Maori Tattoo Designs: Gorgeous Tribal Artwork

maori double sleeve woman's tattoo


Beautiful Maori tattoo designs bear resemblance to Polynesian tattoo designs. This similarity is due to the similarities in these coastal cultures. Some historians say that New Zealand Maori tattoos were brought to the culture by Polynesians. Other, however, say that Maori tattoos are the oldest tattoos in history. Whether or not they were the first tattoos does not impact the beauty and creativity of these designs.

traditional maori shoulder tattoo design

The Signature Design

The elements that define Maori tattoo designs are:

  • Spirals
  • Curved shapes
  • Small circles that blend into larger patterns
  • Curvilinear designs
  • Bold, black or blue lines

In traditional Maori culture, men wore tattoos on their faces, legs, and buttocks. Maori style tattoos for men were meant to be identification cards. They symbolized the achievements and history behind the wearer of the tattoo. As a result, designs were never the same. Though they employ the same style, each tattoo is unique.

Maori tattoos for Women have a different place in tattoo history.Women wore blue tattoos on their chins, lips, necks, and backs.Actually, blue outlining of the lips and chin was a popular design for women until the 1970s. Creative designs fill in the chin. The lips then can either be outlined or filled in with blue ink.These designs follow the signature style of Maori tattoos. At the same time, each one is unique to the wearer.

Today most Maori tattoos appear on arms, shoulders, and backs. The Intricate tribal designs are truly stunning. They can be thin or thick, bulky or intricate, curved or cornered. The possibilities of designs are as limitless as the imagination. Also, if tradition is adhered to, the tattoos will uniquely represent each individual. If you are looking for a bold, tribal pattern to fill up large volumes of space, try considering Maori tattoo designs.

Wear your story on your skin with Maori tattoo designs!


12 Photos of the Maori Tattoo Designs: Gorgeous Tribal Artwork

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