35 Creative Small Tattoos for Men

Small tattoos for men are becoming more and more popular. While large tattoos can be impressive, they are not always practical or appropriate for every setting. Small tattoos offer a more subtle way to show off your personality and style. They can be easily hidden if necessary, and they are less likely to cause pain or irritation. Plus, small tattoos are usually less expensive than larger ones.

You can place small tattoos anywhere: your ankle, nape, back of the ear, wrist, and finger. After all, even the smallest pieces can make the biggest impact. Here are some of the best we found:

1. Small Animal Tattoo

Animal tattoos have always been popular among men. After all, they’re versatile and are generally fun designs to explore. So whether you’re getting a replica of a deceased pet or a spirit animal, consider a small animal tattoo. You can experiment with the design by adding elements like a portrait inside an animal’s body. Doing this helps you create a unique design just for you. 

2. Small Cat Tattoo

If you consider yourself a ‘cat person’ or like cats in general, show your love by getting a small cat tattoo. Besides looking cool, mysterious, and elegant, cats often make symbolic tattoos. Many believe cats to be a symbol of determination. So if you want a piece that inspires you every day, consider a small cat tattoo. 

3. Small Skull Tattoo

Although most men like getting larger skull tattoos, a smaller version is just as good. Whether you want the outline of a skull or want something realistic, a small skull tattoo is a great choice. You can get as much detail with a larger tattoo, giving you a subtle yet meaningful piece. Skull tattoos may look menacing, but no one will ever question your masculinity with them. 

4. Small Cross Tattoo

Crosses have always been a popular tattoo motif for men. That’s because they’re some of the best ways to show your faith while not being over the top. There are several interpretations of this design. But whether you choose a simple black cross or an elaborate rosary, they’ll look masculine. Popular places for this design are the hands, fingers, or chest. Overall, it’s the perfect piece for Christian men who want to showcase their faith subtly. 

5. Small Crown Tattoo

When considering a small crown tattoo, there are two popular choices among men. You can either get an outline of a crown in traditional black ink or make it as detailed as possible. Generally, small tattoos look best when they’re intricately designed. So all you need to do is ensure you find the right artist. For this piece, it’s best to find someone specializing in fine lines. 

6. Small Portrait Tattoo

Although portrait tattoos are generally big, they don’t need to take a lot of space to be meaningful. After all, they can still be detailed and intricate when they’re smaller in size. For this reason, small portrait tattoos have become a popular choice among men. Most portrait tattoos that men get are either one of a historian, celebrity, or family member. Regardless, remember to give the artist a picture for the best results possible. 

7. Small Star Tattoo

For men getting their first tattoo, choose a design that’s meaningful and not too drastic. Because of this, men often choose simple designs like a small star tattoo as their first piece. You can have the design be as simple as an outline of a star or entirely blacked out. But if you want the tattoo to have a unique meaning, consider a different start design. For example, you can get the Australian flag’s stars tattoo to show off your love for your country. 

8. Small Feature Tattoo

Feature tattoos are incredibly versatile and can contain any design you want. That’s why they’ve become a popular choice among men. After all, it lets men create unique designs. Generally, feature tattoos involve shapes with an image as its centerpiece. These are usually done with things like a comic book character. Overall, this small tattoo idea lets you create a fun and different spin to the entire piece. 

9. Small Music Tattoo

Music-themed tattoos are popular among men who love their tunes. Popular motifs that this tattoo theme has are records, music notes, and instruments. All of these are usually done using traditional black ink. The best part is the designs are pretty small, making them perfect for a small tattoo design. 

10. Small Angel Tattoo

Angel tattoos are a widely popular tattoo motif among men. That’s because these heavenly beings usually have a deep meaning behind them. Some of these traits include protection, strength, and spirituality. Although angel tattoos are made larger and detailed, you can also get smaller designs. But keep in mind that the design may need to be tweaked a bit. However, you’ll end up with a piece unique to you. 

11. Small Money Tattoo

For hardworking men who like flaunting their hard work, a small money tattoo is perfect. There are many different designs to pick from when it comes to this theme. For example, you can get a money note or coin tattooed. Otherwise, you can be creative and go for something for a flower made of dollar bills. Either way, money tattoos look great no matter the size – and they’re pretty masculine. 

12. Small Tribal Tattoo

Small tribal tattoos are popular among men who want to show their heritage. Men usually get these tattoos wrapped around their wrists or ankle. They’re great alternatives for full tribal sleeve tattoos. The best part is if they’re small, you can have the piece as intricate as possible. Even if you don’t know your heritage, small tribal tattoos are pieces that generally look cool on any man. 

13. Small Meaningful Tattoo

Getting a small, meaningful tattoo is good for men who want to get a subtle yet impactful piece. This tattoo design lets men honor someone or something that means a lot to them without overdoing it. After all, sometimes, the smaller they are, the more memorable they become. Popular designs for small meaningful tattoos among men are pictures, quotes, or symbols. Regardless, remember to get a piece that reminds you of something you hold dear to your heart. 

14. Small Lettering Tattoo

Small lettering generally looks better than big and bold writing. That’s why when getting a small tattoo, why not get one in small lettering in a simple script. But for this, you’ll need to find a fine line artist for top-quality lettering. After all, the design revolves around the script. Either way, small lettering tattoos allow for many fonts, allowing you to create a piece unique. 

15. Small Name Tattoo

Name tattoos are some of the most personal pieces you can get. They’re a great sentiment towards those names who got inked. A great thing about this design is that it doesn’t need to be large to show that you appreciate the person. Overall, it’s best to get a small name tattoo in an area where you can see it every day. This way, you can remind yourself that this particular person is always with you. 

16. Small Scorpion Tattoo

Scorpion tattoos are among the most masculine, regardless of their size. Although the scorpion’s outline doesn’t leave much room for creativity, the body does. Plus, you can have the scorpion as realistic or as abstract as you want. You can make a small scorpion tattoo unique, but a popular design is done in tribal print. 

17. Small Family Inspired Tattoo 

If you’re a family man and want to immortalize your love for your family, consider a small family tattoo. It’s a great way to show your love and appreciation for your loved ones. Plus, it showcases your loved and caring side. Overall, small family tattoos help men show off their masculinity and sensitivity. 

18. Small Forest Tattoo

Small wrist tattoos are becoming more popular among men. That’s because it isn’t painful, and it can be one of the most meaningful pieces you have. It’s an excellent choice for anyone who wants to get a symbolic yet subtle tattoo. One of the best designs for this is a forest tattoo. Forests can symbolize your love for nature or the feeling of being lost. 

19. Small Harry Potter-Themed Tattoo

If you’re a fan of Harry Potter, immortalize your adoration through body art. There’s no better way to stand out when it comes to your wizard knowledge than getting a small wrist tattoo. A masculine and symbolic Harry Potter to consider is a Deadly Hallows tattoo. But if you’re looking for something more elegant, a tattoo of the Golden Snitch is also a good choice. Either way, a small Harry Potter tattoo is a unique piece to get. 

20. Small Swimmer Tattoo

If you’re a swimmer, diver, or love the sea, a unique piece is a small swimmer tattoo. This is an eye-catching tattoo design that suits men who love the water. Plus, it shows that you’re always up for new challenges! Either way, it’s the perfect small tattoo design for adventurous men. 

21. Small Cherry Fruit Tattoo

A cherry fruit tattoo is a great choice for men who enjoy a pop of color in their tattoos. It lets them express their artistic sides, and cherries are generally symbolic fruits. They’re often associated with love and harmony, so if you love color and want a tattoo that can show off your sensitive side, get a small cherry tattoo. 

22. Small Spiritual Tattoo

A perfect spiritual tattoo that’s eye-catching and symbolic is a mountain tattoo. Mountains symbolize a person’s willingness to overcome new challenges. For this reason, this design is perfect for men who aren’t afraid of facing problems while staying grounded. Show people how you’re willing to progress and grow despite the issues you face every day.

23. Small Joker-Themed Tattoo

If you’re a fan of the iconic comic villain, Joker, consider a small Joker-themed tattoo. A popular design among men is a Harley Quinn piece. That’s because Harley represents the Joker’s other side, representing his better half. For this reason, men often get this piece to honor their significant others. 

24. Small Demon Mask Tattoo

Men who want bright tattoos representing their wild side will want this design. A demon mask tattoo is a menacing yet unique piece, perfect for men who want a pop of color in their tattoos. Plus, the demon mask can represent the wearer’s struggles in life. After all, everyone is facing their demons. It’s best to get this design in a smaller version to make it more meaningful and eye-catching. 

25. Small Palm Tree Tattoo

Small palm tree tattoos look best over the ankle or wrists. They’re the perfect piece for men who want to commemorate great and fun summer memories. For this reason, a lot of men get small palm tree tattoos during the summer season. Besides that, the tattoo design also shows others that you’re always up for a good time. 

26. Small Rib Tattoo

Although rib tattoos may be challenging to get done, it’s a great spot for small tattoos. That’s because it’s easy to hide under your clothes and it gives ample space for a small piece. So that means you have many location choices on your ribs. Either way, both word- and art-based tattoos look great on the ribs, making it a versatile area. 

27. Face Tattoo

Before getting a face tattoo, make sure to think it through. That’s because it’s one of the most visible pieces you can get, and it will be difficult to hide. Either way, if you’re still set on the idea of a face tattoo, the best place for a small tattoo is along the cheekbones. Popular designs for face tattoos are simple shapes like the cross. 

28. Small Neck Tattoo

Neck tattoos are among the most visible on your body and some of the most meaningful. After all, it’s a sensitive area, meaning most men choose special designs for it. But it’s a relatively flexible spot. That’s because either writing and symbols going down the sides or back of the neck are perfect for men. 

29. Small Shoulder Tattoo

The top of your shoulders is one of the best places for small tattoos, especially script designs. That’s because word-based tattoos would creep up the neck, making it look cooler. But you can also get a small tattoo on the front or back of your shoulders. 

30. Small Hand Tattoo

The hands are some of the best places for small tattoos. But remember that hand tattoos are among the fastest to fade. After all, people use their hands every day. So that means you’ll need to get hand tattoos retouched regularly. If you’re ready to commit, small hand tattoos are an excellent option. Hand tattoos are popular among men who want a subtle yet impactful piece they can see every day. 

31. Small Back Tattoo

If you’re looking to get a stand-alone small back tattoo, it’s best to keep to the upper back. After all, the side of the middle back can perfectly accommodate small tattoos. But remember that whichever location you choose, you’ll need to have it centered. Doing it this way makes the piece more eye-catching and symbolic. 

32. Small Forearm Tattoo

Forearm tattoos are a common choice among men because they can show and conceal them when they want to. Plus, the forearms are the perfect size for small tattoos. Besides that, due to the forearms’ surface area, it lets artists use different styles. That means there are many small forearm tattoo designs to explore. Generally, the forearm is a decent area for lengthy script tattoos that won’t fit on your wrists. 

33. Small Arm Tattoo

If you’re considering getting a tiny tattoo, you may want to consider putting it on top of your arm. Otherwise, the back of your arms and just above your elbows is a perfect place as well. Meanwhile, if the design you want is a bit long, adding it to the middle of the arm is ideal. You want to be careful when choosing the placement. After all, the arm is one of the most visible areas of the body. 

34. Small Wrist Tattoo

While wrist tattoos are common among women, they’re becoming more popular among men. Because of the wrist’s smaller space, small tattoos are perfect. Plus, the wrist is a nice and flat piece of skin, allowing artists to use different techniques and styles. A great thing about small wrist tattoos is that they don’t hurt as much. So that means the wrists are a decent spot for men getting their first tattoo. 

35. Small Chest Tattoo

Although most men think that large chest tattoos are the best, small designs can look as good. Besides, big chest tattoos are only a good idea if you’re planning on building them down to your arms. Otherwise, small chest tattoos are great for stand-alone pieces.


How Much is a Small Tattoo?

Since small tattoos are smaller, they’re naturally cheaper. That’s because small tattoo designs require less time and ink to complete. Although the price range depends on each shop or artist, the general range for small tattoos is around $50 to 80. Meanwhile, for more complex designs, it can reach as much as $200 per hour. 

Where Should Men Get a Small Tattoo?

Because small tattoos are compact and flexible, they can virtually be placed anywhere. But what are the most common places that men choose for their small tattoos? Common areas include the wrist, ankle, foot, forearm, and shoulders. Meanwhile, more adventurous men decide to get small tattoos on their faces or neck. 

Do Small Tattoos Look Good on Men?

Most men get big and bold tattoo pieces, so you may wonder, do men look good with small tattoos? Like with any design, small tattoos can perfectly complement a man’s appearance. Plus, it makes them look more attractive. After all, tattoos can signal courage and a propensity for taking risks. 

What are the Most Popular Small Tattoo Ideas For Men?

The best design for you depends on your preference, but there are shared favorites among men. Like big and elaborate pieces, there are tattoo motifs that stand out for small tattoos for men. These include skulls, tribal themes, wolf, religion, and crowns. Script tattoos are also popular among men who want a more meaningful piece.