Hedgehog Tattoos: Symbolism, Meanings & More

Hedgehog Tattoos: Symbolism, Meanings & More

You’ve probably seen one of these animals at some time or another. In some countries, they like to hang out in human gardens, while they are also popular pets in the U.S. and worldwide celebrities on YouTube. With that in mind, what’s with Hedgehog tattoos?

Today we’re going to tell you why Hedgehogs have become a popular choice for eclectic and beautiful skin art and we think that you’ll be surprised when you hear the reasons. They’ve got symbology and even myths about them across the world, as it turns out, so read on to find out more about Hedgehogs and their skin art popularity!


What is the History of Hedgehog Tattoos?

When it comes to Hedgehogs, there’s quite a rich history, as these cute little pincushions have been around for approximately 15 million years.

They get around too, apparently, as their 17 species are widely distributed, so that you’ll find them in Central Asia, Africa, Europe, the Middle East, and the United States as well – though U.S. Hedgehogs are pets there, rather than a native species.

As such, for as long as people have been getting tattoos in these countries, Hedgehogs have definitely been a skin art option that was ‘on the table’, but depending on where you go, the symbolism of the ‘hedgie’ can actually vary quite a bit.

Since Hedgehogs have such a wild and varying reputation, let’s take a closer look at what they symbolize with an eye for locale so that you are getting a more comprehensive view of the hidden meanings of Hedgehogs for your tattoo designs!


What Do Hedgehog Tattoos Symbolize?

First and foremost, as a general symbolism, most agree that Hedgehogs represent a combination of cuteness and attitude! With those adorable long noses and handsome little faces, these little guys and gals are still armored with spikes that are ready to enforce a ‘hands-off’ policy when a Hedgie feels threatened.

In Mongolia, however, these spiky creatures are considered unlucky, especially if they walk into your home! Early Mongolians believed that this was because of the way that they walked with their heads-down. After all, how good an animal could they be, if they were always trying to hide their faces?

Despite their suspicion, Mongolian folklore does admit that the Hedgehog was known for being clever, adding a little more depth to the symbolism behind this animal that you could incorporate into your tattoo.

Egyptians considered the Hedgehog to be a lucky animal and there are even carvings of ships with Hedgehog-faces on the hull! Hedgehog amulets were also made and they have been found in many burial chambers, suggesting that even Egyptian royalty and the priesthood viewed this animal quite favorably. Lucky, clever, possibly morally questionable — Hedgehogs have some surprisingly complex symbolism!


What Do Hedgehog Tattoos Mean?

The meaning behind your Hedgehog tattoos is going to be up to you, but we can tell you a little about the meanings of some that we have seen.

A popular meaning is, of course, the ‘tough but cute’ interpretation, and nothing quite gets that across like a Hedgehog does.

It can also represent someone who has had a rough time in life, though, who looks cute but has developed spiky armor to protect them from the world.

Then you’ve also got the gamers out there who like tattoos, who might well choose the iconic ‘Sonic the Hedgehog’ as a statement to express that they themselves are clever, fast, and a little ‘punk rock’ in the bargain.

Finally, in many households or the gardens behind them, these animals are beloved pets, and so sometimes you’ll even see Hedgehog tattoos that are memorials. This is definitely an animal that you can get creative with when it comes to meanings and color combinations, so it’s worth considering for some skin art of your very own.


Where Do Hedgehog Tattoos Usually Go?

Hedgehog tattoos are a popular ankle tattoo, putting this cute creature in an even cuter place where it can be displayed or hidden at will – much like the Hedgehog can do themselves! That said, you’ll see outer arm Hedgehogs and even fingertip Hedgehog faces for those owners who are cute and a bit on the bold side.

The upper arm is also a popular spot for Multi-purpose Hedgehog tattoos or even for memorials, though for the latter and for fans of these adorable animals, backpieces are certainly not unheard of. As these creatures come in many colors, with the mix of softness and spike they make quite unique and interesting displays of skin artistry.


Characteristics and Styles of Hedgehog Tattoos

You see a lot of differences in the Hedgehog tattoos that are out there because this really is an animal with a whole lot of personality. With the right rendering of the spikes, for instance, that defensive armor is almost like a mohawk, adding extra attitude to certain Hedgehog tattoos and subsequently, their owners.

Others focus on the cuteness to advertise a bit of their own, with a Hedgehog showing its belly to indicate vulnerability or a willingness to open-up for those who dare the spikes outside. Different styles of tattooing also make a big impact. Photorealistic tattoos can hold an amazing amount of detail and Hedgies are a worthy subject.

New School can even bring cuteness overload to the table, somehow taking the Hedgehogs natural ‘adorable factor’ and magnifying it by 100. It will be up to you, of course, what your Hedgehog tattoo will look like and express, so you want to take a little time to plan the perfect Hedgehog for the job.

Just be sure to look at a few different styles once you know what you want – often they can make your unique design even better, so it’s well-worth the time to discover all of your artistic options!


In closing

Whether your Hedgehog tattoo is a statement of your own ferocious cuteness, cleverness, or suspicious behavior (if we’re going with Mongolian interpretation), with the right artist your tattoo will definitely be a winner.

These beautiful creatures have captivated imaginations around the world and their many colors and unique shapes really make for some of the most interesting artwork you’ll ever see. Now that you know a little more about them it’s time to answer the really important question – what’s your Hedgehog tattoo going to look like?  We can’t wait to see!

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