Chances are if you’re looking for something small it’s your first tattoo.
Dipping your toe in by getting something small like a minimal tattoo is a great way of deciding that you want more without being stuck for hours trying to finish a painful design. The rule of tattooing is that anything small has to be simple, minimal. The more complicated the design the bigger it has to be. Just because you can print it that small, doesn’t mean your artist can do it. Here are some of our favorite minimal designs, perfect for any tattoo beginner!
Arrows are essentially a simple line with a point and a simple fletch at the end. They are thin and able to fit easily in almost any area. This makes them ideal for fitting under a watch or bra band. They’re cute, boho and have a lot of meaning. You might get an arrow tattoo to remind you of having direction in your life, goals to aim for, or to remind you to keep going all in a minimal tattoo design!
Simple fonts and single words can be done fairly small. Keep your letter size around 0.7mm at smallest if you want it to age well. Words can be anything from names, places or just a reminder to “keep going”. In fact, this is the most versatile small tattoo as it can literally be anything. You could also get something called an Ambigram which is a word which reads differently upside down.
These small squiggles actually have a lot of meaning. They’re a Buddhist symbol that determines levels of enlightenment. They’re also rather minimal tattoos and are smart in design. The simplicity of them will appeal to a lot of people and the spiritual implications tend to be one of peace and serenity with the world around you.
Constellations and Compounds
Constellations don’t have to be limited to star signs. Many cultures looked to the stars to provide direction. There are plenty of constellations that relate to stories and legends. There might be a story you like or one you feel applies to your life. Many people get mixed up between the symbols for constellations and those for chemical compounds but both make cute tattoos. Serotonin for example, is the compound for one of the happiness chemicals in the brain.
There are tonnes of different symbols out there that make small, discreet tattoos – star signs, Samoan, moon phase, cross, music notes, etc. Anything that is simple can be small. There are plenty of silly symbols too if you just want something for fun, like the copyright logo or the Rockstar games logo!
Adinkra is an African symbol language that uses small, simple pictures for words. There are plenty of symbols to choose from each with their own meanings. They’re nicer looking and less cliché than Kanji letters. The Adrinkra language focuses on peace and harmony much like the people who created it. The designs are simple, black, symbols and they’re ideal for small areas.
Are any of these calling out to you? And if you’re not a beginner, let us know what your first tattoo was!