Getting a large, bold design across your chest is a brave choice that can look simply amazing when you’ve got your top off! While many chest pieces are done simply in black or grayscale, there’s no harm in adding some flashes of color either. These 45 intriguing chest tattoos show you just what s achievable.
There’s simply no better canvas for a piece of body art than a chiseled chest, especially now that summer is upon us and you’ll be baring your skin more often as the heat rises. Before you go with a commonplace design that most of your friends are already rocking, check out our list of the top twenty coolest and most unique chest tattoos. You’ll be sure to find some artwork that is provocative, interesting, alluring and down right awesome.
- If you thought your buddy’s black and white skeleton tattoo was cool, you haven’t seen anything yet! This chest tattoo is the perfect blend of old school and new school, with classic images like a skeleton and red rose inked in bold, cartoonish hue. The wings on this guys chest are wonderfully detailed. the negative space in the clouds give a natural looking depiction of light rays and the flame in the center make this chest piece really come together.
2. The script on the top of this guys chest piece is perfectly placed. The two heads on each side of his chest are slightly hidden but are put in just the right spot.
3. This is a really unique tattoo. most of the time when you see birds on a tattoo they are flying up, but in this case they are diving down. The solid black figures in the tattoo give it a serious and bold appearance.
Chest pieces are rad because they often complement other work you’ve had done. As you’ll notice, a lot of these pieces have sleeves, stomach art or back art done as well. Chest pieces are known to really tie the entire body’s worth of work all together to create a real masterpiece of inked art.
4. This is a classic American style chest and stomach tattoo. The bold lines and solid colors really represent traditional American tattooing. The eagle with its wings spread over the chest is a classic tattoo that lives as an icon for America and tattoo lovers of all kind. With American flags waving and woman’s face placed perfectly, it is obvious that this tattoo artist has been doing this for a long time.
5. We particularly liked this guy’s newly inked words as they correlate to the wings. Both pieces took time because of the extent of the detail.
6. Here’s a great example of a chest piece that is just part of the overall art on his body.
7. Simple, rockstar quality work.
8. The shading here is really well done.
9. Great use of imagery in this artwork. Clear, defined lines create a compelling piece.
10. The hornets are pulling the roses apart. He has set up this piece so that it looks complete if he decides to leave it as such or he can easily add on and it would look like it flowed great.
Not to sound stereotypical, but sports are a big part of the lives of most men. Whether you were a baseball star back in high school and college, or you just enjoy the roar of a ballpark, a traditional black and gray chest tattoo is the perfect way to pay homage to a sport that means a lot to you.
11. This is a unique piece with the glove seeming to come off his chest. Excellent detail in the glove.
12. Dramatic scene of the swallows billowing down towards his navel. It’s a strong scene and is beautifully curated on his skin.
13. This is so vivid and the colors make the piece so vibrant and live. It’s such a beautiful piece that no doubt took a lot of time to complete.
14. Wow, the shading and detail in the wings is astounding. The variation is coloring is really cool because it shows the strength and force of the bird versus the still strong yet weaker animal that is the snake. It’s a formidable piece that looks great.
15. The dark ink takes so much time and ink to complete. It may not look like it, but he was in that chair for a while. Does the block look appeal to you or would you opt for something else?
16. Watch out for this beast! He looks devilish in every sense of the word.
17. Subtle chest piece with words inscribed is a great start to any inked piece.
18. This artist did a fabulous job in every area of this artwork. The lines, the details, the overall flow is just awesome. This piece took a lot of time and effort and the overall finish is on point.
19. Fascinating piece that seems to have a hundred different things going on. The artist did a great job with the line variation.
20. Loving the various colors. It creates a chaos and warlike feel.
21. The undertones in the wings is bomb. The artist created this typical owl and turned him into something so much darker as he holds the eye in his talons. That’s what we love about art. You can literally take something so simple and create anything you want it to be.
22. Woah, this robotic look is so authentic. It’s amazing the skill level this took to complete the realistic contrast and variation of depths. Well done.
23. The heart seems to be exploding with this machine. The colors are gorgeous and cause the entire piece to practically come off his chest. This is so well done and it’s so cool because if this guy was just walking down the street, you’d have no idea he had this masterpiece underneath his shirt!
24. Serving in the military is undoubtedly honorable and momentous for any serviceman. Just because you have returned home from active duty doesn’t mean that you don’t carry countless memories and experiences with you forever. This unique chest tattoo blends the U.S. Army logo with flesh and bone, perfectly capturing the life changing essence of a tour of duty.
25. Sure, the old adage says that “home is where the heart is,” but we think it’s also where your body art says it is! Justin Vernon, known popularly as “Bon Iver,” had his home state of Wisconsin’s outline tattooed on his chest with a snippet of his own song lyrics about the importance of memories. You can take a boy from his home, but you can’t take his home away from a boy!
26. If you purchase tickets in advance to every Spiderman flick and dressed up as Spidey every Halloween as a kid, then this is the perfect chest tattoo for you. This ripped skin style is something that Peter Parker himself would love, revealing the true superhero within.
27. Delicate birds have always been a popular design choice for women who want some ink, but females aren’t the only ones who can rock their love for little birdies! Simply avoid any sort of “tramp stamp” and strategically place colorful birds on your chest; if anything, they accentuate your masculine, muscular physique!
28. Harry Styles may have sparked a flurry of hateful comments from online gossip mavens when he had this butterfly inked on his chest, but he got the last laugh once they realized he had sparked a new trend in the world of male tattoo design. Butterflies symbolize metamorphosis and transformation, so this particular image may be a viable choice for you if you have experienced a lot of transition and change in your life.
29. Owls are traditionally known for both their wisdom and sensitivity, which we all know are both major chick magnets! Rocking this colorful owl design on your toned bod will guarantee you dates with the hottest girls around.
30. Not a fan of bright colors or thick lines? No worries! Male model Stephen James is famous for his chest full of tattoos in an unfinished, pencil-sketch style. The best part about this type of tattoo is the fact that you can always add color and dimension later in life if you choose to do so; your options are limitless.
31. World-renowned ink master Ami James of Miami Ink has to be away from his family for several months out of the year now that he has his own tattoo shop in New York City. Ami decided to have a portrait of his daughter tattooed on his chest so that he can see her smiling face whenever he looks in the mirror each morning. This style of tattoo would also be a wonderful tribute to someone in your life who has passed on, as your loved one’s image will be forever close to your heart.
32. If you’re a musician, chances are that you either already have a music note tattooed somewhere on your body, or you just want something different from the norm. Pay tribute to the most important thing in your life, music, by having simple sound waves tatted on your chest.
33. You can love a band without wanting portraits of its members’ faces inked on your chest for life, but how else can you really show your love and adoration for their work? By working with your tattoo artist to make a montage of images from the band’s various pieces of album artwork, you’re not only showing your support for their brand of genius; you are also creating a one-of-a-kind tattoo design that is unlike any other.
34. Just because you chose your chest as the perfect blank canvas for your next tattoo doesn’t mean that you need to decide on a mural that fills up its entire space! Smaller designs at the top of the chest, like these star outlines, can look just as hot as a larger piece that takes up the entire chest.
35. Faith often brings great comfort in times of loss, which is why this tattoo is the perfect tribute piece to both a deceased loved one and the faith that bring healing to those who remain on Earth.
36. If you’re not the religious type but still want to acknowledge someone impactful in your life, have their name inked on your chest in a delicate cursive font, along with a date that means something to your relationship with that person. It could be the birthdate of a child, a wedding date, or even a decease date.
37. Any artist could appreciate the bold colors and strokes of this tattoo design, especially with the inclusion of a blue bird that is hidden to the eye at first glance. If you’re an art enthusiast, there’s no need to have your favorite Picasso painting emblazoned across your chest; get creative and generate an abstract design that’s uniquely your own.
38. If you’re looking for shock effect, then look no further. This optical illusion will definitely get plenty of stares the next time you rip your shirt off poolside! This took so much time and skill. Seriously, this is an incredible piece. The way it zeroes in on his chest like that is masterfully done.
39. Not every tattoo has to be a symbolic mystery that must be analyzed for a deeper meaning or significance. If you’re a straight-forward guy who likes to get down to business, having adjectival traits that you consider to be important in life tatted directly onto your skin is the way to go.
40. For some, there’s nothing more inspirational and important in life than religious faith. Having your religion’s monumental symbol of faith, like this Celtic Christian cross, tattooed on your chest keeps your religion close to your heart and soul at all times. This is so tender.
41. Heart tattoos may be a dime a dozen, but we can’t take our eyes off this paint-dipped design, which proves that it’s possible to take a common symbol and truly make it your own instead of making it trite.
42. Basic tribal tattoo that has plenty of potential for lots of additions although it looks pretty stellar all on it’s own.
43. Classic black and white with writing. Although this is a fairly traditional look, you can always tweak it to make it your own. Discuss different ideas with your artist to make it original and your’s alone.
44. This is an original spin on the classic skull tattoo. The entire image is so dramatic and bold. It causes quite a stir and evokes a plethora of emotions. What is your initial reaction when you see it?
45. This is a pretty exquisite piece because the detail in every area of the piece is so calculated and well thought out. From the eyes to the wings, the owl looks evil and threatening.
Chest pieces are great ways to capture the essence of your art. It’s a fairly smooth surface which allows the artist to really have free reign to create beautiful imagery. They are easy to cover for work and they’re fun to showoff at the beach or pool or wherever you feel like it. They’re a great option for people who want a lot of work done but who also want to be able to conceal it. They’re also a great way to add a little bit of ink bit by bit. You can always go all the way with a massive image or you can add some a little bit here and there and one day you’ll have a finished piece that is magnificent.