Photo: Ihor Bulyhin/Shutterstock

10 Tattoo Clichés To Avoid at Any Cost

by Kate Sedgwick Jan 21, 2009

Tribal band / Barbed wire — Upper arm

This tattoo proclaims you as a member of the tribe, that’s true. The sad part is that the tribe in question is the “sub-literati.”

Super hard neck tattoo

The placement implies anything but hardness, no matter the subject matter. This is the mark of the young man with erectile dysfunction, or at the very least, a premature ejaculator. Can you say overcompensation? Go ahead and try again. I’m willing to be patient.

Garden variety butterfly tramp stamp

Beware the secret garden below. The butterfly belies a much more sinister truth, and though the garden is sure to be properly pruned, the implication that insect life may seek exodus from the deep cleavage below may not be so far off the mark.

Look at my boobs sacred heart

Frank Zappa had it right about you Catholic girls. Too many years cooped up with the same sex have you making this desperate and permanent plea for male attention that you reiterate every time you “forget” to close those top buttons.

Any placement of a dolphin

Bad enough on a necklace or a t-shirt, the dolphin tattoo indicates a desire to be seen as peace and earth loving. The bad news is that you were probably inspired to get it after an alcohol fueled domestic abuse disturbance that resulted in your arrest.

Nautical star

Would you cut it out already? The closest you’ve been to the open water is happy hour near the naval base during shore leave.

Angel wings on the back

In your desire to be different, you committed the error of putting puny, atrophied angel wings on your back in an indelible medium. Were they suddenly to become corporeal, you’d be left with useless nubs that make getting dressed impossible. Shows severe spatial orientation issues.

Flower on the ankle

The design you picked out gave you a familiar, warm-fuzzy feeling. It’s unfortunate that you failed to recognize it was because it resembled the packaging on your favorite feminine hygiene product. A future of daytime soaps awaits you.

Tazmanian devil

Any Looney Tunes character pretty much says the same thing, but Taz is the mark of the beast — as in Old Milwaukee. The calling card of the unemployable, the Tazmanian Devil shows a character deficit that pretty much guarantees you will complacently be the recipient of public assistance for the rest of your life.

Low-abdominal, sub-navel tribal

Your shirt’s too short and your pants are too low and that means we can all see your belly tattoo. With or without a belly button ring, this almost definitely indicates a cavalier approach to birth control. Pretty soon, your tattoo will be ravaged by your impending pregnancy.

Featured image: Alex Hockett

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