Cherry Blossom Tattoo Designs & Ideas to Try in 2024

Flowers are one of the most popular design choices, and it’s easy to see why.

With a long history of having a language of their own, each type of flower tattoo says something different about the individual – even telling about their personality from their birth month flower.

One of the most popular flowers seen when it comes to body art is a cherry blossom tattoo. 

Cherry blossoms aren’t just known for their beautiful blooms. They’re one of the most recognizable symbols of Japan and springtime.

When these bright blossoms bloom in Japan, it’s a time for celebration and merriment. With such joyful symbolism, it’s no wonder these are a popular tattoo pick.

In this article, we’ll uncover the meaning behind these popular cherry blossom tattoos as well as the best ideas to try in 2023.

Flower Tattoos: a Unique Language

Flowers have a rich history throughout human civilization.

They’ve been used as religious icons, cultural symbols, and even signs of love from the ancient cultures such as the Celtic, all the way to the mother times.

Today, people give flowers to loved ones as a sign of love, sympathy, or celebration. They’ve taken on a diverse meaning of their own, and this has roots through generations. 

People have used flowers to share ideas and feelings for thousands of years. This is known as floriography or the language of love. This practice gained a lot of popularity in the Victorian era.

In both England and the United States, blooms, plants, and floral arrangements such as daisies or roses were a way to converse with others and share feelings.

Gifting daffodils, for example, was a way to show you hold someone in high regard, and very common to be dedicated to your mother. Sunflowers were a sign of loyalty and longevity.

Since speaking one’s feelings was not something that was encouraged at the time, flowers were a way for people to express themselves to those they care about. They concealed secret love, solidified friendships, and were a form of artistic exploration.

The Symbolism of Cherry Blossom Tattoos

How does the language of flowers fit into cherry blossom tattoo ideas?

Though cherry blossoms – sakura – are from Japan, they carry a similar significance to the Victorian era symbolism.

In Japan, these flowers are symbolic of the spring. They’re all about nature renewing and new life. 

The short life of cherry blossoms

Cherry blossoms are a very unique flower. They bloom for only two weeks, and then they slowly fade away. Their short lives make them all that more spectacular, likes butterflies, encouraging people to take advantage of this time of year with parties, time spent outside, and fun. 

Because their lives are so short-lived, they’re a way to see life in a new way. While the short-lived blooms might make you sad, they’re also remarkably inspiring.

Our own lives are also short, and we never know when our time will end. Life is very fragile, but that doesn’t mean it can’t also be beautiful and spectacular. 

The religious meaning behind cherry blossoms

Cherry blossoms also carry significance within Buddhism.

In Buddhist philosophy, life is all about working towards wisdom and greater understanding. Each moment should count because life is quickly passing us by, so don’t let anything go to waste. 

The short life of these cherry blossoms fits easily into this philosophy. The colorful blossom itself is a symbol for enlightenment, but also for the unending cycle of life and change.

In Buddhism, the only thing that’s certain is uncertainty. 

Other symbols of cherry blossoms

Throughout the world, cherry blossoms have taken on their own meanings.

When it comes to cherry blossom tattoo designs, people are free to choose any symbol or meaning that has significance to them and you can mix them with other symbols such as moon or feather tattoos.

That’s one of the many beautiful things about tattoos, so see which of these symbols below connects with you. 

  • Strength – In Japanese Samurai culture, the petals of cherry blossoms were seen as a symbol for drops of blood falling on the battlefield. As such, this flower is also a symbol of strength and perseverance, and the reason why tiger tattoos in Irezumi style or Japanese dragons and koi fish often have cherry blossoms around them.
  • Love and sexualityIn China, cherry blossoms aren’t just a symbol of springtime. They’re also a sign of love and femininity. 
  • HopeDespite their short lives, these blossoms are a sign of hope and optimism.
  • Change – Since cherry blossoms die within a few weeks, they’re a strong reminder that our lives are full of many changes which we can learn to embrace, especially together with the phoenix bird.

When they are paired with other symbols, like the spiritual evil eye, they can encompass more meaning and go deeper.

Cherry Blossom Tattoo Placement

If you’re thinking of choosing one of these sakura tattoo designs below, you’re in luck.

This is a highly flexible tattoo that’s easy to place just about anywhere on your body, just make sure to heal it well.

While the placement depends on whether you include the entire tree or just the blooming branches, you have a lot of options. 

The most common places to place a cherry blossom tattoo is on your back, shoulder, or forearm, especially if you’re mixing it up with another theme, like an anime tattoo for example.

Women also frequently place this design on their feet, ribcage, or leg.

A tattoo artist can work with you to find the best placement for your design and body type. 

Cherry Blossom Tattoo Design Ideas

Have you decided that sakura flower might be the right fit for you? If so, check out these cherry blossom tattoo designs below for some inspiration.

As you’ll see, there’s a lot of ways to make this tattoo idea your own no matter what the symbolism means to you.

Are you looking for a custom cherry blossom tattoo design? We got you.

Our expert tattoo artists will provide a quick initial draft to get you going.
Happy inking ❤

Milena Petrovic

Milena Petrovic

Co-founder of Tattoo Stylist

About the author

Milena has decided to start an organization that will create a safe environment for everybody to get their first, second or third tattoo and to encourage young people to transform their ideas into tattoos safely, with talent and vision.

You can find her writing about tattoos on Quora or updating our Pinterest profile with awesome tattoo ideas!