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Meaningful Mental Health Tattoos We Love The Most

Mental Health Tattoos and Their Meanings 

Tattoos are a form of personal expression. For most people, their tattoos are more than just art – they’re reminders or symbols of life experiences. For those battling depression, anxiety, PTSD and other issues, mental health tattoos can be a way to express their feelings and the difficulties they’ve faced.

Mental health-related tattoos also bring awareness to this common and important issue. There are so many beautiful and brilliant tattoo designs related to mental health. Here are some of our favorites.

Inspiring Mental Health Tattoos With Meaning

2 Tips For Choosing the Right Tattoo

Choosing a tattoo isn’t an easy decision. Sure, you can remove a tattoo, but it’s a painful, expensive and tedious process. If you want to get a tattoo that brings awareness to mental health, it’s important to consider a few things.

Use these tips to help you choose the right tattoo.

Don’t Choose a Trendy Design

A trendy tattoo design may look great now, but what about 10+ years from now? Choose a timeless design that will be just as meaningful and beautiful in the decades to come.

Get Personal

The best tattoos are the ones with personal meaning. Think about your personal experience with mental health and what symbols or phrases speak to you. For example, if you’ve made a lot of progress with your personal growth, a tattoo design that features a watering can and flowers with a simple phrase or quote may be perfect for you. It’s personal, meaningful and symbolic.

Choosing a timeless design with personal meaning will help ensure that you don’t regret your tattoo and it continues to serve as a positive reminder to keep moving forward.

Mental Health Popular Symbols and Their Meanings

Many mental health awareness tattoos feature powerful symbols of growth, hope and sometimes, sadness. Here are some of the most popular symbols and their meanings.

Green Ribbon

A green ribbon is the universal symbol for mental health awareness. There are many ways you can incorporate this ribbon into a tattoo design, like this one:

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Lotus Flower

The lotus flower is symbolic of the recovery from mental health issues. Lotus flowers grow and thrive in muddy, still water. They root themselves in the muck, and each morning, they rise up through the water and bloom. When the day is through, the flower submerges itself into the river water and repeats the cycle the next morning.

For those battling mental health issues, life can feel like the cycle of the lotus flower. It’s a beautiful reminder that each new day is a chance to bloom.

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Growing Flowers

For those who are recovering from mental health issues, tattoos of growing flowers can symbolize their own growth. It’s a reminder that we are all constantly learning and improving. The flowers are usually growing out of the figure’s head in the tattoo, drawing attention to the fact that the mind is growing.

Growth-related tattoos are often accompanied by hopeful phrases, like “always growing,” or “I’m growing.” Some also incorporate green to symbolize mental health awareness.

Serotonin

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The serotonin symbol serves as a reminder to stay calm and happy. Serotonin is an important neurotransmitter that helps regulate your mood and feelings. Having the symbol tattooed on your arm or body can help you stay grounded and calm when times get tough.

Some choose just the plain serotonin symbol, while others add on to the symbol by incorporating flowers or some other symbol of growth.

Butterfly

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Butterflies go through a great transformation before they become the beautiful creatures they are, which is why they have become an important mental health symbol. As a tattoo, they can serve as symbols of the growth that you’ve achieved or the work ahead. It’s also a gentle reminder that while transformation is painful, it’s worth it.

Some tattoos pair butterflies with flowers or quotes to drive the message home.

Anchor

My struggles may try to sink me but my husband my anchor won’t let me #mental health #semicolon project

Anchors can be powerful symbols, especially for mental health. For many, the anchor is someone or something in their life that keeps them grounded or from sinking. Some tattoos feature an anchor tethered to a heart or an anchor with an awareness ribbon wrapped around it.

Semicolon

Tattoodo

The semicolon has become a symbol for hope, a reminder never to give up and a continuation of life. It marks the continuation of your story and, perhaps, a new beginning.

The semicolon became a logo for Project Semicolon, which is a non-profit that promotes suicide prevention and mental health wellness. Today, it has become a symbol of solidarity for those battling mental health issues. You can find many beautiful tattoos featuring these punctuation marks. It’s often paired with sunflowers or butterflies to represent growth and transformation.

Tattoos For Mental Health Awareness

Mental health tattoos don’t always have to incorporate symbols. They can sometimes be direct and obvious. Other times, they subtly hint at the struggles the owner is going through.

Here are some of our favorite unique mental health awareness tattoos.

Still Have Hope

 

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by ✶ 𝔐𝔬𝔫𝔦𝔞 𝔐𝔦𝔢𝔩𝔠𝔷𝔞𝔯𝔢𝔨 ✶ (@mojkaink)

No matter how hard it gets and how low you feel, there is always hope for a better tomorrow and a happier future. This tattoo serves as a reminder of that. The words “Still Have Hope” are powerful, and the crossed fingers are a symbol of hope.

Behind the Mask

 

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by lhk丨tattooist & illustrator (@lhkiosk)

When you suffer from anxiety or depression, it can feel like you’re wearing a mask. You show the world you’re happy, smiling face, but inside, you’re struggling to make it through the day. This tattoo embodies that feeling. The girl wears a tiger mask in front of the mirror, but behind it, she’s crying.

The tattoo has a powerful meaning and really sheds light on the struggles people with depression and anxiety face every day.

No Doubt

 

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Typoholic Tattoo (@tttypoholic)

Many mental health issues can lead to self-doubt and lack of confidence. This tattoo serves as a reminder not to let doubt get in the way of your dreams or your journey. The “ubt” in the word “doubt” is crossed out to remind you that you should “do” what makes you happy.

Walking a Tightrope 

 

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Michele Volpi (@_mfox)

When you have anxiety, depression or other mental health issues, it can feel like you’re walking a tightrope. This tattoo is the embodiment of that feeling. A person is walking a tightrope between two clouds, using a stick to maintain balance.

Mental Health Self Love Tattoos

Many people struggle with self-love and confidence. Social media, filters and impossible beauty standards make it challenging for everyone to feel confident in their own skin. These tattoo designs remind us all to love ourselves.

Love Yourself First

 

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Serenaics.tattooer (@serena.ghiaroni.tattooer)

While this tattoo is simple, it has a powerful and beautiful message: love yourself first. After all, you can’t love others if you don’t love yourself first. The simple scripted text is beautiful and minimal, so it can easily be placed virtually anywhere on the body.

Self-Hug

 

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by ILARIA (@catenailaria)

Self-love tattoos don’t have to be elaborate or detailed to be meaningful and beautiful. This tattoo features a person hugging themselves with the simple words “love yourself.”

Imperfect and Worthy 

 

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by BombVonne | Tattoo Artist (@bombvonne_)

Sometimes, we need a reminder that no one is perfect, but that doesn’t make them unworthy. This beautiful tattoo design features a woman hugging herself with flowers growing from the top of her body. Beneath it are the words “I am imperfect and still worthy.” A fitting reminder to love yourself and all of your so-called flaws.

I Am Enough

 

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Bri Marie Gipson (@brizycakes)

Self-love also means reminding yourself that you are enough no matter what. This beautiful tattoo features the words “I am enough” with a bouquet of flowers.

I Still Rise 

 

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Mrs Kitson (@lauried1992)

Motivational words can help you work on your self-love and remind yourself how far you’ve come. This minimalistic tattoo features the words “And I still rise” below a rising sun. Each day is another opportunity to rise, shine and learn to love yourself.

To Err is Human

 

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Carolyn 🏳️‍🌈🍃 (@_breathepositivity_)

When you love yourself, you forgive yourself. We’re all humans, and we all make mistakes. This tattoo design is an important reminder of this. “To err is human, to forgive, divine.” These are powerful words that can help you stay grounded when negative thoughts creep in.

Love Yourself

 

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by marcos battle (@slow_jamz1)

Featuring butterflies and a self-hug, this tattoo reminds you to “love yourself.” This tattoo design represents not only self-love, but personal growth. It’s another example of how beautiful fine-line tattoos can be, especially for mental health awareness themes.

Final Thoughts

Mental Health tattoos help bring awareness to issues that many of us are battling but have trouble talking about. They also serve as symbols and powerful reminders of the journeys we’re on and how far we’ve come.

If you’re considering getting a mental health tattoo, use these designs as inspiration.