102 pretty Japanese words for tattoos to inspire you

Japan inspiration

by Coco Tran

On August 12, 2023


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In This Article: Table of Contents

Here is a list of 102 pretty Japanese words for tattoos. These words are often used for names, their meanings, any famous Japanese people with the name, historical/cultural significance, and popularity:

1. Aki (明) – “bright, shining”

Beautiful for its luminous meaning. Singer Aki Yashiro. Historically given to both genders. Popular unisex name.

2. Aoi (葵) – “hollyhock flower”

Lovely floral name. Model Aoi Miyazaki. The Aoi Matsuri festival features hollyhocks. Common for girls.

3. Asuka (明日香) – “fragrance of tomorrow”

Hopeful, optimistic meaning. Wrestler Asuka. Refers to the historic Asuka period. Uncommon but rising for girls.

4. Ayumi (歩美) – “walk, beauty”

Elegant imagery. Actress Ayumi Hamasaki. Ayumi suggests moving towards beauty. Popular for girls.

5. Etsuko (悦子) – “joy child”

Cheerful meaning. Author Etsuko Ichinomiya. Etsuko has a bright, upbeat sound. Common for girls.

6. Fumiko (文子) – “literary child”

Intelligent, cultured meaning. Empress Fumi. Fumiko indicates someone born into a learned family. Classic girl’s name.

7. Hana (花) – “flower”

Feminine, delicate nature image. Model Hana Soukupova. Flowers symbolize beauty and transitory nature in Japan. One of the most popular girl’s names.

8. Haruki (晴輝) – “clear radiance”

Uplifting natural imagery. Author Haruki Murakami. Haruki suggests optimism and clarity. Popular unisex name.

9. Hikari (光) – “light”

Beautiful, luminous meaning. Actress Hikari Mitsushima. In Buddhism, light dispels darkness/ignorance. Classic girl’s name.

10. Hiroshi (宏) – “great, prosper”

Grand, successful imagery. Author Hiroshi Noma. Hiroshi suggests achievement and strength. Common boy’s name.

11. Jun (純) – “pure”

Simple and modest beauty. Actor Jun Matsumoto. Jun conveys innocence and sincerity. Popular gender neutral name.

12. Kaori (香) – “fragrance”

delicate, feminine sensibility. Musician Kaori Asoh. Fragrant plants like plums are admired in Japan. Popular girl’s name.

13. Kazuo (主夫) – “one who is harmonious/obedient”

Peaceful, cooperative meaning. Author Kazuo Ishiguro. Kazuo promotes unity and harmony. Classic boy’s name.

14. Keiko (恵子) – “blessing child”

Auspicious, fortunate meaning. Actress Keiko Kitagawa. Keiko suggests divinely bestowed gifts. Common girl’s name.

15, Kenji (健児) – “strong, healthy child”

Robust, vigorous meaning. Author Kenji Miyazawa. Kenji indicates physical vitality. Classic boy’s name.

16. Kiku (菊) – “chrysanthemum”

National flower of Japan. Graceful beauty and nobility. Onna-bugeisha Takeko Kiku fought bravely during the Boshin War. Popular for girls.

17. Kimiko (希美子) – “rare beauty child”

Elegant and special meaning. Symbolizes treasured Japanese aesthetic ideals. Fairly common for girls.

18. Kiyoshi (清) – “pure”

Virtuous, untainted meaning. Jazz musician Kiyoshi Koyama. Kiyoshi suggests moral clarity. Classic boy’s name.

19, Mai (舞) – “dance”

Graceful, lively imagery. Actress Mai Nakahara. References artistic practices like traditional dance. Fairly common girl’s name.

20. Makoto (誠) – “sincerity”

Suggests virtue and honesty. Actor Makoto Shinkai. Makoto encourages truthfulness and integrity. Popular unisex name.

21. Masako (正子) – “correct child”

Upright, proper meaning. Empress Masako. Indicates someone raised correctly. Classic girl’s name.

22. Midori (緑) – “green”

Fresh, hopeful natural color. Violinist Midori Goto. Symbol of renewal and energy. Popular for girls.

23. Minoru (稔) – “fruitful, bountiful”

Prosperous meaning. Sociologist Minoru Karashima. Minoru suggests good harvest and success. Classic boy’s name.

24. Miyoko (美代子) – “beautiful generation child”

Timeless elegance. Figure skater Miyoko Hirayama. Links beauty with longevity. Common girl’s name.

25. Nobuyuki (信之) – “trustworthy”

Honorable, reliable meaning. Racecar driver Nobuyuki Wakabayashi. Nobuyuki encourages fidelity and integrity. Popular classic boy’s name.

26. Rei (麗) – “lovely, beautiful”

Graceful simplicity. Actress Rei Kikukawa. Embodies Japanese aesthetic sensibility and refinement. Common for girls.

27. Rin (鈴) – “dignified”

Regal, revered meaning. Author Rin Ogata. Rin suggests high principles and virtue. Gender neutral name.

28. Sachiko (幸子) – “happy child”

Joyful, blessed meaning. Novelist Sachiko Kashiwaba. Sachiko expresses optimism and good fortune. Classic girl’s name.

29. Saki (咲) – “blossom”.

Youthful, fresh imagery. Actress Saki Aibu. Blooming flowers represent life and celebration. Popular for girls.

30. Sakura (桜) – “cherry blossom”

National flower. Golfer Sakura Yokomine. Symbol of delicate beauty and renewal. One of the top girl’s names.

31. Shinji (真治) – “true governance”.

Just, wise meaning. Anime director Shinji Aramaki. Shinji suggests integrity and fairness. Classic boy’s name.

32. Shiori (栞) – “bookmark”.

Whimsical nature image. Author Shiori Ito. Shiori implies following your own path. Popular for girls.

33. Subaru (昴) – “unite”

Beautifully conveys harmony. Car company Subaru. Made up of the stars Pleiades. Uncommon but rising unisex name.

34. Suga (菅) – “reed grass”

Humble and resilient plant. Rapper Suga. Symbol of flexibility and reliability. Rare boy’s name.

35. Sumire (菫) – “violet”

Delicate floral imagery. Actress Sumire Uesaka. Violets represent everlasting love. Popular for girls.

36. Takara (宝) – “treasure”

Precious, cherished meaning. Takara are highly valued objects like jade, gold, jewels. Uncommon but beautiful girl’s name.

37. Takeru (武) – “warrior”.

Valiant, honorable meaning. Prince Takeru battled a monster with a legendary sword. Strong and classic boy’s name.

38. Tomiko (富子) – “prosperous child”.

Abundant, affluent meaning. Links innocence with good fortune. Classic girl’s name.

39. Toshiko (聡子) – “wise child”

Intelligent, perceptive meaning. Jazz singer Toshiko Akiyoshi. Indicates someone insightful. Common girl’s name.

40. Yoshi (良) – “good”

Simple, optimistic meaning. Musician Yoshiki. Yoshi suggests moral uprightness. Popular unisex name.

41. Yui (唯) – “unique”

Special, one of a kind meaning. Actress Yui Aragaki. Implies incomparable qualities. Popular for girls.

42. Yukiko (幸子) – “fortunate child”

Blissful, auspicious meaning. Author Yukiko Kada. Evokes happiness and prosperity. Classic girl’s name.

43. Yuko (優子) – “gentle child”

Kind, empathetic meaning. Singer Yuko Ando. Yuko promotes warmth and compassion. Common girl’s name.

44. Yumi (弓) – “bow”

Elegant, refined meaning. Model Yumi Lambert. References the bow’s graceful shape. Popular for girls.

45. Yuriko (百合子) – “lily child”

Beautiful floral imagery. Actress Yuriko Yoshitaka. The lily connotes purity in Japan. Classic girl’s name.

46. Akira (明) – “bright”

Radiant, shining meaning. Actor Akira Kurosawa. Unisex name, but more common for boys.

47. Daisuke (大輔) – “great helper”.

Strong, supportive meaning. Musician Daisuke Asakura. Encourages capability and reliability. Popular classic boy’s name.

48. Jiro (次郎) – “second son”

Confident, assuring meaning for a second born boy. Businessman Jiro Ono. Classic name associated with achievement.

49. Kenichi (健一) – “strong first”

Robust, vigorous meaning. Martial artist Kenichi Ebina. Indicates physical might and leadership. Common boy’s name.

50. Ryu (竜) – “dragon”

Powerful, mythical creature. Actor Ryuhei Matsuda. Dragons represent strength and wisdom. Cool modern boy’s name.

51. Asuka (明日香) – “fragrance of tomorrow

Hopeful imagery. Name of an ancient Japanese capital. Uncommon for girls.

52. Chou (蝶) – “butterfly”

Graceful, delicate meaning. Butterflies represent transformation. Cute uncommon girl’s name.

53. Emi (笑) – “blessing, beauty”.

Positive, cheerful meaning. Symbol of Japanese aesthetic ideals. Popular classic girl’s name.

54. Fumiki (文稀) – “scholarly wisdom”.

Cultured, learned meaning. Fumiki suggests intelligence and grace. Rare boy’s name.

55. Ginko (銀子) – “silver child”.

Valuable, precious meaning. Silver is admired for purity in Japan. Unusual but pretty girl’s name.

56. Hanae (花恵) – “flower blessing”.

Beautiful floral imagery. Hanae links nature with good fortune. Classic girl’s name.

57. Haru (春) – “spring”.

Hopeful, fresh season. Haru evokes scenic Japanese springtime beauty. Popular unisex name.

58. Hideki (秀樹) – “excellent tree”.

Strong, flourishing natural image. Hideki suggests health and vitality. Classic boy’s name.

59. Isamu (勇) – “courage”.

Brave, valiant meaning. Isamu indicates inner strength and heroism. Cool masculine name.

60. Jun (純) – “genuine”.

Sincere, honest meaning. Jun conveys virtue and purity. Gender neutral name.

61. Kaede (楓) – “maple”.

Graceful tree with seasonal beauty. Symbol of time passing. Popular girl’s name.

62. Kazue (和恵) – “harmony blessing”.

Peaceful, auspicious meaning. Promotes unity and good fortune. Classic girl’s name.

63. Kohaku (琥珀) – “amber”.

Warm, radiant meaning. Amber evokes nostalgia. Unusual but interesting unisex name.

64. Makoto (誠) – “sincere”.

Honest, truthful meaning. Makoto encourages integrity and virtue. Common gender neutral name.

65. Natsuko (夏子)- “summer child”.

Bright, cheerful seasonal imagery. Natsuko captures vibrant Japanese summers. Popular classic girl’s name.

66. Osamu (治) – “discipline, study”.

Scholarly, focused meaning. Osamu suggests education and erudition. Intellectual boy’s name.

67. Rika (梨華) – “pear blossom”.

Delicate, sweet floral name. Pear trees represent longevity and prosperity. Common girl’s name.

68. Ryota (涼太) – “refreshing thick”.

Cool, crisp imagery. Indicates relief from summer heat. Popular modern boy’s name.

69. Sora (空) – “sky”. Free, limitless meaning.

The sky’s natural beauty is admired in Japan. Popular gender neutral name.

70. Takumi (匠) – “skilled craftsman”.

Masterful, artistic meaning. Takumi indicates expertise and precision. Cool boy’s name.

71. Tomoe (巴) – “whirlpool, comma”.

Fluid, cyclical image. Tomoe appears on crests of historical clans. Unusual but lyrical girl’s name.

72. Tsubaki (椿) – “camellia”.

Evergreen flowering shrub. Camellias represent unwavering devotion. Beautiful classic girl’s name.

73. Yori (依) – “reliant”.

Trustworthy, faithful meaning. Implies steadfastness and loyalty. Rare unisex name.

74. Yua (優亜) – “gentle Asia”.

Kind, empathetic meaning. Promotes warmth and compassion. Modern girl’s name.

75. Akihiro (昭大) – “bright, great”.

Impressive, distinguished meaning. Akihiro conveys intelligence and leadership. Popular boy’s name.

78. Eiji (英次) – “excellence, next”.

Superlative, promising meaning. Indicates continuous achievement. Classic boy’s name.

79. Goro (五郎) – “fifth son”.

Strong familial meaning. Honorable status as later son. Traditional masculine name.

80. Hideo (英男) – “excellent man”.

Admirable, superior meaning. Hideo promotes strength and discipline. Classic boy’s name.

81. Ichiro (一郎) – “first son”.

Leadership, pioneer meaning. Ichiro conveys capability as firstborn. Popular classic boy’s name.

82. Junta (純太) – “genuine thick”.

Sincere, true heart meaning. Junta suggests virtue and integrity. Modern boy’s name.

83. Kaito (海翔) – “ocean, fly”.

Bold, adventurous aquatic image. Kaito captures freedom and ambition. Cool modern boy’s name.

84. Masahiro (正大) – “correct, great”.

Just, honorable meaning. Masahiro encourages moral uprightness. Classic boy’s name.

85. Nobu (伸) – “extend”.

Growth, perseverance meaning. Implies continuous achievement. Short masculine name.

86. Raiden (雷電) – “thunder, lightning”.

Dynamic, intense natural force. Raiden conveys power and energy. Bold boy’s name.

87. Renji (廉次) – “virtuous, next”.

Upright, ethical meaning for a second son. Promotes honesty and morality. Uncommon boy’s name.

88. Ryūnosuke (龍之介) – “dragon’s helper”.

Mighty, devoted meaning. Refers to the legendary dragon’s assistant. Very rare boy’s name.

89. Shintaro (慎太郎) – “cautious thick son”.

Careful, vigilant meaning. Shintaro implies prudence and preparedness. Classic boy’s name.

90. Susumu (進) – “progress”.

Forward momentum meaning. Susumu conveys advancement and ambition. Uncommon boy’s name.

91. Tadashi (正) – “correct”.

Just, honorable meaning. Tadashi encourages moral uprightness. Simple classic boy’s name.

92. Takehiko (威彦) – “heroic prince”.

Brave, commanding regal meaning. Takehiko indicates valor and leadership. Rare masculine name.

93. Yasahiro (泰大) – “calm, great”.

Peaceful, eminent meaning. Suggests tranquility and distinction. Uncommon boy’s name.

94. Yoshihiro (嘉大) – “fortunate, great”.

Auspicious, eminent meaning. Implies prosperity and success. Classic boy’s name.

95. Akane (茜) – “brilliant red”.

Vibrant, intense color. The red rose madder dye was treasured in Japan. Popular girl’s name.

96. Asami (晶美) – “morning beauty”.

Radiant, elegant meaning. Asami links sunrise with grace. Common girl’s name.

97. Azami (薊) – “thistle flower”.

Resilient purple blooms with sharp leaves. Thistles represent strength and caution. Unique girl’s name.

98. Chiharu (千春) – “a thousand springs”.

Enduring, long-lasting imagery. Chiharu conveys longevity and renewal. Classic girl’s name.

99. Chouko (蝶子) – “butterfly child”.

Delicate, graceful insect meaning. Symbol of transformation. Poetic girl’s name.

100. Fuyuko (冬子) – “winter child”.

Seasonal imagery indicating resilience. Fuyuko reflects the quiet beauty of winter. Uncommon girl’s name.

101. Kiyoko (清子) – “pure child”.

Virtuous, sincere meaning. Indicates moral clarity. Popular classic girl’s name.

102 Yukino (雪乃) – “snow field”.

Tranquil, pristine wintry image. Yukino beautifully captures the serenity of freshly fallen snow. Unusual girl’s name.

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