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30 Chinese Characters that make great tattoos

Updated: Oct 20, 2023


Chinese characters for tattoos

In ancient times, a single Chinese character could usually represent one word. In modern times, however, most words are made up of two or more characters. Nevertheless, some Chinese characters have retained their standalone meaning and can technically still be used without needing to add more characters. The following are 30 individual Chinese characters that make for great tattoos.


(Be aware that it’s generally not advised to use multiple of these characters in succession, as that can alter the meaning or cause the characters to not make sense when read together. If you wish to compile multiple characters together, its best to consult with a native Chinese speaker first.)



1. 家 - jiā


Meaning: Family, Home



2. 爱 - ài


Meaning: Love (platonic or romantic)



3. 美 - měi


Meaning: beauty, beautiful



4. 禅 - chán


Meaning: zen (Originally a concept within Bhuddist practice that emphasizes the use of meditation to awaken oneself to their true nature and attain compassion and insight. It has also been adopted in Western society to mean peace and tranquility.)




5. 和 - hé


Meaning: peace, harmony





6. 野 - yě


Meaning: wild, undomesticated




7. 想 - xiǎng


Meaning: to dream, to think, to desire




8. 勇 - yǒng


Meaning: brave, bravery




9. 力 - lì


Meaning: power, strength




10. 康 - kāng


Meaning: health




11. 笑 - xiào


Meaning: smile, laugh




12. 舞 - wǔ


Meaning: dance




13. 天 - tiān


Meaning: sky, heaven




14. 喜 - xǐ


Meaning: happiness




15. 福 - fú


Meaning: blessing, good fortune



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16. 谦 - qiān


Meaning: modest, humble




17. 奕 - yì


Meaning: full of life/spirit




18. 超 - chāo


Meaning: transcending, super




19. 静 - jìng


Meaning: calm, quiet, tranquil




20. 精 - jīng


Meaning: vitality, energy




21. 华 - huá


Meaning: talent, talented




22. 善 - shàn


Meaning: good, goodness, kind, kindness




23. 贤 - xián


Meaning: virtuous





24. 悟 - wù


Meaning: enlightenment




25. 德 - dé


Meaning: morals, morality




26. 仁 - rén


Meaning: benevolent, benevolence, humane, merciful




27. 智 - zhì


Meaning: wisdom, knowledge




28. 暖 - nuǎn


Meaning: warm, warm-hearted, sweet





29. 朗 - lǎng


Meaning: open-minded, optimistic




30. 佳 - jiā


Meaning: very good, optimal




Interested in getting any of these characters tattooed? Download them for free, or try getting a custom design by a Chinese tattoo designer!

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