Anime Tattoo Sleeve Ideas and Examples | Freehand

Anime Tattoo Sleeve Ideas and Examples

With the rise in popularity among anime shows we have noticed a huge increase in anime tattoos and especially anime tattoo sleeves. These style of tattoos are typically more bright and vibrant due to the nature of cartoons. Remember, with sleeve designs its especially important to conside the composition of the art and how it wraps around the limbs. What part will be visible from the side and what part will be visible from the front? You can get an entire sleeve custom designed on our website by contacting and hiring one of the available artists. Anyway, let's go through a bunch of examples!


Anime Tattoo Sleeves

Examples and ideas for your next anime tattoo. Designed and inked by artists from all over the world.


Dragonball Z Sleeve

by priscilla_pandemonia 

DragonballZ is one of the worlds most well known anime shows. It's been around for a long time! This full arm sleeve design is so vibrant. There is a lot happening within the sleeve but that's what makes it cool. Almost every inch of skin is taken up by something with very little fillers and negative space. The colours go so well together. 


Ghibli Sleeve

by priscilla_pandemonia

Another colourful anime sleeve tattoo here. This time themed around Ghibli and inked by the talented Priscilla. 


One Piece Sleeve

by mate_tattooer

The reds and oranges on this anime sleeve look fantastic. The tattoo is themed around One Piece which is a very popular anime show. The sleeve contains multiple characters and faces. 


Ghibli Sleeve Black and Grey

by delicz.ttt

Another ghibli tattoo idea here but this time the sleeve is in black and grey. This style is more common among 'regular' tattoos that are not anime themed but we think it works really well here. The tattoo is less intense and will probably turn less heads but that doesn't mean it's not an amazing design. You can really appreciate the detail and effort put into this. 


Anime Leg Sleeve Tattoo

by tylershaquille

Anime sleeves are not just meant for arms. You can also get a sleeve design on your leg. There is a lot more skin and space to fill on the leg so make sure you have enough ideas to fill the space. You might want to consider designing the sleeve to have less ink around the painful parts such as the knee and achilles. 


Anime Full Arm Sleeve Tattoo


Back to arm sleeves! This piece has mostly muted greys throughout. The pop of yellow and red on top of this makes for amazing contrast. This sleeve is not fully finished yet but you can see how it's coming together and turning the customers arm into a piece of art!


Kirito and Asuna Sleeve


Kirito is another popular anime and kirito tattoos are increasing in popularity. This example also includes Asuna. The way the characters are composed onto the arm means there is literally zero empty space. It also includes a DragonballZ character.


Death Note Sleeve


Black and grey anime sleeve tattoos look great, wouldn't you agree? This artist has used the clients skin tone as the skin tone of the characters faces and this creates excellent contrast between the bold black lines. This kind of sleeve won't hurt as much as the full colour examples previously because less ink will be used and typically tattoos with block colouring tend to cause more pain. Something to keep in mind if your pain tolerance is low!



Anime Tattoo Ideas

Are you still struggling for anime tattoo ideas and inspiration? Don't worry, let's look at a few points to consider to spark some inspo.


What's your favourite anime tv show?

This is an obvious thing to think about but it also makes you aware of why is this your favourite anime and what makes it meaningful to you. This can trigger some deep ideas.


Who is your favourite character within this anime?

Who stands out to you in the show and why? Is it their appearance, their personality or something else? Maybe consider including them within your custom sleeve design.


Do you have a favourite episode or scene from a specific episode?

Sometimes a specific episode or even a specific moment can stand out to us and resonate due to our own experiences in life. You can think about including this scene within the sleeve to carry extra meaning.


Can you merge multiple animes into the same design?

It's possible that you don't have one standout show or character. In this case you can merge multple shows into the same sleeve like some of the examples above. This can also make for a super interesting design.


Do you prefer colour sleeves or black and grey sleeves?

If you choose a black and grey design it can effect the content of the tattoo idea too. You may want to go with characters who have darker emotions on their face or include different weather scenes that are more fitting for the dark vibe.


What anime do you think has the best visuals?

Each anime has it's own visual style and artwork. What one do you enjoy the most? Even if the show itself is not your favourite it might be cool to get it tattooed anyway. Especially if you value appearance over meaning with tattoos.


Ask an artist for help with a custom tattoo design!

Artists will generally have more creativity than you. This is not a bad thing! Use it to your advantage. Contact and artist and give them some information. They may be able to come up with an idea for you.


Still firing a blank? Read our gaming and anime tattoo ideas article to see more examples. 



Custom Sleeve Tattoo Design

Okay, so you have an idea and you are ready to get an artist to draw the idea up. Find an anime tattoo designer expert on our website and message them with your idea. They will be able to draw the idea show you how it may look on your arm or leg. This will help you decide if you want to pull the trigger on getting inked in real life. Since sleeve tattoos are such a big deal you don't want to be on the fence with the design so this stage is super important. You can even hire multiple artists and receive multiple takes on the same idea and compare them.


For more details on how this works, check out this video.



How Much Sleeve Tattoos Cost

Okay great, so you are ready to go ahead and get the tattoo done! I will be honest with you. Sleeve tattoos are not cheap and rightly so. Your limbs have a lot of skin and this means it can take several days to cover it all. The price depends a lot on the country you are in and the studio you go to. As with all art, costs vary massively between experienced and rookie artists. In the USA, getting an entire sleeve tattoo will most likely cost between $1,000 - $3,000 USD. The best idea will be to reach out to your desired tattooist and show them the design you comissioned. They will get a good idea of the complexity and ink needed and will be able to give you an estimation on how many days or hours this will take. 

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