Different Tattoo Styles

December 17 2018

Different Tattoo Styles

Tattoos come in all varieties. Big, small, color, black & grey, etc. That is part of what makes tattoos so awesome. Tattoos are unique as the people have them. From what they get tattooed, to the the style they get it tattooed.

But what exactly is a “tattoo style” ?

A tattoo style is the general look of the tattoo not the image that is being depicted in the tattoo. Just like the different conventional art styles , modern, classical, impressionist,  and so on. There are many different styles of tattoo.

Simply put there are many ways to tattoo a cat.

What are the different tattoo styles you may ask? Well my friend, tattoo styles are many, but we have put a list together of some of the most popular tattoo styles, as well a little info about what makes them each so uniquely beautiful.


Traditional tattoo style:

Traditional tattoos are what you think of when you think of classic American tattoos. It is the style your Grandpa got when he was in the Navy. Bold black lines and bright colors are the trademarks of this tattoo style.

Traditional Tattoo Style

Traditional Tattoo Style by Eddie


Neo Traditional tattoo style:

As the name implies Neo Traditional tattoos take a lot of inspiration from the Traditional tattoo style. However, Neo Traditional tattoos have a twist, finer lines mixed with bold, more nontraditional colors, and more true to life illustrated qualities create tattoos that have the classic feel with a taste of the new.

Neo Traditional Tattoo Style

Neo-Traditional Tattoo Style by Tom Doyle


Tribal tattoo Style:

Tribal tattoos have been around since the beginning of tattoos, with each culture offering their own unique style. Popular tribal tattoo styles include: Polynesian, Native American, and more. They usually involve elaborate patterns and can range in size from small to entire body tattoos.

Tribal Tattoo Style

Tribal Tattoo Style by Eddie


Watercolor tattoo Style:

The Watercolor tattoo style has gained a lot of popularity recently, this makes sense with more and more women getting tattoos. Watercolor tattoos are very delicate and beautiful looking. With minimal to no outline the colors flow over the skin.

Watercolor Tattoo Style

Watercolor Tattoo Style by Ryan


Blackwork tattoo Style:

The Blackwork tattoo style is just what it sounds like, tattoos with no color they only use black ink. Blackwork tattoos can range from very simple tattoos to something very complex. Blackwork is a great style if you want a tattoo that will stand out

Blackwork Tattoo Style

Blackwork Tattoo Style by Sarah


Realism tattoo style:

The Realism tattoo style is just what it sounds like… realistic tattoos. These tattoos look true to life and be in color or black and grey. Realism tattoos on the perfect tattoo when you want your tattoo to look exactly like its real life counterpart.

Realism Tattoo Style

Realism Tattoo Style by Ryan


Japanese tattoo style:

The classic Japanese tattoo style has been a favorite for hundreds of years, and it is no surprise. These stylistic tattoos are great for telling stories in ink. They have a distinct look and use symbolism to show their meaning.

Japanese Tattoo Style

Japanese Tattoo Style by Eddie


Trash Polka tattoo style:

Trash Polka is a tattoo style that mixes blackwork, realism, and trash. This tattoo style is usually only black and red but can use other colors depending on the tattoo.  The Trash Polka tattoo style has gained more popularity recently for its ability to mix these elements and create amazing works of art.

Thrash Polka Tattoo Style

Trash Polka Tattoo Style by Eddie


Geometric tattoo style:

The Geometric tattoo style focuses on lines and shapes. From simple shape to elaborate patterns, or turning everyday things geometric, this contemporary tattoo style is more versatile than it appears.

Geometric tattoo style

Geometric Tattoo Style by Sarah


Black and Grey Tattoo Style

The black and grey tattoo style is one of the most common. You can do any other style of tattoo in the black and grey tattoo style. This style focuses on shading to make tattoos look great. And, is what some call the OG of tattoo styles

Black and Grey Tattoo Style

Black and Grey Tattoo Style by Ryan


Aesthetic Tattoo Style

The Aesthetic tattoo style can be almost anything. There are tattoos that focus on the appreciation of beauty and the nature of beauty. These tattoos induce a feeling of great aesthetic pleasure. Aesthetic tattoos can big or small, black or color, and anything in between, as long as it is aesthetically pleasing.

Aesthetic Tattoo Example

 Aesthetic Tattoo Style by Tacho 


Small Tattoo (Micro Tattoo) Style

Small tattoos or the micro tattoo style, are tattoos that are very small. They can be done using other tattoo styles, and can be color or black and grey like the tattoo below. Small tattoos are becoming quite popular as a first tattoo, and as a way to fill in the extra space for those with a lot of tattoos.

Small tattoo style micro tattoo

Small (Micro) Tattoo Style by Sarah


Abstract Tattoo Style

Abstract tattoos are just like abstract art, it does not attempt to represent external reality. These Abstract tattoos use different shapes, forms, and colors to achieve the style. Any subject can be tattooed in the Abstract tattoo style, and they are a great way to differentiate even the most simple tattoo design.

Abstract Tattoo Style

Abstract Tattoo Style by Sarah


3D Tattoo Style

3D tattoos are a very cool and unique tattoo style. They can be very simple or intricate tattoos, but all 3D tattoos have one thing in common, the 3D red and blue lines. They tattoos are done this wya so when you put on 3D glasses the tattoo becomes 3D.

3D Tattoo style  

3D Tattoo Style by Ryan 


Cartoon Tattoo Style

The cartoon tattoo style is done in the style of your favorite classic Saturday morning cartoons. These tattoos looks very cool, and can be actual cartoon characters or just anything reimagined in the cartoon tattoo style.

Cartoon Tattoo Style

Cartoon Tattoo Style by Sarah


Continuous Line Contour Tattoo Style

In the Continuous Line Contour Tattoo Style the artist tattoos the outermost edges of a form, as well as  any dramatic changes within the form. Put simply, a continuous line contour tattoo looks like an "outline drawing," that uses no shading, and it appears that the tattoo machine never lifts from the skin.

Continuous Line Contour Tattoo Style

Continuous Line Contour Tattoo Style by Ryan 


Portrait Tattoo Style

Portrait tattoos can be of famous people or just someone you love. They are very realistic looking and take a highly skilled tattoo artist to create. Portrait tattoos can be done in color or black and grey, and can range from simple to very complex. A well done portrait tattoo is always a great choice for a tattoo style.

Portrait Tattoo Style Bob Marley

Portrait Tattoo Style By Steve 


Animal Tattoo Style

Animal tattoos can be done in almost every style. Whether it is a dog portrait tattoo, a cat cartoon tattoo, a horse watercolor tattoo, or any other animal tattoo, they are all extremely meaningful tattoos. These Animal tattoo styles are always great as long as the tattoos portray the animal the way you remember them.

Animal Tattoo Style Dog Tattoo

Animal Tattoo Style By Steve 


There are a countless number of tattoo styles to choose from, but these few tattoo styles are a great starting point for you tattoo journey. Whatever tattoo style you decide on make sure you get it from the best tattoo artists at the best tattoo shop Mr. Inkwells Classy Tattoos. We have tattoo artists that can tattoo any style. So, call, book online or just come on down to the best tattoo shop in Orange County, Mr. Inkwells Classy Tattoos.

See you soon!



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1 comment

  • A j: August 19, 2020

    Nice tattoos, especially the Japanese style

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