Zipper Tattoo Designs

Back zipper tattoo

If there's something inside you just dying to be revealed or something you feel a need to conceal, a zipper might be the perfect symbol to express how you feel. The right zipper tattoo design and placement can help you show the world exactly what you want it to see.

Download Free Zipper Tattoo Flash Art

A little flash art can help you get started on your new tattoo, and it can also help you decide on the perfect placement for it. The designs below feature one basic zipper tattoo and one open zipper that reveals some beautiful roses. You'll need to use Adobe to download them, and they're completely free.

Zipper Tattoo Trends and Ideas

Zipper tattoos aren't exactly new but they are becoming increasingly popular, and it's not difficult to understand why. This design can be used in a number of different ways.

3-D Tattoos

3D zipper tattoo
3-D zipper tattoo

Zippers are the perfect addition to a 3-D tattoo, which can look incredibly real due to the careful use of shading and color that gives the design a raised look. This technique is perfect for making an existing scar look even more gnarly if that's your goal, but it's also an eye-catching technique that will make any design pop.

Steampunk Style

Zippers also fit into the steampunk tattoo trend, and there's usually something inside the open zipper that reveals something about the person with the tattoo. For example, it could be a clockwork heart or a set of gears that suggest the person with the tattoo is really a mechanical figure. Along the same lines, a closed zipper tattooed down the back could symbolize someone is simply wearing a "human" suit.

Covering or Enhancing Scars

Zipper tattoo covering a scar
Zipper tattoo covering a scar

Zipper tattoos are often used to hides scars from injuries and surgical procedures. An artist tattoos the zipper directly over the scar tissue to conceal it as much as possible, and even if the scarring isn't completely hidden the design obscures it.

In other instances the zipper design is used to enhance a scar, essentially framing it. This could mean a person has reason to feel proud the scar, but it can also symbolize taking control over the situation or event that caused the scar in the first place and give that person a sense of closure.

Other Reveal Design Ideas

There are plenty of things you can reveal in the opening of a zipper tattoo. For example, you might choose to add:

Music zipper tattoo
  • A lovely bouquet which could symbolize a romantic personality
  • A portrait of a beloved family member
  • A quote, poem or song lyric that has deep meaning for you
  • Musical notes drifting out from the zipper to show your musical side
  • An animal that could represent your wild side
  • A bird flying out to represent your free spirit

Getting a High-Quality Zipper Tattoo

It's always important to choose a highly skilled tattoo artist for any tattoo you want to get, but it's crucial to choose an artist who has experience creating zipper tattoos if this is the design you have your heart set on.

Zipper tattoo with inner leopard skin design

At first glance zippers may seem like they're simple to create, but that's not quite the case. The teeth on either side of the zipper should be exactly the same size and align perfectly to look right, and this is easier to do on a closed zipper design than an open zipper that surrounds a scar or another design element.

If the zipper is meant to conceal or frame a scar, this is another reason to choose your artist carefully. Tattooing over scar tissue tends to be more difficult than tattooing over smooth skin since it's typically tougher than normal skin and may not take the ink as well. If you can find an artist who specializes in working on scar tissue, you're more likely to get a great result.

Zip It!

A top-notch artist, a well-thought-out design, and the perfect placement can add up to an amazing tattoo. Experiment with zipper design ideas on paper and then share them with your artist, who will create a professional drawing to use for your future tattoo.

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Zipper Tattoo Designs