Getting a moon tattoo is by no means only a modern trend. The moon has been a powerful symbol in the arts, poetry, literature and mythology over centuries in all cultures across the globe.

The moon is one of the only celestial bodies with features graspable by our naked eye from the Earth.

If you are looking for ideas, feel free to jump to the designs below.

We do advise you to before that read more about the history and learn about the symbols you are planning to use.

Let’s jump right to it!

Moon Tattoos – The Friendship, The Feminity & The Cosmos

Often referred to as “she-moon”, there is undeniable female energy about the moon, making it the perfect tattoo symbol for women.

She is a shapeshifter, slinking away from a full orb to a mere sliver and back again.

The moon balances darkness and light in always shifting proportions. Her cycles lead the way for others to follow — from the ocean’s tides to women’s bodies.

With the combination of the sun and the moon in tattoos, there is a clear composition of eternal counterparts that both bring light in their own respective time of the day.

Their balance is what many friendships are about, which is why sun and moon tattoos are a common tattoo design for friendship tattoos.

Moon can also be paired with other symbols, as it’s used in Native American tattoos in beautiful scenery.

Additionally it can be paired with cherry blossom flowers to represent Japanese culture, or a crescent moon can be swirled around by a gentle snake for a tattoo symbolizing rebirth and change.

You can add the birds in your moon scene, like owl or raven.

In literature, music and art, moon is often referenced – common symbol all the way up to Sofi Tukker’s naming the song Moon Tattoo.

Every Tattoo Has A Story – Moon As A Symbol and Its Meanings

Moon represents a symbol that has been ocurring during the entire history of humanity: from Greek mythology as Selene, the goddess of the Moon, to the urban legends of nowadays such as the moon landing in 1969.

The moon is a feminine symbol, universally representing the rhythm of time as it embodies the cycle.

This Earth’s biggest satellite visible from the Earth has amazed and embellished  the history of many Amerindian and Oriental civilizations. This is why the moon has a lot of meanings, particularly according to the phase it is in.

In astrology, the moon is a symbol of the soul, and in the horoscope it determines the subject’s capacity for reflection and adaptation.

It is the middle ground between the light of the sun and the darkness of night, and thus often represents the realm between the conscious and the unconscious.

Universally, the moon is the symbol of growth and change.

Moreover, it symbolizes the night and passing of time, and it is a very popular image in tattoo art, unlike the sun as the symbol of permanency and eternal life.

It can be paired with other spiritual symbols like evil eyes, mermaids or the koi fish to get multiple meanings in there.

Moon is also a common theme in popular culture, especially for songs, with many songs dedicated to it. The variations of the name are famous in TV shows and novels, with writers naming characters Luna – like the cat in Sailor Moon anime series, or Harry Potter’s witch friend.

Moon Phases Symbology & Meanings

The phases of the moon symbolize immortality and eternity, enlightenment or the dark side of Nature herself.

Its round shapes gives it also the meaning of a circle – constant, eternal and life-giving.

As a result of its cycle of renewal and regular phases, the moon often gets linked with feminine aspects.

Such aspects are nurturing receptivity and life rhythms. It might reflect inner knowledge, or the phases of man’s condition on earth, since it controls the tides, the rains, the waters, and the seasons.

Below you can find all the moon phases as described in the amazing guide by

New Moon

The Moon is positioned between the Earth and Sun so it cannot be seen from Earth. This moon phase signifies new beginnings.

Waxing Crescent Moon

‘Waxing’ means the Moon’s illumination is growing, and ‘Crescent’ means less than half of the Moon is illuminated. This moon phase signifies intention.

First Quarter Moon

Exactly half of the Moon is illuminated and the other half is shadowed. This particular moon cycle signifies decision making.

Waxing Gibbous Moon

‘Waxing’ means the Moon’s illumination is growing and ‘Gibbous’ means more than half of the Moon is illuminated. This moon phase signifies refinement.

Full Moon

The Sun illuminates the entire moon. This particular moon cycle signifies release and sealing of intention.

Waning Gibbous

‘Waning’ refers to the decreasing of the Moon’s illumination, and ‘Gibbous’ means more than half of Moon illuminated. This moon phase signifies gratitude.

Third Quarter

Exactly half of the Moon is illuminated and the other half is shadowed. We will see the opposite side than the First Quarter Moon. This moon phase signifies forgiveness.

Waning Crescent

‘Waning’ refers to the shrinking of the Moon’s illumination, and ‘Crescent’ means less than half of the Moon is illuminated. This particular moon cycle signifies surrender.

New Moon

The Moon is positioned between the Earth and Sun so it cannot be seen from Earth. This phase signifies new beginnings, and the moon cycle begins again.

Moon Tattoo Ideas

To help you with your research for your next tattoo design, we went on a hunt through Instagram to find the best moon tattoo ideas.

Take a look below to check them out all:

Are you looking for a custom tattoo moon 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!

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