Rihanna Reveals Why She Got This Tattoo Inked Backwards

There’s a lot to love about Robyn Rihanna Fenty. She treats glasses of Malbec as street-style accessories, she single-handedly changed how the beauty industry thinks about inclusivity with her foundation line, and she gave us anthems like "Bitch Better Have My Money." If that weren’t enough, Rihanna is also the owner of one of the most expansive tattoo collections in Hollywood, offering up the kind of ink inspiration Instagram never could.

It’s rare for a celebrity to reveal their entire tattoo collection to the world, but Rihanna has been relatively forthcoming over the years. We may not know the meaning behind every single design, but we do know she has at least one matching tattoo with her best friend (the star behind her ear), one reported tribute to Tupac (“Thug Life” on her knuckles), and one inspirational quote tattoo (“Never a failure, always a lesson”). Rihanna recently revealed to the T Magazine that the latter is written backwards so she can read it in the mirror and be reminded that learning from your mistakes is just another part of life.

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Even if Rihanna hasn’t revealed the meaning behind every tattoo, the massive collection of 20+ designs is still worth exploring. Ahead, a guide to RiRi’s most notable designs.

Illustration by Louisa Cannell

Knuckles



1: "Thug Life"
Illustration by Louisa Cannell

Left Hand



2: "Love"
Illustration by Louisa Cannell

Left & Right Ankles



3: Treble clef and sixteenth note

4: Gun-shaped falcon

5: Camouflage shark
Illustration by Louisa Cannell

Right Foot



6: "1988"
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Illustration by Louisa Cannell

Left Ankle (Back)



7: Skull with a bow
Illustration by Louisa Cannell

Left Side Body



8: Star

9: "Rebelle fleur"

10: Queen Nefertiti

11: Arabic script
Illustration by Louisa Cannell

Right Side Body



12: Pisces symbol

13: Gun

14: Sanskrit script
Illustration by Louisa Cannell

Neck (Back)



15: Stream of stars
Illustration by Louisa Cannell

Chest



16: "Never a failure, always a lesson" written backwards

17: Cross

18: The date April 11, 1986 in Roman numerals "XI-IV-LXXXVI"

19: Egyptian Goddess Isis
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Illustration by Louisa Cannell

Right Hand



20: Traditional Maori-inspired geometric design

21: Henna-inspired design
Illustration by Louisa Cannell

Right Wrist



22: Large cross
Illustration by Louisa Cannell

Left Hand



23: "Shhh..."
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