Long before Dr. Woo, JonBoy, and their A-list clientele made dainty white dots and tiny crosses mainstream news, tattoos were already deeply ingrained in the fabric of history, discovered on the bodies of Egyptian mummies and an Austrian-Italian iceman now known as Ötzi. In those times, thousands of years ago, tattooing was thought to be used therapeutically, a kind of early form of acupuncture; today, it's much more popular for creating decorative body art.
Still, Ötzi and his pre-Common Era cohorts stand to prove that tattoos aren't a passing trend, but a constantly evolving art form. They are also not inherently "trendy" — but the kind of techniques, needlework, and ink used can be. In early 2018, for example, there was an undeniable spike in wrist tattoos; last fall, it was all about the fingers. 2019 has brought with it a whole new wave of ways to get a tattoo flooding our Instagram feeds, from unique body placements to bold, fresh color palettes.
Needless to say, it's becoming increasingly difficult to refrain from getting more ink in the new year. But where do we begin? We spoke with industry pros and scoured Instagram to track down some of the biggest tattoo trends we expect everyone to be asking for this year. Keep clicking for the raddest designs, placements, and colors to inspire your next tattoo.