Sun Tattoo: Meaning & History Explained

Not many people know this, but sun tattoos have a lot of symbolism attached to them.

They can mean different things to different people, but often signify big concepts such as passion, energy, and even life itself.

Sun tattoos are also popular because their round form can be interpreted artistically in many unique ways.

If you’re considering getting a sun tattoo, keep reading to learn more about the meaning and history behind these fiery designs.

Symbolism Of The Sun Throughout History

The sun is an integral part of life on planet earth and therefore its importance and cultural significance to people around the world and throughout history cannot be understated.

This means that naming every instance of the sun as an important cultural symbol throughout history would surely deserve its own article!

That said, there are some prominent examples that we can touch on.

In ancient Egypt, the sun god Ra was one of the most important deities, and the sun was seen as a source of warmth and nourishment.

In Greece, the sun god Apollo was associated with healing and prophecy, and the sun was seen as a source of knowledge and enlightenment.

In China, the sun goddess Xihe was seen as a protector of livestock, and the sun was seen as a source of strength and prosperity.

Today, the sun is still seen as a symbol of life, and it is often used as a metaphor for hope, growth, and regeneration.

Whether we see it as a source of light or a source of heat, the sun continues to be an important part of our lives.

The sun has held deep meaning in cultures around the world throughout history.

Sun Tattoo Meaning & Symbolism

The sun is literally the driving force responsible for life on earth.

So, it’s no surprise that there are many different meanings placed upon this fiery ball in the sky.

That said, for many, sun tattoos have come to represent three things: life, energy, and passion.

Let’s take a look at each of these meanings in detail.


The sun is one of the key forces behind the existence of all living things on our planet. Therefore, it has naturally been adopted by many as a symbol for life itself.

However, the concept of “life” is somewhat vague — which can be a good thing!

This ambiguity can be interpreted in many ways, and you are free to interpret this symbolism however you like.

For example, the sun could symbolize your respect for all living things.

Or, it could represent the temporary nature of life and serve as a reminder to live every day to the fullest.

It’s truly up to you.


The sun is one of the most important symbols of energy.

It is the largest source of renewable energy, and it provides an endless supply of power that can be used to generate electricity, heat homes, and power vehicles.

The sun is also a powerful symbol of life and growth.

Its warmth and light give us the energy we need to live and thrive. In many cultures, the sun is also seen as a representation of hope and prosperity.

Its presence can chase away the darkness and bring new life to the world.

For all these reasons, the sun is an important symbol of energy that can be celebrated in the form of a tattoo.


When it comes to passion, there is no greater symbol than the sun.

For centuries, the sun has been revered as a source of life, light, and warmth.

It is no wonder, then, that the sun has come to represent passion in many cultures.

From the heat of the desert to the rays of the tropics, the sun embodies the energy and power of passion.

For some, the sun is a reminder of summer love affairs or long-awaited vacations.

For others, it represents the fire of ambition or the warmth of family bonds.

No matter what it symbolizes, the sun is sure to bring a touch of passion in the form of a tattoo.

7 Sun Tattoo Examples

The sun can be interpreted artistically in many unique ways — from cartoony to refined.

Here are seven examples of our favourite sun tattoo designs.

Cute Sun With Face Tattoo

This cute sun design includes a feminine-looking face and small dotted accents.

We appreciate this design for its symmetry and thoughtful design.

Simple Line Sun Tattoo

This simple design is made up of thin lines — giving it a refined look.

This style of sun tattoo would be great for those interested in a small, low-profile tattoo.

Sun With Flowers Tattoo

This design is a good example of how other symbolic flourishes can be integrated into your sun tattoo design.

In this case, the artist has added flowers to accent a classic sun design.

Modern Sun Tattoo

This design takes things in an interesting direction with its thick lines and refined face.

Colourful Sun Band Tattoo

This design utilizes bright colours to create not just a sun, but a sunny beach scene.

We also like this tattoo for its interesting band design which wraps around the arm.

Realistic Sun Tattoo

This colourful design depicts the sun in a more realistic way — including bright reds and orange bursts of flame.

Cute Cartoon Sun Tattoo

This little design is a great reminder that tattoos don’t have to be too serious.

We appreciate the lighthearted and goofy nature of this little doodle-style tattoo.

Should You Get A Sun Tattoo?

Sun tattoos are interesting.

They are a rare example of a tattoo design that has become incredibly popular without becoming tacky.

This is likely because the sun is not a fad. Instead, it is a timeless symbol of life on our planet.

The sun can also be depicted in many different ways — from photo realistic to highly stylized.

This versatility means that you can work with your tattoo artist to develop a sun design that is unique to you and your personality!

So, for these reasons, choosing a sun design for your next tattoo would be a very safe choice.

Final Thoughts

Sun tattoos are popular for a reason: they can look amazing while maintaining strong and powerful meanings.

Whether you see the sun as a symbol of life, energy, and passion, or you just love the summertime, there’s a sun tattoo out there for you.

Do your research before you get inked so you can be sure you’re getting a design that means something special to you.