The Real Meaning Of A Rose Tattoo

A rose is a classic symbol of love and beauty, and as such, is a very popular tattoo motif. Rose tattoos, however, come in a wide variety of patterns, colors, and combinations, and the meaning behind each different type of tattoo might vary with its design. New York tattoo shop Underground Ink relates that the rose is linked to Greek mythology, where it may symbolize the immortal love goddess Aphrodite held for her slain lover Adonis. The rose is also found in tarot symbology, where it represents the balance between the promise, hope, and new beginnings found in its petals and the defensiveness and loss hinted at by its thorns.

What the different shapes of rose tattoos mean

If a tattoo is in the form of a rosebud, it implies youth and new beginnings. If the tattoo is of a full-blown rose, this indicates maturity, growth, achievement. The open rose is at the height of its beauty and perfection, and may indicate that the person who's chosen to have such a rose tattoo inked on their skin feels that they have reached a similar pinnacle in their life journey. A tattoo of a wilted rose, however, may symbolize defeat or loss, perhaps the kind that comes from a failed relationship (via TatRing).

The symbolism behind rose tattoo colors

Red roses often stand for love and romance, but can also be used as a memorial or to commemorate a sacrifice of some kind, perhaps honoring a loved one in the military or law enforcement who was killed in the line of duty. Pink roses represent a more innocent kind of first love, while yellow roses indicate a mature, jealousy-proof love and blue roses an impossible, unattainable love. White roses can be mystical in nature, or perhaps even stand for sympathy and resistance, as with the 2018 Grammy Awards demonstration in support of the Time's Up movement against sexual harassment and workplace gender inequality. Black roses symbolize farewell and even death, often being used as a memorial for a family member or a lover who has passed away.

Although these different interpretations of rose patterns and colors are suggested as possible meanings behind the tattoos in which they are found, a tattoo is ultimately a highly personal expression. If you choose to get a rose tattoo, the most important consideration is to pick one whose design is most meaningful and pleasing to you, since you'll probably be wearing it on your skin for the rest of your life.