How To Pick The Right Font For Your Word Tattoo

‘Love Yourself First’ Fine Line Back Tattoo @trangbe_tattoo

Word and phrase tattoos enjoy immense popularity in the world of body art. While a picture may say a thousand words, sometimes you just want a few in a visible space to remind you of your capacity for strength, to remember a special moment or person, or as a tribute to an impacting song or poem. 

But, when it comes to getting words tattooed, it’s not just a case of the specific phrase or single word you want – that’s just the start. A huge part of the tattoo is the actual design, or in the case of word tattoos, the font. 

Typewriter Font Back Tattoo @thechanjai

Typewriter Lettering

The typewriter font has a historical look to it, and works well with word tattoos taken from literature. 

Custom Tattoo Design recommends adding a full stop to your typewriter word tattoo,

“Typewriter font is most effective when used with a period at the end, as silly as it may sound, but the impact of that little dot is big when used in script tattoos. It adds a finality and a punch to a sentence or one word saying.”

‘La Dolce Vita’ Side Body Tattoo @azalea_tattoo

Script Or Cursive Lettering

Cursive letters are made up of flowing lines that are often unique to the person writing it. As such, each tattoo artist might have their specific way of doing a cursive word tattoo. 

“The styles are as diverse as they are many. Influences include regions of the world, eras of time, and the personal preferences of the writer. This style was often used in official documents and also in Church writings,”

Tat Ring
Bold Lettering Tattoo @tattoo_zhangtzu

Block Lettering 

This style is on the bolder side of the lettering scale, and the ideal choice if you want your tattoo to make an eye-catching statement. 

There are different fonts to use if you want a bold, block lettering tattoo, including Deutsch Gothic and Celtic font. 

Handwriting Tattoo


This could be the perfect font option for you if you are getting a memorial tattoo. 

If you have a sample of someone’s handwriting, you could get your word tattooed in this unique style. 

This makes for a completely unique and meaningful word tattoo.

‘Amour’ Leg Tattoo @unepetitemanchotte

Word Tattoo Placement

The placement for your tattoo is also a huge decision. How often you see your tattoo, the aftercare process, and how fast your tattoo will fade can depend greatly on where your tattoo is placed. 

Often, people get a lettering tattoo to remind themselves of something meaningful, therefore they often opt for a placement that is in easy visibility. If this describes the tattoo you want to get, placement options include the inner wrists and ankles as these areas are easy to see.

If you want to go for a placement that you can cover up in day-to-day life, you could get your word tattoo wrapped around your thigh, or placed on your hip or along your collarbone.

Wanderlust Circular Tattoo @everjoy233

A middle of the back tattoo can be a difficult choice when it comes to aftercare as you may struggle to reach this spot to moisturize. 

New York tattoo artist, Gabby Pignanelli, advises in Allure that you should actually think about the placement of your tattoo before setting your heart on a specific style of lettering.

“I’d think about where you want to put it first, and how you’re thinking you want it to look on your body…If you’re going to go with the fine line on your hands or your feet where there’s more friction, you’re going to run the risk of it falling out a little bit and needing some touch-ups. Bolder [fonts], especially on your hands, can work a little bit better in the long run, but it’s all about personal preference.”

Minimalist Handpoked Word Tattoo @laurajambo

How To Look After Your Word Tattoo

Depending on your type of script, word tattoos are often on the more delicate side with thin, dainty lines.

As such, it is easier to make and see mistakes – there is no large design to hide behind. So, the first thing you can do to make sure your tattoo looks good and ages well is to get tattooed by a professional artist. 

Then, once your tattoo is done, follow your tattoo artist’s aftercare instructions. If you look after your tattoo well in the beginning, the better the chance your ink will look crisper for longer.

Flowing Script Tattoo @oznurgocuktattoo

Size Matters When It Comes To Word Tattoos

Besides getting tattooed by a professional and washing and moisturizing your tattoo, another factor that comes into play in how your tattoo will age is size. 

Micro tattoos are all the rage, with many people thinking the smaller, the better.

While these dainty, feminine tattoos may look good when you walk out of the tattoo studio, as time goes on the ink starts to spread, distorting your tiny word tattoo and making it illegible. 

So, if you are leaning towards a super tiny word tattoo, think about going one or two sizes up to take the ageing process into account.

‘No Matter What’ Bold Lettering Tattoo @troybtat.tei

One of the best things you can do when you’re trying to decide on a tattoo is to do your research. Go through Instagram and find tattoo artists who are well versed in word tattoos, and dive into the different fonts you can choose from. 

The more tattoo styles and lettering you get exposed to, the more you’ll be able to pinpoint what you will really love. 

Once you’ve got an idea of the tattoo design you want, allow your chosen tattoo artist to advise you. They’ll be able to let you know if your chosen style and placement together will turn out well. A tattoo professional’s opinion should not be overlooked. 

And, do not forget to do a spell check.

Recent Posts