170 Best Sleeve Tattoos Ideas For Men And Women

Tattoos are nothing less than a style statement as they do the dual task of attracting attention s well as getting across the attitude of the bearer to the onlookers. Though the placement of the tattoos is determines by the size and design and more importantly the personal decision of the bearer, some spots of the body are favored more than the others for having a tattoo etched on them. One of the favorite tattoos among the young and the old are the sleeve tattoos. Though the design started as a common one for males, many women are also spotted with the same today. The ever rising popularity of sleeve tattoos, also known as tattoo sleeves is being cashed in by several garment companies, which have launched products which look similar to tattooed sleeves in appearance, though they are just designs featured on mesh fabric.

Full Sleeve Tattoo

Coverage of the Sleeve Tattoos

In most cases, sleeve tattoos cover all the arm area of the bearer, starting from his shoulder and reaching the wrist, just like a sleeve of a full sleeved garment. It can be in the form of a single large sleeve tattoo or a number of smaller ones combined with each other to form a comprehensive design. Some sleeve tattoos may cover half or quarter of the sleeve too. Such designs are called half sleeved and cover most of the times, the area between the elbow and the upper arm, while in some cases, it may also apply to the area below the elbow and up to the wrist. The quarter sleeved design starts at the mid section of the shoulder and goes down to the elbow. The design entirely depends upon the preference of the bearer, as there is no hard and fast rule regarding the sleeve tattoo designs.
The tattoo bearer can discuss his requirement with the designer and have an absolutely unique design as a sleeve tattoo for him.


The process is quite cumbersome because of the sheer size of the tattoo as it involves multiple smaller tattoos linked with each other to form an unbroken chain like sequence. This may take as long as a few hours and may extend well up to some weeks, months and even years, depending upon the intricacy and detail required in the design. The blending of smaller tattoos into one complete flowing design requires a lot of creativity and is one tough task, which requires a great deal of expertise on the behalf of the tattoo artist. On the other hand, getting this tattoo design demands a great deal of patience for the client too, who has to make a frequent trips to have small details of design etched from time to time. Moreover, the extensive size of the sleeve tattoo makes it very hard to get rid of at later stages, if the bearer wants to do so. Therefore, a lot of careful contemplation is required before one makes up the mind to get a sleeve tattoo done on oneself, as it involves a great deal of extra time, money and patience as compared to other regular tattoo designs.

Best Sleeve Tattoo Designs For Men & Women

Artists and designers have come up with a great variety in sleeve tattoos, as such tattoos are based absolutely on their creativity and capability. In fact, they present a great scope for them to explore their talent in tattoo designing as each design can be a completely different set of smaller designs. This means that there is possibility for each and every sleeve tattoo to be unique and different from the rest. Here are some common sleeve tattoo designs:

  • Tribal Sleeve Tattoos – One of the most popular choices in full sleeve tattoos is the original Maori tattoo designs, which can feature common tribal elements such as spirals and matau. These tattoos exhibit intricate details and look amazing and eye catching because of this reason.
  • Realistic 3d Full Sleeve Tattoos – Realistic sleeve tattoos may incorporate realistic elements such as flowers designs, plants, animals and birds. These can be done in vibrant colors to make a complete effect of these design elements. Roses, lotus, peacocks, swallow, hummingbird and phoenix can make the top choice for such designs. Also Biomechanical tattoos look very creative on full sleeve. On the other hands, some people may prefer fantasy sleeve tattoo designs, which can include elements such as flying birds and elves done in the style of fantasy. Such tattoos may draw attention of the onlookers and fascinate them at the same time.
  • Jesus Christ Full Sleeve Tattoo – Another popular full sleeve tattoo design is Jesus Christ full sleeve tattoo which displays the images of the savior Himself and some even show the sufferings borne by him.
  • Warrior Full Sleeve Tattoos – The warrior full sleeve tattoos may present the pictures of warriors and weapons, engaged in conflicts and wars. Such a tattoo design reflects sheer power and strength. Other designs may include elements such as hearts, dreamcatchers, feathers, arrow and skulls. Clock, compass, geometric, anchor, musical symbols and angels are some other common things used in such a design. One can have as many of them included in sleeve tattoo design as he wants, but it has to be discussed with the designers, right from the beginning stages of the tattoo, so that he can plan the design accordingly.
  • Pin Up Sleeve Tattoo Designs – Another well appreciated sleeve tattoo design is the one which features pin up girls, which make your sleeve look really attractive. Some people may have portraits of their lady love or children etched on their sleeves to show their love towards them, while other may have their names included in these designs. Sometimes, some text can be incorporated in the design, which may be anything ranging from a famous quotation to even the lyrics of the favorite song of the bearer.

The variety in sleeve tattoos is literally endless as they give the liberty to the designer to create something new at every stage of its completion, because of the fact that it is a combination of a large number of small sized tattoos, rather than being one large and continuous one. The variation can be based not only on the elements of design, but also colors used in creating sleeve tattoos. Some designers may make these designs in conventional colors such as black and grey, while others can go for more vibrant colors to make sure that the tattoo attracts every person who sees it and definitely demands a second look.

Because of the variety and versatility it gives to the designer as well as the bearer, sleeve tattoo is a great piece of art for those who want to show off their individuality and originality to the whole world. The one and the only thing to bear in mind before having a sleeve tattoo etched is that it requires a great deal of commitment, as time, money and comfort, all are at stake. And another factor which you should base your decision is that you should be willing to carry such a tattoo with your forever because, once done, such a tattoo is hard to get rid of due to its size and prominence. The lasting nature of the sleeve tattoo can make it both, beneficial as well as disadvantaged for the bearer.


Popular Designs Of Sleeve Tattoos

Blackwork Full Sleeve Tattoo by Nissaco
Dotwork Sacred Geometry Full Sleeve by Helsinki
Prometheus Full Sleeve Tattoo by Jun Cha
Colorful Neo Traditional Sleeve Tattoo by Nederland
Alex Grey Sleeve Tattoo by Eric The Viking
Blackwork Buddha Sleeve Tattoo by Jun Cha
Starry Night Sleeve Tattoo by Tyler Malek
Spiraling Japanese/Tribal Sleeve Tattoo by Christopher Noogin
Greek God Mars Full Sleeve by Jun Cha
Surfer Full Sleeve Tattoo by Ben Klishevskiy
Blackwork Full Sleeve Tattoo by Kostas Baronis Proki
Lord Shiva Full Sleeve by Sullen Art
Geometric Sleeve Tattoo by Nissaco
Mandala Sleeve by Ivan Hack
Space Sleeve Tattoo by Tobias Jonsson
Gothic Sleeve Tattoo by Craig McDonagh
American Military Full Sleeve by Luka Lajoie
Biomechanical Sleeve Tattoo by Matt Driscoll


Sleeve tattoos are one of the most popular tattoo designs the world over, as they look both beautiful and prominent. Like the sleeve of a garment, they cover the area from the shoulder to the wrist, though some designs may be half sleeved or quarter sleeved. These designs combine a large number of smaller designs, which make creating them a difficult and time consuming task, but the effort is truly worth the while.

Popular Designs Of Sleeve Tattoos

Shredded Steel Full Sleeve by Pavel Roch
Blackwork Full Sleeve by Jakob Holst Rasmussen
Polynesian Tribal Sleeve by Kenny Brown
Koi Fish Full Sleeve by Nha Nguyen
Samurai Full Sleeve Tattoo by Nha Nguyen
Realism Full Sleeve by Dennis Wilde
Full Sleeve Tattoo by Jun Cha
Polynesian Tribal Sleeve by Lai
Geometric 3/4 Sleeve by David Mushaney
Halftone Full Sleeve Tattoo by Badjo
Space Sleeve Tattoo by Nika Samarina
Blackwork Full Sleeve by Xnazax
Fallen Angel Full Sleeve by Jun Cha
Amour Tattoo by Steven Mckenzie
Surrealism Sleeve by Bolo Art

Pin It on Pinterest