Gangsta Tattoos

Need Gangsta tat inspiration?

Although a real gangster isn't likely to admit his affiliation with a street group, the following gangsta tattoos are perfect for the individual who wants to incorporate symbolism or a unique urban design into his/her body art.

Ideas for Gangsta Tattoos

If you want to pay homage to your life experiences, ups and downs or self discoveries, getting gangsta tattoos is one way to do it. These tattoos can represent many personal triumphs and lows. Although the most popular gangsta tattoos involve some form of weaponry or symbols of violence, there are plenty of inspirations for those that want a tattoo that evokes a deeper meaning. Here are a few ideas for a ghetto fabulous gangster tattoo.

  • Snakes: Snakes are a great option for a gangsta style tattoo. Not only are some snakes lethal and dangerous, they also represent temptation and wisdom. If you've had a few years of life-learned lessons under your belt, or you have overcome the temptation to succumb to a dangerous street lifestyle, a snake may represent your battles and inner strength. A snake tattoo is perfect for a sleeve or back tattoo placement.
  • Grim Reaper: The Grim Reaper represents death, thus making this design very appropriate for a gangster that wants to share a fascination with the other side. A Grim Reaper Tattoo is a great choice for an all-black tattoo design. Due to its size, it works well as a full back canvas piece.
  • Tiger: Do you have the eye of the tiger? Tiger tattoos are a great choice for the street fighter who has no fear! Due to their rarity, a white tiger is even more unique!
  • Tear Drops: Although there are many connotations for this symbolic design, tear drops remain a very popular tattoo choice. A teardrop placed under the eye may represent the loss of a loved one. Popular amongst prison inmates, teardrop tattoos may also indicate that the bearer has committed murder. Normally, the number of teardrops placed under the eye indicate how many people the bearer has murdered.
  • Rosary Tattoos: Depending on your faith, a rosary tattoo makes a great option for an ankle or wrist design.
  • Angel Tattoos: It never hurts to have an angel by your side when you've lived in darkness or in fear. If you feel you've been protected or blessed by a higher being, an angel tattoo is a sentimental choice. If you want something even more unique, consider a pair of angel wings rather than a full angel figure.
  • R.I.P. Tattoos: Sadly, most gang members have experienced the loss of a friend or loved one through violence. An R.I.P tattoo is a classic choice for anyone wishing to pay respect and tribute to someone they've lost. R.I.P. tattoos can be inked in a full color portrait design or kept simple with a fancy scrolled font showcasing the beloved's name and birth/death dates.
  • Gun Tattoos: For obvious reasons, a gun tattoo remains a very popular choice amongst the gangsta tattoos category. Gun tattoos can be custom sized and placed nearly anywhere on the body.

Precautions with Street Tattoos


Although many gangsta tattoos represent tough street living, don't sabotage your health when you decide to get inked. Homemade tattoos are painful and may cause injury and even death from infection. If you have the desire to tattoo your body, save your cash and hire a professional artist to do the job. Not only will a professional artist have the equipment and supplies needed to create a professional piece, they'll also take the necessary sanitary precautions that will ensure your safety. In addition, you'll have their skill and talent working in your favor when creating a unique design.

While gangsta tattoos aren't the most popular choice for the average tattoo enthusiast, they hold a special place in the world of hip hop inspired designs. For more inspiration, check out our cool tattoo designs and skull tattoo slideshows!

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Gangsta Tattoos