17 Japanese Tattoo Phrases

Looking for some interesting JapaneseHow do you choose tattoo phrases?

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While most people end up getting something that doesn’t make sense…

Read More: japanese quotes tattoos

…with this guide, you can get something that JapanesePeople understand and know. Phrases that weren’t awkwardly translated from English to Japanese. What kind phrases are these “Japanese tattoo phrases” exactly? They’re native JapaneseProverbs, idioms. These words can have interesting meanings. That Japanese understand.

So, let’s take a look. Maybe you’ll find your next tattoo.

1. Shoshin kantetsu (初志貫徹) – Seeing things through until the end

ShoshinThis refers to your original objectives and goals.

Shoshin kantetsu It means to follow through with your plans and goals.

It’s a motivational phrase that means that you shouldn’t give up on what you started.

japanese tattoo phrases

2. Ishin denshin (以心伝心) – Understanding each other without saying it in words

This poetic expression describes a situation in which you are able to understand someone without the need for words.

It also uses the beautiful kanji character for heart or 心 twice in the phrase.

japanese tattoo phrases

3. Isshoukenmei (一生懸命) – Having intense determination

This motivating phrase reflects intense determination.

The kanji characters isshou (一生), meaning life time, also adds to the phrase.

It is a determination so strong that your life is at stake.

japanese tattoo phrases

4. Ichiji ga banji (一事が万事) – Understanding one thing can lead to understanding everything else

This phrase can serve as a reminder to keep your eyes on the prize and not get distracted by all of it.

It can literally be translated to “one thing is ten thousand things.”

japanese tattoo phrases

5. Omoitatta ga kichijitsu (思い立ったが吉日) – The best day to start is now

If you always find yourself feeling like you can’t keep resolutions, this phrase is the perfect one.

This means that the best day to start is the day you have an idea.

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It’s a phrase that can make sure that you don’t procrastinate!

japanese tattoo phrases

6. Katte kabuto no o o shimeyo (勝って兜の緒を締めよ) – Don’t relax after winning, but prepare for the next

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Kabuto, a traditional Japanese food, is JapaneseThe warrior’s hat.

This expression emphasizes the fact that you must prepare for your next battle, even if you win.

It’s important not to get too proud after winning or being successful.

This phrase suggests that you should remain humble and work hard.

japanese tattoo phrases

7. Kahou wa nete mate (果報は寝て待て) – Luck comes to those who wait

It’s easy to start to feel anxious when things are not going the way you want them to.

Since it’s not possible to control luck, this phrase means that it’s better to wait and let luck happen.


8. Shippai wa seikou no moto (失敗は成功の基) – Failure is the basis of success

Shippai refers to failure and seikou refers to success.

Although they may seem opposites, this phrase combines them and reminds us that success is not possible without failure.

If you’re ever feeling down about a failure, this phrase can be uplifting to continue towards your goals.

japanese tattoo phrases

9. Shoshin wasure bekarazu (初心忘るべからす)- Don’t forget the feeling of being a beginner

This phrase embodies the essence of the JapaneseCulture that focuses on the basics of every skill.

Even if you become highly skilled at a craft or profession, it’s important not to forget the basics and the essence of when you started.

It’s about being humble and true to your roots.

japanese tattoo phrases

10. Shinra banshou (森羅万象) – All that exists in the nature and the universe

If you’re looking for an all encompassing phrase, this means everything in the universe and nature.

It has a deep meaning that can help you to be aware of the vastness and smallness of the universe.

11. Warau kado ni wa fuku kitaru (笑う門には福来る) – A place with laughter brings luck

This saying means that laughter can bring you luck.

You don’t have to take things too seriously if you are prone to taking things too seriously. It is possible to enjoy the moment and laugh at yourself.

japanese tattoo phrases

12. Tenka musou (天下無双) – Something unique and doesn’t exist anywhere else

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Tenka(天下) means the world and this phrase describes something that is unique and doesn’t exist anywhere else.

It is an important phrase to celebrate everyone’s individuality and distinctiveness.

japanese tattoo phrases

13. Muga muchuu (無我夢中) – Being extremely concentrated and absorbed in something

This is a term that refers to being so involved in something that you forget about yourself. It includes the kanji character nothingness (無) and dream (夢). If you’re passionate about something it is common to fall into a state of intense concentration forgetting about everything else except the task at hand.

japanese tattoo phrases

14. Momo kuri san nen kaki hachi nen (桃栗三年柿八年) – Achieving things take time

The literal translation of this phrase is that “peach and chestnut take three years but persimmon takes eight”. This refers to the time required for these trees produce fruit. It’s a great phrase that uses metaphors to show that success and achievement comes with time.

japanese tattoo phrases

15. Yuu yuu ji teki (悠々自適) – Living true to yourself

It’s common to be distracted by outside influences. This can make you live a life that’s not true to yourself. This phrase represents someone who doesn’t get fazed by other people’s opinions and lifestyles, but continues to live according to their own values.

japanese tattoo phrases

16. Fuukou meibi (風光明媚) – The beauty of the nature and landscape

This expression expresses appreciation for the beauty and surroundings.

It uses particularly eloquent kanji characters such as wind (風) and light (光).

Fuukou meibEven if your mind seems cluttered, i can help you to be more mindful of gratitude for nature.

japanese tattoo phrases

17. Zento youyou (前途洋々) – a bright hope for the future

This is a great phrase for people who are easily pessimistic but need to be reminded to remain hopeful.

This phrase is filled with optimism and hope for the future.

japanese tattoo phrases


You are now familiar with a number of JapaneseYou can also find tattoo phrases.

Are you interested in learning more? You might be interested in this additional JapaneseHere are some tattoo phrases.

Which was your favourite?

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