Having the head that looks like horse’s head and curled tail a seahorse is a species of fish belonging to the genus Hippocampus. The word of the genus consists of two ancient Greek words “hippos” and “kampos” that are translated as “horse” and “sea monster”. Despite the etymology, these little creatures that can reach maximally 8 inches in length hardly can be called monsters and vice versa people see them as very cute and inspiring.
The Symbolic Side of Seahorse Tattoos
Seahorse tattoos have quite a bit of symbolism which varies depending on cultural background and behavior features of this living thing.
- Adaptability and survival – seahorses have the ability to camouflage when they feel danger.
- According to ancient Greeks and Romans seahorses were seen as servants of Poseidon, the god of all seas. People believed that seahorses guided lost souls who died in the sea’s rough waters.
- Different Asian cultures think that seahorses can bring good luck.
- Celts believed in the mystical power of water and thus they often attributed such water qualities as imagination and creativity to seahorses and other beings that live in the waters.
- Unlike most of the world’s creatures, the male seahorses have the ability to produce the offspring, thus, the tattoo with a seahorse can signify fatherhood.
- Since these adorable creatures choose their partner for a lifetime, they are often chosen as a tattoo design that denotes loyalty and eternal love.
- Seahorses are not great swimmers. While pretending to be corals, they just go with current in order to find food and so this feature of their behavior can be symbolic of the go-with-the-flow attitude of some people.
The Features of Seahorse Tattoos
There are 54 species of seahorse yet when it comes to tattooing, most people prefer not to bother about the diversity of species and just focus on the recognizable design. Mainly, seahorses are tattooed as a separate piece but you can add some nice complementing elements to make the ink look more interesting:
- Different sea-themed designs like seaweed, water waves, corals, fish, water bubbles
- Geometric figures
As far as the design, both multicolor and one-color seahorse tattoos are possible. Thanks to the great variety of designs, seahorse inks fit men as well as women nicely. You may opt to small seahorse tattoos and place them on the wrist, the arm and ankle or even on your finger. More complicated designs featuring background and multiple elements can create some marvelous sleeves and back pieces. Feel free to choose whatever style you want because seahorse looks phenomenal in any style. Though, the most popular ones are:
- Black and gray
- Traditional and Neo-Traditional
- Dotwork and Linework
- New School
If you adore seahorse unusual appearance or symbolism it possesses, you should definitely check out some of the most interesting seahorse tattoo designs below.
#1. Awesome3d Black and Gray Seahorse Tattoo for Men
The smooth transition from darker gray values all through light gray to negative areas of skin is amazingly executed. The 3D aspect of the tattoo is just awesome!
#2. Vibrant Colorful Cartoon Seahorse Tattoo on Thigh
Color tattoos fade quicker than black ones and you will probably need a touch up a few years later but since this absolute color bomb tattoo with the image of the seahorse looks like a sticker, it is hard to resist the temptation to get inked up with it.
#3. Ornate Female Celtic Seahorse Tattoo
If you wonder whether it is possible for a tattoo design to be simple and intricate at the same time, take a look at this marvelous dotwork seahorse mandala tattoo and make sure that there are no impossible things in tattooing!
#4. Cute Seahorse Silhouette Tattoo on Ankle
This blackwork outline seahorse tattoo with little stippling shading inside is really neat. What makes this tattoo look even cuter is charming googly eyes of the sea horse.
#5. Mega Cute Seahorse Tattoo Designs in Traditional Colors
There’s a rule that works well for all traditional tattoos – the simpler it is, the better. And this simplicity applies to everything starting with the design and finishing with the limited color palette. As far as this super vibrant traditional seahorse tattoo, it works well as the tattoo filler and on its own.
#6. Very Elegant Seahorse Tattoo Design on the Hip
Though seahorse tattoos perfectly fit almost every part of the body due to their interesting shape, sensible placement is still required. Even an already good tattoo can look much better if placed properly like for example this seahorse ink that so nicely sits on the girl’s hip.
#7. Striking Black Geometric Seahorse Tattoo on Arm
The detail in this seahorse body that looks like Knight armor doesn’t allow us to take our eyes off. As far as the triangle at the background, you can easily come up with some other geometric figure for the background, not necessarily triangle.
#8. Eye-catching Girly Seahorse Tattoo in Dotwork Style
Strong black dot shading along with open skin areas that aren’t tattooed create some intensely amazing seahorse tattoo on the hip!
#9. Cool-looking and a Bit Scary Japanese Seahorse Tattoo
Thanks to the seahorse look slightly resembling a dragon, many Asian cultures, Japan, in particular, attributed some of the dragon significances like wisdom and good luck to seahorse thus getting the Japanese style seahorse tattoo really makes sense.
#10. Intricate Mandala Seahorse Tattoo on the Side
The seahorse shape allows you to play with the placement. Bet that you couldn’t have imagined how beautifully this intricate floral seahorse can sit on the side. This tattoo surely has a soul!
#11. Vibrant Neo-traditional Seahorse Tattoo for Ladies
The vibrancy of all browns, yellows and grays in this Neo-Traditional seahorse tattoo is fantastic. The big red sun makes a great background for this seahorse so that it could pop off the skin even more.
#12. Pretty Seahorse Tattoo in Black Color
There are about 54 species of seahorses so make sure you made your own research and chose the best reference for your tattoo. This black and gray tattoo of the leafy sea dragon really has the feel of underwater.
#13. Significant Realistic Seahorse Tattoo on Shoulder
Comparing to the whole universe people seem so tiny creatures just like seahorses in the vast oceans. But in the end, the size doesn’t matter. What really matters is your thirst for life, and if this is your message to the world, then seahorse is surely your design of the tattoo.
#14. Wondrous Sea Horse Tattoo in Dotwork
Clean outlines along with great detailing in the body make the carcass of this wondrous seahorse tattoo that reminds some kind of engraving taken from a book.
#15. Strong Vibrant Seahorse Dragon Tattoo With Skull
Crowned with the skull this Neo-Traditional seahorse tattoo looks really badass and masculine. On the whole, this is how the colors have to look like, this is how the outline has to look like and this is how a good solid tattoo has to look like.
#16. Hypnotizing Seahorse Outline Tattoo
The bizarre leafy sea dragon looks rather like seaweed than the seahorse. Inspired by the sea life, this tattoo has the detailed line work all the way through it and looks phenomenally beautiful on the hip.
#17. Breath-taking Seahorse Skeleton Tattoo for Girls
This is what can come out of the artistic use of the negative space contrasting to rich heavy black shading. The black and gray realistic skeleton of sea horse is absolutely breath-taking.
#18. Nice Blue Seahorse Tattoo for Men Behind the Ear
You have the chance to show the world what a great and caring father you are with the help on nice bold colorful seahorse tattoo behind the ear! Since male seahorses can deliver the offspring, the seahorse tattoo symbolizes fatherhood.
#19. Incredibly Beautiful Linework Seahorse Tattoo Design
With the minimum of shading and some of the most consistent lines, this seahorse tattoo grabs your attention and makes to fall in love with every single line.
#20. Catchy Black Seahorse Tattoo for Men on Leg
A seahorse is a truly unique creature. Being a fish the seahorse rather looks like a knight chess piece with a tail. In this black tattoo, some really dark areas let the light areas and white highlights stand out more so the piece is well-seen from the distance.
#21. Phenomenal Seahorse Tattoo for Men on Forearm
If to look at seahorse tattoos from the side of creativity symbolism, they are great for artists, musicians and actors. Just check out how cool this seahorse look with its belly designed as a piano keyboard!
#22. Truly Unique Seahorse Tattoo Image
A tattoo depicting seahorse may signify the contentment of being who you really are without wearing masks or expressing fake emotions. The ground for this symbolism hides in the seahorses’ absence of evolution because they haven’t changed since their inception.
#23. Magnificent Seahorse With Triangle Tattoo on Back
Overall, this seahorse tattoo has a very simplistic feel but when you look closer at areas like its tail and body, the detail is just incredible. Placed in front of the blue triangle that represents vast oceanic depth this black and gray seahorse tattoo is awesome.
#24. Attractive Seahorse Tattoo on Wrist in Black and Gray
Instead of just tattooing a figure of the seahorse alone, a tattoo artist has made a very clever decision and added those thin lines and circles to the image so the design works nicely with the wrist of this lady.
#25. Badass Color Seahorse Tattoo Pic on the Head
Not only the colorful seahorse design shows this girl creativity and patience but also the fact that the tattoo sits on the head which is a quite painful spot to get tattooed.
#26. Jaw-dropping Simple Seahorse Tattoo for Boys
For those of you who don’t believe that it is possible to do the jaw-dropping tattoo with just a single needle, we have found this stick and poke seahorse tattoo design that is very clean and has its wow effect.
#27. Interesting Small Sea Horse Tattoo Idea in Gray Hues
Check out those cute water bubbles around the seahorse. They really give the feel of underwater and bring life to the whole composition. As we see, due to the interesting bending shape, the seahorse can make good filler for any-theme tattoo sleeves.
#28. Splendid Tiny Seahorse Tattoo in Classic Style
Back in the day, there was a limited range of colors so tattooists relied on strong bold black outlines to create contrast with the primary colors. Traditional tattoos are still as cool and strong as they were back then. This seahorse tattoo is the best proof for our words.
#29. Timeless Traditional Seahorse Tattoo Design
When it comes to color tattooing, the simple bold traditional seahorse tattoo is what will be solid when it’s healed and for the long term.
#30. Creative Tribal Seahorse Tattoo for Guys
If you find realistic images of seahorse too busy, there tons of creative and interesting ethnic designs like this intricate Polynesian seahorse tattoo to inspire you.
#31. Marvelous Watercolor Seahorse Tattoo
In addition to seahorse odd look, it can mimic corals like a chameleon. While pretending to be oceanic surface seahorse simply waits for food to drift by. This ability is symbolic of patience and persistence and often becomes the number one reason for getting inked with a seahorse design.
#32. The Best Seahorse Tattoo in Neo-traditional Style
If Neo Traditional style wasn’t your first option of the seahorse design, this amazing piece may change your mind. The colors are so strong and vibrant that this aquatic tattoo leaves no choice for you but get it.
#33. Super Cute Purple Seahorse Tattoo in New School Style
Super vibrant saturated colors, googly eyes and exaggerated parts of the body – all of these are the features of this cool New School seahorse tattoo. Plus, that cute pink pompadour that resembles Elvis hairstyle surely adds the zest to the tattoo.
#34. Unique Light Gray Seahorse Tattoo Idea
The thing that the outlines are interrupted in some places of the seahorse image is a nice touch. In addition to those cool contours, the imitation of the brush strokes in the shading really makes this tattoo above the elbow unique!
#35. Sharp Contrast Seahorse Tattoo
This black Dotwork seahorse tattoo is flawless. Having these negative skin areas come out of dark parts of seahorse body is the best way to show contrast.
#36. Beautiful Mermaid and Seahorse Color Tattoo Not Medusa Gorgon
Seducing men with the sweet voice and dragging them to the bottom of the ocean, mermaids are seen in various mythologies all over the world. However, in tattooing mermaids serve as talismans for sailors. Portrayed with other oceanic creatures like the seahorse, mermaids create beautiful aquatic tattoos.
#37. Unique Hybrid T Rex-seahorse Tattoo
We have no clue why this guy combined two absolutely different creatures in one hybrid tattoo but the seahorse with the head of T-Rex looks so cool, doesn’t it?
#38. Interesting and Original Seahorse Tattoo for Men
This amazing tattoo concept reflects seahorse’s ability to camouflage. The same tones of gray washes of corals at the background and seahorse itself at the foreground make them blend together so it is really hard to tell where the seahorse is.
#39. Inspiring Seahorse Tattoo in Sketch Style
All of these sharp chaotic lines that come out of the image create an interesting look of the unfinished drawing in this black sketch seahorse tattoo.
#40. Vibrant Colorful Abstract Seahorse Tattoo
If you already have marine tattoos, seahorse probably will not be your first option for another aquatic tattoo. Yet after you take a look at this colorful abstract seahorse tattoo, you will definitely want to book your next appointment at the tattoo shop.
#41. Cool-looking Seahorse Tattoo in Dotwork
We love how the tattoo artist made an accent on the armor-like body frame of the seahorse by adding strong heavy black dot shading on each scale. Thanks to the softly shaded background and bold contours, this black and gray seahorse tattoo really pops off the skin.
#42. Nice Detailed Tattoo of the Swimming Seahorse
Seahorses are known for their effortless approach in finding food. They drift with the current and pretend corals or seaweed. This seahorse tattoo undoubtedly has the water motion feel and can the perfect option for people who live on the “let it be” principle.
#43. Super Bright Pink Seahorse Tattoo Idea for Girls
It is not a secret that girls adore saturated vibrant colors. If you like bright colors as well, get inspired by the blending of purple and pink colors in this super bright seahorse tattoo that nicely sits on the woman’s bicep.
#44. Cute Little Seahorse With Big Eyes as Tattoo Filler Idea
Even if a seahorse isn’t the first thought that came to your head while choosing a tattoo design, it can become beautiful tattoo gap filler for some aquatic sleeve like this black and gray seahorse with star fish.
#45. Lovely Couple of Seahorses in a Bottle Tattoo
Many seahorses choose their partner for a lifetime, thus, portraying two cute sea horses holding each other’s tail inside the bottle meets the only reasonable explanation – these two symbolize endless love.
#46. Unusual Colorful Seahorse Tattoo
As we know these horse-alike fish can easily change their color to protect themselves from being eaten. Choosing colorful seahorse for a tattoo design not only points on your adaptability but will also put a smile on your face on a dull rainy autumn day.
#47. Amazing Skeleton of Seahorse Tattoo
The skeleton of this seahorse reminds some kind of coral lost in claws of water waves. Amazing use of gray wash technique allowed the tattoo master to recreate the same shadowing and depth as in the pencil drawing.
#48. The Sophisticated Light Gray Seahorse Tattoo
Light gray values and the absence of clean bold outlines make this seahorse arm tattoo look refined and sophisticated. Those barely seen dotted circles around the seahorse are a nice touch!