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Half Sleeve Tattoo Designs

Mayuri Kulkarni Mar 10, 2020
Half sleeve tattoos are a unique thing - they pain a bit less while inking, can be flaunted while at parties and beaches and can conveniently hidden at workplaces! Choose a design reflecting your values or personality and its suitability to be placed on the arm.
Tattooing has been an age-old culture of many ethnic groups all over the world, and has become a part of fashion these days. With its increasing popularity, all tattoo lovers want their tattoo to be different in every aspect. Most of the tattoo designs have typical meanings associated with them, and hence, many people choose tattooing as a method of expressing themselves.

Half Sleeve Tattoo Ideas

A sleeve tattoo is a popular type of tattoo that is inked on the arm, usually from the shoulder to the wrist. These tattoos look striking as they are made to imitate a sleeve. Half sleeve tattoos are those that start from the upper arm and end near the elbow.
They were previously more popular among men, but recently, women are also developing a fondness for these tattoos. Here are some half sleeve tattoo ideas for men and women. Have a look!

Designs for Women

Love Tattoos

A love tattoo can be anything that represents love, and its many aspects. If you are a romantic at heart, then this is the tattoo for you. The image on the right shows a tattoo that has two hearts locked together, which represents love and togetherness.
While the heart is the most commonly used symbol for love, you can also go for designs that feature Cupid, the Roman god of love or roses, wedding rings, and other symbols of love and commitment. Red is prominently used in these designs.

Flower Tattoos

Flowers are not only pretty and feminine, but also have several aspects to their symbolism like love, joy, happiness, beauty, innocence, purity, and a host of abstract qualities.
Not only this, flowers have come to be associated with several myths in cultures across the world. Now, the meaning of a flower tattoo depends on the flower it depicts, as every flower stands for something unique. You can either choose a floral tattoo in black and white, or go for a vibrant and colorful one.
Rose, lily, daisy, iris, hyacinth, bluebell, carnation, honeysuckle, primrose, and poppy are popular tattoo designs, because of their powerful symbolism, or their beauty. Rose represents love, passion and beauty.
Iris is a symbol of virtue, purity, faith, valor, and wisdom and the Holy Trinity of Christianity. The poppy is a flower that is strongly associated with sleep and death. Different colors of the flower stand for different aspects. For example, yellow roses are a symbol of friendship.

Demon Tattoos

The word demon has its origin in the Greek word "daimon", which means a divine entity.
However, with time, the word came to be associated with evil spirits and beings that supposedly caused harm to humans. They are powerful entities, and are scary to look at. In certain cultures, they are considered protectors who can keep us safe from evil spirits and the evil eye.
The Japanese follow the practice of hanging demon faces on the entrance to their homes.
The purpose of inking a demon tattoo on your arm, is to protect you from evil influences. When choosing a demon tattoo, you can either go for traditional demon motifs, or ask your tattoo artist to create one for you.

Skull Tattoos

Beyond the usual skull and crossbones design, there are other designs and symbolism related to skull tattoos.
If you believe in the importance of acquiring knowledge, you can go for a tattoo that depicts a snake coiling around the eye sockets of the skull, which symbolizes knowledge that survives beyond death.
The skull is also widely believed to be a symbol of victory over death. Combine it with roses, banners, flames, daggers, etc to create designs that really stand out.

Fairy Tattoos

Fairies are graceful creatures with wings, who possess magical powers. They are an integral part of folklore all over the world, and symbolize magic, youth, and innocence. After flower tattoos, these are the most sought-after tattoos for women.
Fairy tattoos also symbolize protection, humanity and spirituality. These designs can be carved with various effects and filled with beautiful colors.

Designs for Men

Dragon Tattoos

The motif of the dragon has its origin in ancient China and Japan, depicted as a giant serpentine creature that had huge wings and breathed fire.
It was widely believed that these mythical creatures possessed magical powers, and were considered the symbols of the four elements namely, Air, Water, Earth, and Fire. Over time, they came to be associated with Buddhism, and today they form an eminent symbol, with the power to ward off evil spirits.
If you're interested in getting a dragon tattoo, you should know that this tattoo stands for power, strength, magic, bravery, nobility, and the quest for one's inner self. In some cultures, it is also considered a symbol for the forces of Nature, which can sustain as well as destroy.

Celtic Cross Tattoos

Celtic tattoos are popular among people of Scandinavia, Scotland, and Ireland. These tattoos are distinguished by their complex designs. The two most popular Celtic symbols are the Celtic cross and the Celtic knot. Celtic knots represent the never-ending cycle of nature.
Since a tattoo design for the arm needs to be elongated, the Celtic cross is an apt design for a half sleeve tattoo.
The circle in the center of the Celtic cross is said to represent the sun, and is also a symbol of eternal life. The cross, on the other hand, symbolizes the four elements, or the four directions. On the whole, the Celtic cross represents the spiritual understanding of Nature and the universe.

Wing Tattoos

The wing tattoo represents freedom of the inner self, and is also associated with magic.
Since wings are used to fly high above, it can also stand for reaching new heights, or achieving success in life. Besides, wings are also a symbol of love, peace, and spirituality. Since many creatures of the insect world acquire wings once they reach the adult stage, wings are also associated with metamorphosis and transformation.
A popular symbol is the heart with wings, which represents spiritual awakening of the soul, and its journey to another realm. These tattoos can represent the powerful wings of the eagle, or the delicate wings of the butterfly, and are sported by men and women alike.

Star Tattoos

Star tattoos, in general, are symbols of struggle and hope in the face of adversity. However, the symbolism changes with the number of points the star has, and also its orientation.
★ The pentagram is a five-pointed star, and its five points stand for the five elements, the fifth element being the Spirit.
★ The nautical star is a five-pointed star that has a strong symbolism associated with it. Since the left palm is used in palmistry, a nautical tattoo on the left wrist is said to guide you towards positive things in the future. Mostly worn by sailors and people who live by the sea, the beautifully symmetrical nautical tattoo is often used as an ornamental element surrounding other tattoo designs.
★ The hexagram is also referred to as the Star of David, and it consists of two interlaced equilateral triangles. This six-pointed star stands for the relationship between the Divine and the mortals. It is a protective symbol, and is one of the most popular religious symbols today.
★ The septagram (seven-pointed star), the octagram (eight-pointed star), and the nonagram (nine-pointed star), represent mysticism, regeneration, and achievement, respectively.

Tribal Tattoos

Tribal tattoos, with their bold aggressive designs, make for some good ideas for a half sleeve tattoo.
The best thing about tribal tattoos is that there are a host of designs for you to choose from. These tattoos look better on men than on women, because of their dark colors and thick lines. Tribal tattoo designs are symmetrical and most of these tattoos are black in color.
One can opt for a Hawaiian tribal tattoo, Maori tribal tattoo, Aztec tattoo or Polynesian tattoo. Each tattoo belongs to a certain tribe, and has a unique symbolism associated with it. Primitive tribes associated tattoos with magic and mysticism. Interestingly, tribal tattoos were once more than just body art; they were used to identify members of a clan.
So, these were some cool half sleeve tattoo designs for you to choose from. Before selecting one, there are certain factors that you need to consider. The design should be such that it complements your arms. Make sure that you also read on tattoo aftercare, as taking care of a tattoo is an important part of getting the perfect tattoo you desire.