60+ Small And Amazing Ankle Tattoo Ideas

By Jason Hamilton / July 12, 2019
blue rose tattoo ankle 2
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Ankle tattoos are becoming the choice of many individuals worldwide who want to embrace the world of tattooing. It is simply because these tattoos are certainly gorgeous adornments, especially if you want tattoos that are less noticeable in nature due to their smaller sizes and placement in the body. There are several designs that are unisex in nature. Even so, they are actually the best to look at, especially to women who sport them. It is because they are made from soft lines, perfect for all those female tattoo lovers. The truth is, men can still wear these tattoos in their body, but the details of the tattoo designs should be bold enough in order to emphasize masculinity.

In fact, tattoos on ankle play a great role in setting a woman apart in a crowded place. The pain factor and price paid for getting such a cute and attractive tattoo become very small and insignificant things when you weigh these factors against the amount of attention you can get on the basis of these tattoos. They have been popularized around the world because many global celebrities have been seen with such tattoos on many occasions.


Advantages and Disadvantages Of An Ankle Tattoo

Of course, having tattoos on the ankle is both advantageous and disadvantageous. This is actually a normal thing since people will never go for a certain thing if they will only get nothing but worse things. Here are some of the advantages you can enjoy:

  • Great Amount of Sex Appeal – For sure, you have noticed that sex appeal is abundantly packed to those people who are wearing tattoos on their ankle. This can’t be explained literally, but science surely has an explanation for this thing.
  • Intensified Gorgeousness – Men and women will also appear more beautiful and handsome in the eyes of many people because of having tattoos.
  • Intensified Fashion Statement – It can also make your fashion statement even better.
  • Explains Your Personality – People will know your personality without having the effort to talk to you. By just looking at your ankle is certainly enough.

If there are advantages, there are also disadvantages that you should expect. Here are some of them:

  • Some people may criticize you inconsiderately.
  • You need to exert extra effort in covering them. This is true especially when you need to attend a very conservative religion-related event.
  • You may look rebellious to others.

Is Ankle Tattoo Painful?

Most people say that ankle tattoos are indeed painful. Here’s what some say from forums:


I’m pretty thin as well and I got an anchor (3 x 4 in) right above my ankle. Yes, it hurt! Like sharp scratching over and over a burn or something, during the shading too. My foot would get kinda tense and would flinch but my friend and the tattooist started talking and distracting me so that helped me relax a lot! The rest wasn’t as bad. Relax, you won’t be the first nor the last to go through it! You’ll be satisfied in the end 🙂” Kimmy from YahooAnswers forum said.

A user named Samantha also agreed that it is ankle tattoos are really painful. In fact, she stated that “it will be the worse pain of your life.” She added that this is because the ankle is “all bone,” meaning it doesn’t have much flesh or fat to use as a cushion against the needles.


The Designs You Can Do With The Ankle Tattoo

Although small in area, a lot of tattoo designs and styles can be inked on the ankle as an ankle tattoo. It is actually considered as one of the most versatile small body parts to have a tattoo on. Generally speaking, designs that are available for the wrist are also available for ankle tattoo designs.

To prove our point, here are some of the best tattoo designs we saw that can be a great fit as an ankle tattoo:


(Please do note that some of these tattoo designs will sometimes feature tattoo designs that are inked on other parts of the body aside from the ankle. Nonetheless, we personally think these designs can be a great ankle tattoo)

Palm Tree Tattoo Designs

Whenever you see a palm tree, what do you reckon? A vacation or a tropical paradise? We often associate palm trees with summer vibes, relaxing vacation, and the white sand beaches because we always see this kind of tree near the shoreline. Imagine yourself making a hammock between two palm trees while looking beyond the night sky and into the universe. What a nice way to relax right?


There are various ways to interpret a palm tree. The most common of all designs is a palm tree silhouette tattoo that is only comprised of black ink. Watercolor tattoos of palm trees are also common. These tattoos often depict a colorful palm tree with the sun setting in the background.

Here are some ideas for your next palm tree tattoo design:

A small tattoo of palm trees on the wrist.

A small cute palm tree tattoo on the ankle.


A small cartoonish foot tattoo of a palm tree on the shores of a wavy beach.

A minimalist palm tree tattoo on the arm with a sunset.


A small cute palm tree tattoo on the ankle.

A silhouette-like ankle tattoo of a palm tree.


A small palm tree tattoo on the back of the leg.

 Another small palm tree tattoo on the arm.

An artsy thigh tattoo of a palm tree.


 A small leg tattoo of a palm tree.Amazing-Palm-Tree-Tattoo-On-Girl-Back-Leg

Wave Tattoo

Wave tattoo designs are about as summer as it gets – aside from palm tree tattoos that is. The waves and the palm trees ultimately signify the season of summer. Imagine yourself lounging around the beach and hear the rustling waves and the billowing of the palm tree leaves against the wind. It is a relaxing vibe and atmosphere to behold! This is what the wave tattoo wants you to imagine whenever you see them. They want you to recall your last summer vacation and be in tune with the sea!

Waves are one of the strongest, most powerful, natural forces on earth. They’ve been known to swallow sailors as well as get them to their destinations. You may go against the currents but you’ll always get carried away by the waves. People who get wave tattoos strongly believe in making the most out of it and riding these waves instead.

A wave may look like something very simple, but there are still many designs of this tattoo available. And so if you are thinking of having this tattoo you can be confident that you will have plenty of options.

Waves tattoos are hugely popular and the first tattoos originated in pacific islander cultures. Back in the day, it was common to see simple single line designs. Tattoos have become much more detailed these days and that means there are some pretty cool designs available to you. There are so many options available to you today.

Here are some of the best wave tattoo designs we saw that might evoke you the feeling of the sea:

A thin three wave tattoo in simple line form.


A simple line tattoo of a wave on the heel of the foot.

A simple line tattoo of a wave on the shoulder.

Simple Wave Tattoo 3


A curvy and thick simple line tattoo of a wave on the foot.

Simple Wave Tattoo 4


A simple line tattoo of a wave and the Sun.

An artsy simple wave tattoo on the wrist.


A small wrist tattoo of a wave in simple line form.

A fairly large simple line wave tattoo with a triangle.

A forearm watercolor tattoo of a wave in japanese style.


A wave tattoo framed by a triangle on the forearm.

A diamond shape framed wave tattoo on the forearm.


A fancy geometric wave tattoo on the upper sleeve.


a low poly geometric tattoo of a wave on the forearm.

Geometric Wave Tattoo 4

A geometric wave tattoo on the forearm.

An upper back tattoo of waves with additional geometric tattoo detailing.

Star Tattoo Designs

Star tattoos are always lovely, not to mention, unique. It shows off who you really are, not to mention what your convictions might be. It looks cool on every part of the body. In fact, getting a star tattoo is recommended for those who want to get a tattoo for the first time, since stars are small and don’t have to look too intricate. Plenty of star designs also carry an attractive look, and could carry a deeper meaning in a person’s life. A star tattoo design can be both intricate and simple, depending on the person.

The star is a classic cryptogram – Dating back to ancient times. It has played many key roles in plenty of religions and cultures. Even before the ancient astronomers knew what a star was and what it consisted of, they were still loved by all. Humans have always looked up in the heavens, in order to attempt to explain what stars are to their peers, by creating mythical stories about their origins.

Because the star is a very simple shape, a lot (and we mean A LOT) of tattoo styles can be used for the star tattoo. If you want something artsy? Boom! Watercolor tattoo designs! Want something common? Neotraditional tattoo designs! Want to be more unique? Bam! Geometric tattoo design!

Here are just some of the designs we can think of that will really interest you:

A very colorful watercolor tattoo.

A watercolor leg tattoo of the universe in a star.

watercolor star tattoo 11

A green and blue watercolor star tattoo.

A small and simple blue watercolor star tattoo.

A green, purple, red, and blue watercolor star tattoo on the leg.

watercolor star tattoo 8

A leg watercolor tattoo of stars.

watercolor star tattoo 7

A predominantly blue watercolor star tattoo.

A wrist tattoo of three stars with watercolor tattoo detailing.

A wrist tattoo of a geometric star.

A three-dimensional geometric tattoo of a star inked on the chest.

A fairly simple geometric tattoo of an eight pointed star.

A highly detailed and intricate chest tattoo of a six pointed star.

geometric star tattoo 9

A cute ankle tattoo of a geometrically detailed star.

A geometric star tattoo on the forearm with black watercolor splat details.

A highly detailed twelve pointed star tattoo in geometric detail.

geometric star tattoo 6

A three dimensional geometric star tattoo on the forearm.

geometric star tattoo 5

A highly detailed and intricately made geometric star tattoo on the forearm.

Arrow Tattoo Designs

Arrow tattoo designs are famous body tattoos that are worn by thousands of tattoo lovers in the world. These tattoos have been the favorite of many people even in the past years. What is being loved by many regarding an arrow design is the fact that it is very simple in design. Even though it is just a simple design, it cannot be denied that it looks very elegant. Just in case you do not know, there are also a lot of tattoo first-timers out there who are choosing them to be engraved on their body. Because of the simplicity of the design, you will only spend a lesser amount of money for it. One reason is that the tattoo artist that you choose will have easier moments in engraving the tattoo on your body. Aside from that, such a tattoo will only require minimal effort and time. In other words, this tattoo would be the perfect choice of many.

The arrow tattoo is most of the time a simple tattoo design. With just a line, a handful of intricate details, and an arrowhead, you already have an arrow tattoo! For those who like to have something that is better visually, however, it would be better if you would go with a slightly different approach to it with the arrow as a design element of another design or spice it up by mixing it with another.

Here are some of the tattoo ideas we can think of that uses the arrow tattoo as a design element:

An arm tattoo of an arrow with an intricate tail and rope detail.

An intricately designed leg tattoo of a bow and arrow.

Another small highly detailed tattoo of a bow and arrow with a wing.

An arm tattoo of an arrow with other embellishments.

An artsy tattoo of an arrow with circles and curves and other geometric design details.

An arm tattoo of three arrows and a bow with a broken line circle and other geometric details.

An arm tattoo of two intricately desingned arrows.

A small bow and arrow tattoo on the ankle.

bow and arrow ankle tattoo

A small intricate bow and arrow tattoo.

Artsy Bow And Arrow Wrist Tattoo

A highly detailed tattoo of a bow and arrow.

What You Need To Know Before Getting An Ankle Tattoo

It’s important to have your core idea fleshed out before setting up a consultation — unless you’re coming in for lettering, which often only requires you to decide on a font. During the consultation, your artist can work out the finer details. You can show them any images you’ve saved as inspiration and figure out placement and pricing.

Depending on the time they have available, the artist may create a mock-up of your tattoo on the spot or a few days later, but ultimately, the final results will depend on several factors:

  • how much of your body you want to dedicate to the art
  • how feasible the tattoo placement is
  • how well the colors you want will show up on your skin tone
  • how much time you want to spend with the artist

Here’s more on what you should consider when designing your next tattoo:


Once you’ve decided what you want tattooed, you have to figure out how you want it to look. There are a ton of different tattooing styles, and you’ll want to go to an artist who’s skilled in the look you’re after.

Some of the most popular styles include:

  • American traditional. Characterized by clean, black outlines and the primary color palette, this style commonly features skulls and roses.
  • Traditional Japanese. Inspired by traditional Japanese artwork, this style’s clean lines and minimal shading are often used to create tigers, koi fish, and flowers.
  • Realism. The goal of this style is to recreate subjects using shading and color contrast, as they appear in real life.
  • Illustrative. By combining aspects of traditional tattooing and realism, this style is about bold outlines and intense color saturation.
  • Neo-traditional. A modernized take on American traditional imagery, this style leans heavily on shading and color to create realistic portraiture.
  • Minimalism or geometric. With a focus on crisp black lines and negative space, this style is about precision. The results are often simple and symbolic.

But you don’t need to be familiar with the lingo to get one of these styles. Browsing Instagram is incredibly helpful, as most artists post their work on their own channel and to a hashtag feed. If, for example, you’ve decided you want to get a tattoo of a cat, a quick #cattattoo search pulls up over 220,000 results.

Save the images you like most and show them to your artist during your consultation. They can use these as inspiration to create a one-of-a-kind piece of your own.


Many people opt for pure illustration, but if you want script — standalone or alongside an image — you’ll need to figure out what kind of font you want.

Adobe Typekit is a great place to look up font styles, offering everything from handwriting to typewriter. The site even lets you see your text of choice in the font you’re considering so that you can actually visualize how it might look on your body.

If you see something you like, print out a couple of different versions to bring to your artist. They may not have your exact font on their computer, so they can use these pages as a reference.


Although the style of tattoo often dictates the color palette, the artist can work with you to modify the design and style to better suit what you want.

That said, your skin tone plays a big role in how well individual colors will hold. For example, fair skin tends to hold white ink better than other skin tones. Red and purple pigments are also more vibrant on fairer skin tones.

Darker skin tones typically hold darker colors — think crimson red and royal blue — better than lighter hues. Having darker skin doesn’t mean that you can’t get pastels or other light hues, just that these options usually don’t appear as pigmented as darker colors might.

Greyscale is also an option. With this style, your artist will use a mix of pure black, watered-down black, and white ink to create the appropriate shades and hues.

Facts You Need To Know About Ankle Tattoo Designs

A lot of first-time tattoo newbies think about starting their foray into the tattoo community with a small ankle tattoo that they can easily hide with a sock or pants. For those people, and maybe even a few experienced tattoo junkies, here are five things you may want to know about ankle tattoos.

They’re painful

Ankle, and by extension foot, tattoos are some of the most painful you can get. Unlike the vast majority of your body, your ankle and foot area doesn’t have much flesh or muscle that it can use to dull the pain.

That being said, shading is more painful than line work. So if you’re determined to get your first tattoo on your ankle, at least get something with little to no shading required.

Tiny designs on the foot and ankle are a bad idea

If you’re getting it behind your ankle, then you’re okay. But anywhere else and your tattoo is going to quickly become a smudgy blob of ink because of how much you use the appendage. Which is why the design can’t be some half-inch micro tattoo.

Not all tattoo artists will do ankle tattoos

Many refuse to design ankle tattoos for a variety of reasons. Some artists don’t like feet, others have had bad experiences tattooing ankles, etc, etc. Don’t be surprised if your first choice turns you down.

Aftercare is extra tedious.

Tattoo aftercare is a pain in the ass at the best of times. For ankle and feet tattoos, it’s especially bad – doubly so if you work somewhere that requires closed shoes. Think about it: you have to keep the part of your body closest to the ground free-and-clear of germs and infection for possibly up to three months!

They fade faster than most

All tattoos fade over time, but ankle and foot tattoos are some of the worst. You’re going to have to get it touched up much more often and just about any other tattoo you get.

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About the author

Jason Hamilton

Jason has been an avid fan of tattoos for over 13 years now. He is currently 35 years old, and he got his first tattoo at the age of 22. Since then, he has added over 20 tattoos to his collection. He is also into writing, which is why he decided to celebrate both of his passion and hobby through tats ‘n’ rings. Jason dreams of having his very own tattoo parlor soon. Jason would be very happy to answer any questions about tattoos that you may have! Leave a comment below and he’ll answer it for you right away!

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