The range of tattoo ideas to replicate grows by the day. However, while some designs are more common and required, others remain in the shadows and wait for the most dedicated followers. The notion of an octopus tattoo belongs to the latter category. Unlike the fish koi tattoo, octopus designs are less widely spread but offer more room for creativity. Besides, the unique and quite symbolic meaning that the image carries can captivate even the pickiest among you. Should you be browsing for some fresh ink inspo or want to improve your knowledge in the area of symbolism – you have come to the right place!


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Octopus Tattoo Meaning


Many aim to enhance the visual appeal of an octopus tattoo with a profound meaning. Since octopus ink is a highly requested tattoo style at the moment, let's discuss the major meanings and symbols that it is associated with:

  • Intelligence and adaptability. In case you don't know, octopuses are highly adaptable, which is the ability that helps them survive in the underwater world. They can solve countless problems, escaping traps and predators that suggest immense intelligence. Like chameleons, octopuses have the ability to camouflage to blend in with the environment and become difficult to spot. Thus, such ink would stress your cleverness, creativity, resourcefulness, and ability to deal with any life challenge.
  • Mystery. Considering the undiscovered depths of the ocean where octopuses reside, these creatures are coated with an enigmatic aura and an ever-present feeling of mystery. You can entitle an octopus ink with the unquenchable thirst for adventures and exploration of all the aspects of life and what lies beyond.
  • Transformation. One of the most curious facts about octopuses is that they can regrow their limbs should they lose one. Such a regenerative trait speaks about an ongoing transformation and constant renewal, meaning that you can take off your old identity and become a new, better self.
  • Nature. Octopuses are complex creatures with countless tentacles and complicated behavior patterns, making them multilayered beings. If you ink the creature on your body, it may symbolize multiple sides to your personality and different approaches to challenging life situations.
  • Freedom. These sea creatures rarely stick to a single place for too long. They thrive on exploring new horizons so that they become spiritual animals for people who value freedom about all.
  • Protection. Some cultures depict octopuses as the guardians of the sea. Thus, you can adapt the connotation to your individual views and beliefs. An octopus tattoo can serve as your protector or mark you as the unwavering guardian of those you care about.
  • Extraterrestrial life. Even though octopuses are sea creatures, many connect them with the cosmos and extraterrestrial life. If you feel a strong bond with these themes, it makes octopus a perfect tattoo choice to stress your ideas.As you can see, a single octopus tat holds a plethora of meanings and can symbolize the most profound thoughts, views, beliefs, and ideas. It takes your personal perspective to assign your ink with a precise connotation, but now you know the directions to move in.


Octopus Tattoos Origin


Where does the octopus tattoo come from? The traditional octopus tattoo originates from Japan, for the most part. Since the country is an island, all sorts of sea creatures are ever-present in its culture. Moreover, a Japanese octopus tattoo is one of the distinctive features of Yakuza gangsters. Despite the criminal touch, octopi tattoos come in all shapes and forms so that you can pick a pattern that isn't connected with the gangster vibe even remotely. The octopus image is incredibly complex and versatile, making it fit for anyone.

Octopus in Different Cultures


We have discovered that octopus tattoo is native to Japanese culture, but there are others to discuss too. One of the most curious octopus tattoo meaning can be referred to ancient mythology. In some legends, the octopus rises as a sea creature – Kraken – that brings death and destruction, but in other myths, it is a deity. The population of Gilbert Islands used to believe that octopi could control the weather and punish the island's people for disobedience. At the same time, Pacific islands were believed to be created by an octopus god.

At the same time, a Polynesian octopus as a tattoo should serve as a constant reminder to continuously work on yourself. Yet, it does not mean you have to adopt any known connotations. You can always encode your own meaning into the design.

What is your favorite octopus tattoo design?

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How To Choose Octopus Design


Despite various octopus tattoo meanings, the sign of it usually wakes fearful feelings. Thus, you can pick an octopus tattoo design to scare your enemies away. Yet, some octopus tattoo ideas can also be used to show off your fun and creative side. Whether an octopus tattoo arm or an octopus leg tattoo, the primary factor should be your individuality and personal preferences. The best way to decide on a tiny octopus forearm tattoo or a large octopus thigh tattoo is to rely on your own likes and hidden connotations.

Size and Placement

Once you decide on the design you are eager to get, the question of the location arises. So, we've rounded up the most popular placements for an octopus tattoo you can choose from:

  • Back and chest

Your back and chest areas stand as the most extensive canvas for a tattoo masterpiece. Thus, you can mix and match different elements to enhance your octopus ink. Many tattoo artists claim that due to the presented room, it is possible to emphasize the whole potential and beauty of the octopus's tentacles.

Some people decide to ink the octopus on their lower backs so that the tentacles wrap around the hips and intensify the visual representation of the art. If you place it on the upper back, you can do the same trick but allow the tentacles to coil around your shoulders, waist, and down arms.

Moreover, you can introduce various elements of the octopus's natural environment, such as the ocean floor, other fish, and a whole range of fictional assemblies.

  •  Limbs: arms, legs and hands

In case you don't feel like dedicating your largest canvas to an octopus tattoo, a mid-size tat would look amazing on your arms or legs. These areas have enough room for intricacy and detail but don't take up all the space and are easy to conceal when the need arises.

  •  Ankles and wrists

If you are looking for a smaller area to place your octopus tattoo on, the wrist or ankle is a perfect location. Although smaller, such ink is not limited in the potent meaning it projects. Those who are new to the world of body art may want to start with these subtle locations until they are certain about taking on a more extensive journey.


Octopus Tattoo Color Ideas

Many people stick to a traditional black octopus tattoo, but colored octopus tattoo have grown in popularity too. The truth is that the colored octopus tattoo bears a deeper meaning. In nature, bright octopi are usually poisonous. That is why, in most cases, a red octopus tattoo means aggression and danger, so you may want to keep away from people with such a forearm octopus tattoo. On the other hand, ladies often prefer an orange octopus tattoo color since it stands for femininity and motherhood.

Colorful Galaxy Octopus Tattoos

While black-and-white ink pieces are fascinating and beautiful, colorful tats transition the full meaning of the art twice as fast. Thus, if you are in sync with the cosmos and want to stress your love and devotion, the mixture of colorful space and intelligent octopuses suits the goal ideally.

You can play around with vibrant hues and cosmic elements like stars and planets intertwined with enigmatic tentacles to succeed with an intriguing visual. Besides, you can emphasize your individual connection with the divine through an octopus masterpiece. Even people with a moderate passion for body art can't deny the mesmerizing fusion of marine life and the vastness of space.

Octopus with an Anchor Tattoo

If you think that an octopus is a single symbol to enhance your ink with, we'll tell you there's plenty of fish in the sea. For instance, combining your octopus tat with an anchor will symbolize security, stability, and realism. When combined with an octopus's mysterious and other-worldly meaning, you will get a perfect representation of balance between adventure and stability. Such ink can be a unique yet potent statement that stresses the duality of life. Not to mention that it can be your dedication to marine traditions.


Thigh Octopus Tattoos

The thigh area suits an octopus ink for a variety of reasons. Surely, the extensive canvas gives room to creativity and imagination. However, there's something inexplicably sensual about such art. Besides, you can mix and match your ideas and let the tentacles wrap around your leg or travel in any desired direction. These tattoos are also famous for their perfect concealment quality.

Octopus with Skull Tattoo

Should you choose to combine an octopus with a skull, you will get a mesmerizing and somewhat blood-chilling design. However, its deeper meaning speaks about the speed of one's life and the impending doom of mortality. Many people use the combo to emphasize their personal journeys and palpable transformations.

Colorful Octopus Tattoos

Not to undermine the ultimate appeal of a black-and-white tattoo, colorful octopus ink bears a striking visual effect. Implementing the most extensive palette of vibrant hues into the design is possible without making any look out of place. Besides, it is twice as easy to stress some peculiar details with the help of color. Moreover, colored ink will highlight your creativity and diversity and an undying passion for the colorful marine universe.


Black and White Octopus Tattoos

As opposed to vibrant octopus ink, black and white pieces pay homage to classy ink. They carry the same remarkable ability to showcase the tiniest of details with the help of lines and shading instead of different colors. Such tattoos are known for their depth and realism.

Black and White Octopus Tattoos with Colorful Elements

If you can decide whether it is a colorful piece or classy ink that you want to etch into your skin, you can consider a compromise – a black and white tat with colored elements. While the main piece remains in classy shades, the details, such as tentacles or any significant elements, will be highlighted in brighter hues. Such an approach to your octopus tat grants you a perfect chance to stress the thin line and intricate balance between simple and extraordinary.

Medium Size Octopus Tattoos

It takes a dedicated artist to grasp the balance of intricate details and the medium size of the tattoo. Once you find an expert to manage the task, you can place the art anywhere on your body due to its adaptable size. While the piece will be intricate enough to attract adoring gazes, it is still easy to hide should the need arise.


Big Tattoos with Octopus

Large octopus pieces are bold and captivating, and there's little use denying it. The size of such ink and its potential location, such as your back or chest area, offer more than enough space for detail and creativity. You can play around with different additional elements to stress your interests, likes, beliefs, experiences, and individuality.

How Much Does An Octopus Tattoo Cost?

How Much Does An Octopus Tattoo Cost?
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One of the most critical points when it comes to getting an octopus tattoo would be its cost. Yet, despite the numerous requests, it is nearly impossible to determine the precise cost of octopus ink and all the other designs. For instance, back tattoos for women and thigh tattoos, as large pieces, will cost $500+. At the same time, a minimalistic octopi ink can cost you as much as $100. Besides, tattoo salons charge per hour instead of the whole design. The prices vary between $100-$150 per hour.

New Tattoo Aftercare Tips

Octopus Tattoo Aftercare Tips
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Despite the tattoo placement or unique design, you must be aware of how to look after getting one. Depending on how well you care for your ink, it will either heal well and look its best or turn out quite the opposite of what you have expected it to. Use these simple but practical tips to your advantage.

  • Keep your octopus tattoo away from the sun. Cover your fresh ink up with clothes every time you are out in the sun. Try not to apply sunscreen since it may interfere with the healing process.
  • Keep an open eye for the first signs of infection. If your ink looks swollen and red after a week, you may start to worry. Surely, when the design leaks pus, it is a red flag too. You should rush to the doctor's office immediately.
  • Keep away from peeling or scratching your tattoo, or you will have scars all over the design.
  • Keep away from tight clothes, they will irritate the wound, and that is not great for the healing process.
  • Keep away from swimming otherwise, your tattoo may get infected. Another reason to postpone going to the beach is that your ink will fade away.

An octopus tattoo is growing in popularity by the day. In case you have always dreamed about ink, you need a precise guide to point you in the right direction. This octopi ink review is precisely the manual that you require!


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