From tributes to sentimental symbols, these tats all mean something special!
Celebrities seem to be totally obsessed with tattoos lately — from full sleeve statement pieces to tiny micro tats. While some of the ink is just for fun, many stars opt for something with special meaning. After all, it’s going to be there forever!
Celebs like Emma Stone and Billie Lourd have gotten inked to pay tribute to a loved one, while other stars like Justin Bieber chose to get their personal words to live by permanently placed on their skin. Whatever the design, each tattoo has a meaningful story for these celebrities.
Hear what these stars had to say about their tattoos…
Back in 2017, Justin Bieber inked the quote “better at 70” on his leg along with a group of friends. The group adopted the phrase from pastor Judah Smith, who uses it as a reminder to be the best version of yourself today so that you can grow into the person you want to be tomorrow.
“I look back at a lot of things in my life, mistakes, insecurities, and although I have felt I’ve wasted a lot of time it also makes me want to be better faster! For me personally I want to work everyday to be BETTER AT 70,” Justin wrote on his Instagram.
Halsey has quite a few meaningful tattoos, including an upside down horseshoe on her upper arm. While a horseshoe is generally good luck, turning it around takes away its meaning.
“I got an upside down horseshoe to signify that I don’t need luck. I work really, really hard, and I believe in the stars aligning, but I don’t believe that anything happens to anyone based out of sheer luck. I believe people work really hard, and they manifest what they want, and what they need, and what they’re hopeful for, and that’s what this is – a reminder,” Halsey told iHeartRadio.
3. Billie Lourd
Billie Lourd paid tribute to her late mother Carrie Fisher with a galaxy tattoo that was inspired by one her mother had gotten inked many years prior. The tattoo was an outer space landscape, which Billie said was because her mother “loves the moon and stars and she’s the ultimate space princess.” Thankfully, Billie was a lot happier with the way her tat turned out than how her mom’s did.
“Hers was a really horrible version of mine basically. Hers kind of looked like she got kicked in the leg. She had a moon and a star and it looked like a Turkish flag, so she went back and was like, ‘Oh let’s add some galaxy stuff.’ When you say that to a tattoo artist, they probably think bruise, so it kind of looked like a bruise galaxy. So I got a version of that that’s classier, but not a bruise galaxy,” Billie told InStyle.
4. Emma Stone
Emma Stone has a tattoo to commemorate her mom overcoming breast cancer, which also has a special nod to the mother-daughter duo’s love of The Beatles. The small drawing of bird’s feet pays tribute to the group’s song “Blackbird” and was actually drawn by Paul McCartney himself!
“We’ve never gotten tattoos before and probably never will again. Two years ago tomorrow she got diagnosed with breast cancer, and she’s out of the woods now, which is amazing. My mom’s favorite song is ‘Blackbird’ by Paul McCartney, and it’s my favorite song as well. I wrote a letter to Paul McCartney asking him if he would draw two little bird feet — because he wrote the song — and yesterday he sent them to me. Custom tattoos by Paul McCartney. Isn’t that wild?” Emma said at the time.
Sophie Turner’s simple tattoo of the letter G on her pinky finger is in honor of her grandfather, who she called her “hero” on Instagram. A few years later, Sophie got the letters J and W tattooed on her wrist in honor of her husband Joe Jonas and their daughter Willa.
Vanessa Hudgens got a butterfly tattooed on the back of her neck when she was 22 after wanting the ink for years. She says the butterfly holds special meaning for both herself and her mom.
“A butterfly landed on my mum’s stomach a week before I was born and that’s how I got my name, because Vanessa means butterfly – it’s a Latin derivative,” she explained on “The Late Show.”
Amanda Seyfried has a tiny script tattoo on the top of her foot that definitely doesn’t mean what people think. The ink, which reads “minge,” was a friendship tattoo she got with her “Mamma Mia!” co-stars Rachel McDowall and Ashley Lilley.
“It’s a term of endearment, and in England, it means ‘vagina.’ But in the U.S., which is where I spend most of my time, it just doesn’t mean anything. So we commemorated our friendship with ‘minge’ tattoos,” Amanda explained on “Late Night With Seth Meyers.”
8. Lily Collins
Right after she finished filming her romantic comedy “Love, Rosie,” Lily Collins inked a rose on the side of her foot to symbolize her strength.
“The one on my foot is a rose with the words, ‘The nature of this flower is to bloom.’ There’s a single petal falling off to symbolize that I may look delicate, but I’m as strong as a rose,” Lily explained to Daily Mail UK.
9. Miley Cyrus
Miley Cyrus has amassed a whole collection of tattoos but her very first holds special meaning. She got the phrase “just breathe” tattooed on her ribcage in her mother’s handwriting to pay tribute to her friend who died of cystic fibrosis and her grandfathers who both died of lung cancer.
“It reminds me not to take things for granted. I mean, breathing – that was something none of them could do, the most basic thing, and I put it near my heart, because that is where they will always be,” she told Harper’s Bazaar.
10. Dakota Johnson
Dakota Johnson turned to famed tattoo artist Dr. Woo to get a slightly wilted flower tattooed on the side of her forearm. While many may not understand why she didn’t choose a flower in full bloom, Dakota had a great explanation.
“It’s a lil f—ed up, but it’s still a flower, like me,” Dakota explained to the tattoo artist.
11. Ariel Winter
Ariel Winter got a series of initials tattoos tattooed on her side, dedicated to some the most special people in her life – her nieces and nephew.
“My second and most special tattoo, the initials of five of the most important beings in my life: my nieces and nephew. Their initials are on my ribcage, on the side where my heart is. They are my inspiration, and my reason for living. Love these babies more than anything and proud to have their initials forever on my body,” Ariel explained.
12. Lena Dunham
Lena Dunham got the word “sick” tattooed on the back of her neck in an effort to reclaim the word and take ownership of the health battles she’s faced throughout her life.
“Sometimes the thing you’re most scared of being called is the best thing you can call yourself. thank you @havenstudiobk for labeling me…and to my sisters in this dizzying but starry slog – i am lasso’d to you!” Lena wrote on her Instagram.
13. Lea Michele
After her grandmother’s passing, Lea Michele got a tiny tat to commemorate her life and their relationship – the outline of a cup of coffee.
“I lost my beautiful grandma this week…She wasn’t your typical grandma. She gave me my first cup of coffee when I was 8 years old. She said something inappropriate to every boyfriend I’ve ever had. She never made pie or knit me a sweater. But she was my grandma and I loved her… More than anything.. I love you Grandma,” Lea wrote on Instagram.
14. Demi Lovato
Demi Lovato added a stunning back tattoo to her collection, which her tattoo artist Alex Aureo titled “Divine Feminine.” The image features a woman with wings being pulled upwards by doves.
“We created this piece together to represent a rebirth of the spirit. The dark wings represent the bad times, their fading away is how she moved forward. The light from within represents the inner strength necessary for the change and the doves, pulling her up, symbolize the reach of an higher state of consciousness. Congratulations on your inspiring journey Demi, honored to have represented this for you,” Alex wrote on Instagram.
15. Gisele Bündchen
Gisele Bündchen’s tiny star tattoo may seem simple but it’s actually a tribute to her late grandmother, who passed away when she was younger.
“She died when I was young. When I first moved to New York, there were no stars in the sky, so to remind me of her I drew one on my wrist and kept it there for a month, and then had someone draw it in, which is why it’s a little crooked. It’s held up pretty well for 10 years. It helps me to remember her,” Gisele told New York Daily News.