22 Amazing Broken Heart Tattoo Ideas To Inspire You In 2023

by Jamie Wilson
Broken Heart Tattoos

Reviewed & updated: August 8, 2023 by Jamie Wilson BA

The broken heart stands out as a symbol of profound emotional resonance, representing not just heartbreak, but resilience, healing, and evolution. In this post, we will delve into the world of broken heart tattoo ideas, exploring its rich tapestry of designs, meanings, and the underlying stories they often hold.

Broken Heart Tattoo
@monsteralphabet via Instagram – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo

Whether you’re considering a tattoo as a mark of personal growth after a tumultuous phase or merely seeking artistic inspiration, this exploration will provide you with comprehensive insights, from the symbolism behind various representations of the broken heart to the latest in design trends.

Broken Heart Face Tattoo Designs

Broken Heart Face Tattoo Designs
@_riccardo_collu_tattoo via Instagram – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo

When searching for a powerful representation of emotional turmoil, consider the teary-eyed design of a broken heart. This striking imagery depicts the heart’s emotional vulnerability, characterized by its three-dimensional edge achieved through the use of black, grey, and red shades. White ink brings out the teary eyes with a realistic touch. A suitable choice for those wanting to symbolize personal pain and heartbreak.

Creative Broken Heart Tattoo Designs

Creative Broken Heart Tattoo Designs
@doppelgangxrl via Instagram – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo

Seeking a way to creatively express the depth of your heartbreak? This bleeding broken heart, symbolizing pain and suffering, might resonate with you. With its anatomical heart replacing the traditional shape, it represents the betrayal often felt in love. The pen sketching style offers a distinctive appearance, while the words “please stop” underscore the longing for relief.

Minimalistic Broken Heart Tattoo On Face

Minimalistic Broken Heart Tattoo On Face
@zomgelijah via Instagram – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo

For those contemplating a facial tattoo, a broken black heart tattoo beneath the eye provides a discreet yet impactful statement. Symbolizing the end of an emotionally charged relationship or mourning a loved one, its minimalistic design ensures it remains understated while conveying depth.

Realistic Broken Heart Tattoos For Men And Women

Realistic Broken Heart Tattoos For Men And Women
@mike_dunn_tattoos via Instagram – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo

Find solace in the intricately shaded realistic broken heart tattoos. Their depth is achieved through masterful shading techniques, with a red overlay illustrating the heart’s struggles. The plunger puncturing the heart can be customized, signifying the heart’s weighty emotional challenges.

Meaningful Broken Heart Tattoo Ideas

Meaningful Broken Heart Tattoo Ideas
@blackholetattoo.alatri via Instagram – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo

Signifying prolonged pain, loss, or yearning, broken heart tattoos convey profound emotions. A tattoo featuring linework and dot shading offers a modern aesthetic, with a torn heart encasing a tearful eye representing the pain within. Personalize with chosen words for added depth.

Black-ink Broken Heart Tattoo Design

Black-ink Broken Heart Tattoo Design
@marjetmendez via Instagram – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo

A timeless black-ink tattoo design, the bandaged heart signifies healing and resilience. Accompanied by floral patterns, it denotes the heart’s vulnerability and delicate state. Perfect for those looking to depict their journey of healing from grief.

Cupid Broken Heart Tattoo Ideas

Cupid Broken Heart Tattoo Ideas
@_kewpietattoos_ via Instagram – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo

For a nostalgic touch, consider a Kewpie (or cupid) design, a popular choice in the 1950s. This traditional tattoo encapsulates the pain of love with a tearful cupid. Suitable for various body parts, it harkens back to a bygone era while signifying hurt in love.

Skull Broken Heart Tattoos For Girls And Boys

Skull Broken Heart Tattoos For Girls And Boys
@baby_doodoo via Instagram – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo

Skull broken heart tattoos serve as poignant reminders of lost relationships or departed loved ones. The chained dagger crushing the skull emphasizes the intense pain felt in the wake of such losses. Personalize with important dates to commemorate cherished memories.

Shattered Broken Heart Tattoo Designs

Shattered Broken Heart Tattoo Designs
@jotatattoo.es via Instagram – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo

A tattoo with shattered heart pieces symbolizes love’s fragile nature. Illustrating the profound hurt experienced, the tattoo’s fragmented design signifies the magnitude of emotional pain. Ideal for visible areas, it serves as a testament to life’s challenges.

Watercolor Broken Heart Tattoos

Watercolor Broken Heart Tattoos
@garyhessstudios via Instagram – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo

Capture the essence of a broken heart with the beauty of watercolor designs. Utilizing pastel shades and spilling techniques, these tattoos exude a gentle charm. Personalize with meaningful quotes, making them apt reminders of faith amidst adversities.

Need More Inspiration

Broken Heart Tattoos
@emilys_parade_tattoos via Instagram – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo
Broken Heart Tattoos
@mars.tattoo.ink via Instagram – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo
Broken Heart Tattoos
@conniegabbert via Instagram – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo
Broken Heart Tattoos
@nataliamarintattoos via Instagram – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo
Broken Heart Tattoos
@tabby_cat_tat via Instagram – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo
Broken Heart Tattoos
@fuori_fase_tattoo via Instagram – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo
Broken Heart Tattoos
@marc.kirchhoff.tattoo via Instagram – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo
Broken Heart Tattoos
@alexhc.tattoo via Instagram – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo

9 Potential Risks Involved In Getting A Tattoo

  1. Infections: One of the most immediate risks is that of skin infections. If the equipment isn’t sterile or the aftercare instructions aren’t followed properly, bacteria can enter the skin, leading to conditions like cellulitis or potentially more severe infections that require medical attention.
  2. Allergic Reactions: Some people may develop an allergic reaction to tattoo dyes, especially red, green, yellow, and blue dyes. These reactions can occur even years after the tattooing process.
  3. Scarring: Improper tattooing technique or complications in the healing process can lead to keloid formation (overgrowth of scar tissue).
  4. Bloodborne Diseases: If the equipment used to create your tattoo is contaminated with infected blood, you can contract various bloodborne diseases — including methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), hepatitis B, hepatitis C, and even HIV.
  5. MRI Complications: Some individuals report swelling or burning in the tattooed area during an MRI. Although this is rare and usually minor, it can be uncomfortable.
  6. Granulomas and Keloids: Granulomas are nodules that may form around tattoo ink, and keloids are overgrowths of scar tissue that can arise from the tattooing process.
  7. Ink Migration: There’s a chance that the tattoo ink can spread out, leading to a blurred appearance of your tattoo over time.
  8. Dissatisfaction and Regret: While not a health risk per se, dissatisfaction with the appearance of a tattoo or regret over getting it is a common concern. Tattoo removal is possible but can be expensive, painful, and may not completely remove the tattoo or could result in scarring.
  9. Tattoo Ink Quality: Some tattoo inks can be of poor quality and might contain harmful substances or contaminants that can cause reactions or long-term health concerns.

To minimize these risks, it’s essential to:

  • Ensure you go to a reputable tattoo parlor that observes all safety and hygiene protocols.
  • Follow aftercare instructions diligently.
  • Be aware of any allergies or sensitivities you might have.
  • Think long and hard about the design, placement, and significance of the tattoo before getting it.

Proper research and preparation can significantly reduce the risks associated with getting a tattoo.

11 Tips To Get The Tattoo You Really Want

Ensuring the desired outcome of a tattoo involves a combination of careful planning, clear communication, and following aftercare instructions. Here are some steps to help maximize the chances of getting the tattoo you want:

  1. Research Tattoo Artists: Not all tattoo artists are created equal. Look for an artist with a good reputation, consistent positive reviews, and a portfolio that matches the style you’re seeking.
  2. Clear Communication: Clearly express your idea to the artist. It might be helpful to bring references or sketches. An experienced artist can provide valuable input, but ultimately, it should be a collaborative process.
  3. Request a Stencil: Before getting inked, most artists will create a stencil of the design to place on your skin. This will give you an idea of placement, size, and how the design will look on your specific body contours.
  4. Understand Ink and Color: Ask about the types of inks being used and, if possible, see the colors beforehand. Some colors might look different in the bottle than they do on the skin.
  5. Placement Considerations: The placement of your tattoo can affect how it’s perceived and how it ages. Some areas, like those that see a lot of sun or experience significant weight fluctuations, might fade or distort more quickly.
  6. Stay Sober: Alcohol can thin your blood, making the tattooing process bleed more and potentially affecting the clarity of the design. It’s also crucial to have a clear head when making such a permanent decision.
  7. Prepare for the Session: Ensure you’re well-rested, hydrated, and have eaten before your appointment. This can make the experience more comfortable and help your body cope with the stress of being tattooed.
  8. Follow Aftercare Instructions: Proper aftercare is crucial to the healing process and can affect the final appearance of your tattoo. Follow your artist’s instructions regarding cleaning, moisturizing, and protecting your tattoo.
  9. Avoid Sun Exposure: Sun can fade tattoos, especially while they’re healing. Protect your ink by keeping it covered or using a high-SPF sunscreen.
  10. Touch-Ups: Even with perfect care, tattoos can sometimes heal imperfectly. Ink might not take in certain spots, or the design might need sharpening. Many artists offer touch-up sessions after the initial healing period.
  11. Stay Patient: Remember that the healing process might cause the tattoo to look different temporarily. It might appear cloudy, scab over, or peel. This is normal and not indicative of the final appearance.

By being proactive, doing thorough research, and cultivating a good relationship with your tattoo artist, you can significantly increase the chances of getting the tattoo you’ve envisioned.

8 Aftercare Tips To Follow After Getting A Broken Heart Tattoo

The aftercare instructions for a broken heart tattoo aren’t fundamentally different from those of any other tattoo. The design or theme of the tattoo doesn’t affect the aftercare process, but the location and size can play a role. Here’s a general outline for tattoo aftercare, which would be applicable to a broken heart tattoo:

  1. Keep it Clean and Dry:
    • First 24 hours: Leave the bandage on for at least a few hours, ideally overnight. It protects the fresh tattoo from bacteria and contaminants.
    • After removing the bandage, gently wash the tattoo with lukewarm water and a mild, fragrance-free soap. Pat dry with a clean paper towel.
  2. Moisturize:
    • Apply a thin layer of tattoo-specific lotion or ointment (like Aquaphor). Avoid products with fragrances or alcohol as they can irritate the skin.
    • As the tattoo heals, switch to a non-scented moisturizing lotion to keep the skin hydrated.
  3. Avoid Water Immersion:
    • Do not submerge the tattoo in water for prolonged periods. This means avoiding baths, swimming pools, hot tubs, and the sea until the tattoo is fully healed.
  4. Avoid Sun Exposure:
    • Fresh tattoos can be sensitive to the sun. Overexposure can cause fading and can prolong the healing process. Once healed, always apply sunscreen to prevent fading.
  5. Avoid Picking and Scratching:
    • As your tattoo heals, it may scab or peel, much like a sunburn. Do not pick at it. Picking can pull out the ink and cause patchy healing.
  6. Stay Healthy:
    • A healthy body heals faster. Drink plenty of water, eat nutritious foods, and get adequate sleep.
  7. Be Mindful of Clothing:
    • Wear loose clothing over the tattooed area to prevent friction. For a broken heart tattoo, depending on its placement, ensure that no tight clothing or accessories rub against it.
  8. Consultation:
    • If you see any signs of infection, like excessive redness, swelling, pus, or if you have a fever, consult with your tattoo artist and consider seeking medical advice.
    • If your broken heart tattoo has specific colors or unique elements, ask your artist if there’s any additional care you should be aware of.

Always follow your tattoo artist’s aftercare recommendations. They might have specific products or procedures they prefer based on their experience and the type of ink and equipment they use. Remember, the aftercare process is crucial for ensuring the longevity, clarity, and vibrancy of your new tattoo.


In the realm of tattoos, the broken heart symbolizes a spectrum of deeply personal experiences and emotions. As with any tattoo, it’s essential to thoroughly research and choose a reputable tattoo artist to ensure the desired outcome and minimize health risks. Proper aftercare is paramount to prevent infections and ensure the tattoo’s longevity. Remember, the process of getting a tattoo is not just about the final design but also about embracing its journey and significance. While tattoos can be a beautiful and enduring tribute to life’s ups and downs, it’s crucial to approach the decision with care, understanding the permanence and potential risks involved. Ultimately, a well-chosen and executed tattoo can serve as a daily reminder of strength, resilience, and personal growth, inspiring you to move forward with grace and conviction.

Feature Image from Pinterest – Love this design? Try a Temporary Tattoo

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