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The Best Male Body Parts for Tattoos

Once upon a time, tattoos were almost exclusively worn by men. This body art fashion is now unisex, but some differences remain. There are some classically masculine placements worth considering -- just as women are more likely to sport an ankle or lower back tattoo, for example, even if that design consists of flaming skulls.


The upper arm, either bicep or deltoid, is an ever-popular placement spot for tattoos, especially for men. The design can appear just on the outer arm or wrap around, like an armband; a tattoo that covers the skin of the entire upper arm is called a half-sleeve, and one that covers the entire arm is a sleeve.


Forearm tattoos are more visible than those on the upper arms and can complement the musculature of a man well. In fact, some forearm tattoo bearers can make their ink ripple or "dance" by flexing the muscles underneath.


A tattoo on the upper chest makes the area look broader, which is an added bonus for some men who want to emphasize their musculature. It can also make the design itself look larger. A tattoo placed here can be on one side or it can span the whole chest.

Upper Back

The back provides a large, unbroken canvas for your tattoo design, and ink on the upper back particularly emphasizes well-muscled shoulders. If you choose a design here, think big. Tattoo designs often look better on a large scale, and the back provides the space to demonstrate this.

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About the Author

Lori A. Selke has been a professional writer and editor for more than 15 years, touching on topics ranging from LGBT issues to sexuality and sexual health, parenting, alternative health, travel, and food and cooking. Her work has appeared in Curve Magazine, Girlfriends, Libido, The Children's Advocate,, The SF Weekly, and

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