Image: iStock / Venerala
There are two kinds of people in this world: those who choose to mark special occasions or memories on their skin in permanent ink, and those who stick to photo albums, thank you very much. We are firmly Team Tattoo, and have quite a few of our own. It's a big decision, and not one to be taken lightly! We used to fret about how society would perceive people with visible tattoos. And sure, some parents still worry about that when it comes to their kids getting inked! But for the most part, people have a much more open mind about them now. One of the coolest tattoos you can get (in our opinion) is one in honor of your kids. Parenting is permanent, just like tattoos, right? There are lots of ways to pay tribute to your kids through tattoos, but these mother-son tattoos are some of our favs.
The mother-son relationship is one of the tightest bonds there is! Obviously, the bond between any parent and child is unbreakable. But there's just something so special about a mama and her boy. It's a different connection than between mother and daughter or father and son. Mamas raise boys who are going to be good men, and that is such an important job. So memorializing that relationship with a matching tattoo is definitely a sweet idea. These mother-son tattoos range from matching to abstract. But they're all indicative of a very special bond.
Image: Instagram / @angrymonkeytattoo
Just ... how freaking adorable is that?! The relationship between Mrs. Potts and Chip in Beauty and the Beast is one of our favorite mother-son relationships. She's so nurturing and protective, and he's just so mischievous. But she still let's him just be a kid (even when he's a tea cup). That's the relationship between a mama and her son in a nutshell. It's half trying to keep them safe and out of harms way, and half letting them be who they are and explore the world. This is such a perfect mother-son tattoo, and of course, paying homage to Disney is always a good idea.
Image: Instagram / @theblackrose.11
The caption on this one reads, "His first tattoo... our mom and son piece. My kids mean so much to me. My son said he is the light to my dark, that he is everything that is good in me. I love this kid!" THE LIGHT TO HER DARK. We're not crying, you're crying. This is an absolutely stunning pair of tattoos, and we are swooning over the sentiment behind it. No matter how old they get, they'll always be our little boys, right? And look at their intertwined fingers in the photo. Seriously, so beautiful and touching, we love it.
Image: Instagram / @mhannibaltattoos
If you're a fan of Stranger Things (and you probably are), you might get this slightly-obscure reference to the show. The numbers 011 represent the character Eleven, played BRILLIANTLY by Millie Bobby Brown. Eleven was born Jane Ives, but was kidnapped as an infant and raised in the Hawkins National Laboratory where she was being experimented on to test her psychokinetic powers. She eventually escaped and was found by Mike, Lucas, and Dustin. When asked her name, she responded, "Eleven", because that was her number in the lab. We love that they used her name and story line as inspiration for their matching mother-son tattoos.
Image: Instagram / @lauren.bakerab
The doodle is so cute! We bet there's a story behind it, too. Maybe he drew it as a little boy, and his mom saved it all those years? Or maybe it's just a meaningful little drawing between the two of them. Whatever the reasons behind choosing this cute little doodle, we love that they turned it into a matching mother-son tattoo. It's also kind of a little creepy, which somehow makes it even cooler? Like mom is weird and son goes with it, or son has a strange streak and mom is supportive as ever. Really adorable, no natter how you look at it.
Image: Instagram / @heather_ronnebaum
The caption reads, "I love the ocean and she loves the mountains. This isn’t a normal mother/daughter tattoo but we aren’t a normal family 🤪🤪. When I spoke to her she told me her brother and her will be getting ones as well. 💞💞. We may be miles and states apart as well as a small family but we are a very tight knit family. Our love for each other will always be with us no matter the distance." We seriously love how this tattoo evolved from one pair to a set for the whole family! And she's right, love bonds a mother to her kids no matter how much distance lies between them.
Image: Instagram / steph_sparkle
Mother-son tattoos are the subject here, but when a mama has more than just a son! Well, those mother-son tattoos become mother-children tattoos! Plus, you should never pass up an opportunity to turn a tattoo between mother and kid into a nice sibling bonding moment. We love how the siblings match but mama is slightly different. As she should be, since she is the glue that holds it all together. Family tattoos totally don't have to match exactly, and these little variations are what make them so special. We're all unique, with one common bond, so our tattoos should reflect who we are!
Image: Facebook/Heart Feels
Oh good gravy, that is amazing. Now, at first glance, we assumed the little symbols were sort of abstract "Rock on" hands. You know, the hand sign you throw up at concerts and what not. And it totally could be, and it would be outstanding if it was. Maybe a mother and son bonding over a love of rock music! But it can also be the the American Sign Language sign for "I love you", which is just SO DANG CUTE we can't even stand it. Maybe it's both? It can totally be both. "I love you, and we love rock music!"
Image: Instagram / @ felixhardytattoos
You don't necessarily have to get a matching tattoo with your son to honor your relationship with him (although it's a pretty cool thing to do). You can totally just get a tattoo that symbolizes your bond with your son, and have it just for yourself. This little pair of owls is so sweet, and such a great representation of the relationship between mother and child. Mom gazing down lovingly at her little one, little one looking up at mom like, "What did I do?", LOL. Listen, we love our kids, but they can be something else sometimes, right? Cute tattoos like this help during those exact moments.
Image: Instagram / @oseveninklounge
We've all heard one variation of this or another, right? Having kids is like removing a piece of your heart and watching it live outside of your body. Or having kids is like creating the piece to perfectly fit your puzzle. This adorable tattoo captures all of those sentiments and more. Mom is the heart with a big piece missing, and her son is the missing piece! There are so many different analogies for motherhood, but we've always been found of this one. And capturing so wonderfully as a tattoo is such a great way to honor being a mom and raising these people.
Image: iStock / mglatattoo
We love how these are the same, yet different. One shows a mountain range with sunbeams and more color, and one is more understated. But they're both so beautiful, and we're sure they represent a special place or memory between this mother and son. And the simple word written over both mountain ranges, "Forever", is perfect. Notice the 3 in the word, though. We imagine the number is also significant in their relationship. Maybe her boy was her third? If so, we bet this mama has a couple other tattoos for her other children. Because if you're going to get one, you've got to get one for ALL of them.
Image: Instagram / @muletattoo
Listen, you don't necessarily have to get a matching tattoo with your kid to make it a special memory! You can just hit up the tattoo studio and go through the experience together. Because getting tattooed at the same time, even if they're different tattoos, is indeed a bonding experience! If you have any tattoos, then you know that it's a process, and it's so much better to share it with someone. Picking a studio and artist, deciding on what you want, waiting around until it's your turn. Then watching each other get inked (and obviously taking pictures and videos!). That right there is a good way to spend the day.
Image: Instagram / @vickischelstraete
Letting your kid design your tattoo is such a special experience! OK, so maybe "design" is a bit of a stretch. But they're only little for such a short time, and it's totally a mom thing to want to capture little bits of their childhood. The way their voices sound, the way they mispronounce certain words. And of course, their early chicken scratch writing. These are the memories that will sustain us as they get older and leave the nest, so it makes so much sense to want to capture them forever in some way. We're sure this little guy is already thinking about the matching tattoo he'll get when he's old enough.
Image: Instagram / @unkleray
This one has us feeling allllllll the feels, we're not going to lie. Motherhood is hard work, and it can feel thankless, at times. Especially when our kids are young! But then they grow up and go out on their own, and you realize that all those years of leading and teaching and loving and supporting have really paid off. We don't have adult kids yet (we're still working our way through the mostly-thankless years), but we hope when our kids grow up that they appreciate the sacrifices and hard work we put in all those years. That's the end goal, right?
Image: Instagram / @tattoosbybee83
We really dig tattoos that are beautiful on the surface, but not super obvious in their meaning (just as a personal preference). This pair of mother-son tattoos could have so many meanings, and we're sure the symbolism holds special meaning for them! We imagine it's a play on the family tree, and maybe each leaf represents a member of the family? Or maybe mom is the tree with the roots that hold everyone down and sustain the family. No matter what it means to them, we love that they have this piece of art to tie them together forever and always.
Image: Instagram / @michael_anthony_lopez
"Hey son, you wanna get some matching tattoos and then see the one and only legend among humans Cher in concert?" HELL YEAH WE DO. Can this mom be our mom? We promise to be very respectful and loving and visit her once a week with baked goods and wine. We'll even pay for the tickets to see Cher! This was probably one of the most memorable days of both their lives, and we just love that they chose to remember it forever with matching music note tattoos. We hope Cher blew their socks off. Obviously she did, does she ever not?
Image: Instagram / @cheryldoestattoos
This is another one of those mother-son tattoos that is just mom picking a special memory and putting it on her body as a permanent reminder. If we could bottle up and sell childhood, all these little moments and words and sounds and smells (OK, not all the smells), we'd be freaking millionaires. One of our favorite parts about being a mom is getting to listen to all the words our kids mispronounce. It's absolutely hysterical. And so heartbreaking when they start saying them right! When this little guy gets a little older and starts saying "beautiful" instead of "feautiful", we know this mama is going to feel the emotions. But at least she'll always have this tattoo to remind her.
Image: Instagram / @imacatmeow_tattoos
If you toggle to the next picture, you can see the other piece of this pair. Triangles and daffodils seem like a strange combination. But in the caption, the artist hashtags birth flower. So it would seem as though mom got a variation of the triangles with the flower from the month of her son's birth. We just love that! There are so many ways to make a tattoo personal and special. Like, the average person probably isn't going to look at that daffodil and know that it's a birth flower (March, by the way). But she'll always think of him when she looks at it, and remember the month her life changed forever.
Image: Instagram / @t_wolf_1
The caption reads, "#HappyMothersDay to the absolute best Mom & friend that I could ever ask for...I am honored to share a symbol of our love & respect for each other that serves as a permanent reminder of how you are a part of me & I am a part of you. I love you!" See, we all want our kids to grow up and say this kind of stuff about us! What a lovely way to pay tribute to your mom, and it's really such a cute tattoo. It's sort of like an abstract mom holding her baby, do you guys see that? Her body and arms form a heart around the little circle she carries. Ugh, we're all emotional just looking at it.
Image: Instagram / @lauranicole447
We stared at this for so long, and then read the caption, and suddenly our eyes were like, "OH MY GOD DUH!" The caption says, "Cody drew an ambigram of our last names. We got the same tattoo, but his faces one way; Jones, and mine is flipped; Puckett. I have no idea how he figured out this was possible, but I love this kid to the moon and back." We have no idea either, but what a smart cookie she raised! Just another example of how personal and unique mother-son tattoos can be. Surely, there are not two people with these exact same tattoos in the entire world.
Image: Instagram / @allison.kaylene
Once again, you have to toggle to the next picture to get the full effect of these mother-son tattoos. We absolutely LOVE watercolor tattoos, and honestly, they're hard to do right. This mama and her son obviously did their research when looking for a tattoo artist (so essential!). Mama fox is looking down at her kit, and little fox is jumping up at his mama. Such a beautiful representation of the relationship between a mother and her son. If you're going to commit to a mother-son tattoo, best make it as amazing as it can be, right? Mission accomplished, family.