The 15 Most Popular Tattoos Of 2015 According To Tattoo Artists

Xavier in Guides

Every year, there are always those tattoos that everyone seem to have gotten.

Last year, it was the infinity symbol—which is basically, the butt of jokes in the tattoo community these days. Tattoo trends come and go, some stay behind while new ones enter the scene to make its mark. People take the idea of a large number of people getting the same tattoos negatively but I think it's also a sign that tattoos are surfacing and getting its ass out there to break the ugly tattoo stigma. The small part we play here is to spread the word and help as much as we can to expand the possibilities in tattoos. We've talked to tattoo artists from all over the world about the most popular tattoos of 2015. Many of them are also the most-requested designs in our Tattoodo Custom services. The designs just keep getting better!

1. Arrows

Arrow tattoo by Felipe Kross
Arrow tattoo by Felipe Kross

Arrows are like the infinity symbols of this year. A lot of tattoo artists reported young people coming over their shop in herds wanting the same thing which is—you guessed it—arrow tattoos.

Most tattoo artists in major cities this year get weekly requests of arrow tattoos straight from Instagram and Tumblr, the biggest source of tattoo ideas these days.

2. Pocket watch with rose (and clocks everywhere)

Pocketwatch with roses from Tim Hinton
Pocketwatch with roses from Tim Hinton

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If girls were lining up this year for arrow tattoos, the guys seem to be drawn to pocket watches specifically paired with roses. “A big thing is the pocket watch with two roses on either side. A couple of years ago, everyone wanted owls,” says Tota Volpe-Landi of Happy Sailor Tattoo in London.

“Honestly, I am so fed up with them. Clocks in eyes, clocks in roses, clocks in bigger clocks. It's become insane,” says Craig Hicks, a tattoo artist from Manchester.

3. Underboob

Hummingbird underboob tattoo by Abel Sanchez
Hummingbird underboob tattoo by Abel Sanchez

Labelled as the new “tramp stamp”, 2015 has seen quite a lot of ladies losing their shirt for a few hours of agony getting their sternums tattooed with mostly geometric patterns and mandalas (see below). Although we don't agree on the tramp stamp part because so far, most of the underboob tattoos we've seen this year are stunning.

Aside from social media hype, the underboob trend may also owe part of its popularity to singer Rihanna.

4. Semicolon

typical semicolon
typical semicolon

The Semicolon Project really brought up a very sensitive topic and helped thousands of people struggling with depression hold their heads up high and believe that their story really is not yet finished. It's more than a trend. It raised awareness on the topic of depression which most people often misunderstood and would rather not talk about.

 5. Mountain

mountain
mountain

Popular choice of tattoos in both blackwork and dotwork. We've seen a lot of scenery stuff in tattoos, too this year and we especially loved the ones by artists like Lisa Orth and Susanne Konig.

6. Watercolor

Watercolor rose tattoo by Lorenzo Loreprod Anzini
Watercolor rose tattoo by Lorenzo Loreprod Anzini

“Watercolor tattoos are lovely. But not all tattoo artists are able to get them right. It's not like the standard traditional style because it requires a lot of contrasting and low tones and whatnot. But most clients don't realise that. They just assume that you can and when they end up getting something that looks nothing like the picture they printed, they complain,” says Martsy Reyes, a traditional American style tattoo artist.

We agree, watercolor tattoos really are lovely—when they're done right. Otherwise, you'll just look like as if you've taken care of a toddler who's left unattended with a bunch of acrylic paint.

7. Mandala

Sternum mandala tattoo by Alex Bawn.
Sternum mandala tattoo by Alex Bawn.

Geometric tattoos were big last year. Many of those geometric tattoos incorporated mandalas peppered with fine dotwork. Mandalas were used to be associated with spirituality but it seems to be leaning more towards the decorative side these days.

8. Hand poke

by Lady Hans at Art House Tattoo Ormskirk
by Lady Hans at Art House Tattoo Ormskirk

Early this year, we've let you in on our views on hand poke or stick n poke tattoos. Many speculated even late last year that “jail tats” are going to be big in 2015. Well, we were right about that. And we were also right about the shitty hand poke tattoos that were bound to come with it, too.

9. Arm band

Blackwork arm band by Hanumantra Lamar
Blackwork arm band by Hanumantra Lamar

A part of the minimalist tattoo trend that's really big this year. (See more at #10 and 14)

10. Dots

by Jon Boy
by Jon Boy

We're pretty sure most of the people who get dot tattoos get them purely for decorative purposes. Nothing wrong with that. What can we say, they're small and subtle and they're perfect for something like a test drive in getting tattoos.

Kendall Jenner insisted that her single white dot by Jon Boy symbolise the “little things that matter.” Sure, sweetheart.

11. Galaxy

Galaxy tattoo by Denis Torikashvili
Galaxy tattoo by Denis Torikashvili

The galaxy madness continues with galaxy tattoos. Like watercolor tattoos, not just everybody can do this one right.

“Kids, kids, kids... Please do your research before barging in some shop demanding a galaxy tattoo over your outdated infinity tattoos. We thought you'd have learned the last time. I swear some kids' stupidity are a lot like the galaxy—endless and void,” Bear Black of Catalina commented.

12. Solar System

minimalistic solar system
minimalistic solar system

As if galaxy tattoos weren't enough, we've also been seeing a lot of tattoos of the solar system. Sometimes, it's just Jupiter on their fingers. While some would a little rocket or constellation to boot. Most of them were often hand poked.

It probably has a lot to do with poor Pluto being kicked out of the recognised planets.

13. Compass

Compass tattoo, artist unknown.
Compass tattoo, artist unknown.

The compass tattoo have been popular for years but it seem to have been among the ones that it seems that it's here to stay.

14. Line

by Jon Boy
by Jon Boy

The same thing as the dot tattoo which I repeat isn't too bad. So, people are loving minimalism these days and they decide to get subtle tattoos like lines and dots. I think the more important question to be raised here is if the tattoo artists can tattoo straight lines as good as Dr. Woo and Jon Boy.

15. Trash Polka

Trash polka tattoo by Constantine Novikov
Trash polka tattoo by Constantine Novikov

Since the Trash Polka style was introduced, people have been curious and genuinely interested with the particular style popularised by Buena Vista Tattoo Club. Not everybody can get this right, either. It requires skill and a good insight on what works and what doesn't, especially with the use of mainly two colours—black and red. But more and more tattoo artists are venturing Trash Polka, spreading it outside of Europe.

Xavier

@Xavier

When she's not writing for Tattoodo, Xavier likes experimenting with art and organizing local music shows. We're kidding, she's probably asleep. Follow her on Instagram @claudia_strife

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