A Complete Guide To Rihanna’s Tattoos

And the special meanings behind them.

Rihanna has over 20 tattoos — from traditional hand tattoos to a large Egyptian goddess..
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Rihanna is known for many things: her catchy, chart topping hits (remember when she used to release albums?), unforgettable fashion, her ever-growing Fenty empire, and her impressive tattoo collection. Rihanna’s tattoos are as well known as the singer herself, and she’s responsible for igniting tons of tattoo trends. The beauty mogul’s has almost every design imaginable, from dainty dedications to deities to a playful twist on skull and bones. If you’re looking for celebrity tattoos to get inspiration for your next ink, Rihanna’s tattoos should be your first stop.

The multi-hyphenate star has been curating her impressive collection of body art since she was in her teens. In total, her body is decorated with 23 tattoos, each with sentimental meaning behind them that reveal who the mogul is and who and what she loves. Rihanna’s most famous tats, like the Egyptian goddess Isis on her ribcage or the Roman numerals that sit on her left shoulder, make regular appearances on her Instagram. But there are others that get less shine. Overall, Rihanna has tons of other designs that will give you major body art inspo.

Want to learn more about the beauty mogul’s epic body art? Read on for a breakdown on Rihanna and her tattoos.

Camo Shark

Penned by celebrity tattoo artist Keith McCurdy (aka Bang Bang)— who’s inked Selena Gomez, Demi Lovato, Adele, and many more— in 2016, Rihanna added a camo shark to her collection of tats. According to E!, the singer and her then-boyfriend Drake got the ink together. She’s since covered up the shark artwork with an elaborate design that wraps around her ankle.

Sanskrit Quote

Bang Bang and Rihanna’s tattoo relationship started with the singer’s hip tattoo. It features a quote in Sanskrit inked vertically down the singer’s right hip. Bang Band told ELLE UK Rih got the tat was she was 18.


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The Grammy-winner singer has 1988 inked on the frontside of her right ankle. It’s a shout out to her birth year — the singer was born on Feb. 20, 1988.

“Never a failure, always a lesson.”

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Rihanna has “never a failure, always a lesson” inked just below her collarbone. It’s one of Rihanna’s coolest designs — it’s transcribed in mirrored writing so she can read it back to herself.

A Tiny Cross

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Across from her “Never a failure, always a lesson” ink, Rihanna has a tiny cross tat that lays on her left collarbone.

Maori Tribal Art

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Rihanna got a Maori tribal print tattooed on her hand back in 2008. It allegedly wasn’t her fave, and she had her go-to tattoo artist Bang Bang cover it up with the elaborate, henna-inspired design we know and love.

Polynesian Design

During a stop in New Zealand for her Diamonds tour in 2013, Rihanna chose to pay homage to the country by getting a traditional Polynesian design on her hand. Instead of using a needle, the singer’s tattoo artist applied the pigment with a mallet and chisel.

Henna-Inspired Hand Tattoo

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Rihanna’s hand tattoo is one of the singer’s most intricate designs. It’s yet another Bang Bang creation that combined her previous hand tattoos and took 11 hours to complete.

A Symbol Of Her Strength

Rihanna has a small tattoo of a firearm on her right rib. The singer came to Bang Bang with a different design in mind, but the tattoo artist pushed her to go with the bold body art.


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Rihanna got the iconic “Shh...” ink on her forefinger back in 2008.


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Rihanna’s feet are so populated with tats, they deserve their own guide. In addition to several other designs on the area, Rihanna has a falcon with its wings spread on her ankle.

Rebelle Fleur

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Bang Bang penned “rebelle fleur”, which translates to rebel flower, on Rihanna’s neck in 2010. The singer launched a fragrance called Reb'L Fleur that same year (major throwback before the Fenty Beauty).


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Rihanna has a trailing collection of stars that would make a constellation jealous on the back of her neck. Some are just outlines, while others are filled in.

Solo Star

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One of Rihanna’s lesser known pieces of body art? The star tat right inside her left ear.

Roman Numerals

Rihanna doesn’t just pay tribute to her own birthday on her canvas. She has her best friend Melissa’s birthday on her left shoulder in Roman numerals. Bestie behavior.

An Egyptian Goddess

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Arguably Rihanna’s most iconic ink, the singer has a tattoo of the Egyptian goddess Isis across her ribcage. The stunning art was completed in 2012, and is a homage to the singer’s late grandmother Dolly.

Skull and Crossbones

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On her back right leg, the singer has ink of a skull and crossbones. To put a Rihanna twist on it, the skull is wearing a red bow.

“Freedom in God.”

The singer has another tat on her ribcage: an Arabic saying that loosely translates to “Freedom in God,” right next to her Isis ink.

Queen Nefertiti

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Rihanna pays tribute to not one, but two Egyptian goddesses on her body. She has a portrait of Queen Nefertiti right above her “Freedom in God” tattoo.


On her left hand, Rihanna has a “love” tattooed on her middle finger.

Pisces Symbol

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Pisces readers: consider tattooing your astrological sign’s symbol on your body. It looks really cute behind Rihanna’s ear.


Rihanna has a Tibetan phrase that allegedly translates to loosely to “lover” on her derrière.

Music Notes

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These music note tattoos are Rihanna’s first. She got them in 2006 as she was taking the world by storm with one of her first hits: Pon de Replay. As of now, they’ve been covered up.