The moon is symbolic of a range of interests and beliefs, making it a perfect tattoo choice for anyone who believes in the influence of the celestial body, appreciates the vast night sky, or enjoys its aesthetic look.
Crescent moons, in particular, represent motherhood and fertility, though several different communities claim the symbol. It can also be symbolic of growth, creativity, and manifestation. Sarah Kim, a tattoo artist at Body Art & Soul Tattoo in Brooklyn, NY, says that there isn’t just one meaning behind a crescent moon tattoo. "Crescent moons are usually related to new phases in life, new chapters, a new begging," explains Chris Vasquez of West 4 Tattoo.
While the design holds a multitude of meanings, you don't have to resonate with one of them to get it tattooed. “The popularity of this tattoo can be as simple as someone simply just liking how a crescent moon looks,” explains Kim.
Scroll on to check out some stunning crescent moon tattoos that will inspire your new ink.
"Most of mine/our clients love delicate and small tattoos, my job is to make them look aesthetically aligned with the body," explains Vasquez. "The outcome being dainty and beautiful, plus it being a mystical, magical, and enchanting symbol that represents so much makes it a very appealing tattoo for all."
Watercolor Crescent Moon
The artist uses a watercolor-esque style on this crescent moon made up of roses and colorful botanicals. While the symbols invoke a connection to spirituality and nature, the use of color allows the tattoo to be more aesthetically customized.
Crescent Moon with a Black Cat
“There is a huge subculture of people who love—or at least have an interest in—things like witches, moon phases, the occult, and other alternative styles who also find tattoos to be the perfect way to express their aesthetic and interests,” said Kim.
This crescent moon tattoo is depicted in the colors of a sunset with a black cat sitting on its bottom tip. Adding a cat increases the symbolism, as they tend to be associated with witchcraft or goddesses.
Crescent Moon with Lily Flowers
In this moon and flower tattoo, the crescent is depicted with thin line art with dots on either tip for shading. The lilies affixed to the bottom emphasize the femininity and divinity of the moon.
Single Flower Crescent Moon
The beauty is in the simplicity of a single flower and tiny crescent moon. Faded shading and crisp lines give this tattoo an inky, illustrated style.
Vasquez says that crescent moons are one of the hardest things to accomplish, "Circles, straight lines, and anything that has to do with perfect geometry is always a challenge and could go easily wrong when not done with proper techniques and experience. I've seen many banana-shaped moons, inconsistent lines, and wrongly placed crescent moon tattoos."
Vasquez recommends doing the research and finding someone who specializes and can interpret your ideas.
Mandala Lace Floral Moon
This floral crescent moon is a great way of showing how customizable the tattoo can be. By adding a unique mix of embellishments like mandala lace or lotus flowers, the tattoo is a super personalized piece of art.
Upper Back Peonies With Black Moon
Here, the artist created a starry effect by shading the crescent moon black and leaving negative space to create the stars. A frame of peonies reflects the feminine and romantic side of the symbol and looks as shiny as the stars with the careful placement of white ink highlights.
Crescent Moon With a Rose
This moon looks like what you might see in the night sky. Rather than a hard outline surrounding the entire crescent shape, we see a defined outer edge and a more realistic-looking fade of textured black, white, and grey. The rose stands out with its crisp outlines.
Minimal Crescent Moon
The size and simple nature of a crescent moon make it ideal for placing in a small, hidden place. "I love doing them behind the ears, ankles, the wrist, and pretty much everywhere," Vasquez says. "I love adding geometry or sometimes charms and beads to them, incorporating designs opens a range of ideas and ways to make them flow with the shape of the body."
Colorful Moon With Birth Flower
Birth flowers are another way unique personalize your ink. The mix of delicate black ink larkspur with a thin, saturated purple and blue moon has a gorgeous effect. Because the zodiac sign Cancer is ruled by the moon and the birth flower for July is larkspur, we love this idea for Cancers born in July.
Dainty Wrist Moon With Flower
This tiny piece was created with only a few strokes and makes the perfect minimal wrist tattoo. Also, note the way the artist doubled the moon's outline as the flower stem.
Delicate Line Work
A super delicate piece made with the light hand of a professional. The geometric moon tattoo is comprised of separate single-line elements, placed together to create a full picture.
Matching Botanical Moons
Two crescent moons ensconced in botanicals is a great idea for a set of matching tattoos. While they correlate, they still each retain their individuality with their personal choices of flowers.
This artist placed contrasting styles with the same astrological theme together. This crescent moon is made with shaded realism, while the corresponding constellation boasts precise linework and silhouettes.
Red Rose Mandala Moon
Another example of how color can be incorporated in your crescent moon tattoo, the red roses are painted with white highlights, giving the florals a three-dimensional effect. The black and white moon is further embellished with a partial mandala, which is often used to represent balance, harmony, and wholeness.