Butterfly Tattoo – The True Meaning And Symbolism

One of the most beautiful tattoos you will ever see is the butterfly tattoo.

Coming in different sizes and colors, we can’t just help but love this adorable creature.

In fact, butterfly tattoos are nothing short of a beautiful work of art.

It also seems to be a girly thing, but is there more to this interesting tattoo?

You are about to learn everything you need to know about this fleeting beauties.

What Butterfly Tattoos Signify

Yeah, you may know butterfly as that fleeting insect that is here one day and gone another day.

One thing we cannot take away from butterflies is that they are both daring and yet fragile.

Daring to soar high and perch on places other flies dare not to perch. And fragile enough to be squashed in a minute.

There are different meanings to a butterfly tattoo.

In some way, people associate it with the changes we go through in life. This is because of the metamorphosis butterflies go through in their lifetime. A reference point is how they start out as caterpillars and then turn into beautiful butterflies.

The change is reflected in our lives because we too as humans develop into different versions of ourselves.

Traditionally, butterflies do not just signify beauty, but transformation and freedom as well.

Try to keep a butterfly in an enclosed space and see how it dies off gradually. But let it out in the open to soar and see how freely it blossoms.

Likewise, butterfly tattoos are for those who love freedom and aren’t shy to express it.

For the transformation part, a butterfly tattoo is another way to show how far one has come in life. Even against all odds, the caterpillar still breaks out of its comfortable shell to become something more phenomenal.

This is a perfect representation of those who refused to stay put in their comfort zones, but instead pursue after a greater height.

Another thing butterfly tattoos stand for is positivity, hope and a better future. It’s like when you attain victory after a difficult turmoil.

In some cultures, butterfly signifies good luck, especially blue butterflies because of their rarity.

Therefore, it won’t be wrong to say that some butterfly tattoo wearers believe that it will bring them good fortunes.

In fact, that is what most males wear it for.

Looking at this tattoo from the female perspective, the butterfly tattoo stands for beauty; inwardly and outwardly.

It also holds some sort of sex appeal for the female wearer, especially when it is tattooed on the human anatomy.

Another important meaning that butterfly tattoos hold is that they represent those with gentle and carefree spirit. Such people are not afraid to venture into new things to explore their creativity.

It may interest you to know that different colors of butterflies signify different things. Let’s break it down.

Different Colors of Butterflies Tattoos and Their Meanings

Every color of butterfly tattoo you see has a meaning attached to it. Here we break down the meaning by color.

Black Butterfly Tattoo

Black Butterfly on Hand

You will find many butterfly tattoos in black color. This usually signifies that life is temporary.

And while some believe that a black tattoo is a sign that there is danger ahead, it’s usually not so.

One other thing people associate black butterflies with is aging.

Blue Butterfly Tattoo

Blue butterfly tattoo on back

Japanese take the appearance of blue butterflies to mean that they will have a bountiful year.

Blue butterflies are not only rare but also a sight to behold.

They are believed to attract good luck and bring absolute bliss.

Usually among the first butterflies to be seen in spring, blue butterflies tattoos are for those who want to turn a new leaf.

Are you a carefree and meek person? The blue butterfly tattoo may just be what you need.

We can’t help but notice that blue tattoos are very appealing, but we love what they signify.

For anyone losing hope, blue tattoo butterflies are believed to help in restoring hope and bringing about happiness.

White Butterfly Tattoo

White signifies purity. It is usually associated with Christians, and especially those with purity of heart.

It has a strong connotation with Christ and particularly as it pertains to His resurrection.

Purple Butterfly Tattoo


Ideally, purple color is used to refer to royalty and nobility. But when it comes to purple butterfly tattoo, it can mean different things.

For some people, a purple butterfly tattoo is a way to attain higher spiritual connection. For others, it’s a way to show elegance and grace.

Purple butterfly tattoos is also known to be a sign of resilience. This is particularly true when the tattoo is meant to show support for someone going through health challenges.

It can also be a way to set yourself apart from the crowd.

Pink Butterfly Tattoo

Without even going far, you should know that pink itself is a representation of femininity.

Apart from that, pink butterfly tattoo has connotations with compassion, youthfulness, love, and intrigue.

People looking to start off a new beginning also identify with this tattoo. Some of them see it as a ritual for renewing life.

Aesthetically, the color pink is a very beautiful color. What makes the pink butterfly tattoo even more attractive is that it’s mild and gentle.

Red Butterfly Tattoo

Think of passion and the color red comes to mind.

Yes, the red butterfly can mean passion and love. But it might interest you to know that it can also be a symbol of good omen.

Now before you get all excited and conclude on getting one, it might interest you to know that it means a negative thing in another culture.

For instance, in Scotland, red butterflies are believed to be witches who transformed to butterflies.

While this may be daunting, it shouldn’t stop you from getting a red butterfly tattoo, especially if you’re not from that part of the world.

In fact, no other color does justice to the intricate details of the butterfly the way red butterfly tattoos do.

Yellow Butterfly Tattoo

Yellow is a bright and playful color. So we understand when free-spirited and sincere people choose to use this color of butterfly tattoo to show off their personality.

The yellow butterfly tattoo is also a way to show that one has inner peace that the world may not understand.

This is very true especially when you look at it from the Chinese ideology that regards it to mean joy and happiness.

Rainbow Butterfly Tattoo

The rainbow color screams of vibrancy and rebirth.

So, the rainbow butterfly tattoo signifies starting afresh and transformation.

For the LGBTQ movement, it is very common to see their members wearing this particular tattoo.

To them, it means breaking stereotypes and identifying with a new ideology.

What Makes Butterfly Tattoos Popular?

Without much agreement, many of us would agree that the butterfly is a very beautiful insect.

It’s a sight to behold.

It has aesthetic qualities as well as deep meanings.

They are also versatile and in many cases represent a new beginning or transformation.

Just take a close look at a butterfly tattoo and tell us if there is any other tattoo that can be as attractive as the butterfly.

Perhaps that is why it is quite popular among women including men.

It is also one major tattoo that can be inked in many different colors and it will stand out.

The Best Places To Ink A Butterfly Tattoo

There is no limitation to where you can place this beautiful tattoo.

While the butterfly tattoo looks good on any part of the body, it is particular attractive in conspicuous places like the arm, on the back and leg.

The best position at the end of the day would be where you in particular decide to have your tattoo.

So, do not be afraid to explore the many places you can have this tattoo.

Frequently Asked Questions About Butterfly Tattoos

Do men tattoo butterfly tattoos?

Yes, butterfly tattoo may look feminine, but there are a lot of men who proudly wear their butterfly tattoos with pride. If as a male you don’t want to make it too feminine, you can stick to just black color butterfly tattoo.

Bold or tiny butterfly tattoo, which is better?

Tattoos hold different meanings for different people. While some people may not have any problem showing off their bold butterfly tattoos, others may not feel the same way.

What does 3 butterfly tattoos mean?

It varies from culture to culture, but the popular believe is that it signifies freedom, transformation and a new beginning.

Is it true that every tattoo lover must have a butterfly tattoo?

This is not true. We agree that the butterfly tattoo is among the oldest tattoos that are still very popular, but it’s not a must to have one. If you don’t feel the need to get one, then don’t.


We believe that now that you know the vital details of a butterfly tattoo, you will be able to make up your mind on whether to get one or not.

Remember that every tattoo has its relevance to the person wearing it.

The butterfly tattoo is a tattoo that cuts across popular belief.

With your imagination, you can turn this beautiful tattoo into an astonishing masterpiece.

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About the author

I’m S.R Bhuiyan, a proud Tattoo artist. I will share the body art journey with you here in PrettyJust. I have 10+ years of experience in the field of tattoo, piercing, nail art, and skincare. Check out my bio which has my tattoo studio/cat/travel pics!

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