoos were often performed as a ritual to give the drawings sacred powers. Today, these particular designs are once again on the rise as artists incorporate their own style into these cool tattoos.
But before you go and get your own Tribal tattoo, let us help guide you in choosing the perfect piece of ink. Below we’ll show you the coolest, most awesome and best-designed Tribal tattoo ideas of 2023. You’ll surely be inspired with the perfect idea of which tattoo style to get, as well as where to get tattooed on your body.
With that said, let’s begin.
Creepy Cyber Blackwork Tribal Tattoo On Woman’s Hip
Welcome to another list of awesome tattoo ideas to inspire you. This list focuses on Tribal tattoo inspiration, a style that’s made quite the comeback in 2023.
First off, we have this uniquely placed Cyber Tribal tattoo on this client’s hip. I love how it extends up to her ribs. If you’re wondering what Cyber Tribal is, it’s a newer form of the traditional Tribal style not necessarily characterized by symbols. The way this piece flows with the shape of her hip bone is very sexy and accentuates her body nicely.
Feminine Black and Pink Lower Back Tribal Tattoo
Okay, tramp stamps are back, and I’m living for it; they’re tattoos on a woman’s lower back. Here we have a lovely feminine Tribal tattoo that untraditionally uses pink ink as opposed to solid black only. What you don’t see is that it’s actually a UV tattoo; the pink ink is illuminated under UV lights, which I think is such a cool idea, especially for all you party-goers. I feel like I’ve taken a step back into the 90’s. Great placement, perfect solid black packing, and an even better concept. Credit to the artist!
Polynesian-Inspired Full Tribal Sleeve
The Polynesian style of Tribal tattoos incorporates symbols of varying meanings, many of them representing protection, fertility or ancestral guardians. While I don’t know the meaning behind this one in particular, what I do know is that it’s absolutely amazing. The motion in this piece is so smooth and gives the illusion of easy-flowing movement. There’s also a three-dimensional feel to it, which I’m loving. Juliano Torres is the artist behind this magnificent sleeve, give his IG: @julianotattoo a like if you want more.
Masculine Neo Tribal Half-Leg Sleeve
If you were wondering what Neo Tribal means, it’s very much a new-school style of traditional Tribal, much like Cyber Tribal characterized by a contemporary feel. This leg piece almost reminds me of the virtual world, if you’ve ever seen the movie Tron, you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about. The way the tattoo extends down to the foot and up onto the thigh is a head-turner for sure. What’s good about this piece is the artist packed the solid black to perfection; there’s not a single inconsistency, and the single lines are smooth and consistent. The artist has some noteworthy talent.
Awesome Cyber Tribal Hand Tattoo
Another Cyber Tribal tattoo, this style has become increasingly popular, especially amongst more alternative people. While this tattoo may seem simple, it’s quite busy for a hand tattoo, but not so busy that it can be considered badly done, quite the opposite actually. I like the mix-up of solid black and linework; it contrasts nicely against each other. The flow of the design is also noteworthy, perfect for the hand.
Amazing Polynesian Sleeve On Man’s Arm
Polynesian tattoos often have a mixture of solid blackwork and subtle shading, which is often the reason behind their three-dimensional appearance. Here we have another awesome sleeve. A common thing you’ll notice when people get this style is that it’s always massive, and often people will marry themselves to the style. I love how clean this sleeve is, want more? Give artist IG: @islandtat some love.
Unique Tribal-Inspired Outer Forearm Tattoo
This tattoo is truly unique, but I can definitely see how it’s been inspired by the Tribal style. I like how clean the lines are, and how the subtle shading is blended so softly. I wish I knew the meaning behind this tattoo as I’ve never seen anything like it before. It almost looks like a centipede. The placement is great as it flows nicely with the shape of the outer forearm; I love the way it’s slightly wrapping around the client’s arm.
Ornamental Neo Tribal Back of Head Tattoo
Head tattoos are absolutely badass, and definitely stand out amongst the crowd. The great thing about them is you can grow your hair out if you no longer want to show it off. If this client grew out his hair you’d still catch a glimpse of the tattoo on the neck; I think that’s really cool. You’ll notice that not all of the tattoo is solid black, there is dotwork present which gives the illusion that some of the tattoo is lighter than the rest, which creates a nice complementary contrast.
Feminine Fineline Neo Tribal Tattoo
This Tribal tattoo is oh-so feminine; usually the characteristics of a traditional Tribal piece are solid blackwork, but here we have the complete opposite, and I’m loving it. It’s also very uniquely placed which is always a winner because unique is interesting. The one thing I would have changed is how close the design is to the client’s original tattoos, I firmly believe there should always be at least a small gap between tattoos so as to not merge them unless that’s the plan from the start. Regardless, this is still a lovely tattoo and the artist showcased some serious skill with the linework.
Polynesian Tonga Half-Sleeve Arm Tattoo
The shapes in this Tribal tattoo are truly awesome and I’m sure they have significant meaning, although sometimes people don’t apply any meaning to their tattoos. Regardless, it just looks cool. Either way, the composition of this Polynesian half-sleeve is perfect and flows well with the client’s arm. The black is packed solidly and the subtle shading is velvety. I hope the client is adding more because this will be one sick sleeve!
Incredible Maui Full-Leg Sleeve Tattoo
Wow! Look at this magnificent Polynesian tattoo! It looks like armor protecting his leg. I love the motion of this design, the way it wraps up and around his leg is absolutely stunning. Like any good quality tattoo, the black is packed consistently and the linework is crisp and uninterrupted. Clearly, this piece goes over his knee, and I take my hat off to him for being brave enough to sit through that because the knee isn’t for the faint of heart. Great work by artist IG: @ akb_future, this is definitely one for the books.
Gorgeous Freehand Polynesian Half-Leg Sleeve Tattoo
I love the bold lines in this freehand Tribal tattoo; they separate each section of it while also bringing the entire design together. The placement is also a mentionable aspect of this piece; the shapes and flow of it work well with the lower leg, but then again when freehanding a design, it’s easier to get this right because you’re drawing directly onto the area that will be tattooed. This is a phenomenal tattoo, done with some serious skill and attention to detail.
Kawaii Neo Tribal Triceps Tattoo
How dainty is this adorable Kawaii Neo Tribal tattoo? Usually, Tribal tattoos don’t include color but this artist chose a different route and I have to say, I don’t hate it. The lines are clean and the color is packed beautifully, something that can be quite a challenge when using lighter ink.
Neon Genesis Evangelion-Inspired Kawaii Neo Tribal Tattoo
Any fans of the anime Neon Genesis Evangelion? Who knew you could take two completely separate things and bring them together to create such a cool tattoo? I love how the solid black complements the bright colors and actually makes them pop more than they would have if the artist hadn’t used black ink. The placement was well thought out as it extends over the client’s entire forearm without warping or wrapping. I might be a little jealous that this tattoo isn’t on my body.
Amazing Masculine Neo Tribal Stomach Tattoo
Okay, this Tribal piece isn’t reserved solely for men, there is definitely a feminine energy to it which could be the gentle dotwork, something not commonly found in the style of Tribal. Regardless, the placement is what really gets me excited. It’s a very sexy area, the way it’s adorning the lower abdomen and almost framing the belly button is exquisite. The linework is something I can appreciate, it’s as smooth as butter and extremely consistent. Credit to the artist for giving the client a tattoo they can be excited to show off.
Neo Tribal Hand Poked Outer Forearm Tattoo
There’s a mix of ornamental and Tribal in this unusual outer forearm tattoo; it could definitely work for both men and women which is one of the things I enjoy about it. The lines are done in a very rustic way which adds to the overall beauty and uniqueness of this piece. Even though both arms seem identical, there are actually differentiations which is cool because you don’t notice it until you take the time to examine them.
Masculine Polynesian Half-Sleeve Tattoo On Lower Arm
I cannot get enough of how crisp and solid the black ink is. Many artists, believe it or not, struggle to pack black and sometimes overwork the skin, but that’s not the case with this kickass Tribal piece. I love how bold it is and you should know the saying, “bold will hold”, so make sure your artist knows how to pack black as consistently as artist IG: @felipeblackink!
Adorable Feminine Neo Tribal Butterfly Tattoo On Back of Woman’s Triceps
The only butterfly on the list, which is a surprise because Tribal butterflies are quite popular. I like that the artist didn’t use too much black here and added some soft shading to give it some depth. The little sparkles are too cute and add an extra layer of femininity to this tattoo. How about that placement? Doesn’t the shape of the butterfly’s wings fit perfectly on her triceps? The answer is obviously, yes. Kudos to the artist for creating this attractive design.
Feminine Talisman Tattoo On Woman’s Foot
Simple, elegant, beautiful, and downright perfect for the foot are some things that went through my head when I looked at this tattoo. Besides all of these wonderful qualities, I truly hope that this tattoo brings her luck, it’s a Talisman after all. If you’re wondering what a Talisman is, it’s an object usually inscribed with words that are thought to be magical, bringing good luck to its wearer.
Stunning Freehand Polynesian Forearm Tattoo
Look at those crisp lines and uninterrupted solid blackwork! Unlike the other Tribal pieces on this list, this one is quite basic because it doesn’t have overlapping elements, but as simple as it is, I can’t stop staring at it. The placement is to die for as each shape making up this tattoo simply flows with the arm. You’ll notice the tattoo stops just before the crease of the wrist and this is often done because this area is prone to fading. Keep that in mind when you get your next piece.
Badass Tribal Scorpion Upper Thigh Tattoo
Here we have ourselves a super clean and well-placed Tribal scorpion, a common animal found in this style. If I could describe black as being bright I would describe this tattoo as exactly that, bright. The solid black ink is packed like something I’ve never seen before, it’s almost surreal. Another cool thing about this piece is the fact that at first glance it doesn’t look like a scorpion until you actually notice it. What an awesome design.
Freehand Samoan Tribal Full-Sleeve Arm Tattoo
Another amazing freehand Tribal full-sleeve tattoo for you to enjoy. This one definitely has more of a masculine feel to it. What I like is how clean this entire tattoo is, all of the lines are smooth, and the solid black is even. Go big or go home can definitely be said for this piece.
Beautiful Ornamental Tribal Tattoo On Woman’s Shins
Matching tattoos are such a cool addition to anyone’s tattoo collection, there’s something truly satisfying about it. Maybe it’s the symmetry? Whatever it is, these tattoos have that wow factor, as simple as they are. For those wondering how painful the shin is, you’d be surprised to find out they’re not that bad. Big-ups to the artist for doing such a stellar job.
Dainty Feminine Fineline Neo Tribal Tattoo On Woman’s Ribs
There’s nothing sexier than a tattoo on the ribs, especially a good one. Unfortunately, it’s difficult to see what this piece looks like up close, but from afar it looks pretty good. I like that it’s almost in the shape of a heart, very feminine. One thing, many people go straight to tattooing their ribs, I don’t recommend this for first timers as the ribs are an extremely spicy spot.
Outstanding Cyber Tribal Back of Neck Tattoo
I’m going to say it, I think Cyber Tribal is my favorite subgenre of Tribal. I mean can you blame me? Is this not the coolest tattoo ever? The placement is gorgeous and flows with the neck and back without any warping. If he wants to hide it, he just has to put his hair down. Tattoos that can be hidden are so cool.
Feminine Ornamental Tribal-Inspired Arm Tattoo
Are they tentacles? Are they ornaments? Is it Tribal? Who knows, what I do know is it’s strangely unique and works really well on her arm. There’s definitely inspiration taken from the Tribal style which is really cool. I love it when artists can take any style and merge it into others. Absolutely awesome!
Stunning Polynesian Outer Forearm Tattoo
The tiny flower hidden among all the shapes and lines is the first thing I noticed when looking at this tattoo. Taking this piece in as a whole is pleasing to the eye; the gentle shading adds softness while also creating a lovely contrast against the thick lines. If you thought this was the whole tattoo, you’d be mistaken…
Masculine Inner Forearm Tribal Tattoo
Continuing from the previous tattoo, this is a view of the inner forearm, as you can see it’s almost like he has two different tattoos, pretty cool if you ask me. I like that it doesn’t extend all the way down to the crease of his wrist; if he were to wear a long sleeve shirt, you would never know he was hiding a tattoo under it. Check out more just like this one at the artist’s IG: @ kiwi.burt
We hope you found what you were looking for and had as much fun looking at these tattoos as we had writing about them. Until next time, happy inking!