12 Wickedly Cool Rib Tattoo Ideas for Men

The oldest documented tattoos were discovered on Otzi the Iceman who died around 3300 B.C., but the art of tattooing had already been practiced across cultures way before Otzi the Iceman.

Tattooing has continued to grow each year — in fact, according to a 2019 poll, 30% of Americans had at least one tattoo, a 9% increase from prior polls.

As the popularity of tattoos continues to grow each year, so does the creativity amongst them. Here are 12 rib tattoo ideas for men that will stand out and turn your ribcage into a work of art.

1. Nature

Many people show their appreciation and love for our planet and wildlife through a nature-inspired rib tattoo. The cool thing about nature tattoos is they look good in tons of different styles. From traditional to abstract to realistic, nature tattoos are versatile and popular in the tattooing world.

2. Abstract

Some people would describe abstract art as a type of art that distorts reality, messing around with certain shapes and forms we’re used to seeing in the real world. It can be made up of random lines, brush strokes, and shapes to create a unique depiction of something real.

Popular in the age of innovation and experimentation, abstract art was a way for people to express how they felt about their work rather than focusing on exactly what the subject of their artwork was.

3. Skull

Skull tattoos can be depicted in either a positive or negative light, and the style of the tattoo can have a huge effect on this.

While many people associate skulls with death and decay, they can actually have much deeper meanings such as the power of overcoming death or the idea of rising from the ashes in dark times.

4. Religious

Religious tattoos are great rib tattoo ideas because you can choose to fit a ton of detail into them or you can opt for something simple.

Many people often incorporate well-known religious symbolism in their tattoos, such as the Virgin Mary, a set of praying hands, or rosary beads.

Whichever aspect of religion you choose to incorporate into your tattoo, religious tattoos are a great way to connect to your faith and show off a part of yourself that you’re proud of.

5. Watercolor

Watercolor tattoos have become popular over the years. This is most likely because they take the normalized idea of a tattoo and do a complete 360. Watercolor tattoos don’t have outlines, feature a ton of blurriness and brush strokes, and use colors that aren’t always seen in your everyday tattoo.

6. Geometric

Geometric tattoos are tied to spiritual practices throughout history. While they can still be very spiritual for people, today geometric tattoos often symbolize something a bit different.

Stability and balance are often depicted by geometric tattoos as they’re often created using a lot of symmetry and abrupt linework.

7. Words

Many people get words or quotes tattooed on them to pay tribute to loved ones that have passed. For example, tattoos in the handwriting of a loved one have grown very popular over the years.

Or, word and quote tattoos can be a means of inspiration for you. From your favorite quote to your favorite song lyrics to even a simple word, word tattoos are something that won’t ever go out of style.

8. Portrait

Portrait tattoos have become wildly popular as most people see them as a personal way to honor someone in their life. They can serve as a constant reminder that you’ve loved someone and have been loved by someone. And, as the rib cage is part of the skeleton that protects your heart, getting a portrait tattoo on your ribs makes it that more sentimental.

9. Outer Space

Space tattoos are great ideas for those who are fascinated by the stars, dream of taking a trip to outer space, or are super into astrology. And if you love the idea of space and the look of galaxies, then this tattoo is a great idea for you as well.

The cool thing about outer space being so vast and unknown is that the possibilities are endless. You can do something as simple as a constellation or something completely imagined and made up in your head — either way no one can say your interpretation of outer space is wrong.

Plus, the ribs are the perfect place for you to get carried away with color and detail.

10. Snake

Snakes are considered to be masculine animals and are often considered a great rib tattoo for men. This is because snakes are thought to represent our life force, specifically primal energy.

As a spirit animal snakes can represent healing and transformation, whether physically, emotionally, or spiritually. If you feel drawn towards snakes you should pay close attention to your healing abilities and notice whether or not you feel drawn to nature and the earth.

Snakes can be tattooed in hundreds of different ways and styles, that’s what makes them such great tattoo ideas — you and someone you know could both have a snake tattoo yet they can look and feel completely different.

11. Dragon

Dragon tattoos almost seem to go hand in hand with snake tattoos as their versatility is also endless. Dragon tattoos are typically drawn large scale and have intricate design and colors, making them excellent contenders for a rib tattoo design.

Dragons show strong symbolism in many cultures, and the meaning behind them can vary greatly. In Chinese culture, they can represent strength, wisdom, and good luck. In Western cultures, they represent masculinity and fighting spirit. In Japanese culture, they represent the protection of family and loved ones.

12. Tribal

Just like dragon tattoos tribal tattoos can have a ton of different meanings as we travel across cultures.

For example, Filipino tribal tattoos are believed to protect you from enemies. Africa is known as the home of storytelling, so African tribal tattoos often tell stories with hidden meanings. Hawaiian tribal tattoos can show love and respect for nature and for the land, while Samoan tribal tattoos can just be personal reminders for people that hold great sentimental value.

Looking for More Rib Tattoo Ideas for Men?

rib tattoo ideas for men

rib tattoo ideas for men

If you’re itching to join the tattoo club or even just looking to add on to your ever-growing tattoo collection, these rib tattoo ideas for men are bound to get noticed.

Want to get your tattoo done by someone you can trust? Contact us today to set up your appointment.


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