Smoke Tattoo Ideas

Look for images featuring smoke for ideas.
Look for images featuring smoke for ideas. (Image: Jupiterimages/Goodshoot/Getty Images)

Smoke can be featured in tattoo pieces in any number of ways, from stand-alone pieces to large sleeves or other large tattoos featuring smoke as a part of the tattoo. Some choose to use smoke in religious tattoos, such as a smokey cross or the image of Jesus on the cross. If you would like to incorporate smoke into your first or next tattoo, always get your work done in a reputable tattoo parlor to avoid possible infection.


Skull tattoos may be accompanied by swirls of smoke, which work in sleeve, half sleeve or small tattoo format. Try a half sleeve of a skull enveloped in smoke and smokey tree branches, or a colorful smoking skull with a top hat. Smoking skulls with top hats can be based on Grateful Dead skull images or your own design. The smoke cloud on such tattoos can be colored as well, such as a purple cloud of smoke.


Combine smoke with an animal image, either skull or flesh. For example, look for a ram image you like and instruct the tattoo artist to create swirls of smoke around the animal. Go for mythical animals such as dragons, phoenixes and unicorns emerging from a cloud of smoke. A humorous take on the smokey animal tattoo is an image of an animal smoking, such as a dog or cat. Entire back pieces can be created out of iconic images, such as dogs playing poker with cigars hanging out of their mouths.


The image of a person smoking a cigarette or cigar is yet another smoke tattoo option. Such tattoos can be of someone you know, such as a beloved relative who always smoked, or the image of a famous musician, artist, leader or book character, such as Sherlock Holmes, who is often depicted with his pipe, Che Guevara, who smoked cigars, or artists such as Pablo Picasso or Vincent Van Gogh.

Additional Ideas

Additional ideas for smoke tattoos include images of smoking devices, such as peace pipes. Sleeves or other large pieces of colorful fire can include smoke, either colorful or gray. Simple swirls of smoke in circular forms on the lower back, back of the neck, wrist, around the arm or on the shoulder blade are also options. Tattooing someone's name to your body or several names in a cloud of smoke is also a possibility.

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